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Be a Hemphead, Not a Pothead

Updated on October 15, 2009


The legalization of marijuana has riled up many doctors, potheads, and believe it or not, environmentalists! Just about every pothead knows the hemp plant produces marijuana, but how many know it can save our planet?

As environmentalist Paula E. Heaney once put it, “Trying to get high from industrial grade hemp would be like trying to get drunk off vinegar.” So why does the federal government resist allowing hemp production? A century ago, hemp was still legal to grow in the US, but it required a labor intensive process to transform the plant into fabric, making it very expensive compared to cotton. The decorticator’s arrival, which was basically what the cotton gin was to cotton, signaled a new era when hemp would outpace cotton as the most cost-effective plant to process into clothing.

In 1935, DuPont Chemical Corporation patented a new synthetic fiber called nylon. If DuPont had its way, nylon, not hemp, would be the new dream material for clothing production in America. Convenient for DuPont, passage of the Marijuana Tax Bill in 1937 made all strains of hemp illegal. The Marijuana Tax Bill allowed DuPont to become the large corporation it is today, because hemp growers could no longer compete as paper makers.

One advantage of using hemp is making paper. But the outlawing of hemp allowed companies like DuPont to supply society’s paper needs with tree fiber.According to Raintree Nutrition Inc., Rainforests once covered 15% of the earth’s land surface; they now cover only 6%, and in less than forty years, they could be gone.In fewer than fifty years, more than half of the world’s tropical rainforests have fallen victim to fire and chain saw, and the rate of discretion is still accelerating. More than 20,000 acres of rainforest are burned every day, more than 150 acres lost every minute, and 78 million acres lost every year!

Hemp requires less land to grow, and nearly the whole plant is usable. Hemp can be used for clothing, ropes, shoes, paints, lotions, soaps, inks, house insulation, plastics, and even fuel. Oil made from hemp seed can be used as an alternative to petroleum diesel fuel. This would supply the same amount of engine power needed to fun a car while reducing the release of toxic carbon monoxide. Hence, legalizing hemp could combat global warming.

Help to correct the misconception of hemp as only destructive, and be sure to support hemp industries by buying their products. Mot natural food stores carry hemp merhcnadise along with a good number of online retailers. Still reading my article? Go to and find other pro-hemp organizations!


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    • mr williams profile image

      mr williams 8 years ago from Norfolk, Virginia

    • profile image

      Journalist Nikki 8 years ago

      You are absoulutely right. As a matter of fact, George Washington and Thomas Jefferson actually grew hemp. Hemp was illegalized for corporate interests.

    • someonewhoknows profile image

      someonewhoknows 8 years ago from south and west of canada,north of ohio

      You should mention that the constitution ,First American flag,clothing and historical books like the bible were all made using hemp paper.George Washington encouraged American farmers to grow hemp for ship sails and rope,as well as clothing since before the united states existed.