The giggle factor that seems to surround hemp
often gets exaggerated on television such that
the underlying storyline becomes "hemp is a
drug," even if it is clearly stated
is a very powerful medium, and
it can both help and hurt our cause. While print
lends itself well to explaining shades of
grey, television lately is all about 30-second
sound bites. That can
change, however, if we as a culture want it to.
Please remember that Standing
Silent Nation will be aired on PBS on
Tuesday, July 3 at 10:00 PM (please check
your local listings). If you would like an
email reminder sent to you, click
here and select the "Send Me A Reminder"
button just below the "Watch Trailer" window.
An excellent follow-up to the nationwide
showing of "Standing Silent Nation" would be
the airing of the documentary "Hemp and
the Rule of Law" on cable local access
stations. You can make this happen! Filmmaker
Kevin Balling has agreed to grant
copyright permission to local access
stations to show his hemp documentary. Please contact
us if you are interested in showing the
film in your
You can get your very own DVD of
"Hemp and the Rule of Law" with a donation of $45 to Vote Hemp.
We need and truly appreciate your support!
Weekly News Update Editor
|Feds Shield Our Farms' Moral Fiber
By Steve Wiegand
The Sacramento Bee
June 21, 2007
Sometimes there are aspects of lawmaking that
remind one of scenes from "Alice in
Wonderland," such as when Alice has a
circular conversation with the hookah-smoking
This came to mind Tuesday morning, whilst
sitting in Room 113 at the Capitol and
observing the state Senate Agriculture Committee.
The topic under consideration was hemp. Hemp
is an oft-misunderstood plant. Many people
think it's the same as marijuana, when
actually they're just good friends.
|On a High: Is Weed the New Green?
June 21, 2007
"Plans are afoot for a great expansion of the
hemp industry." So proclaimed the Department
of Agriculture in its rousing 1942 movie,
"Hemp for Victory," which urged farmers to
rally to the cause. "Hemp for mooring ships!
Hemp for tow lines! Hemp for tackle and
gear!" The plant's long, strong fibers twist
easily into rope, which made it useful for
parachute webbing. The war effort was
imperilled when Japan's seizure of the
Philippines curtailed America's supply.
But despite the enthusiasm of wartime
planners, hemp never took root (as it were).
Taxes and regulations, introduced in 1937 but
minimally enforced during the war, kicked in
again during the 1950s. Hemp is a variety of
the Cannabis plant, which also produces
marijuana — though industrial hemp has a
smaller concentration of the mind-blowing
compound, THC, than the smokable stuff.
America's puritans, not to mention
nylon-makers, wanted production shut down.
|Hemp Once Grown around Lexington to Support War
By Bill Steinbacher-Kemp
June 24, 2007
LEXINGTON, KY — In the summer of 1943,
more than 4,000 acres of marijuana being
grown around Lexington. The buyer for this
crop, though, wasn't some downstate gangster
or crime syndicate. No, in this instance, the
buyer was none other than Uncle Sam.
During World War II, industrial hemp, a
variant of marijuana which contains lower
levels of the psychoactive ingredient THC,
was used to make rope and other items, such
as parachutes, harnesses and shroud lines for
Hemp has been around for a long time.
Although not as valuable as other fiber crops
such as flax, the long, soft fibers of hemp
were put to good use by early pioneers to
fashion myriad items, from twine to coarse
fabrics. In the early 1900s, Kentucky was the
center of U.S. hemp production, though there
were several other areas where it was still
commercially grown, including northern
Native Americans Growing Hemp Find that Tribal Sovereignty Collides with Government Policy
Native American Times
June 26, 2007
Alex White Plume and his extended Lakota
family, or tiospaye, are known on South
Dakota's Pine Ridge Reservation for the
determination and industriousness with which
they have faced the hard economic choices
imposed by history and reservation life.
Undeterred by poor soil and uncertain weather
on their land, the White Plumes planted
alfalfa, barley and corn. They raised horses
and buffalo. All of which brought the family
little better than a subsistence life and
continued reliance on government subsidies.
Still, the family was resolved to achieve
economic self-sufficiency, thus preserving
the Lakota traditions and bonds that sustain
the identity of family and tribe.
So, after much research, and under Alex's
leadership, the family planted industrial
hemp, the non-psychoactive relative of
marijuana. As Alex discovered, and as told in
Standing Silent Nation, the new P.O.V.
documentary recounting the White Plumes'
tragi-comic adventures in hemp growing, the
world is in the midst of a boom market for
hemp products. The demand is no less in the
United States, with this anomaly — hemp
products can be sold in this country, but
hemp growing is a felony. Alex wasn't out to
challenge the logic of the federal
government's drug war, but figured that
tribal sovereignty allowed him to plant hemp
as surely as it allowed casinos elsewhere. He