Until December 2018, the U.S. government was the only major industrialized nation to prohibit hemp cultivation—but with passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, the U.S. finally ended decades of this misguided policy. Hemp is of one of the earth’s most versatile and sustainable crops. Hemp requires little in the way of herbicides or insecticides, and lends itself well to organic farming systems. Grown in rotation with corn and soy, it aerates soil and controls weed and pest pressure. Hemp fiber can replace virgin timber pulp in paper, glass fibers in construction and automotive composites, and pesticide-intensive cotton in textiles. And hemp is an excellent ingredient in body care: high in omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids, hemp oil helps make our soap lather smoother and less drying and adds superb moisturizing properties to our lotions and balms. Dr. Bronner’s led the fight to legalize hemp cultivation and supported Vote Hemp and the Hemp Industry Association’s legal, media, grassroots, and lobbying efforts to re-commercialize industrial hemp.
We also believe that marijuana should be legal, for both medical and recreational use. Many responsible adults use cannabis safely as medicine to manage and treat illness and disease, in place of much more addicitive and harmful opiates and other pharmaceuticals. As well many adults responsibly and safely elevate their consciousness and appreciation for life, or find meditative spaces after a long day’s work, instead of drinking much more problematic alcohol.
Dr. Bronner’s support was instrumental in the successful effort to legalize marijuana in Washington D.C.
It’s time to end the outdated, racist policy of cannabis prohibition that shreds productive citizens’ lives and families for no good reason, disproportionately affecting people of color, while resources are diverted away from real crimes.
A more compassionate approach to our national drug policy would treat addiction to hard drugs as a health problem like alcoholism, giving addicts the treatment they need to beat their addictions, instead of locking them up in jail. Much of the harm attributed to drugs is the result of criminalizing their use and abuse, which ruins the lives of otherwise law-abiding, non-violent citizens, and hands massive profits to violent criminal syndicates operating in the black market.
Psychedelic medicines, when used responsibly in therapeutic settings, are effective tools for awakening compassion, healing trauma and catalyzing progressive social change. We support the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, whose primary project is to bring MDMA-assisted psychotherapy through the FDA approval process for the treatment of chronic, treatment-resistant posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD). But our larger goal is to see psychedelic medicine responsibly integrated into American and global culture, readily available to those who most need it, while helping the rest of us open our hearts and minds to each other and the wonderful, living world we are all part of.