Modified on: 19/10/2023
When did hemp become illegal in the uk and europe (and why did it happen)? Here is the answer!
If you are a fan of marijuana and CBD cannabis, you will surely want to know why tobacco is legal — and why alcohol is too — while weed is not.
In short, we know how harmful smoking and alcohol are to health. It leads to the development of numerous diseases, even fatal, and making consumers dependent … While cannabis does not lead to death, not even through overdose, nor does it make us a burden of the system. National Health.
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Why is marijuana illegal in The UK and Europe, and many other countries, unlike other highly harmful substances to humans?
Many people will tell you, “Because it is an outstanding substance,” but the answer is different … as racism started in the US a long time ago.
Racism and Cannabis Prohibition: What’s the Correlation?
To understand the link between illegal cannabis and xenophobia, we have to travel to the United States and back to the early 1900s. In this period, the herb was still little used by the Americans but consumed regularly by Mexicans and other ethnic minorities.
From 1910 onwards, with the Mexican Revolution, Mexico’s citizens began to migrate to the USA, bringing with them the custom of smoking weed for recreational and therapeutic purposes (nowadays legal CBD oil is well-known for its medical function).
A state of panic.
If there was already an enormous terror of Mexican immigrants among Americans, the use of cannabis and the psychoactive effects of the substance have made the US population even more frightened.
From here, urban legends began to arise and circulate about the use of weed, including the fact that it stimulated the “bloodlust” and led to acting violently and evilly.
It seems that racism, combined with terror, has led to the demonization of marijuana and its consequent prohibition urged by Harry Jacob Anslinger, a US official who was formerly inspector of the Bureau of Prohibition during the ban on alcohol.
Harry J. Anslinger and the war on cannabis
In 1931, Anslinger became head of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics and waged a real war against marijuana, which he placed on the drug list.
There were no studies on hemp at the time, so it was not yet known that the psychoactive substance of cannabis is THC, while numerous others (including CBD) are highly beneficial for humans.
For this reason, the substance included in the list of drugs was “marijuana” and not “tetrahydrocannabinol”. Moreover, worldwide prohibition has led to the permanence of cannabis among illegal substances. Only the diffusion of CBD cannabis has brought to light the benefits of CBD and the non-psychoactivity of this cannabinoid.
The fight against cannabis led to the commonality of the consumption of weed with the main crime events of those times, so much so that Harry J. Anslinger renamed it The killer drug.
To confirm the racism theory, you need to know that Anslinger’s battle was pressing that marijuana smokers were ethnic minorities, including African Americans and Mexicans, and that smoking led these people to violence and mental imbalance.
A probable Xenophobia led him to affirm phrases such as the following:
“There are 100,000 total marijuana smokers in the United States, and most of them are Afro-Americans, Hispanics, Filipinos, and entertainers. Their satanic music, jazz and swing, derive from the use of marijuana. This marijuana causes white women to seek sexual relationships with blacks, entertainers and any other”.
“I wish I could show you what a small marijuana cigarette can do to one of our degenerate Spanish-speaking residents. It is why our problem is so big; the largest percentage of our population is made up of Spanish-speaking people, most of whom are mentally low due to social and racial conditions”.
Delusional, sure, but his position led him to win his war. In 1937, US President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed the Marijuana Tax Act, which made hemp (including industrial and medical hemp) illegal throughout the United States of America.
The demonization of cannabis started in America in the early twentieth century. Still, it spread worldwide, so much so that in 1938 the revision of the International Opium Convention came into force (a revision signed in 1925), which included cannabis to substances prohibited drugs.
International Opium Convention: Another global blow to marijuana
The International Opium Convention, signed in The Hague in January 1912 and revised in 1925, was the first international treaty for the control of drug trafficking, signed by:
It gained worldwide validity in 1919 when it was incorporated into the Treaty of Versailles.
As you have read, the rectification of the Convention combined cannabis, hashish and derivatives with prohibited substances (which, before, basically included cocaine and opium). The text allowed the production and use of cannabis, hashish, and derivative products for medical and scientific purposes only, except for hashish charas, prohibited under any circumstances — since, according to Egypt, used for recreational purposes only —.
In 1961, the International Opium Convention was replaced by the Single Convention on Narcotic Drugs, the first international treaty to officially prohibit cannabis.
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