After 56 Years, Hemp Makes a Comeback
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After 56 Years, Hemp Makes a Comeback
Posted by CN Staff on October 16, 2013 at 07:07:24 PT
By Niraj Chokshi
Source: Washington Post
USA -- It’s been more than half a century, but hemp is back. Sort of. Earlier this month, a Colorado man harvested the crop for what advocates say was the first time in 56 years. The legality of his actions are somewhat unclear, but they represent a promising turning point for proponents of the versatile plant that can be used in fabrics, textiles, yarns, paper and carpeting.“I’m much more hopeful than I have been,” says Tom Murphy, national outreach coordinator for Vote Hemp, a nonprofit that advocates for legal changes that would allow farmers to grow the crop. Thanks to a confluence of state and federal policies, hemp cultivation may not be far off.
Hemp, a plant of the same species as marijuana, falls into a legal gray area. Because it contains trace levels of THC — the substance in marijuana that gets people high — it’s governed by the 1970 Controlled Substances Act. It’s not illegal to grow, but you need a Drug Enforcement Agency permit to do so. And none are currently out there, according to a July Congressional Research Service report.For a long time, no one pushed back. But then residents in Washington and Colorado voted to legalize recreational use of marijuana last November. And the Justice Department made clear in a late-August memo that it would focus its limited resources on prosecuting pot sale to minors, illegal gang activity involving the drug, interstate trafficking of it and violent crimes involving it. In other words, marijuana is still illegal, authorities said, but we don’t have the resources to prosecute low-level users and uses. Many advocates saw that as a subtle green light to Washington and Colorado. And hemp advocates say it likely applies to that plant, too.Members of both parties in the House and Senate have backed cultivation of hemp for industrial use. A House-passed version of the farm bill included a provision allowing hemp growing. And legislation in the Senate has been introduced by Sens. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), and Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.).Over the past decade and a half, more and more state legislatures have been taking up the industrial-hemp cause through a variety of initiatives, too.“Most of these have been resolutions calling for scientific, economic, or environmental studies, and some are laws authorizing planting experimental plots under state statutes,” the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service reported.Ten states have removed barriers from producing industrial hemp, according to VoteHemp, which the CRS report also cites. Those states are California, Colorado, Kentucky, Maine, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, Vermont, Washington, and West Virginia. California joined that group just a few weeks ago, when Gov. Jerry Brown signed SB 566.Eleven states have either passed bills creating commissions, authorizing research or greenlighting hemp studies, according to VoteHemp. This year alone, legislation has been introduced in 20 states. Source: Washington Post (DC) Author:  Niraj ChokshiPublished: October 15, 2013Copyright: 2013 Washington Post CompanyContact: letters Website: URL:  Hemp Archives 
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Comment #9 posted by The GCW on October 16, 2013 at 17:00:03 PT
Maybe the profane word was, prohibitionists.
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Comment #8 posted by Hope on October 16, 2013 at 13:38:06 PT
We call them ignorant all the time. 
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Comment #7 posted by mexweed on October 16, 2013 at 13:22:41 PT:
1. Rieferforestation, 2. Lobbying, 3. DEA
1. In addition to hemp farming on tree-free fields like conventional crops as by the Colorado man mentioned above, check out Hemp for Reforestation, briefly described in my comment on the other recent CN hemp-related article. Colorado has had forest damage from certain bug pests, followed by drought hitting the weakened trees, leading to horrific deadwood-fueled fires, and then where live tree roots were lacking to prevent runoff and erosion, the recent flooding disaster.Hemp farmers could be paid to gather some of each post-summer HEMP LITTER-- dead stalks, branches, etc.-- from a year's crop and have it sacked, bundled and hauled to overly dry creekbeds, ravines, gullies, erosion sites to RETARD STORMWATER RUNOFF. SEEDS on and among the stalks will drop down through the biomass, take root, hold material in place, grow and produce further litter/topsoil as PRECURSOR CROP FOR TREES. Cargotainer boxes of hempfield residues might be a profitable export crop for Coloradans-- reforestation is needed in Haiti, Saudi Arabia, the Sahara Desert etc.!2.  Mark, the line I particularly noticed in your comment to someone named Tim George was: "I have a personal vendetta against prohibitionists such as yourself, and as such, I call for the immediate resignation of your position in law enforcement." Might not be a good idea to admit personal vendetta, wanting to punish some person who did wrong does not correct the wrong (Jesus, Caneh-bosom be upon him, said turn the other cheek) rather I suggest "Forgive---> Convert---> Redeploy". Avoid anger (theatrical gesture to scare somebody), it can not be counted on to achieve any good. Try dreaming up something positive you can suggest Tim George do, such as read up on nutrition, exercise, use of 25-mg one-hitters. Think of yourself as a lobbyist not a rival enforcer.3. Re: absurdity of "Drug Enforcement"-- what "drug" are they "enforcing"? My suggestion is, they're enforcing H-ot B-urning O-verdose M-onoxide $igarette addiction, which results from the threats to a kid's future if caught with cannabis, and from the 10-1 or worse disparity between price per net weight of cannabis and $igarette tobacco-- steering kids who "smoke for status" or "to be accepted" into the cheaper, less punished nicotine alternative.  ($193-billion/year hit on US economy from $igarette smoking health damage. Oh, but somebody-- a drug company, a hospital, etc.-- is making that money?)
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Comment #6 posted by FoM on October 16, 2013 at 12:12:51 PT
The Oregon ruling is good news.
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Comment #5 posted by Mark702 on October 16, 2013 at 11:11:34 PT:
Ignorant is a bad word?
I got a message when commenting: [Please refrain from using profanity in your message]What was the offending word? Hell if I know, since there weren't any. I took out "ig norant" which I used when referring to prohibitionists. It's not profanity by any means, and the definition is "lacking knowledge or awareness in general; uneducated or unsophisticated."It's clear that anyone who is a prohibitionist is "ig norant" simply by the actual definition of the word.
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Comment #4 posted by Mark702 on October 16, 2013 at 11:09:13 PT:
Oregon Law Trumps Local Ban On Dispensaries comment: What about the line I've heard from you, Tim George, saying "we don't make the laws, we just enforce them" like so many other cops? OREGON STATE LAW has legalized medical cannabis dispensaries, that was the will of the people. This country and state was founded of, for and by the people. This is not "your" town it is ours, the citizens who voted and made our voice heard. You have shown yourself to be corrupt and unfit for duty. I have a personal vendetta against prohibitionists such as yourself, and as such, I call for the immediate resignation of your position in law enforcement.
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Comment #3 posted by runruff on October 16, 2013 at 09:51:30 PT
To see them go in our lifetime! 
 Dear jerry, 
Thanks to you, marijuana legalization is a reality. But ex-DEA heads are pressuring the Obama administration to overturn the marijuana legalization laws in Colorado and Washington. Don't let the DEA stand in our way -- make a gift today! Our opponents are threatened by our progress and will do anything they can to stop the momentum of our movement. But we’re fighting back and leading a campaign to take on the Drug Enforcement Administration. Nixon created the DEA as the machine to power his declared war on drugs. It’s a costly, ineffective institution that uses a blunt law enforcement approach to a complex public health problem. It promotes lies about marijuana and other drugs, blocks medical marijuana research and raids marijuana distributors who are operating legally under state law. It even intimidates pain management doctors and is illegally using NSA and CIA programs to spy on Americans.
We’ve had enough of the DEA and we’re doing something about it. Help us raise $10,000 by this Thursday, October 17. We’re making great progress but we still haven’t heard from you.
The DEA should not be in the business of determining which drugs are medicines, blocking scientific research, undermining state marijuana laws and using illegal practices in the name of the drug war. And it certainly should not be kicking down thousands of doors, tormenting families and wreaking havoc. Yet the DEA’s out-of-control behavior has been unchecked for 40 years -- and is even funded as “essential” during the government shutdown. With your help, we’re ready to take on the DEA. We’re working to slash its wasteful budget and building momentum for congressional hearings on its outrageous practices. We have legislation in Congress that would ensure that the DEA can’t interfere in states with marijuana legalization laws. And we’re exposing the appalling nature of the DEA, demanding real oversight and an end to its brutal, counter-productive tactics. If you want to end the war on drugs, the DEA needs to be targeted. Help us do it. Donate today. Sincerely,
Ethan Nadelmann
Executive Director
Drug Policy Alliance 
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Comment #2 posted by HempWorld on October 16, 2013 at 09:27:25 PT
Here is more info on hemp and products... it all out, it's a lot!
Hemp Materials
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Comment #1 posted by ekim on October 16, 2013 at 07:41:55 PT
Hemp hearing on value of farmers growing 
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