California Assembly Endorses Industrial Hemp

California Assembly Endorses Industrial Hemp
Posted by FoM on November 19, 1999 at 21:20:09 PT
Staff Editorial, The Pacifican U. of the Pacific
Source: U-WIRE
The California Assembly recently passed a resolution to support the legalization of industrial hemp. This resolution says that California farmers can grow industrial hemp under certain regulations which do not interfere with marijuana laws. 
It was supported and written by Sam Clauder, who is the political director of C.A.I.R. (Campaign for Agricultural and Industrial Renewal). The resolution was introduced by Assembly member Virginia Storm-Martin, who says, "Industrial hemp is not marijuana, but rather a non-intoxicating plant that has been cultivated and used in a multitude of ways around the world for millennia." She continues by saying, "Prohibiting California farmers from growing this potentially highly profitable crop makes about as much botanical sense as prohibiting gardeners from growing poppies because one variety is the source of opium." Indeed, the levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) found in industrial hemp is less than 1 percent, which is not high enough to intoxicate a person who inhales it. Marijuana, used for recreational purposes, must contain at least 3 percent concentration of THC in order to have an intoxicating effect. Most recreational marijuana contains 5 percent to 20 percent THC. The resolution, however, did not receive support from the California Republican Party, as they rejected it on September 25 at their convention in Southern California. One of the main reasons that they chose not to support it was that some believe that the legalization of industrial hemp will open a doorway for recreational marijuana to be legalized. This same argument was used to oppose the legalization of medical marijuana. The DEA, the department responsible for regulating drugs, is paranoid and ludicrous in its definition of an intoxicating drug. Recently, 20 tons of birdseed and thousands of health bars from Canada were seized by U.S. Customs because the DEA claimed that they contained traces of THC. Does the DEA actually think that people are going to eat birdseed in order to intoxicate themselves? Do they think that allowing birdseed into the U.S. will result in the legalization of recreational marijuana? Allowing farmers to grow industrial hemp is different from allowing farmers to grow marijuana. The public seems to understand the difference between the two and not call for a radical change in marijuana laws just because hemp has been legalized. Hemp has been used throughout this nation's history and still has many uses beneficial to our environment and economy. Between 1942 and 1945, hemp was used for maritime rope; it required little water to grow and nourished the soil. Hemp yields four times as much paper per acre as trees, textile material eight times stronger than cotton, building materials stronger than wood, biodegradable plastics and clean-burning diesel fuel. The benefits and possibilities resulting from the legalization of industrial hemp far outweigh the paranoia expressed by the DEA; farmers and California residents will certainly benefit from this resolution. Published: November 19, 1999(C) 1999 The Pacifican via U-WIRE  Copyright  1995-1999 Excite IncRelated Articles & Web Site:Californians For Industrial Renewal State Assembly Endorses Hemp - 10/20/99 Orange - Summer of Sam - 9/23/99 
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