CANNABIS THROUGH THE DECADES

Posted on 05 November 2015

Though historians document cannabis use as far back as the Abyssinian civilization in the 8th century BC, its cultural progress over the past 70 years has been meteoric.

 

I’ll admit it, I was born in 1960, obviously as a baby I was unaware of the widespread use of marijuana among the white upper middle class hippies and what was to become known as the free love generation. What I knew about growing up in the 60’s was this group of “hippies” was professing peace and love and non violence, all things that even as a young child I recognized as good values. I wanted to be part of that and oh, yeah I wanted a maxi coat and a VW Bus!

 

Then the 70’s liberated marijuana from association with other narcotics! Even though the 70’s was a politically tumultuous time, 11 states actually decriminalized marijuana, with Oregon being the first and Nebraska last, Alaska, California, Colorado, New York, North Carolina, Maine, Minnesota and Ohio all saw the light. The people rocked out, my friends and I were right there with them.

 

By the 80’s, Pres. George Bush declared a “war on drugs” and Pres. Reagan called for a “nationwide crusade against drugs, a sustained relentless effort to rid America of this scourge” Yet drugs became a status symbol at venues like Studio 54, and were associated with flash and wealth. But we all knew the real scourge was the enormous shoulder pads that hit the fashion scene.

 

During the 90’s, enlightened California passed Proposition 215 legalizing medical marijuana use for AIDS, cancer and other serious conditions. However, the image of the stereotypical stoner, was a young white male, playing endless video games in their parent’s basement. That image has been hard to shake.

 

At the turn of the Century and the tragedy of September 11th, the U.S. became sober by day and secret stoners by night. Anxieties about the future, the economy and climate change were rampant.

 

Enter the 2010 decade. The internet has bombarded us with daily images of poverty and terrorism. With two recessions, and unemployment high, people have become cynical and pessimistic. An attitude of “enjoy life while you can” leads to greater awareness of appreciating life’s journey. AnnaBís’ motto, “Enjoy the Journey” has become the motto of a new generation.

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