Pubdate: Sun, 01 Aug 2004
Source: Lexington Herald-Leader (KY)
Copyright: 2004 Lexington Herald-Leader
Author: Gatewood Galbraith
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Popular)
Bookmark: (Cannabis - Medicinal)
Bookmark: (Hemp)


Cannabis: A History is an outstanding treatment of the subject which
should be required reading for every parent and legislator in the
country concerned with America's failed "drug war."

The book puts to shame any purported basis of the government for
criminalizing the plant and everyone associated with it and does so in
an entertaining and educational fashion. Most important, it does so by
simply reporting the facts. From mankind's earliest discovery and
primitive use of cannabis to the present-day effort to vilify the
plant and everyone utilizing it, this handsome books covers it all in
digestible detail.

The interaction between humans and cannabis is as old as mankind
itself. From our earliest exploration of which plants would service
our needs for fiber, food, fuel and medicine, we have selected and
cultivated a variety of them over the past 10,000 years, with most of
them specific to limited localities. Cannabis, however, has the unique
ability to grow in most areas of the world and to furnish the best
natural base for each of those necessities of life.

Cannabis, referred to as hemp when grown for industrial-textile use,
produces the longest and strongest natural fiber on earth and can be
woven into cloth as fine as silk or as tough as canvas and rope. It
makes the most durable paper in the world without wasting the forests.
And hemp seed is one of nature's most nutritious foods.

Perhaps most important, hemp as a biomass produces methanol, which
could give farmers an opportunity to earn a living growing fuel for
our automobiles just like the corn growers producing ethanol.

Cannabis, when grown for ingestion as medicine, is today called
marijuana. It has been in use as an analgesic and stress reliever for
thousands of years, in hundreds of cultures.

Before being made illegal in 1937, it was the basis of more than 50
percent of the medicines on earth. It is the safest, most therapeutic
substance known to man and indicated for use in the treatment of
cancer, nausea (especially as a result of chemotherapy or radiation
therapy), migraine headaches, glaucoma, menstrual cramps, childbirth,
muscle spasms, Tourette's syndrome, asthma and emphysema.

In many of these cases, smoking is the preferred format of delivery
because it provides immediate relief, but the plant also can be eaten
or used as a topical lotion.

Author Martin Booth explains in clear fashion how this remarkable
plant, such a friend to man through the centuries, came to be illegal,
and what a sordid tale it is.

He traces the big money and special interests who engineered the
Draconian anti-cannabis laws, which have resulted in the premature
deaths of tens of thousands of Americans and the criminalization of
millions more.

Some law enforcement officials, protecting bloated budgets, will hate
this book because it methodically annihilates their public rationale
for the present laws, using facts drawn directly from government
studies, paid for by taxpayer's dollars.

Every other person who reads this book will appreciate its scope, its
depth and that it is a reliable source for the truth about cannabis in
a politically untrue world.

Book details cannabis' uses, criminalization.
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