Rehabilitating Hemp’s Image
Campaign for Liberty has frequently reported on the progress of rehabilitating hemp’s image and rescuing the crop (which has deep historical roots in our country) from the stigma it’s been given since being classified as a Schedule 1 narcotic in 1970, a victim of overzealous government regulators wildly swinging their broad brush.
This week, Rolling Stone covered the history of hemp legalization and the recent successes achieved by Representative Thomas Massie and others, following years of leadership by C4L Chairman Ron Paul on the issue. Their article also describes how an amendment to the Food Bill allowing growing hemp for agricultural and research purposes is already making a positive economic impact, noting:
Mike Lewis, a military veteran and food security expert who founded the group in 2012 when his brother returned from the war in Afghanistan with a brain injury, now has grant money for a hemp textile project and part-time work for twelve people. This in a state with a 19% poverty rate. “Appalachia has a strong history of textiles,” Lewis observes. “In my vision that’s what’s missing from rural communities, ag income. People used to survive off tobacco. If it has to be hemp for textiles, let’s do it. People call hemp a panacea, a pipe dream, but look how many people came together from all walks of life in Kentucky to make this happen.”
Will this be a short-lived resurgence for hemp or the start of a renaissance that helps jumpstart moribund state economies? Only grassroots Americans will decide, and that’s one reason Campaign for Liberty will continue working to end senseless government regulation on hemp.