As we recently reported, Hemp History Week is in full effect, and it would be all but blasphemous to recognize this particular subject matter without paying proper homage to the person who may be solely responsible for keeping the awareness regarding the prohibition of hemp active during his lifetime, and that’s the late, illustrious Jack Herer.
Jack Herer aka The Emperor of Hemp aka The Hemperor is revered by most marijuana activists as one of the utmost champions that ever campaigned for the federal government to change their outmoded laws regarding the cultivation and production of hemp here in the United States.
As a matter of fact, you’d be hard-pressed to find a person who partakes that doesn’t know the name Jack Herer. I mean let’s face it, the man has a strain of cannabis that bears his name. That alone speaks volumes.
But what most tokers-of-the-trees may not be aware of is the fact that Jack initially bought into the government’s anti-marijuana propaganda campaign and believed pot was rightfully labeled as taboo.
Yup. You read that correctly, my fellow puffers-of-the-sticky-stuff.
The man whose name is now pretty much synonymous with the legalization of marijuana believed that hemp’s psychoactive cousin was indeed bad for you and made it point to refrain from consuming it.
You see, Jack wasn’t born a hippie or even a liberal, and held firm to his views regarding the consumption of pot for recreational purposes until he reached age 30. It was then that his girlfriend at the time turned him on to a few puffs and he finally came to the realization that maybe pot wasn’t as bad as the propagandists had made it out to be and decided to investigate it further.
In his well-known book, The Emperor Wears No Clothes, Jack puts great emphasis on the fact that the cannabis plant should be decriminalized or outright legalized and contends that it could be used as a renewable source of fuel, medicine, food, fiber and paper/pulp and that it can be cultivated in practically any part of the world for therapeutic as well as economical dedications.
From there Jack would go on to not only become known as one of the most influential activists in the modern day movement to legalize marijuana for any dedication we see fit, but he also made a run at the Oval Office on two different occasions, once in 1988 (1,949 votes) and again in 1992 (3,875 votes) as the candidate for the Grassroots Party.
Sadly, Jack would suffer a major stroke and heart attack in July of 2000, making it difficult to do the one thing he loved the most, speaking out about prohibition. And although he would go on to mostly recover from the occurrence, paradoxically Jack would suffer yet another heart attack on September 12, 2009 while backstage at the Hempstalk Festival in Portland, Oregon.
Unfortunately, the second heart attack caused further health complications that would ultimately claim Jack’s life at the age of 70 in April, 2010.
The Emperor Wears No Clothes has sold in excess of 700,000 copies over the course of 11 editions.
Rest in peace and keep watching over us, Jack. You’re truly missed.
Be sure to check out the attached video documentary Jack Herer- The Emperor of Hemp 🙂