When California became the first state to legalize marijuana in 1996, it looked like pot, demonized for so long, was finally on a path to being more legit. So when the publisher of Santa Monica Press approached me soon after and asked if I was interested in writing a comprehensive book about marijuana, I thought the timing was good. Offbeat Marijuana came out in 1999 and offered a detailed look at marijuana and covered everything from its historical use as a medicine to its U.S. production as a valued textile known as hemp. And of course there’s plenty of information about pot’s storied cultural and societal role in the past few decades.
Turns out, of course, we were a little ahead of the times. It would take almost 15 years until pot was approved for legal recreational use by a U.S. state. Now, eight states and Washington, D.C. have legalized the recreational use of marijuana. Pot finally appears ready to step into a welcoming embrace in America.
Yes, this is true despite what new Attorney General Jeff Sessions has said about the federal government still enforcing national laws on pot prohibition. Today’s climate feels much different than 20 years ago. Public acceptance is too strong and widespread to turn back the clock on marijuana laws.
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