Omaha Drug Lawyer: History of Marijuana in the United States

Omaha Drug lawyer Daniel Stockmann is an experienced attorney. With more than ten years of experience as a defense lawyer, particularly working with clients facing drug charges, Stockmann is well-versed in the numerous tactics and policies law enforcement officials use to target marijuana use in Nebraska. Because of the states conservative stance on the leafy green substance, lawyers like Stockmann stay busy navigating the judicial minefields it can stir up. Though there are definite contradicting views on this topic, its nothing new. The history of marijuana in the United States has been rife with controversy for a long time.

Marijuana’s Debut in the United States

The cannabis plant has been used by humans for both functional and recreational purposes for thousands of years. It is believed to have originated in Central Asia, with history of its use dating back nearly 12,000 years. Hemp, the non-psychoactive form of the cannabis plant, has been used in manufacturing goods such as oil, fuel, and textiles throughout the centuries. As various tribes and settlers traveled across the world, cannabis reached nearly every region, eventually ending up in North America and what would be the United States.

Cannabis use was not uncommon in its early days here. American government in the early 17th century encouraged hemp production for things such as ropes and sails up until around the Civil War. People also continued to use it for medicinal purposes, such as pain relievers. It didnt become a subject of controversy until the early 20th century.

Early Stigma Led to the War on Drugs

George Bushs War on Drugs in 1989 was prefaced by decades of prejudice and stigma around marijuana and those who used it. Long before this, between 1910 and 1920, thousands of Mexican immigrants came to the United States to escape the aftermath of a civil war in their home country. Because the new influx of people brought in the practice of recreational marijuana use, it became embedded into the existing society. What came with it in the following decade was a buildup of racialized ideas about marijuana and misinformed ideas about the plants actual effects.

In the late 1930s, a film entitled Reefer Madness was produced. This movie, portraying extremely exaggerated beliefs about marijuana use and its effects on people, stirred up the country and incited fear into Americans. Meant as a warning for younger people about the dangers of marijuana, it further escalated much of the nations strongly prejudiced beliefs against it. From this culture of fear came stricter laws in regard to marijuana possession. Then, in the 1960s, marijuana became more popular and widely used in part due to changing political times. It was no longer a low-class drug. This was also a time of early research discovering that violence and the desire to try harder drugs did not correlate with marijuana use.

However, this didnt stop the newly founded Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) and passionate parent groups from collaborating to push the new War on Drugs. With Bushs declaration, a new wave of law enforcement strategies and public opinion surfaced in the nineties. Today, though recreational use of marijuana is legal in some areas of the United States, there is still much of this ignorance and prejudice remaining in regard to cannabis.

Get Support from Experienced Omaha Drug Lawyer Daniel Stockmann

The United States is in the midst of controversy over marijuana legalization. Because public opinion has changed so drastically over the course of time, more change is bound to come. In the meantime, conservative state laws like the ones in Nebraska encourage law enforcement officials to crack down on marijuana use and possession. If you or someone you know is in a troubling situation with a drug charge, get support from trusted drug lawyer Daniel Stockmann. Fill out the free case evaluation form on this page for more information today.