Despite its stigma, cannabis has been a favorite of celebrities for decades
Since the earliest days of popularized art via cinema and recorded music, marijuana has always been there. This is perhaps one of the principal reasons that the little green plant was vilified and criminalized to such an extent. Popular groups from both America and England, such as the Jefferson Airplane and the Rolling Stones, embraced the cannabis culture as their own and many celebrities have voiced their opinion on its use over the years.
The Stone’s legendary lead guitarist Keith Richards said, “I do smoke, but I don’t go through all this trouble just because I want to make my drug of choice legal. It’s about personal freedom. We should have the right in this country to do what we want, if we don’t hurt anybody.”
Even as far back as the great Louis Armstrong, musicians were speaking out in favor of cannabis. Armstrong often said, “I think people need to be educated to the fact that marijuana is not a drug. Marijuana is an herb and a flower.”
But the man and his music that really brought marijuana into many people’s mainstream was Jamaican Bob Marley and his reggae music. The slow, easy groove of reggae was particularly well-suited to the cannabis culture, and Marley became the face of that culture. Marley is quoted as saying, “It really puzzles me to see marijuana connected with narcotics, dope and all of that stuff. It is a thousand times better than whiskey. It is an assistant and a friend.”
Author Kurt Vonnegut, who was very popular during the height of the marijuana culture said in one of his books, “If everyone smoked weed, the world would be a better place.” Simplistic, perhaps, but not without merit.
Perhaps comedian Jay Leno said it best, “Why is marijuana against the law? It grows naturally upon our planet. Doesn’t the idea of making nature against the law seem to you a bit….unnatural?”
But no one will ever top the great Bill Murray, “I don’t do drugs, though. Just weed.”