Reefer Madness: 11 Fun Facts About Marijuana

Perhaps it’s time we all mellowed out and took a Friday Fun Facts look at marijuana.

Fact 1. Marijuana is by far the most popular illegal substance in the United States. About one-third of Americans, 100 million, admit to having used marijuana at least once in their lives, and about 25 million cop to having used it during the past 12 months.


And Frito-Lay sells 1 billion bags of Cheetos every year. Coincidence? I don’t think so.

Fact 2. There are reportedly some 200 slang terms for marijuana in the English language alone, including pot, weed, ganja, mary jane, reefer, bud and grass.

Who knew?

Fact 3. China’s Emperor Shen Nung was history’s first recorded user of medical marijuana. In 2737 B.C., he reportedly used the substance to relieve the discomforts of rheumatism and gout.

“And while you’re at it, get me a bag of Cheetos.”

Fact 4. Hemp, the industrial form of marijuana, was a staple of the early American economy. George Washington grew it at Mt. Vernon. And the first two drafts of the Declaration of Independence were written on hemp paper.

“So what am I supposed to do, sign it or smoke it?”

Fact 5. During the Temperance movement of the 1890s, anti-alcohol advocates often recommended marijuana as a substitute intoxicant for demon rum. This is because alcohol was associated with domestic violence, while pot was not.

“Have some bud and mellow out, dude!”

Fact 6. From 1850 to 1942, medical marijuana was readily available at many pharmacies. It was frequently prescribed to relieve nausea, labor pains and rheumatism.

Buy American!

Fact 7. Although marijuana became illegal in most states in the mid-20th century, it didn’t become a federal Schedule 1 drug until the passage of the Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act of 1970.

“That should show those dirty hippies!”

Fact 8. In 1996, California became the first state in the union to legalize marijuana for medicinal use. Today, a total of 22 states have either decriminalized marijuana, allow it for medicinal use or have legalized it outright, despite the continued federal ban.

Medical marijuana is also permitted in Washington, D.C. Oh, the irony!

Fact 9. Uruguay is poised to fully legalize marijuana this fall. The radical move was undertaken to undercut the country’s powerful drug cartels.

“As long as they keep crystal meth illegal, we’re all good.”

Fact 10. To overdose on marijuana, you’d have to consume 1,500 pounds in 15 minutes.

“Care for another ‘Magic Brownie,’ sir?”

Fact 11. According to Forbes, the combined costs of enforcing marijuana laws in the United States is currently $41.8 billion a year. By contrast, if made legal, regulated marijuana sales could add as much as $100 billion to the annual economy, according to economist Stephen Easton.

Because we don’t already have enough ways to get wasted.

Have a mellow weekend!

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