Texas Medicine and Railroad Gin: Lessons From Prohibition

By Michael A. Stusser

The 18th Amendment revoked the sales and use of alcohol in the United States in 1919. Shocking as it may seem that such an act could become law, the roots of Prohibition were complex (people were drinking too damn much canned heat) – and misguided. The government created a campaign to scare Americans about liquor with propaganda that looks shockingly similar to another era of prohibition – the one launched against marijuana use. (Not surprisingly, Americans continued boozing it up – through home distilleries making moonshine, private speakeasies, and mob-led bootlegging.)

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We’re highlighting the shared journey of alcohol and cannabis prohibition – because they’re retroactively such hilarious images – and we can learn many lessons from these historical documents as we continue to fight for the legalization (and decriminalization) of weed. Laws attempting to legislate morality and ban items that are not evil or against public welfare have never worked – but Bless ‘Em for Trying!

Here’s a look at some of the ways both Prohibition and Reefer Madness were marketed to the masses

"Medicinal Whiksky" and "MJ Medicine"

“Medicinal Whiksky” and “MJ Medicine”

Before Prohibition (as with cannabis), alcohol was frequently touted to help with various ailments. Here is a bottle of bonded “medicinal whiskey” labelled “for Medicinal Purposes Only.” Cannabis, of course, has been helping with chronic pain, stress, multiple sclerosis, epilepsy, glaucoma, cancer and much more for centuries.

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An “Anti-Saloon League” was formed to promote prohibition. (The group became popular with many inside the government after passage of the income tax amendment in 1913 – as they were no longer dependent on booze to fund operations.) This is from their newspaper, The American Issue, from Jan. 25, 1919.

Screenshot 2018-07-27 13.54.26While women were major backers of the early Temperance Campaigns, they also rallied for Repeal of Prohibition. Women are, of course, also leading the legalization movement and many are CEOs of prominent cannabis companies and organizations.

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As early as 1871, the campaign against spirits had begun. Here is a Temperance illustration of a drunk man hitting his wife. Much of the prohibition propaganda was sold as a way to protect women and children from boozing hubbies and fathers coming home wasted from work, drinking his paycheck away and raising hell and havoc.

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Straight to the Point. The bottle or your best girl!

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Asking American to choose their country or their cocktail, posters like these advocated for Prohibition during World War I.

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A far cry from biblical verse (“Wine that gladdens human hearts, oil to make their faces shine, and bread that sustains their hearts”), firewater was eventually sold to the masses as dangerous, deadly rotgut.

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In 1936 the now infamous film Reefer Madness was released, warning Mom & Pops about the dangers of weed by showing a group of pot-smoking teenagers descending into a hellscape of murder, madness, suicide and violence after firing up a fatty. Yikes!

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Similar to the Prohibition propaganda attempting to scare wives about drunken husbands, this 1942 film used the Devil himself to put the fear of God into families.

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Like films such as Reefer Madness and Assassin of Youth, Marihuana attempted to scare the Bejesus out of the general public with absurd claims of cannabis leading to wild orgies (if only!), impregnation, heroin addiction and, yes, kidnapping. That’s some strong ganja!

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PROHIBITION REPEALED! Oh Happy Day! By 1933, Americans had had more than enough prohibition, and public opposition had become overwhelming. First Congress passed an act legalizing beer and wine, and by December of 1933 Utah became the 36th State to ratify the 22nd Amendment – repealing the 18th (Prohibition) and restoring the sale and manufacture of alcohol.

Screenshot 2018-07-27 14.16.44And soon, we’ll have a National Celebration for the Legalization of Cannabis!

Author Michael Stusser is the host of Higher Ground, the World’s first talk show highlighting cannabis culture. Think of it as “The Daily Show” meets “Good Morning America”…but with a giant bong on the desk. For more on Higher Ground and host Michael Stusser, visit www.highergroundtv.com   or www.michaelstusser.com

Get A Job — In Legal Marijuana

By Gary ODD Edmund

MJBA Job Fair Spokane is Saturday, June 20th at the Spokane Convention Center

MJBA Job Fair Spokane is Saturday, June 20th at the Spokane Convention Center

Gary ODD Edmund found his career in legal cannabis – drawing his own comic, “The Bud,” featured here on the MJNewsNetwork. Gary and The Bud suggest that if you are interested in finding your place in the fastest growing industry in America, you start by attending an MJBA Job Fair.

The next MJBA Job Fair is Saturday, June 20th at Spokane Convention Center. Sponsors include the Marijuana Business Association, NORML, Wahington’s Finest Cannabis, Cannabis Training Institute, Blue Roots Cannabis, Analytically Correct, Foundry Law, Eden Labs and many of Washington’s top industry employers.

MJBA Unveils 2nd Installation of The Road To Prosperity Poster Campaign

WASHINGTON: Think Rosie the Riveter with a passion for cannabis: The Marijuana Business Association (#MJBA), a leading trade organization representing the interests of participants in the fast-growing legal cannabis industry, unveiled the second installation in its “Road to Prosperity” series by artist Michael Guttsen at the monthly meetup of the Seattle MJBA held last night at Magical Butter Studios in Seattle’s SODO district.
The campaign is reminiscent of the Depression-era WPA posters and emphasizes the economic and cultural prosperity available through the legalization, regulation, and taxation of marijuana. “We are very excited to get delivery of poster #2 in #MJBA “Road to Prosperity” series by artist Michael Guttsen,” MJBA CEO David Rheins announced to the group, “Think Rosie the Riveter of Reform! This poster is dedicated to the MJBA Women’s Alliance, and the 100 strong female-owned cannabis businesses they represent, for setting a new standard in ethical business practices.”
Copies of the poster will be available, FREE, with paid membership, at the upcoming MJBA Job Fair, to be held at the Red Lion Hotel in Bellevue, WA on Saturday, September 27, 2014.  The event is being sponsored by Weedhire.com job board, and will showcase “High Paying Jobs In Legal Marijuana” from Washington Companies, including: IONIC, Evergreen Herbal, Eden Labs, Viridian Sciences, RMMC, Marijuana Venture, Blue Line Protection Group, BioTrack THC and many others.