The Marijuana Plant
The marijuana plant is perhaps one of the most recognized, iconic species of vegetation worldwide. The pot leaf is a symbol of cannabis that has been spread globally through both anti- and pro-pot propaganda initiatives, publicly and privately sponsored, since the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. The marijuana leaf has been displayed on posters, signs, pickets and advertisements, in popular film and documentary, news and social media.
Can it be, though, even with such information dispersal and visibility, that the weed plant has long been misunderstood?
Maybe. Certainly by some. Not many people are aware of the fact that human beings have used cannabis 10,000 years ago—not to smoke or get high, but as a source of nutrition, found in the marijuana plant’s protein-rich seeds. The fibrous stalks of the marijuana plant, used to produce hemp, have been traditionally important for hemp rope production and making cloth for clothing.
As the prohibition on pot crumbles, advocates for marijuana legalization and the implications of legalized cannabis continue to garner support. The gain in momentum is also helped by a substantial body of strong scientific evidence and positive public record. Conversations about how to grow weed are not the taboo or employment death-sentence that they once were. Medicinal cannabis is known to provide real relief for patients, adults and children, who are indeed suffering.
Clearly, public perception of the marijuana plant is changing. Marijuana is no longer simply infamous—a substance broadly conceived of as a gateway drug and mainly for hippies, causing physical enervation and loss of motivation; rather, as information about cannabis becomes more accurate and transparent, the marijuana plant increasingly becomes a symbol for potential.
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