For the first time in the magazine’s history, Rolling Stone has devoted pretty much all of their print edition to cannabis this week, with a range of news and cultural pieces.
Highlighted in the magazine this week is an article by comedian Bill Maher titled “How We Won the War on Pot”, a piece on marijuana myth-busting, and a feature on Drug Policy Alliance founder Ethan Nadelmann who the magazine dubs “The Real Drug Czar”.
In it, they detail Nadelmann’s two-decade career as a cannabis lobbyist and activist. In it, the writer praises Nadelmann’s work and influence:
Before Nadelmann joined the cause some 20 years ago, marijuana legalization was an orphan crusade of hippies handing out leaflets at Dead shows and outlaw growers with bumper stickers demanding U.S. OUT OF HUMBOLDT COUNTY! Today, thanks in large part to Nadelmann’s efforts, pot is fully legal in two states and available medically in 16 others. “He is the single most influential policy entrepreneur on any domestic issue,” says John DiIulio, a longtime drug warrior and tough-on-crime academic who has recently come around to Nadelmann’s side on marijuana policy. “He wore me down,” DiIulio says. “What can I say?”
He also openly discusses psychedelic use, which he admits he favors more than cannabis:
Nadelmann likens his use of mushrooms to fasting on Yom Kippur: “Once a year, it’s a good thing.” And he’s taken two “vision quests” under the influence of ayahuasca, a cousin of peyote, regarded as “the queen” of hallucinogens. “Psychedelics are wasted on the young,” he says.
The feature has a lot on cannabis, including a profile by Rolling Stone assistant editor Jonathan Ringen profiling a few Colorado pot nerds like Ry Prichard of TC Labs and grower Phillip Hague, who talks about his incredible collection of cannabis genetics:
But his real secret weapon is what he calls his “legendary tackle box of seed.” As Hague tells it, no matter what strain your guy tells you he’s selling, it’s probably just a variation on one of four main types: haze, skunk, kush and northern lights. The reason? Back in the Eighties, growers in Holland – land of the perfect tulip – homed in on a small group of fast-growing, high-yielding plants, which they bred into hundreds of closely related strains that still dominate the kind-bud market here today. For a man who loves marijuana as much as Hague does, the loss of the plant’s genetic diversity is a major crime. So he’s traveled the world – to Jamaica, Mexico, Pakistan, North Africa, South America – building up a seed bank of strains that have been cultivated by local farmers for countless generations. “Even in Jamaica, they’re starting to grow higher-yielding Dutch hybrids and things along those lines,” he laments. “Every year, you lose more and more of those indigenous strains. We grow lots of plants that are based on these old Jamaican lines.”
And of course, Rolling Stone digs into cannabis culture on a pop level with interviews of actors Seth Rogan, Danny McBride and James Franco, who says he’s not even a smoker and hasn’t “in decades”.
“The last time, I got in a lot of trouble.” Silence. Tons of silence. Will the silence ever end? Finally, he says, “I got in a car accident and was arrested. I was almost 17 and on probation for graffiti and drinking incidents. I think I wasn’t even supposed to be driving at that point. I remember the judge saying if I hadn’t gotten such good grades, she’d probably have put me in juvenile, but she gave me one more chance, although I was made a ward of the state.”