The legalization of cannabis in the United States has finally become a reality in many states, thanks to a handful of marijuana activists that spoke up for the truth…decades ago, regardless of the barrage of kickback from every angle, and around every corner. They helped pave the way to a better/healthier future for all.
One of the most well-known names in recent cannabis history is the so-called “Emperor of Hemp,” or what some like to call him “The Hemperor” and this what cannabis lovers around the world should know about the man!
Born on June 18, 1939, in Buffalo, NY, United States, Jack Herer, an American cannabis rights activist was an eager glass pipe entrepreneur, a pro-cannabis/hemp activist, and he also opened his first head shop in California (1973) with the help of his friend/business partner Ed Adair a.k.a. “Captain ED”.
Jack Herer inspired a director (Jeff Jones) to film a documentary about his life. “The emperor of hemp” aired in 1999 on PBS stations throughout the U.S. and led to a legion of followers.
“The only dead bodies from marijuana are in the prisons and at the hands of the police, this is ridiculous.” – Jack Herer
Mr. Herer also gained international popularity as the author of the book “The Emperor Wears No Clothes.” The social history book that he wrote back in 1985 has been continuously in print for a full 31 years, and in 2016 it got its 20th edition. “The Emperor Wears No Clothes” has served as an inspiration and empowerment tool for people who still fight for cannabis decriminalization and legalization, as well as expanding the use of hemp for industrial use.
Herer is also signed as an author of the book “G.R.A.S.S.: Great Revolutionary American Standard System [with Al Emmanuel]” (1973), as well as the articles “Cannabis Medicines Banned” and “Hemp For Victory Coverup.”
He used his voice to spread awareness and teach why the cannabis plant should be decriminalized and how it could save the world. He argued that it could be used as a renewable source of fuel, medicine, food, fiber, & paper, and that it can be grown in virtually any part of the world for medicinal as well as economic purposes.
“I don’t want to wait 20 to 50 years for something to be done about petrochemical pollution.” – Jack Herer
Jack also founded and served as the director of the organization Help End Marijuana Prohibition (HEMP). His controversial statements that “the U.S. government has been deliberately hiding the proof of the cannabis’ benefits from their citizens,” motivated him to even run for United States President twice, in 1988 (1,949 votes) and 1992 (3,875 votes) as the Grassroots Party candidate. And…of course, he didn’t get elected.
“When I went off to the Army when I was 17, I believed in America and the rights of freedom. But today I believe that my government is lying to the American people, and that my president, George Bush, is a criminal.” – Jack Herer
This world, however, lost a great man on April 15, 2010.
In July 2000, Jack Herer suffered a minor heart attack and a major stroke, resulting in speech impairment and difficulty moving the right side of his body. It has been reported that he quickly recovered with the help of the psychoactive mushroom Amanita muscaria.
Sadly, he suffered another heart attack on September 12, 2009, while backstage at the Hempstalk Festival in Portland, Oregon. Finally, on April 15, the next year, he took his final breath. He was 70 years old at the time. Jack Herer was buried at the Eden Memorial Park Cemetery in Mission Hills, California.
“Growing hemp as nature designed it is vital to our urgent need to reduce greenhouse gases and insure the survival of our planet” – Jack Herer
Today, the “Jack Herer Cup” is held in Las Vegas each year to honor Jack Herer, and a Sativa-dominant hybrid strain of cannabis has been named after him as well. This strain has won several awards, including the 7th “High Times Cannabis Cup.”
The strain Combining a “Haze” hybrid with a “Northern Lights #5” and “Shiva Skunk” cross, Sensi Seeds created the Jack Herer strain hoping to capture both cerebral elevation and heavy Trichome production. Its rich genetic background gives rise to several different variations of Jack Herer, each phenotype bearing its own unique features and effects. However, consumers typically describe this 55% sativa hybrid as blissful, clear-headed, and creative.
Jack Herer was inducted into the 16th Cannabis Cup Hall of Fame in recognition of his first book.
He will be missed, but never forgotten…