(Link to Boston Globe write up here)


On June 25, 2020 – the world bid farewell to a man who helped legitimize the hashish motion in a time when it was thought of taboo. A person who often rose to the event to defend the great identify of hashish when disingenuous research had been launched to tarnish the repute of the plant even additional.


Dr. Lester Grinspoon – 92 – was one of the vital prolific voices in favor of legalization and hashish as a drugs, and is instantly and not directly accountable for the expansion inside the trade we all know at this time. He has written twelve books on hashish because the 1970s and served as one in every of NORMLs board of administrators up till his dying.


Activists used his quotes as weapons when confronted by naysayers of the advantages of hashish. For instance;


Cannabis is remarkably secure. Although not innocent, it’s certainly much less poisonous than many of the typical medicines it might change if it had been legally accessible. Despite its use by tens of millions of individuals over hundreds of years, hashish has by no means brought on an overdose dying. – Dr Lester Grinspoon


This quote has been utilized hundreds of time to legitimize an argument when debating the validity and security of hashish. It is likely one of the “go to arguments” when speaking concerning the lethality of hashish.


I’ve come to doubt whether or not the FDA guidelines ought to apply to hashish. There isn’t any query about its security. It is one in every of humanity’s oldest medicines, used for hundreds of years by tens of millions of individuals with little or no proof of serious poisonous results. More is understood about its adversarial results than about these of most pharmaceuticals. – Dr. Lester Grinspoon


Dr. Grinspoon was additionally not a huge fan of the FDA and their relationship with hashish. In reality, he overtly spoke about it contemplating that hashish is a drugs that has been used for hundreds of years with little proof of “significant toxic effects.”


We on this nation have to make up our minds — — we can’t have it each methods: we can’t be each drug-free and free. – Dr. Lester Grinspoon


Additionally – Grinspoon was a main activist of freedom and understood the hypocrisy of a “drug-free world”. The idea of being Drug Free implies that one should relinquish some degree of “freedom” to acquire it – and even then it could be troublesome to obtain. Grinspoon’s rationale performed a heavy affect in my very own writing and relationship to the thought of drug legal guidelines. 


I started to research marijuana in 1967… I had not but realized that there’s something very particular about illicit medication. If they do not at all times make the drug person behave irrationally, they actually trigger many non-users to behave that manner. – Dr. Lester Grinspoon


This savage remark identified the irrational habits of the “anti-drug crowd” – yammering on concerning the risks of drug use having zero private expertise. These quotes provides us perception into the thoughts of a champion for civil liberties and good drugs.


Once Upon a Sagan


Grinspoon wasn’t at all times a fan of hashish. It wasn’t till his good friend Carl Sagan instructed him to “seriously look at the evidence” that the spell that blinds so many lecturers wore off. Grinspoon started wanting objectively at hashish and it wasn’t till his son – Daniel Grinspoon – was recognized with Leukemia that he noticed the facility of hashish firsthand.


Since then – Grinspoon began campaigning for hashish and have become a royal ache within the ass for Nixon, and subsequent presidents, who had  hard-ons for a drug battle. In reality, Grinspoon was one of many first to evaluate the nationwide literature on hashish and got here to the conclusion that there was empirical proof to recommend that the nation has been misled.


If it wasn’t for Carl Sagan – Grinspoon might have been one of many world’s most prolific “drug warriors” and possibly an asset for prohibition – however a sequence of occasions led him down the trail of activism. If it weren’t for these occasions – we might not have ever reached the diploma during which hashish is tolerated at this time


An Activist until the day he died


Another superb quote I bear in mind of Grinspoon goes as follows;


I’ve been smoking marijuana for 44 years now, and … I believe it is a super blessing. – Lester Grinspoon


Unlike many lecturers – Grinspoon actively professed that he smoked weed. This is the equal of “coming out of the closer” inside academia. Cannabis – particularly in the course of the 80s and 90s was thought of extremely taboo.


Grinspoon by no means shied away from his hashish use. This elevated his standing even greater contemplating that he was an affiliate professor of Psychiatry at Harvard School of Medicine and the American Psychiatric Association. For hashish activists – Grinspoon was a pioneer and when you’ve got the chance to purchase some Grinspoon Strain in a dispensary – smoke a blunt in honor of this nice man – that weed you’re smoking is partly due to his activism.


So thanks Lester – we respect what you probably did for us all and we honor you at this time and forevermore – a saint amongst the stoners, a hero of hemp. May your identify without end be exalted as a champion of freedom.


We salute you!









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