Welcome to Frequently Asked Questions about Cannabis / Hemp / Marijuana (FAQ)

This document contains straight answers to tough questions about hemp and marijuana. Every effort has been made to ensure their accuracy, and sources, if not provided, are available by request. BE WARNED -- this text has changed minds. The author and contributers do not take responsibility for any change in outlook, new ideas, or re-evaluation of one's relationship with current political parties which may result from allowing photons to travel into your eyeballs, even when said photons originate from a
cathode ray tube, backlit LCD screen, microfiche reader or illuminated sheet of paper on which this document is being displayed. Unless of course you feel like showering us with fan mail and candy-grams. In that case we'll take the blame

Copyright (c) 1 9 9 4 by Brian S. Julin

The following persons have contributed to this document at some point in it's evolution: Laura Kriho
<cohip@darkstar.cygnus.com> (original list of questions), Marc Anderson (fact finding), Paul L. Allen (LaTeX formatting) ,plus some others who haven't said they want their name put in.

This material is maintained and written by Brian S. Julin, with help from several other individuals. It is copyrighted material. The copyright is only there to prevent anyone from editing or selling this material. Feel free to redistribute the material in any form as long as it is unaltered in content, and no credit or money is taken for the contents themselves. Comments, questions, contributions or ideas should be mailed to verdant@twain.ucs.umass.edu or c/o Brian S. Julin at UMACRC, S.A.O. Mailbox #2, Student
Union Building, UMASS, 01003More information on the document is at the end -- wouldn't
want to bore you... So without further ado:


Part1: What's all this fuss about hemp?

1a)What is hemp?
1b)What is cannabis?
1c)Where did the word `marijuana' come from?
2a) How can hemp be used as a food?
2b)What are the benefits of hemp compared to other food crops?
2c) How about soy? Is hemp competitive as a world source of protein?
3a) How can hemp be used for cloth?
3b)Why is it better than cotton?
4a) How can hemp be used to make paper?
4b)Why can't we just keep using trees?
5a)How can hemp be used as a fuel?
5b) Why is it better than petroleum?
6a) How can hemp be used as a medicine?
6b) What's wrong with all the prescription drugs we have?
7) What other uses for hemp are there?

Part 2: So why aren't we using hemp, then?

1) How and why was hemp made illegal?
2) OK, so what the heck does all this other stuff have to do with hemp?
3) Now wait, just hold on. You expect me to believe that
they wouldn't have thought to pass a better law, one that
banned marijuana and allowed commercial hemp, instead of
throwing the baby out with the bath water?

4) Is there a lesson to be learned from all this?

Part 3: Does it? Doesn't it? Is it true that?

1) Doesn't marijuana stay in your fat cells and keep you high for months?
2) But ... isn't today's marijuana much more potent than it was in the Sixties? (Or, more often ... Marijuana is 10 times more powerful than it was in the Sixties!)
3a) Doesn't Marijuana cause brain damage?
3b) If it doesn't kill brain cells, how does it get you `high'?
4) Don't people die from smoking pot?
5) I forgot, does marijuana cause short-term memory impairment?
6a) Is marijuana going to make my boyfriend go psycho?
6b) Don't users of marijuana withdraw from society?
7) Is it true that marijuana makes you lazy and unmotivated?
8) Isn't marijuana a gateway drug? 
Doesn't it lead to use of harder drugs?

9a) I don't want children (minors) to be able to smoke marijuana. How can I stop this?
9b) Won't children be able to steal marijuana plants that people are growing?
10a) Hey, don't you know that marijuana drops testosterone levels in teenage boys causing [various physical and developmental problems]?
10b) Doesn't heavy marijuana use lower the sperm count in males?
10c) I heard marijuana use by teenage girls may impair hormone production, menstrual cycles, and fertility. Is this true?
11) Go away.
12) Isn't smoking marijuana worse for you than smoking cigarettes?
13) Don't children born to pot-smoking mothers suffer from ``Fetal Marijuana Syndrome?''
14) Doesn't marijuana cause a lot of automobile accidents?
15) Aren't you afraid everyone will get hooked?
16a) Is urine testing for marijuana use as a terms of employment a good idea? I want to make sure my business is run safely.
16b) Isn't all this worth the trouble, though, in order to reduce accident risks and health care costs?
17) Wouldn't it be best to just lock the users all up?
18) I heard that there are over 400 chemicals in marijuana... Wellllll...? 
19) Doesn't that stuff mess up your immune system and make it easier for you catch colds?

Part 4: Why is it still illegal?

1) Why is it STILL illegal?
2) What can I do to bring some sense into our marijuana laws?
3a) Where can I get more information?
3b) Umm, I'm computer illiterate, so that just went way over
my head. Are there any good books I could go get instead?

4) Do you have any advice for people who want to organize
their own group?

Part 5: Sources by question number

Part 6: About the alt.hemp FAQ.


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