Tag Archives: Medical Marijuana

Dispatches from the Old Man in the Hills (#3)


Jack Herer is personified as a saint by many of his fans. In his groundbreaking book The Emperor Wears No Clothes, Mr. Herer documents history and research that leads readers to believe cannabis, mainly hemp, can mend our unsustainable economy built on finite resources and endless growth. Industrial hemp is woven into the evolution of modern society. The Chinese produced paper by mixing hemp and other fibers – granting the ability to record history, ideology, statistics, innovations, etc. In Europe, hemp fiber was used to fabricate sails and rope – making long distance naval travel possible. Hemp – a strong hardy fiber – contributed to European travel across the Atlantic (in the 1700’s) and subsequent discovery of the America’s. Hemp seed and fiber was mandatory in early long distance travel. Used as grain for food or seed, hemp could be brought anywhere and offered the ability to reproduce sustainable supply of food and fiber. Hemp was an integral part of society prior to Reefer Madness and the War-on-Drugs. This resource had been largely lost in modern society until Jack Herer and others reminded us of its potential. Some believe hemp can save the world, but as we are too often reminded: ideology is constantly confronted by material realities such as economy and law. With cannabis legalization seemingly inevitable, this beneficial crop continues to face scrutiny. On the North Coast, hemp – the cousin of medicinal cannabis – is seen as more pariah than savior. And why we collectively ask? Well, as Mr. Herer curses from his saintly perch in the clouds, let us ask the old man in the hills…

The views and opinions expressed by the old man in the hills does not reflect the views and opinions of the Humboldt Underground. HU feels obligated to provide a voice for all in our community. Our goal is to move the conversation forward and all points-of-view are legitimate (unless hateful or discriminatory). Every voice in our community deserves to be heard.

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Cannabis is a Healing Plant: A Personal Account


Picture provided via wikipedia.com

For my first article writing about cannabis, I want to reflect on my own poignant and personal testimony demonstrating how this amazing plant can be a healing medicine.

My mother moved to Northern California to settle down and begin her golden years in a place of beauty, and to be near her daughter (that’d be me). She and dad found a place, and jobs, and were getting excited about summer hikes and adventures when, six months into the new chapter of our lives, mom was diagnosed with stage four anal cancer. A very rare cancer that is usually removed via surgery when found, but mom’s cancer had spread to her lymph nodes and it was too late for surgery. (Side note of relevance: the reason for this is that she was living in a state that, at the time, did not have health care and therefore she could not afford and get the recommended colonoscopy screenings. So, hey people over 50 – get your colonoscopy, it can save your life!)

I cannot express to you in words what it feels like to witness a loved one go through the suffering, pain, and fear that mom went through. Memories flood my brain as I recall the countless hospital days and nights, the chemo and radiation treatments which made her so sick and frail, the piles of pills she had to take every day, the time her feather light blonde hair all fell out except a few clumps which dad had to shave off, the time she held my hand praying to die, the regular vomiting and nausea, and, eventually, IV dripped morphine and only a skeleton of mom lying for weeks in bed, only waking to use to the bathroom and to whisper “I love you.” She died in May of 2014, screaming and writhing in pain and morphine-induced dementia. Yes, horrible beyond belief; unfair, traumatic, unreal, and completely fucked up.

I can, however, express to you the gratitude and joy I have for the cannabis plant. It was a positive ray of light – hope – that we cherished throughout mom’s cancer journey.

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The Underground Gaze

The Underground Gaze posts the top photo(s) members and readers submit. All photos are submitted anonymously…

This week The Underground Gaze selected a photo of indoor Cherry Pie submitted by an unknown source:

CHerry Pie _ merry xmas

If you’d like to show off, send us a pic… anonymously of course… humboldtundergroundblog@gmail.com

Truth and Change in Northern Cali as Cannabis Goes Mainstream

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In life, there is only one guarantee: change (i.e. nothing is guaranteed). Not to be confused with Obama’s ambiguous change campaign, the change we are speaking of is the social kind. Transcendentalists beware universal truth is subject to Cartesian doubt. Truth and meaning can only be understood through differences – relativity – meaning and truth are always subject to change depending on ones viewpoint. As the French postmodern social-theorist Jean Baudrillard would argue, through power and technology, we are seduced into believing we can understand the minutiae of human life, an understanding of universal reality and values (as used by politicians and police to make and enforce law). 

However, this “universal reality” is nothing more than simulations from the past – an agreed upon reality that became false the second it became “universally understood.” In other words: because of our constant movement through time and space – social location – and because all meaning exists in a web of semantic distinctness, truth is an ever moving target. The moment “truth” becomes isolated from social, spatial, and temporal movement it ceases to be true. Depending on time, space, and an individuals’ standpoint, truth constantly changes, and therefore universality, Truth, reality, society, and value are impossible to reconcile.

Deep shizz… but to get to the point… if truth (reality, society, etc) is always changing then our values are always changing. Going deeper… let us think about the values we have all come to universally accept as true. Foregone values from the past, the same values that policy and law were created under and still enforced. Under what pretence (social located truths) were these laws establish and created (i.e. cannabis law)? There are many layers of complexity associated with creating policy – and policy inevitably favors some groups over others. When it comes to the history of cannabis policy, this statement couldn’t be more relevant. Throughout the history of cannabis prohibition there are many examples of old ideas (simulations from the past) that influence the policy and law of the present.

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The Underground Gaze

The Underground Gaze posts the top photo(s) that members and readers have submitted. All photos are submitted anonymously.

This week: The Underground Gaze has selected a photo of indoor Kali Mist submitted by an unknown source:

Kali Mist

click image to enlarge