Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Ghana takes a backwards view on hemp

[Dar es Salaam, Tanzania]
WHEN I was in grade 11, I wrote an essay titled Were the Middle Ages a Backward Period in the Development of Western Civilization - as has Traditionally been Thought of & as the Very Name Implies? That was for my Ancient Greek & Roman History class taught by the brilliant Mr. John Patton who kind of looked like Aristotle. :-) Actually, we were given a sheet with about 20 topics or questions to choose from. In said essay, I vividly remember stating that "trade and commerce - the mark of an advanced civilization - was virtually non-existent." This was simply proof to show that the Middle Ages was a backward era. No arguments there.

Et tu Ghana?
Well, it appears that the power brokers in Ghana's government have decided to take a trip to the Twilight Zone of backwardness. Just take a peek at this folks:
For the sake of our indigenous Africans in Ghana and throughout the continent, who haven’t been exposed to countless literature and medical journals that herald the Hemp plant, I will quote a passage that clearly states the truth that your politicians and lawmakers conceal, as to the real reason why so much energy is wasted criminalizing this God-given plant.

“The reason the Weed is outlawed is only ostensibly about health. The truth is the Weed is no more addictive and no more a health risk than cigarettes or alcohol, both of which are protected by the law. Why is it then not allowed? Because if it were grown, half the cotton growers, nylon and rayon manufacturers, and timber products people in the world would go out of business. Hemp happens to be one of the most useful, strongest, toughest, longest lasting materials on the planet. You cannot produce better fiber for clothes, a stronger substance for ropes, an easier-to-grow-and-harvest source for pulp. Instead we cut down hundreds of thousands of trees per year to give ourselves Sunday papers, so that we can read about the decimation of the world’s forest. Hemp could provide us with millions of Sunday papers without cutting down one tree. Indeed, it could substitute for so many resource materials, at one-tenth the cost. And that is the catch. Somebody loses money if this miraculous
plant, which also has extraordinary medicinal properties, incidentally is allowed to be grown. That is why marijuana is illegal in your country.”
By the way, we'll have to assume Ghana's politicians have viable alternatives to creating wealth for its poor farmers that would rival hemp's unlimited possibilities. Right? I doubt it. Now why do I get this sneaking suspicion that some powerful outside institutions have the hands of this government tied behind closed doors. After all, doesn't Ghana depend on aid and favourable trade benefits from some Western governments in order to progress? Hmm...I wonder who sold out. [Read more]

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