Kentucky's state Senate Agriculture Committee voted unanimously on Monday to approve legislation that could pave the way for the creation of a legal hemp industry in the state, following testimony from Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), who claimed to be wearing a hemp shirt.The proposed bill -- which will now be considered by the full state senate -- would establish a process for Kentucky farmers to begin growing hemp, but only if the federal government first passes a measure to remove the crop from a list of illegal drugs. Hemp is currently listed alongside its more potent cousin, marijuana, as a Schedule I controlled substance. Other Schedule I drugs include heroin and LSD.
The illegality of agricultural hemp is one of those issues that is almost too frustrating to even write about. When we're facing existential crises as large as climate change and ecosystem collapse, it is infuriating there's still so much work to be done to reform our ridiculous drug laws. Just think about this: according to the United States government, the fabric of Rand Paul's shirt and the paper that drafts of our own Declaration of Independence were written upon is just as illegal as heroin and LSD. Insanity.