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Why It Was More Dope To Be A Stoner In The 60s And 70s

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The sixties and seventies were iconic times in American history for a number of reasons. These decades were also iconic for stoner culture. I’ve often said that I felt I was born in the wrong era (the eighties) and I would have fit in better with the stoners of yesteryear. Being a stoner is always cool, but it was way cooler to be a stoner in the sixties and seventies.

The 60s And 70s Had Better Music

Some of the best classic rock albums were made during this time. The sixties boasted artists like Jimi Hendrix and the Grateful Dead. The seventies had Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd. Woodstock happened in the sixties. It’s really no contest. The music we have today, while some of it is great, is not nearly as good as the classic rock and roll of yore and it’s still my favorite music to get baked to.

Cannabis Was Cheaper

Back in the sixties and seventies your parents were getting their herb for a lot cheaper than you’re getting it now. Depending on the quality, you could generally buy an ounce for around $40. Even when you take inflation into account, that’s still super cheap compared to what you would pay now. Contrary to popular belief the cannabis available at the time was not all garbage grass. There were some strong strains available. At the time the best that you could get was probably still pretty dank.

They Had Cheech And Chong

The comedy duo of Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong aka Cheech and Chong were the precursor to the stoner comedy duos that we love today. Today’s stoner comedies and indeed the entire catalog of Seth Rogen movies would probably not exist had Cheech and Chong not made cannabis related comedy popular. I remember listening to my dad’s old Cheech and Chong records when I was growing up and though a lot of the humor went over my head until I started smoking weed, I thought they were amazing. Cheech and Chong are, and continue to be, the shit.

They Were The Original Hippy Generation

During the sixties and early seventies the US was involved in the disastrous Vietnam war, until Nixon pulled out troops in 1973. The cannabis lovers of that time, or “dopers” as they were called were staunchly opposed to the Vietnam war and they were not shy about letting the rest of the world know it. The anti-war activists paved the way for the activist movements of today. Their anti-war stance was actually the reason why the Nixon administration targeted stoners, along with the African American community for his “war on drugs.”

Mass Incarceration Hadn’t Begun Yet

President Richard Nixon officially started the “war on drugs” in 1971 by declaring drug use as the biggest threat to American society. He followed up by forming the DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) in 1973. Shortly after that Nixon resigned in disgrace in 1974 and 11 states decriminalized possession of cannabis between 1973 and 1977. President Jimmy Carter ran on a more liberal platform, which included decriminalizing cannabis. The senate voted to decriminalize possession of an ounce or less. It wasn’t until 1980 when Reagan was sworn in, that American prisons began to fill up with non-violent drug offenders.

The sixties and seventies were quite a time to be alive. Too bad many of us hadn’t been born yet.
We’ve made a lot of advances in stoner technology since the sixties and seventies, but we had to start from somewhere. Thanks to all the stoners from almost half a century ago for being so dope.

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Were you a part of the “dopest” generation? Share your stories in the comments!