Harry J. Anslinger
1st Commissioner of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics
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- Traffic in marijuana is increasing to such an extent that it has come to the be cause for the greatest national concern.
This drug is as old as civilization itself. Homer wrote about, as a drug that made men forget their homes, and that turned them into swine. In Persia, a thousand years before Christ, there was a religious and military order founded which was called the Assassins and they derived their name from the drug called hashish which is now known in this country as marihuana. They were noted for their acts of cruelty, and the word "assassin" very aptly describes the drug.
- Here we have drug that is not like opium. Opium has all of the good of Dr. Jekyll and all the evil of Mr. Hyde. This drug is entirely the monster Hyde, the harmful effect of which cannot be measured. Some people will fly into a delirious rage, and they are temporarily irresponsible and may commit violent crimes. Other people will laugh uncontrollably. It is impossible to say what the effect will be on any individual. Those research men who have tried it have always been under control. They have always insisted upon that. … It is dangerous to the mind and body, and particularly dangerous to the criminal type, because it releases all of the inhibitions.
- Hearing on H.R. 6385 (April 1937)
- How many murders, suicides, robberies, criminal assaults, holdups, burglaries and deeds of maniacal insanity it causes each year, especially among the young, can only be conjectured...No one knows, when he places a marijuana cigarette to his lips, whether he will become a joyous reveller in a musical heaven, a mad insensate, a calm philosopher, or a murderer...
- "Marijuana — Assassin of Youth" in The American Magazine, Vol. 24 (July 1937), p. 18
- Most marijuana smokers are colored people, jazz musicians, and entertainers. Their satanic music is driven by marijuana, and marijuana smoking by white women makes them want to seek sexual relations with Negroes, entertainers, and others. It is a drug that causes insanity, criminality, and death — the most violence-causing drug in the history of mankind.
- As quoted in Legalizing Marijuana : Drug Policy Reform and Prohibition Politics (2004) by Rudolph Joseph Gerber, p. 9; also in Hawking Hits on the Information Highway : The Challenge of Online Drug Sales for Law Enforcement (2008) by Laura L. Finley , p. 28, and "The Emperor Wears No Clothes: The Authoritative Historical Record of Cannabis and the Conspiracy Against Marijuana" (1994) by Jack Herer, Jeanie Cabarga, and Jeanie Herer, p. 29.
- "Statement of H. J. Anslinger", from H.R. 6385 hearings, April 27 – May 4, 1937,
- Schaffer Library of Drug Policy
- see also Harry J. Anslinger Quotes/Quotations Search, from Uncle Mikes Library