My understanding is that hemp agriculture, which used to be PLENTIFUL in the UnitedState, was made illegal under the pressure of lobbying by oil companies when Henry Ford starting experimenting with hemp-based fuels. The time to put this behind us is now. Hemp agriculture is useful for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is helping to move us away from our dependence on petroleum. Did you know that hemp is so pest resistant that you can plant it with other crops and it will protect them as well making it a great co-planting crop with plants that are prone to pests. Hemp can provide us with paper, fuel, food, textiles...it's one of nature's great gifts to us...we just need to be it legal ONCE AGAIN, as it used to be. Currently, we are importing millions (if not billions) of dollars worth of hemp products mostly from Canada and China. This crop, which requires little in the way of resources (no need for fertilizers or pesticides, grows quickly, doesn't require a lot of water) would be a windfall for US farmers. And just so we are clear, although you probably already know it, you'd have to smoke a joint the size of a telephone pole made out of hemp to get any sort of marijuana like effects. You might as well ban poppy seeds (since they are related to heroin) as a drug, if you believe that banning hemp is necessary because of illegal drug use.
I am writing to ask that you please introduce a Senate version of H.R. 1866, the Industrial Hemp Farming Act of 2009. The legislation allows American farmers to once again grow hemp to the extent that it is allowed under state laws.