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Flying Over US Capitol on July 4: Hemp Flag
Hemp legalization advocate came up with the idea
By Evann Gastaldo, Newser Staff
Posted Jul 2, 2013 1:35 PM CDT
The US Capitol dome backdrops American flags flying at half-staff at the foot of the Washington Monument on the National Mall in Washington, Sunday, Jan. 9, 2011.   (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

(Newser) – On Independence Day, the flag flying over the Capitol building in DC will be made of hemp. Colorado hemp advocate Michael Bowman came up with the idea, and Rep. Jared Polis, sponsor of a hemp amendment that could help get farmers back into the hemp-growing business, helped Bowman make it a reality. The flags that fly over the Capitol can be purchased, so they are replaced almost every day. This one is thought to be the first made from hemp since the 1930s, when the government first started outlawing it.

Considering that Betsy Ross's flag was hemp; that colonial settlers used the crop to pay taxes and make rope, fabric, paper, and other goods; and that many headed west in wagons covered with hemp canvas, the hemp flag that will fly on the 4th of July is "a powerful symbol," Bowman says. The flag will go from DC to Colorado's state capitol building, then on a tour of other capitol buildings in states considering hemp legalization, the Washington Post reports.

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Showing 3 of 15 comments
Jul 3, 2013 10:54 AM CDT
Don't Bogart that flag, my friend
Jul 3, 2013 6:17 AM CDT
Welcome and hello! I’m Cousin Mary Jane, Cannabis Sativa L; twice removed from the paternal side; AKA industrial hemp. Don’t confuse me with my Resinous THC Cannabis Indica and Sativa family, (some refer to them as marijuana) – they are distant cousins of mine. Although we may look a bit alike we do not act the same, and we are most definitely very different. They get tiny trichomes containing THC (tetrahydrocannabinols) that have psychoactive properties; we do not. My family members are grown for our seeds and stalks and have virtually no psychoactive elements......Hemp has been, and still is a very good biodegradable plant that can be used to make paper, cloth, cars, flags, bedding, etc. And one can grow hemp every year at planting season, instead of chopping down beautiful trees, and forrests, that take decades and centuries to grow back. Go to a local landfill and check out all that unnessecary stuff pollluting the land that could mostly be recycled. Anything made of hemp will go back to the earth and replinish the soil. We have to start massive recycling and using hemp again for our dear Mother Earth who has taken so much abuse. Don't know how much more she can take!
Jul 3, 2013 12:22 AM CDT
What a suprize they are still read, white, blue?