When thinking back to our time of youth, everyone can hear and recognize the soundtrack of their lives. From the rebellious punk rock music to the heart-wrenching ballads of R&B, each genre marks an era of personal growth and realizations about life. For me, country music held an important role as the anthem of my childhood, but in recent years, songs by Shania Twain and Garth Brooks are kept buried in nostalgia alongside tunes by Guns N’ Roses and Ace of Base.
Even though I have embraced different approaches to music and found new favorites since then, country music has recently re-appeared in my life, as legendary country music singer Toby Keith just released a new music video about cannabis that features a joint-smoking Willie Nelson.
I’ll be the first to say that in the past, not everyone saw a strong connection between cannabis and country music. But in an industry in which I am extremely involved in and passionate about—cannabis is now being promoted and whole-heartedly embraced by the country music world. It was then that I was reminded that much like music, cannabis transcends all people, regardless of what they believe.
Known for his patriotism and support for the military, Keith has produced many conservative songs like “Courtesy of the Red, White and Blue” and “American Solider.” Keith’s newfound success with this cannabis anthem reminds me of how much the cannabis industry has evolved. Now, conservative and liberal politicians are working together to reform cannabis legislation at the state and federal levels.
Although cannabis is notorious for the role it plays in the Rastafarian way of life, cannabis has a way of influencing many other cultures and religions around the globe. In the United States, we’ve seen everything from cannabis cultivating nuns to modern cannabis churches that are non-denominational out of respect for all religions.
There will always be beliefs and ideologies that continue to separate us. Instead of focusing on those differences, let’s rally all fans of rock, rap and country, as well as every known religious affiliation, and we will continue to work together to reverse the negative stigmas associated with cannabis. Our relentless advocacy and dedication to professionalism and freedom will help us prove how cannabis has the ability to improve the planet and all the people who live on it.