The 50 Year Anniversary of Nixon’s Attack on Black and Brown People Through the Initiation of the War on Drugs


 by Veronica Castillo 

Photo by Author

In 1971, the lives of black and brown people received another threat. In this threat, the government focused on changing an entire nation’s law just to keep black and brown people suppressed and oppressed. In 1971, President Nixon, with an ugly, disgusting, racist soul- officially declared a “War on drugs”, loosely translated: a “war on black and brown people”. Because in America at the time, freedom was a focus. And whenever the nation moves even an inch closer, the fear of leaders and supporters of white supremacy start to rage.


For in America, the freedom of the black and brown people is the biggest fear of a white supremacist and their supporters. Nixon decided that this couldn’t happen and so,terror continued. Black and brown lives in this country never have mattered much. Sure we have “all lives matter” chanting and protesting but- that chant and protest wouldn’t be needed if “all lives matter” were really the case in America.


The History of Plants Being on Schedules


In 1970, President Nixon, in all of his rage, signed the CSA into American law ruining thousands of lives- not all lives- but mostly black and brown. The Controlled Substance Act officially prohibited cannabis and placed the plant on schedule 1- as a very dangerous drug.


But it started in 1937 with the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937, where cannabis became taxable. This happened because of racism and prejudice against Mexicans who were coming to American with their medicinal herb, Marihuana. This act didn’t outlaw cannabis, just made accessibility harder. At that time, marijuana was not classed as a major drug like opium and heroin, which were prohibited under the Harrison Narcotics Tax Act of 1914.


Harry Anslinger, another disgusting, worse than vomit individual who was the Federal Bureau of Narcotics Commissioner, helped pass the 1937 Marihuana Tax Act through his campaign against cannabis- not just marijuana, but the whole plant. For 5 presidents, over a 30+ year career, Harry terrorized the lives of black and brown people. Check out the movie: The United States vs. Billie Holiday.

Photo by Author

In 1970 when cannabis was outlawed completely, the government rang the bell and just like that, black and brown lives were under a new attack.


The Controlled Substance Act and Its Schedules

Photo by Author

In 1970, Harry and his goons, known as the federal government, declared marijuana more dangerous than cocaine, meth, oxycodone, and fentanyl; a plant, an herb, like tea; a plant with 5000 years of healing proof. According to the government, schedule I drugs have the highest potential for abuse and the potential to create psychological and/or physical dependence (do you notice the decision made off of “potential” not “proof”?).

The American government is evil and twisted as heck. I mean- they have marijuna listed as more dangerous than Cocaine! Codeine! Meth! All of the plants that can heal- are on schedule 1:

Schedule I:


Schedule I drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse. Some examples of Schedule I drugs are:


  • Heroin
  • Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD)
  • Marijuana (cannabis)
  • 3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine (ecstasy)
  • Methaqualone
  • Peyote (cactus)
  • Psilocybin (Magic Mushrooms)


Schedule II


Schedule II drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with a high potential for abuse, with use potentially leading to severe psychological or physical dependence. These drugs are also considered dangerous. Some examples of Schedule II drugs are:


  • Combination products with less than 15 milligrams of hydrocodone per dosage unit (Vicodin)
  • Cocaine
  • Methamphetamine
  • Methadone
  • Hydromorphone (Dilaudid)
  • Meperidine (Demerol)
  • Oxycodone (OxyContin)
  • Fentanyl
  • Dexedrine
  • Adderall
  • Ritalin


Schedule 3:


Schedule II drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with a low to moderate potential for physical and psychological dependence. Some examples of Schedule III drugs are:


  • Tylenol with codeine
  • Ketamine
  • Anabolic steroids
  • Testosterone


Schedule 4:


Schedule II drugs, substances, or chemicals are defined as drugs with a low probability for misuse and abuse.Some examples of Schedule IVdrugs are:


  • Xanax
  • Soma
  • Darvocet
  • Valium
  • Ambien


Dear American Government, You Got it Wrong


All of the information on the schedules are B*LLSH*T! We know that from the huge opioid epidemic in this country and many others! We know that all the plants that heal are outlawed because the government can careless about actual healing- just control!


Hear from Americans about what you did to our country with your control, greed, and hatred due to fear and jealousy, of black and brown people:


“The government definitely got it wrong and created more harm than good starting with Harry Anslinger(Head of FBN). Anslinger denounced any positive research and prosecuted 3,000+ American Medical Association doctors who prescribed narcotic drugs through 1939. Anslinger testified before Congress saying, “Marijuana is the most violent-causing drug in the history of mankind”, and used Gore Files-often racist, horror stories over-hyped with cannabis as the cause of violence, but in 1948-1950, Anslinger contradicted himself claiming that cannabis did NOT make users violent, but pacifistic. Congress would vote to continue restrictions against cannabis, but this time for the exact OPPOSITE reasons. It doesn’t make sense!!! Just like Nixon signing the Controlled Substance Act in 1970 and putting cannabis on the Schedule 1 list doesn’t make sense”. – Cheryl Clements with House of Weird Perfection


The War on Drugs has mutated and still lingers over the Chicago southside communities like a dark cloud over our Windy City. Something unnoticed in the 182 pages of the Illinois’ Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act is that consumers can still be given a ticket and fined if seen smoking on their porch or backyard, which was echoed by the Chicago Police Department in a video released to Youtube.Though the legalization of marijuana is evidence of a significant cultural shift in mores and legal standards, I am historically and observantly not convinced that Black Americans will be granted that autonomy.”- Victoria Sockwell- Writer and Researcher


“I’m going to speak directly to the government. When you started the “War on drugs,” you didn’t anticipate pushback from the citizens that you were voted in to represent. We voted for you because we thought you had our best interest in mind. You spread the lie that Cannabis is a gateway drug using your religious leader puppets. You spread the lies of the black and brown community stating that cannabis makes black men “violate their women”, You created that lie that resulted in targets on our backs. It’s time to legalize Cannabis, stop the lies, and be the leaders you were voted in to be. Listen to the people!” – Terry Byas- Writer


“Growing up in the heart of the drug war, The Emerald Triangle,  I didn’t understand that running from helicopters, hiding from cocked guns, kidnapping, rape, and overall oppression was not normal. By the time I was 16 I had experienced all of this, and all of it had gotten swept under the rug. The drug war has created a huge rug for millions of atrocities to get swept under. When we aknowledge natural medicines with senseible policies we can begin to address the real issues such human trafficking, drug addiction, food insecurtiy, homelssness, racism, and the other many inequities oppressive systems create. As we unravel the traumas  we can heal the impacts. It’s time for our country to end the war so we can heal. As long as natural medicines are criminalized, the true atrocities of the world will have rugs to get swept under. I am ready to beat some rugs!” – Lelehnia DuBois- Humboldt Grace


“The War on Drugs is a huge failure in this country. It has had negative impacts on millions of people by persecution and criminalizing the habitual users. Which is important to note that people who are users are not criminals, they are actually victims. The government’s agenda has led to mass incarceration of millions of people, increased white collar crimes, and has led to systemic human rights abuses. All of these dynamics are more while still fueling the powerful drug cartels. Let’s think of, “The Balloon Effect.” As the Government showcases their efforts of dismantling drug production or major routes, the supply for the end user is not reduced. Let’s take crystal meth for an example. The US government stated that they regulated the sale of chemicals used to manufacture the drug. So although most major big meth manufacturers went out of business,  thousands of small-scale operations sprung up all over the country, using chemicals that weren’t regulated. The U.S has a drug enforcement budget of $30 billion a year but the success rate is about 1%. Let that sink in. In the 80’s, Switzerland was heading towards the same direction but decided to Institute the War on Drugs as a Health crisis. They got it right, instead America has intentionally created an unachievable goal while creating human misery and bulldozing human rights”.- Samuel Johnson- Black Men in Suits Urban Nation


In Closing


U.S Customs and Border Protection- Department of Homeland Security knows that lethal drugs are let into the country by other government organizations- heck- they may even organize it. They say this:


“Just prior to the passage of the Marihuana Tax Act of 1937, the Customs Agency Service compiled a Narcotics Manual that reported: “Marihuana may be cultivated or grown wild in almost any locality. Inasmuch as this drug is so readily obtained in the United States, it is not believed to be the subject of much organized smuggling from other countries.” Today, however, marijuana trafficking is a major concern of CBP, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Drug Enforcement Administration”.


The war was vicious, not necessary, and lost. The people spoke and continue to speak.



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