Today is ‘Back to the Future’ Day. As an enormous Back to the Future fan, I have been waiting for this day for a long time. For those of you that may be too young to know what I’m talking about, or weren’t hip to pop culture back in the 80’s and early 90’s, the Back to the Future movies (there were 3 total) were about a young man who was friends with a physicist and they traveled first back in time, then in part two they traveled to the future, specifically to October 21, 2015. That of course is today.
While a lot of people want to focus on what became reality from the film (Cubs might win the World Series?), and what didn’t (I’m still waiting for commercially available hoverboards!) I couldn’t help but reflect on how much the marijuana world has changed since Marty McFly and Doctor Emmett Brown traveled into the future in the 1980’s. The film starts out in 1985, although Back to the Future Part II was released in 1989. For the record part 3 was released in 1990, although all of that film took place in 1985 and 1885.
In 1985 I was four years old. My mom and stepdad grew marijuana, and my dad sold marijuana. I think even one of my aunts sold marijuana, and my grandfather was in prison for growing and selling marijuana, among other offenses. I of course didn’t know much about marijuana at the time because after all, I was four, but I did have a basic idea of how things were back then compared to now. Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) was a program that was spreading to more and more public schools, spreading reefer madness along the way. Ronald Reagan was President of the United States, and ‘Just Say No’ was the drug war slogan of the day.
The drug war was in full force back then, and marijuana prohibition was enforced in anyway the government could think of. Marty McFly would have had no part of any doobie smoking back then, and would have been considered a total outcast if he did. I like to think that Dr. Brown maybe smoked cannabis, kind of like a time traveling Carl Sagan of sorts, but it was never referenced in the film, so that’s just my own personal marijuana/science nerd theory. But even the great Dr. Emmett Brown would have been arrested, thrown in jail, and given the ‘marijuana scarlet letter’ in the form of a felony on his record had he been caught consuming marijuana back then. In the 1980’s, there were no medical marijuana states, and certainly no recreational marijuana states.
Zoom forward to today, and there are many, many medical marijuana states, four states that have also legalized recreational marijuana, and Washington D.C. which has legalized both medical and recreational marijuana. Marijuana reform is spreading like wildfire, and reefer madness propaganda like D.A.R.E. and ‘Just Say No’ are considered to be ridiculous and harmful. These are truly amazing times. Had Back to the Future been accurate, the tricked out Delorean would have zoomed to Hill Valley, California on October 21, 2015 and found numerous medical marijuana dispensaries all over the place.
A lot has changed since the films releases in the 1980’s, early 90’s on the consumer end too. I remember my dad going through a lot of brick weed back in those days, using a triple beam scale, and metal pipes. If someone got something good back then, which was much more rare compared to today, they called it ‘kill bud,’ which I still do from time to time as a ‘throwback’ thing. Thai stick and Maui Wowie were the dominant strains of the day if it was dank. Had the fictitious character Marty McFly consumed marijuana back then, that would have been the situation he would have encountered.
I like to think that this hypothetical stoner version of Marty McFly would have traveled to October 21, 2015 and one of the first things he would have done is try to score some weed. I know if I was in that situation, that would have been the first thing I would have done! He would have had his mind blown by how things are today. Not only is amazing flower so much more prevalent today, but so are digital scales, and smoking devices that would have seemed out of this world to people time traveling from the 1980’s. Dabs, vape pens, topicals, high CBD products, these would all have seemed so crazy to any time traveler from multiple decades ago. It’s truly an exciting time to be a marijuana consumer.
I want to give a shout out to all Back to the Future nerds out there. If you are like me, you have been waiting for this day for a long time, and probably were even teased for it. I know I was (and probably still will be for this silly article!). In 1985 I was Marty McFly for Halloween, which basically consisted of wearing jeans and a very bootleg vest like he wore in the first film. And by ‘like he wore in the first film’ I mean it wasn’t even close, but hey, what is a broke kid to do back then? HAPPY BACK TO THE FUTURE DAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! #GreatScott