Shakespeare, Maya Angelou, Steve Jobs, Queen Victoria, Bob Marley, Carl Sagan: What do all these people have in common? They’re all highly successful, influential, creative individuals our culture has propped up for their art. One could argue that society has been influenced for the better with their contributions. They’re also all past marijuana users.
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It’s hard to imagine a world without Bob Marley’s music, Cosmos, Romeo and Juliet or iPhones, but without these people — and without weed — they might have not existed. BottleStore.com has found 42 successful people who either use or support marijuana, from artists, comedians, musicians and actors to billionaires and literal royalty.
While weed-users have been portrayed as counter-cultural in recent decades, many successful, mainstream, important people throughout history have used or supported weed. It’s important to look back at our own history and find that marijuana has so many important uses in our culture.
Related: The History of Cannabis in Europe
Some have used cannabis for creative inspiration, some used it for medicinal healing and, now that weed is legal, others have created successful businesses. For instance, famed actress and talk-show celebrity Whoopi Goldberg now has her own line of medical cannabis, called Whoopi & Maya, for treating menstrual craps with balms and rubs. Willie Nelson owns Willie’s Reserve, and Tommy Chong has Chong’s Choice.
But there are also many on our list that one simply might not expect. Actor Patrick Stewart, for example, recently invested in Oxford Cannabinoid Technologies, a company that researches cannabis as a solution to pain, inflammation and other issues. Billionaire Bill Gates, the second richest person in the world, has never publicly admitted to smoking pot, but he has pushed Microsoft to invest in Kind Financial, which is a fiscal company specifically designed for the cannabis industry.
Also, medical marijuana is the only solution or possible treatment option for specific illnesses. That’s the case for the ordinary person, and it’s also the case for successful celebrities like Melissa Etheridge, who used weed to counter the side-effects of chemo while treating her breast cancer.