For the vast majority of people, their initial exposure to the plant known as Cannabis sativa was in the context of it being “drugs”. We’re talking about the concept of drugs as experienced by a child or teenager, even some sheltered adults, in which “drugs” are a sort of bogeyman figure representing anti-social behaviour, crime, delinquency, poor health and general scariness. So, is cannabis a drug?
Cannabis in Australia has a long and vibrant history. Indeed, some scholars believe that Britain first colonised Australia specifically to grow hemp, though it is unknown whether the plant may have previously been grown here, perhaps transported via the landmass now known as Indonesia long before the arrival of the British. Let’s take a close look at our favourite plant here in sunny old Australia.