We left New York City in the fall of 2010, three months after we both finished graduate school. On September 1, in a red Volkswagen Beetle, we traveled north to Maine. The goal back then was to drive from east to west, to every state with a medical cannabis law, with a detour to the federal cannabis farm at the University of Mississippi. We would document the struggles to legalize the plant as a medicine while the federal government vigorously fought back.
We drove across the country four times while reporting for this book, and we made it to nearly every state with a cannabis law. After almost three years, 30,000 miles and hundreds of interviews, we became experts on cannabis in America—and the story changed. Americans were no longer passing only medical cannabis laws; two states approved personal use cannabis. And the country swung with them in favor of full legalization. We were in Oakland when California tried, failed, and offered lessons with Proposition 19. And we were in Seattle on election night 2012 when cannabis prohibition ended in Washington and Colorado.
There wasn’t room in the book for every character or every adventure, so you can find those stories on the blog (Tumblr). Make sure to check there often for updates on current events and many tales from the road.