Appalled at the recent defeat of a bill that would have allowed Colorado to become the first state to legally grow industrial hemp since World War II, Hollywood actor and hemp activist Woody Harrelson has withheld $10,000 of his taxes to protest the government.
"I know I'm only a pampered actor with no room to complain, ... but the fact is I care," Harrelson wrote in a two page proclamation. Previously Harrelson, who has commercial interests in a hemp clothing company, had pledged his support for the Colorado hemp bill by affirming that he "will personally guarantee that all hemp produced in Colorado will be purchased at fair market prices." The legislation was recently killed by the House Agriculture Committee by a 8-5 vote.
According to a story that ran in USA Today, Harrelson said that he's been quietly fighting on behalf of industrial hemp and other environmental causes for years. He even slipped president Clinton a letter regarding hemp cultivation while they both attended actor Ted Danson's wedding, the feature noted.
In response to Harrelson's action and to commemorate his efforts on behalf of the Colorado Hemp Production Act of 1996, the Colorado Hemp Initiative Project (CO-HIP) has declared July 23 to be Woody Harrelson Appreciation Day. "Mr. Harrelson has shown great courage and integrity in speaking out in the name of the [environment,] said CO-HIP's Laura Kriho. "As a well known and talented actor, his fame has brought media attention to issues like the salvage logging rider and the industrial hemp movement. We hope he continues to be a vocal supporter."
For more information, please contact CO-HIP at (303) 784-5632.