Medical marijuana for the win.
Chances are when you think of medical marijuana you think of that one guy in your office who always shows up reeking like pot. Sure, he says it’s to treat his glaucoma, but nobody actually believes him. While the research about medical marijuana continues to grow and more states make it a legal treatment option, many people still aren’t convinced that marijuana is anything other than a hippie’s low-cal answer to a couple of beers. But medical marijuana is slowly and steadily gaining supporters, and the Stanley brothers are doing their fair share of the heavy lifting when it comes to convincing people that pot isn’t just for your Uncle Steve to smoke in his beige van outside of family gatherings anymore. Read on to find out more about these babely bros and how they are turning the medical marijuana industry on its head. Who are the Stanley brothers?
1. Faith in Cannabis
The first thing you need to know about the Stanley brothers is that I am not talking about the legendary bluegrass band. The second thing you need to know is that I am talking about seven deeply sexy brothers from Colorado Springs, Colorado who make their living selling pot. The brothers are passionate about what they do, brother Jason says that he views marijuana as being “God’s plant” after watching the healing effects it provided their uncle who was suffering from pancreatic cancer when all other treatments failed. It’s actually a mission that all of the brothers believe in, and an idea they all agree with: when it comes to modern medicine and healing on a grand scale, marijuana is the answer and they want to make it accessible to those who have a medical need for it. When Jason says: “God is moving in the hearts of men and women and children around the world about this plant in ways that I never would’ve imagined,” he’s talking about the family business, moving bud.
2. The Breakthrough
It takes more than just watching marijuana help one person to build a business out of its potent results. For the Stanley brothers, their business didn’t really come into focus until a woman named Paige Figi walked into their first dispensary. You see, Paige was looking for treatment for her five-year-old daughter, Charlotte, who had severe epilepsy. Charlotte had a form of epilepsy called Dravet’s Syndrome. She had over 300 grand mal seizures per day. By the time she was five-years-old, she had gone through all pharmeceutical options and none of them worked for her.
Most people would’ve turned away the desperate mother, that’s how taboo our society’s relationship with marijuana still really is. But the Stanley brothers didn’t. Instead, they took a low-THC strain of pot (THC is what gives you that stoned feeling) called “Hippie’s Disappointment” and created a new strain that was safe enough for Charlotte to take. They called it Charlotte’s Web, and the word was out: these guys were changing the face of medical marijuana.
3. Converting Nonbelievers
The Stanley brothers are Christians and they all graduated from the same evangelical high school. In many respects, this makes them the perfect candidates to spread the word about medical marijuana. They are used to trying to convince people to believe in something that might seem difficult on the surface, convincing people about the efficacy of medical marijuana is just all in a day’s work. Plus, their strain, Charlotte’s Web, was so effective in how it limited Charlotte’s seizures that they received massive national attention. In an interview with CNN’S own Sanjay Gupta the brothers were able to present their mission and their results in such a way that Gupta, notoriously anti-medical marijuana was almost immediately won over to their way of doing things. The rest of the world can’t be far behind.
4. The Twist
While the Stanley brothers might have already succeeded in making a few converts to the church of medical marijuana, they know that there are certain lines that they cannot cross if they want to maintain their positive image and keep their credibility as providers of legitimate medical treatments: for example, they do not sell any marijuana to be taken for purely recreational reasons.
Although some of the brothers (including Jason, quoted above) believe that marijuana is fine to enjoy recreationally, that’s just not what their brand is about. The brothers don’t like to be associated with “burn out culture” or stoners in general. In fact, they are kind of fuddy-duddies about pot, reminding all of the people who enjoy their strains medically to make sure that they do so responsibly. On an interview with Today the brothers said that their marijuana and CBD oils are about getting healthy, not about getting high.
5. The Realm of Caring
It’s easy, when you’re a hip and cool liberal cat like me (that was like, at least 65% a joke) to roll your eyes at people who go out of their way to make it clear that they only believe in weed for medicinal reasons, but reading up on the Stanley brothers, it’s kind of hard to get that eye roll going, especially when you consider all of the good that they have done since they first made Charlotte’s Web. It was their success with this strain that led them to launch a foundation called The Realm of Caring. The non-profit is organized to help families navigate their treatment options in the world of medical marijuana, and it primarily assists children. To date, thousands of kids have been helped by the work that the Stanley brothers are doing.
Rebecca Jane Stokes is a writer living in Brooklyn, New York with her cats, Batman and Margot. She’s an experienced generalist with a passion for lifestyle, geek news, pop culture, and true crime. For more of her work, check out her Tumblr.