2010-AnnDruyanFreedom Leaf Editor-in-Chief Steve Bloom spoke with Ann Druyan, an Executive Producer of Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey, widow of Carl Sagan and member of NORML’s Advisory Board. Her interview appears in the “Women of Cannabis” section of our December issue.

“I began to smoke marijuana, some 50 years ago when I was 15,” Druyan tells Freedom Leaf. “My best friend’s older brother gave us a single joint, which we smoked in her backyard on a summer evening while her parents were out for dinner. I recall the bliss of it vividly. I remember feeling that a doorway had opened for me to greater awareness and a heightened appreciation of life’s beauty. Soon after, my own brother began smoking. We both enjoyed it so much, we immediately wanted to share it with our father. It changed his life, too. I feel a great debt to THC—and can’t help but think that I have lived, loved and worked more completely because of my wholly positive life long relationship with cannabis.

Druyan teamed up with NORML in the ’90s, “during the most horrendous period of ‘Just Say No’ I was looking for a way to have my voice heard. I did make a scene at my kid’s D.A.R.E graduation, but I was looking for some larger arena. Lester Grinspoon suggested I join the NORML board. Keith (Stroup) and Allen (St. Pierre) impressed me enormously. Their seriousness of purpose and practical approach gave me hope that we could bring about some change. That was about twenty-five years ago.”

Druyan, co-creator of the original Cosmos series that first aired in 1980, was an Executive Producer, a Director and writer of Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey, the 13-part series hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson that premiered in March 2014, “My most recent work premiered in 2014. I was the lead Executive Producer, Writer and a Director of Cosmos: A SpaceTime Odyssey, the 13-part series hosted by Neil deGrasse Tyson, that was broadcast on the Fox and National Geographic Networks. It remains the largest roll-out of a television series in history, broadcast in 180 countries around the world, and deservedly won the Peabody Award, four Emmys and a dozen awards.

About her reform activities, Druyan pointedly observes: “Our society is on its way to a degree of sanity about marijuana. There are other forms of madness that seem to require our activism more urgently.”

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