Think that billionaires don’t touch cannabis? Think again. The world’s richest have access to all the indulgences in the world and cannabis is no exception. Here’s a list of some users or advocates that may shock you.
Worth $79.4 billion according to Forbes, Gates could afford some quality bud if he needed to. Gates voted “yes” to pass Initiative 502, legalizing marijuana for recreational use in Washington State, but he was still somewhat surprised that it actually received approval. Says Gates: “As for drugs—well, marijuana was the pharmaceutical of choice…”
Bloomberg was famously quoted as saying, ”You bet I did. And I enjoyed it,” when asked if he ever used cannabis. The quote appeared in the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws Foundation’s $500,000 advertising campaign, stirring controversy. Although he never denied his quote, he regretted the blowback. ”In terms of, I had, certainly when I was younger, as I suppose most people in my generation, experimented. I never lie, so if somebody asked me a question, I told them. Do I, in retrospect, wish I didn’t say it that day so they couldn’t quote it? Of course.”
Media mogul Ted Turner is rumored to have been a cannabis user since his youth, even supposedly getting caught growing marijuana in his dorm room at school. Turner has also been selfless with his money to support cannabis. His organization the Turner Foundation is a sponsor of the Kentucky Hemp Museum, which provides grants to groups that benefit the environment.
Sir Richard Branson
The co-founder of the Virgin Group (think Virgin Atlantic Airlines, Virgin Galactic, Virgin Records, etc.), is one of the world’s richest men. He’s also an advocate of marijuana reform, despite only smoking “a joint or two.” He and his son Samuel produced the Brazilian documentary Breaking the Taboo to explore the War on Drugs.
The late visionary behind many Apple devices smoked cannabis when he was younger in order to relax. Jobs ate pot brownies on the regular and admitted to using hard drugs like LSD.
The ultra-conservative Koch supports decriminalizing marijuana, which is unsurprising once you learn he is a founder of the criminal justice reform group, Families Against Mandatory Minimums. “I have friends who smoke pot… It’s ridiculous to treat them as criminals.”