Why is Marijuana Illegal? Reefer Madness!: Harry J. Anslinger Essay. Harry J.
Anslinger headed the Federal Bureau of Narcotics for 31 years. His biggest contribution to the so-called "reefer madness" propaganda movement was the 1937 Marijuana Transfer Tax Act, which imposed strictures on the growing and use of the plant which rendered hemp effectively worthless by taxing it out of existence.
Anslinger passed this bill through rather dubious means. His testimony in favor of the Act, for example, consisted largely of selections from Hearst newspaper articles read aloud into the Congressional record. Hemp Around Their Necks by Harry Anslinger. Harry Anslinger Vault. Known as the "Father of the Drug War", Harry Anslinger was the first Commissioner of the U.S.
Bureau of Narcotics (somewhat equivalent to the later "drug czar") of the United States. Under president Hoover, Anslinger was appointed to the newly created position on August 12, 1930 at the age of 38. Father of the Drug War.