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High Times Greats: Howard Stern On Drugs

In the 1990s, Howard Stern was already firmly on board with cannabis legalization.

Fred Blake/ Star File

Though Howard Stern claims to no longer smoke pot and use other illegal drugs, they have always been a favorite subject of his. In 1993, he devoted radio airtime to such pothead guests as David Lee Roth, Richard Belzer, Chip Z’Nuff of Enuff Z’Nuff and Phil Rind of Sacred Reich. Marijuana minstrel David Peel and Mickey “The Pope of Dope” Cezar were longtime Stern regulars. Private Parts, the shock-jock’s bestselling biography, was written with the help of former High Times editor-in-chief Larry “Ratso” Sloman. For the April, 1994 edition of High Times, Steve Bloom compiled a series of blurbs that illustrate Howard Stern’s progressive stance on drugs. In honor of Stern’s birthday January 12, we’re republishing them below.


On The Radio

November 29, 1990
Guests: Mickey “The Pope of Dope” Cezar and David Peel

Cezar: There are people out there suffering, people who are dying who need grass. The government says no. What kind of government is this who doesn’t give a good goddamn what happens to its citizens? To support some laws that to me are unconstitutional, inhuman and unjust…
Stern: So you actually distribute the pot to them free?
Cezar: Some of them, yes. If they can afford, they can pay. If you can’t, well…
Stern: Wow. You really are the Pope. Quickly, I’ll say hello to David Peel. Do you sell marijuana like the Pope?
Peel: I don’t sell it, I sing it.
Stern: Do you wanna sing a song?
Peel [sings]: Free the Pope, free the Pope/ The Pope smokes dope/ God gave him the grass/ The Pope smokes dope…
Stern: I gotta get outta here….

After Cezar and Peel leave and a commercial break.

Stern: Remember that song? Mari-marijuana, mari-marijuana/ We like marijuana, you like marijuana, everyone likes marijuana too/ Up against the wall, motherf-er…. Remember that one?
Jackie Martling: That was the big hit!
Stern: David Peel wrote that, right?
Martling: I know he sang it for years and years on the same street corner.


April 19, 1993
Guest: David Lee Roth

Stern: I know that good pot is four hundred dollars an ounce. So for ten dollars you probably just got a joint!
Roth: It’s the most creative ten dollars I ever spent!
Stern: Hey, normally when you buy ten dollars’ worth of pot you don’t have to do anything, but now all of a sudden that it’s David Lee Roth they could make a whole big deal out of it and really bust his balls for a couple of years.
Roth: Guys, I’m outta here. Have a really good day.
Stern: Didn’t it sound like he was rolling a joint while we were talking? I was almost up before a grand jury one time. I started making some jokes about coke. We don’t even do any drugs. We don’t even go to Washington Square Park and buy pot. I gave all that up like a hundred years ago. So we were talking about it and this DEA guy hears it and goes: OK, let’s get him up before the grand jury, joking is an offense! Jackie, would you ever buy pot in Washington Square Park?
Jackie Martling: You have to be crazy. Of course, he’s probably an old hippie who thinks it’s not a crime.
Stern: Everyone to Jackie who smokes pot is an old hippie.

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October 23, 1993
Guest: Phil Rind

Rind: There are a lot of uses for hemp that people aren’t aware of.
Stern: You can put it in a bong. You can put it in brownies. Put it in a hash pipe.
Fred Norris: You can replace fossil fuels.
Stern: You can cure cancer.
Norris: You can build a house with it.
Martling: Smoke your house.
Stern: And you can feed Somalia with it.
Norris: You can take the leaves and fold it like origami.
Martling: What about breast implants?
Stern: Yeah, hemp breast implants. My mother has ’em.
Norris: You can make pot meatloaf.
Rind: Let’s grow hemp and stop cutting down the rainforest for paper. The original Constitution was written on hemp paper.
Stern: That’s convincing Sen. Jesse Helms.
Martling: They have clothes made out of hemp.
Stern: Pot clothes. You can smoke your jacket.
Rind: The first American flag was made out of hemp fiber. George Washington and Thomas Jefferson both grew hemp.
Stern: Du-ude—I wipe with pot. Talk about a stereotype. Not a real good spokesperson. You can get better people. It’s cool if I came out to legalize pot because I don’t even smoke pot. You listen to the guy and go, “Well, he has selfish motivations.”


October 29, 1993
Guest: Richard Belzer

Belzer: I need your advice, Howard— I’ve never smoked marijuana…
Stern: Please! Belzer’s like a marijuana addict. He shoots it! Belzer loves to smoke pot.
Belzer: Say it again, Howard.
Stern: Belzer love to smoke pot. I assume he smokes pot because all he does is talk nine hours a day about pot. So, Belzer says to me: Do you think I should go judge the Cannabis Contest in Canada?
Belzer: No, in Amsterdam, where it’s legal! Should I do it, Howard?
Stern: Do they pay you?
Belzer: They’re flying me and my wife there, five star hotel. See, I’ve never tried it so I figured I’d try it in a country where it’s legal. What do you think?
Stern: Yeah, try it.
Belzer: OK, thanks.
Stern: So you dudes are gonna go over and smoke a bunch of cannabis for three days and try to decide what is the best?
Belzer: What if I cover the event for you?
Stern: Sure, give a call—definitely.
Belzer: We’ll call you from Amsterdam.
Stern: Call in high, after you’ve sampled everything.


December 6, 1993
Guest: Chip Z’Nuff

Stern: High Times magazine sent Chip out to cover the Cannabis Cup. He was a judge. You love weed, right?
Z’Nuff: It’s fun to partake. If you think about it, Howard, there’s like thirty thousand uses for grass.
Stern: I’m for legalizing marijuana. Why pick on those drugs? Valium is legal. You just go to a doctor and get it and overdose on it—what’s the difference? Prozac, all that stuff, so why not marijuana? Who cares? It’s something that grows out of the ground—why not? Go smoke a head of cabbage. I don’t care what you smoke. I don’t really care. I’m not a smoker anymore, but I don’t care. I say anything that calms people down I’m all for, because people are all hyped up. But every time you speak to these guys who dedicate their lives to legalizing marijuana, they go, “Hey dude, you can make rope out of marijuana.” I go, “Dude, don’t we have enough rope in this country?” So anyway, it’s totally legal over there [Holland]?
Z’Nuff: The grass out there is a lot different than here. Everything’s hydroponic.
Stern: You didn’t know Chip is a chemist. Everything is hydroponic, man! Whenever I read all the pot magazines hydroponics is, like, a big thing….

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Between The Lines

Howard On Howard: “I would smoke dope and cigarettes up in my bedroom, blowing smoke out the window, while my parents were downstairs thinking I was doing homework…. I love my in-laws. They even smoked pot once with Alison [his first wife] because they wanted to experience what their children were going through…. When Paul McCartney got busted in Japan and imprisoned for grass, I called Tokyo to protest.” —from Private Parts

Jackie “The Joint Man” Martling on Howard: “Howard did everything—pot, LSD, whatever. He stopped slowly. Now he’s down to mineral water and jerking off.”

High Times on Howard: “Back in the early Eighties, Howard was the most irreverent person in the media. Almost no one would talk to him. He was scum. I could relate to him. Now he’s a big deal. He rides around in a limo. Now I can’t relate to him.” —John Holmstrom, Oct. ’90

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