Colonel Harland David Sanders, founder and mascot of Kentucky Fried Chicken, was raised to believe that alcohol, tobacco, gambling and whistling on Sundays were terrible social evils. So you could say the fast-food mogul - who was born 126 years ago today - is an unlikely figure in cannabis culture. But he became part of it in 2009 when an old KFC location was turned into a medical marijuana dispensary.
The store located in the Palms neighborhood of Los Angeles was called Kind For Cures or KFC for short (see what they did there?). The dispensary didn't sell chicken fried in cannabutter or THC-infused cole slaw. But they did offer a strain called K.F.C. OG. And they kept the restaurant's original design intact, including the signature mansard roof. (Although the owner later painted it green to avoid getting sued for copyright infringement.)
The establishment may also have inspired a South Park episode. In "Medicinal Fried Chicken" (2010), Cartman joins an illegal fast-food cartel when the only KFC restaurant in South Park is closed down and converted into a medical marijuana dispensary. Cartman quickly goes from chicken runner to a fast-food kingpin in a criminal syndicate run by none other than Colonel Sanders.
Meanwhile, South Park residents are giving themselves testicular cancer so they can qualify for medical marijuana. Ultimately, the episode satirized overregulation of marijuana and fast food.
Unfortunately, the KFC dispensary became a casualty of regulation shortly afterward, when city bylaws forced it to close down. But - like Colonel Sanders - it lives on as part of cannabis culture thanks to "South Park." Here's a clip of Cartman's rise and fall as a fast-food gangster.
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