Liberal policy with regard to decriminalizing marijuana in NYS, enacted by Governor Cuomo, may have increased the odds that countless young people will have a greater chance of complications from Covid-19.
Marijuana in New York State is now “decriminalized.” That means it’s not a policing priority. With heroin, fentanyl and other synthetics all around, perhaps a young person smoking a joint isn’t where our police force should be focusing their enforcement efforts.
This change in policy was enacted to help protect minorities, specifically. However, Black and Latinx New Yorkers comprise over 90% of those still being arrested for marijuana. So this is clearly not working.
Arrests under Penal Law Sections 221.05, 221.10, and 221.15, New York Consolidated laws, continue.
So where exactly are people, young and old, buying their decriminalized “street weed” from? Why, it’s the neighborhood drug dealer, a criminal by definition!
Scare tactics aside, stories circulating the Internet suggesting today’s marijuana is 1000 times more potent than “grandpa’s dope from the 1960s”, the cannabis sold today on the streets is absolute garbage. Deadly potent? Hardly.
While it is true that some newer cannabis strains sold in legitimate markets in Amsterdam and Colorado peak at over 30% THC, the highest-quality weed from 1970 was already super strong, almost psychedelic in its effects.
Cannabis Sativa landraces, such as Acapulco Gold, Oaxoan, Panama red, Thai, and others were potent beyond belief.
These landraces, grown outdoors in their native habitat to which each was acclimated, were reportedly mindblowingly powerful.
Acapulco Gold, grown indoors under lights, averages about 22% THC, and outdoors, it was likely far higher, owning to the powerful rays of the sun.
Of course, these facts are well-known to the D.E.A., it’s just the misinformed public that believes weed today is 1000 times more potent.
Skunk #1, the world’s most famous strain of marijuana, a stable inbred line, was first developed in 1978. In comparison, it was actually weaker, averaging only 15% THC.
But none of this is what kids are getting today. Not even close.
The buds, or flowers, are stripped of oils using solvents like butane, and not highly-refined butane, but rather the cheapest stuff, loaded with industrial contaminants and poisons.
The extracted oil is then sold separately, and the drug processors can now make double their money off a single product: flower and oil. Either product can, and usually is, adulterated. You can count on it.
Fentanyl, the super-opioid responsible for a spate of overdose deaths over the last few years, has even been found in both oil and bud.
Commercial cannabis is also routinely sprayed with fungicides like Eagle-20, an agricultural growth aid that is extremely harmful to the lungs.
Eagle-20 and solvents also produce their own characteristic “highs”, so weed stripped of cannabinoids might still have a psychotropic effect, owing to contaminants alone.
Nowadays, most young people vape their cannabis. That’s not so bad, right? Wrong.
Remember the crisis in late Summer of 2019 regarding vaping?
The facts were swept under the rug, but it turns out, the issue was with illicit market cannabis vapes (and Internet-purchased nicotine, in some rarer cases) being adulterated with a cutting agent, something usually associated with good health: Vitamin E acetate.
Why Vitamin E? Because it is viscous, like cannabis oil, and can be substituted in its place, a far cheaper substance. Win-win for the dealers. More profits.
Too bad Vitamin E is not meant to be inhaled. While vaping may be a healthier choice, as there are no combustion products, and vaping is encouraged in England and other European countries as safer choice than smoking, black market vapes are not safer. They’re not even mildly safe.
In fact, they’re hazardous to human health. Potentially deadly, even. Staten Islander News Org first broke this story about fake vapes and contaminants, it you will recall.
That takes us to the present time, March, 2020. We are grappling with a virus that strikes the lungs. And hard.
While not every person smoking or vaping black market pot has died or ended up in the hospital, there’s no question that countless people, young and old, have damaged their lungs smoking weed and THC vapes filled with dangerous chemicals, yet are still walking and living their lives.
Not every person smoking or vaping adulterated black market cannabis died. However, that doesn’t mean they didn’t suffer ill effects; chances are they did.
Will this have an effect on patient outcomes on a mass scale? Marijuana is used widely in our society, like it or not. We can only wait and see, however it’s impossible it won;t have some effect on some people.
Unfortunately, the connection will be difficult to prove, and even more difficult to find solutions to.
Either legalize marijuana or don’t. Decriminalization leaves adolescents, college students, and older Americans seeking to use cannabis in a sticky situation.
The bind is that, although decriminalized, the only beneficiaries of this somewhat new policy are the drug cartels overrunning our cities and towns.
We need cannabis quality controls.
In a free America, cannabis would be illegal. Or it wouldn’t. There is no in between. And, it can’t be both. Think about it.
The grey area is a danger zone, a place where citizens risk everything to use a benign substance with proven medical benefits, but which has become deadly, or at least a real hazard, thanks to marijuana decriminalization in NYS and greedy cartels.
Drugs cartels greedy? Who would have thought!
Our politicians should know better, and act to change the present situation which lacks any clarity or logic.
In the United states, we live in a land under the Rule of Law. “Decrim” is inconsistent with our values of having clarity of law, an unambiguity every American should be thankful for.