Urgent warning for synthetic cannabis users

PEORIA — The Peoria City/County Health Department and UnityPoint Health issued an urgent warning Wednesday about synthetic cannabis, which can cause life-threatening bleeding that may start internally and be initially difficult to detect.

The warning cited “multiple cases in the greater Peoria area of people suffering from severe bleeding after smoking a drug containing synthetic cannabinoids,” said Dr. Gary Knepp, vice president and regional chief quality officer for UnityPoint Health, during an afternoon news conference at the Methodist Atrium Building. “This report was followed by an Illinois Poison Control Center report that they had been consulted on 17 suspected cases in Chicago, Joliet and Peoria.”

Synthetic cannabinoids mimic the effect of the cannabis plant. Often called K2 or Spice, the drug is sprayed onto a plant material and smoked. Synthetic cannabinoids are generally more potent and intense than cannabis, said Dr. Kirk Moberg, executive director of UnityPoint Health Illinois Institute of Addiction Recovery.

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Renken, Leslie. “Urgent warning for synthetic cannabis users.” www.pjstar.com. 28 March 2018. Web. 9 April 2018.

Why a Federal Judge Dismissed a Lawsuit That Could Have Legalized Marijuana Nationwide

A federal judge on Monday tossed out a lawsuit that sought to legalize cannabis under federal law, handing another setback to a movement aimed at effectively making the drug legal everywhere in the United States

The plaintiffs in the case included former NFL player Marvin Washington, along with a 12-year-old girl who uses medical marijuana to treat her chronic epilepsy and others who used the drug for medical reasons. Their lawsuit, which named Attorney General Jeff Sessions as a defendant, argued that the Controlled Substances Act (CSA) is unconstitutional with regard to its classification of marijuana as a Schedule 1 substance, the federal government’s most dangerous classification that is also reserved for drugs such as heroin and LSD. The lawsuit called that classification “irrational” based on the argument that marijuana serves a real medical purpose for countless patients across the country.

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Huddleston, Tom Jr. “Why a Federal Judge Dismissed a Lawsuit That Could Have Legalized Marijuana Nationwide.” fortune.com. 27 February 2018. Web. 6 April 2018.

FACTS ABOUT SYNTHETIC DRUGS

Synthetic drugs, also referred to as designer or club drugs, are chemically-created in a lab to mimic another drug such as marijuana, cocaine or morphine.

The resulting designer drugs typically have a new different effect on the brain or behavior. Because these drugs are created in illegal labs, their ingredients and strength are almost impossible to know.

There are more than 200 identified synthetic drug compounds and more than 90 different synthetic drug marijuana compounds.

Many of these synthetic drugs are made in foreign countries and then smuggled into the United States. Clandestinely-made drugs have no manufacturing safety standards that are normally required by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

The effects of synthetic drug use can include: anxiety, aggressive behavior, paranoia, seizures, loss of consciousness, nausea, vomiting and even coma or death.

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Just Think Twice. “FACTS ABOUT SYNTHETIC DRUGS.” www.justthinktwice.gov. Web. 4 April 2018.

ENVIRONMENTAL DAMAGE OF MARIJUANA IN THE WEST

Citizens, Law Enforcement, and Elected Officials are concerned about the growing environmental problems that come with increased planting of marijuana planting in the West.


“ENVIRONMENTAL DAMAGE OF MARIJUANA IN THE WEST: A ROGER MORGAN PRODUCTION 1.” Online video clip. YouTube.com. YouTube, 27 March 2018. Web. 30 March 2018.

NJ marijuana legalization: Tube men, black market and other legal weed pitfalls

Weed merchants in Washington state picked up on the popularity of inflatable tube men usually seen waving and flapping around outside of car dealers and mattress stores and occasionally onstage at concerts.

But complaints about the inflatables, green in color and moving erratically in front of marijuana shops, streamed into the regulatory agency set up to control the weed industry.

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Serrano, Ken. “NJ marijuana legalization: Tube men, black market and other legal weed pitfalls.”

The complicated answer to a simple question: Should marijuana be legal where I live?

It has been decades since I held a joint between my fingers. (I’m not even sure that’s what it’s called these days.) But memories from my youth came pouring back to me on Tuesday as I pondered over the question on my ballot.

Voters in Chicago and surrounding areas were asked to weigh in on whether marijuana should be legalized in Illinois. But it didn’t stop with recreational users. The nonbinding referendum also asked us to consider whether people should be allowed to cultivate it, manufacture it and distribute it without retribution.

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Glanton, Dahleen. “The complicated answer to a simple question: Should marijuana be legal where I live?” www.chicagotribune.com. 22 March 2018. Web. 23 March 2018.

Normal’s Fritzen warns against recreational marijuana use

NORMAL – The Normal Town Council’s senior member is entering the fray whether marijuana for recreational use will become legal in Illinois.

Councilman Jeff Fritzen said he’s probably hoping against hope the legislature rejects the idea even though taxes placed on marijuana sales could help state government reduce its massive debt.

Fritzen’s comments follow Bloomington State Senator Jason Barickman’s announcement late last year that he’s willing to support legalized marijuana in return for having a say how the state will use marijuana revenues.

Fritzen said people are kidding themselves if they think the state can keep marijuana out of the hands of people younger than 21, which is four or five years before their brains are fully developed.

“The legalization of marijuana, even though they’re going to propose an age on it, the age is 21. Well, we’re still four or five years away from full development of the brain, and there are impacts of this,” Fritzen said.

“This is a revenue issue for the State of Illinois, and it hadn’t ought to be that we would be willing to risk the development of our youth and our young people, our young adults. Maybe you can somehow miraculously keep it out of the hands of teenagers. I doubt it,” the councilman also said.

Fritzen said it’s a “huge fallacy” to believe that if marijuana becomes legal, dealers will no longer engage in other illegal activities like selling opioids.


Packowitz, Howard. “Normal’s Fritzen warns against recreational marijuana use.” www.wjbc.com. 8 March 2018. Web. 13 March 2018.

Mason-Dixon Polling & Strategy Poll

This poll was conducted by Mason-Dixon Polling & Strategy, Inc. of Jacksonville, Florida from November 1 through November 4, 2017. A total of 625 registered Illinois voters were interviewed statewide by telephone.
Those interviewed were randomly selected from a phone-matched Illinois voter registration list that included both land-line and cell phone numbers. Quotas were assigned to reflect voter turnout by county.
The margin for error, according to standards customarily used by statisticians, is no more than ± 4 percentage points. This means that there is a 95 percent probability that the “true” figure would fall within that range if all voters were surveyed. The margin for error is higher for any subgroup, such as a gender or age grouping.

QUESTION: Now I want to ask a few questions more specific about marijuana policy in Illinois. Currently, possessing 10 grams of marijuana – enough for about 30 joints – is not a crime in Illinois. Instead, it is a civil violation like a traffic ticket. Many people call this policy “decriminalization.” Medical marijuana use is also legal in Illinois. Knowing that personal marijuana possession is already decriminalized in Illinois, which one of the following marijuana policies do you prefer: [ORDER ROTATED]

  • Keep the current policy of decriminalization and medical marijuana
  • Keep the current policy of decriminalization but repeal medical marijuana
  • Change the current policy of decriminalization by legalizing commercial production, use and sale of marijuana for recreational use-Make all marijuana use illegal

1

2


Mason-Dixon Polling & Strategy, Inc. “Mason-Dixon Polling & Strategy Poll.” Web. 8 March 2018.

States consider ‘sanctuary’ status for cannabis businesses

Taking a cue from the fight over immigration, some states that have legalized marijuana are considering providing so-called sanctuary status for licensed pot businesses, hoping to protect the fledgling industry from a shift in federal enforcement policy.

Just hours after U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced on Jan. 4 that federal prosecutors would be free to crack down on marijuana operations as they see fit, Jesse Arreguin, the mayor in Berkeley, California, summoned city councilman Ben Bartlett to his office with a novel idea.

Berkeley was already the first city in the nation to formally declare itself a sanctuary city on immigration, barring city officials from cooperating with federal authorities. Why not do the same thing with marijuana? Last month, it did.

“We knew we had to do something,” Bartlett said. “This is a new engine of a healthy economy.”

Others may soon follow Berkeley’s lead: Alaska, California and Massachusetts lawmakers are among those with similar bills pending, though the chances for passage is unclear.

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“States consider ‘sanctuary’ status for cannabis businesses.” chicago.suntimes.com. 6 March 2018. Web. 6 March 2018.