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    Synthetic marijuana poses big threat

    Synthetic marijuana poses big threat

    By Jami Davis

    Synthetic marijuana is now being thought of as dangerous, and is subject to being banned. The product is often referred to as “K2”, “Blaze”, “Spice” and other names, depending on the manufacturer.

    The product originated when scientists created a synthetic version of the THC found in marijuana, in hopes of finding an avenue to produce therapeutic drugs. Two of the drugs commonly found in synthetic marijuana products are HU-210 and JWH-018, laboratory made chemicals produced to mimic the effects of THC.

    Synthetic drugs draw users in because they have not yet been isolated in urine-based drug test. Drug users get a high, while not facing the legal consequences. However, the drugs may have more dangerous consequences than a run in with the law.

    “Synthetic drugs are chemicals that people are putting into their bodies. Many chemicals react in harmful ways when put in your system. The FDA does not test these products. People who use synthetic drugs are at great risk, just to get high,” Officer Butch Pearson said.

    Synthetic marijuana is sold in packages, usually about three grams in size, and can be expensive.

    Manufacturers advertise these products as “incense” or “herbal blends” “not for human consumption”.

    “Herbal blends” found in synthetic marijuana include “dwarf skullcap”, “Indian warrior”, “honeyweed”, “beach bean” and others.

    Negative effects of using synthetic marijuana are only known on a short term scale. Long term effects are completely unknown, and no testing has yet been done to determine them.

    Short term effects of synthetic marijuana include burning of the throat and lungs, hallucination, unusual heart beat, nausea and in some cases, death. The side effects of using synthetic marijuana have been responsible for hundreds of calls to poison control centers and hospitalizations in individual states alone.

    Legislation in some states is being worked on to illegalize these substances and minimize damage to human lives.

    “Laws are being passed now to stop the sale of these drugs. My concern is the health risk and long term effects,” Pearson said.

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    • C

      Conner StevensonJan 14, 2011 at 10:09 pm

      While this product could pose as a problem in the future, I could see how it may help a little bit with the problem of people smoking marijuana. I feel as if it really wont do much to stop the use of it though. I mean, the people that already do it wont stop doing it to do the synthetic version, and the people that start the synthetic version would most likely move to the real thing once the synthetic version is banned. In the long run, I really see no benefit to having made this alternative.

    • E

      Evan MayJan 14, 2011 at 9:37 pm

      I have heard people say that weed isnt really that bad. I belive that those people are dead wrong. Marajuana or this so called “synthetic marajuana” are equally hazardous to people’s health. The government should move to ban the “spice” before it becomes a problem to large to contain.

    • T

      Tessa AllenJan 14, 2011 at 9:15 pm

      I actually stumbled on a story like this a while ago in the newspaper and it fascinates me that people can become so addicted to being high that they are willing to risk those side effects but who really understands the mind of a junkie other than a junkie? I am glad this is getting coverage at a level that will actually reach teenagers though.

    • M

      Madison GuidryJan 13, 2011 at 7:28 pm

      This is ridiculous. People that depend on a drug so much that they have to rely on a fake legal substance to replace it, need help. They need to start thinking about their body and what it could do to it. They could seriously hurt theirself.

    • R

      Raya GirardJan 12, 2011 at 4:53 pm

      Wow, I had no idea something like this existed. This is an article that could literally save someones life. People should be very careful what they take. We are lucky to live in America where we have a FDA to monitor drugs but we still need to be careful and watch out for ourselves

    • H

      Haseena Abdur-RahmanJan 8, 2011 at 2:55 pm

      Drugs are illegal for a reason. Like shelby said, man hasn’t been known for creating too many great things with one try. The side effects may be unknown now, ut i predict that they will most likely develop into something harmful. When this drug is perfected, however, then i personally don’t care what people do with it. I just don’t want innocent lives to be endangerd because of an incompletion in a drug like this.

    • U

      Unique LarryJan 2, 2011 at 6:04 pm

      I agree with Shelby, however I believe that because the first try was not to their liking that there will be other attempts. The idea to have a synthetic marijuana with various chemicals that have harmful short term effects, who knows what it will do to those over a long period of time and there hasn’t been any testing is kind of crazy.

    • J

      Jessica TaylorJan 2, 2011 at 2:22 pm

      I had heard of synthetic marijuana before, but I did not know much about it. This is just another thing that man has created with good intentions, but has been used for the wrong purposes. I agree with Shelby though, I think it was released too early, if they are not even sure of all of the side effects yet.

    • S

      shelby reynoldsJan 2, 2011 at 11:48 am

      im sorry..but the truth hasnt been known for creating to many great things with one try. so many things get released to early and then regret falls into place when people begin showing unfavorable symptoms. this to often happens. i think we need to take longer at testing a product in the lab rather than quickly putting it in the hands of the consumer in order to make it a mass labratory.. we arent to be tested on. we are to be helped. so before u give us anything..make sure it works first.

    • M

      Malikah WilliamsDec 17, 2010 at 7:36 pm

      Before this article, I had never even heard of synthetic marijuana. Now why people would want to take this more harmful route is beyond me. Just do not do anything at all, synthetic or otherwise.

    • D

      Diana O.Dec 17, 2010 at 6:40 pm

      This is absolutely crazy. The problem can easily be resolved with the law and the producers. That maybe impossible so the companies should be the first people to take the proper steps to legalize it, then the government will take its steps. Marijuana is not a very good product. If it is legalized will the crime rate lower? That’s a risk to see if we are willing to take.

    • T

      Trey CarterDec 17, 2010 at 11:41 am

      I think this is basically a way for companies to legalize marijuana. Since its almost impossible for the government to monitor the entire “street marijuana” production, these scientist have figured out a way to manage and market it. Excellent idea, too bad its a terrible product. I’m sure that the manufacturers of this synthetic marijuana are making big money now, until they ban it, then it’s off to something else.

    • A

      Alex MartinezDec 17, 2010 at 9:32 am

      I think that problems like these could be solved if all of the states just legalized marijuana. That way, those who wanted to get high would not have to resort to synthetic drugs like this with harmful synthetic chemicals, but could use real marijuana, which is so much better than smoking a cigarette.

    • R

      Rachel ArnoldDec 15, 2010 at 2:32 pm

      This is crazy. The fact that people would buy expensive, chemically manufactured, high risk marijuana just stuns me. The side effects alone seemed endless. This article covered the topic really well though. I definitely learned something new.