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No, legal weed is not ‘dumbing down’ the nation’s teens

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The marijuana policy landscape changed rapidly between 2002 and 2013. During that time, 13 states passed medical-marijuana laws, 10 states relaxed penalties for marijuana use, and Colorado and Washington became the first states to fully legalize recreational pot use.

Opponents of marijuana liberalization warned that these changes would bring devastating consequences, particularly for kids: “But what about the children?” was the common refrain. The president of National Families in Action, an anti-drug group, warned that commercial marijuana would “literally dumb down the precious minds of generations of children.” Psychiatrist Christian Thurstone, an outspoken opponent of Colorado’s marijuana legalization, argued in 2010 that “the state’s relaxed laws have made the drug widely available — and irresistible — to too many adolescents.”

Given the widespread liberalization of marijuana laws and huge changes in public acceptance of the drug, you might expect that by now we’d be seeing more marijuana use — and more problematic use, such addiction and dependency — among the nation’s teens. But in fact the exact opposite has happened, according to a new study from Richard Grucza and colleagues at the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis.

The number of American teens with marijuana-related problems — such as dependency on the drug, or troubles with family and school due to marijuana use — fell by 24 percent between 2002 and 2013. The overall number of teens using marijuana fell, too. And the teens who do use marijuana are less likely to experience problems due to the drug.

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“We were surprised to see substantial declines in marijuana use and abuse,” Grucza said in a statement. “Whatever is happening with these behavioral issues, it seems to be outweighing any effects of marijuana decriminalization.”

Grucza and his colleagues analyzed data from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, an annual federal survey. Their research, forthcoming in the Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, was funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse.

“The reduction in the past-year prevalence of marijuana use disorders among adolescents took place during a period when 10 U.S. states relaxed criminal sanctions against adult marijuana use and 13 states enacted medical marijuana policies,” the study found. “During this period, teenagers also became less likely to perceive marijuana use as risky, and marijuana use became more socially acceptable among young adults.”

If legalization opponents are to be believed, these are all the ingredients necessary for an explosion in marijuana problems among the nation’s teens. So what happened?

In looking more closely at the data, Grucza and his colleagues discovered something interesting. They found that the number of adolescents experiencing a broad array of non-drug-related conduct problems — fighting, stealing, arguing with their parents — was declining, too. And so they divided the kids experiencing marijuana-use problems into two groups: those who exhibited marijuana-use disorders alongside other conduct problems and those who had marijuana-use disorders but otherwise experienced no other conduct problems.

They found that the decline in marijuana-use disorders was concentrated almost exclusively in the kids dealing with other problems on top of their pot use: “We observed a decline in the proportion of adolescents who both reported conduct problems and met criteria for marijuana use disorders. In contrast, the proportion of adolescents with marijuana use disorders who did not report conduct problems remained relatively constant.”

Researchers know that bad behavior and drug use often go hand in hand among teens. While the causality can go either way — bad behavior causes drug use or vice versa — a reduction in one usually accompanies a reduction in the other. So if teens are becoming better-behaved overall, it stands to reason that drug problems will decrease, too.

“Other research shows that psychiatric disorders earlier in childhood are strong predictors of marijuana use later on,” Grucza said in a statement. “So it’s likely that if these disruptive behaviors are recognized earlier in life, we may be able to deliver therapies that will help prevent marijuana problems — and possibly problems with alcohol and other drugs, too.”

Again, the research here does not at all show that liberalization of marijuana laws caused these reductions in teenage marijuana abuse. But it does strongly suggest that other factors — such as broader behavioral and mental health trends — are much more likely to drive changes in teen marijuana use than other factors, such as laws or attitudes toward pot.

Grucza’s study adds to a growing body of research showing that changes to marijuana policy have had a much smaller effect on teenage drug use than once feared. A paper published in Lancet Psychiatry last year found that passing medical-marijuana laws had no effect on teen marijuana use at the state level. Other large surveys of adolescents, such as the Monitoring the Future Study, find that in recent years teen marijuana use has been flat. State-level federal survey data shows little change in teen marijuana use, even in states that have legalized it for adults.

As a number of states consider marijuana legalization this fall, opponents are already asking: “But what about the children?” If the research by Grucza and others is any indication, the kids will be just fine.

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The Game to Release New Cannabis Line

The Game is going green as the brand ambassador for a new cannabis line. The rapper (real name Jayceon Taylor) has partnered with G FarmaBrands, a California-based company that specializes in marijuana-based products for medical and “adult use,” to launch “G Stiks” and “G Drinks,” which will be available throughout California and Washington state.

“As an award-winning recording artist, star and icon, The Game embodies the true spirit of the marijuana culture,” said Ata Gonzalez, founder of G FarmaBrands, in a press release sent to Billboard. “He understands the plant and is a firm believer in us as a company and our dedication to setting the industry standard through quality and innovation.”

The new G Drinks line will feature lemonade beverages in flavors of original, pink and strawberry, infused with the company’s Liquid Gold cannabis oil. The G Stiks, cone-shaped cannabis cigarettes, are currently available in six different blends. Both products are crafted to match The Game’s personal tastes

“These guys are the pioneers of innovation in the cannabis industry,” said The Game of G FarmaBrands (which currently servesmore than 700 dispensaries in California) in a statement. “I’m excited to help raise awareness for G Stiks and G Drinks in all territories that we are available.”

The Game is also set to perform at the 2016 U.S Cannabis Cup and Carnival in San Bernardino, California, later this month.

 

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California Recreational Cannabis Poised To Qualify for Ballot

Supporters of a recreational marijuana ballot measure in California handed in more than 600,000 signatures supporting their effort, indicating the initiative is virtually assured of going before voters in November.

Supporters amassed a comfortable cushion of signatures, given that the initiative needs just 365,880 valid ones.
The measure, backed by tech billionaire Sean Parker, would legalize adult-use cannabis in the nation’s most populous state, opening countless opportunities for entrepreneurs wanting to serve the market directly or through ancillary services and products.

The campaign already has garnered a significant coalition of high-profile supporters, ranging from Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom – who was on hand for the campaign launch in San Francisco Wednesday – to national groups such as the Marijuana Policy Project and the Drug Policy Alliance.

Major California players such as the state chapter of the NAACP, the California Medical Association, two sitting local U.S. congressmen, and the California chapter of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws also are on board.

It also appears public opinion is on the campaign’s side: A February poll showed 60% of Californians support legalization.

While adult use was once rejected narrowly in California, this year’s outcome could very well be different.

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Second CO Cannabis Company Seeks NFL Stadium Naming Rights

Weed and football Best Friends farm

Weed & Football

May 19, 2016
A second cannabis company has announced it wants to land the naming rights for Sports Authority Field at Mile High, home of the Denver Broncos professional football team.

Denver-based concentrates company Openvape said in a news release it has submitted a proposal to “preserve” the Mile High legacy by pursuing “OpenVAPE at Mile High” as the stadium’s official name.

The interest among cannabis companies in the naming rights underscores an attempt to find innovative forms of marketing.

Last month, one of Colorado’s largest cannabis retailers, Native Roots, said it aims to replace Sports Authority, which currently has the naming rights to the stadium but recently filed for bankruptcy and has been forced to sell its assets.

In a bankruptcy court filing, the Denver Broncos argued that Sports Authority can’t sell or transfer its Mile High Stadium naming rights or its team sponsorship without written approval, the Denver Post reported.

Openvape said its proposal to partner with the stadium’s owner – the Metropolitan Football Stadium District – makes clear the company has the money to take over the obligations of the current naming agreement. That may amount to more than $6 million annually, and any deal is expected to last until 2021, Openvape said.

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Pot or Pizza Delivery?

PIZZA OR POT DELIVERY?
In Palm Springs, California patients can now get medical marijuana delivered to their door as fast as a pepperoni pizza.
But, how do you go about getting pot delivered right to your door? The first requirement is a prescription for the issuance of an MMJ Green Card. There are several physicians in the desert such as Greensight Medical who has 4 locations and accommodating hours. They have experienced doctors on staff that can evaluate you and write you a recommendation for medical marijuana.
Once you’ve got your green card in hand you will be able to choose between a storefront shop or cannabis delivery service. Hop on the internet and Google Marijuana Delivery in the desert. You can also check out Weedmaps.com an online directory for pot in Thousand Palms, Palm Desert and Palm Springs for a detailed list. They post menus from many dispensaries and you can order your favorite strains such as Green Apple, Pre 98 Bubba or delicious Kiva Chocolate edibles. Make sure to do your research and read the reviews and then make your choice.
DELIVERY DISPENSARIES VS. STOREFRONTS
Some patients may feel uncomfortable going to a marijuana store, being seen inside and purchasing marijuana. Or you may have a busy schedule and can’t get to a store. However, you may want to go into a storefront to visually look at all of the varieties of weed. There is a need for both options, but options in the desert are limited, since there are only 3 in Palm Springs. Also, due to a city ordinance storefronts are closed on Sundays.
Hopefully, it won’t be a long drive for you, and once you are in the store, there is usually a long wait in a crowded lobby since they are generally pretty busy. Currently, there are only a handful of storefronts in the desert. Three storefronts may open in Cathedral City, however due to bureaucratic red tape they have not opened yet. Officials in Indio are looking into allowing medical marijuana dispensaries in their city. Desert Hot Springs opened one dispensary in March.
A good medical marijuana delivery service will provide dependable, safe and discreet delivery options. Delivery in the desert has never been easier. The staff should be able to advise patients on their range of cannabis products and explain in detail the possible health benefits. All card carrying patients can order marijuana to be delivered to your home, work or if you’re visiting and just relaxing in your hotel room. Basically, it’s convenient to place your order online or over the phone and enjoy the luxury of having it brought right to your door. Some marijuana delivery services even offer free delivery. That can be a big savings for you with the high cost of gas today.
Many offer special deals, referral gifts and returning patient perks. Once you’re satisfied with your chosen dispensary, it’s like you’ve found your best friend. Program their phone number into your speed dial and when it’s time to replenish, they will be there for you.
“I prefer marijuana delivery because they discreetly deliver meds to my house in a prescription printed bag and I can schedule it at my convenience,” said Bruce a retired contractor who spends $75 a week on medical cannabis. “I should not have to make the trip to a store.”
Mobile marijuana businesses now number in the hundreds across Southern California. Nationwide, pot delivery services have nearly tripled in three years.
“Home delivery is becoming the option of choice for more and more patients who need a service they can depend on and be there when they need them, like a best friend,” said Craig from Best Friends Farm (www.bestfriendsfarm.org) a marijuana delivery service located in Rancho Mirage, California. Craig also stated that many of his patients are female because they feel safer. Older patients in the desert, disabled and even busy executives welcome having meds delivered to their door.
The shift from a brick and mortar model to a marijuana delivery service is becoming increasingly common in California. Overall, the medical marijuana industry is constantly evolving and growing.

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At Best Friends Farm all of our cannabis is California grown by responsible family farmers who care about the environment. Most importantly, we care about you, our Patients and offering you simply the Best Products. REFER A FRIEND GET A FREE GRAM!

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