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'Legal pot' no longer legal for 2011

Jan 03, 2011 6:17 am
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="200" caption="K2 is one of several brands of "legal marijuana" that have been banned for one year by the federal FDA, under emergency regulations for study purposes. Photo by the Daily Freeman's Tanya Barricklo."][/caption]A synthetic marijuana of chemically treated herbs that has been marketed on convenience market shelves as incense under names such as “K2,” “Buddha,” and “Spice” has been banned for a year by the federal Drug Enforcement Administration after concern was repeatedly voiced by smaller municipalities across the country dealing with users entering emergency rooms and inundating poison control hot lines complaining of elevated heart rates, seizures, paranoia, vomiting and hallucinations. In a story in today's Daily Freeman, reporter Patricia Doxsey has a piece about how the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration has used its emergency authority to ban the five synthetic cannaboids used to turn the leafy herbs into a legal form of pot. The chemicals match the effects of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, which is what causes marijuana smokers to get high. The ban will last a year, giving the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services time to study whether to permanently ban the synthetics.

“K2 is dangerous and it’s in the public interest to no longer allow this stuff to be sold,” said Rusty Payne, a spokesman for the federal Drug Enforcement Administration.

The synthetics will be classified with other drugs such as marijuana, heroin and LSD as Schedule 1 drugs, considered to have no legitimate medical use and, hence, banned.

Although there have been no medical mishaps from the drug locally, Doxsey's report touches in with local hospitals and school administrators dealing with the drug, including Superintendent of Schools Kate Farrell in Catskill.

For the full story click HERE...