In spite of the wholly negative reputation “synthetic marijuana” has earned through the media, some people are still using “spice” and seeing dire consequences.
Over Easter weekend alone, 28 people were hospitalized after using spice in Jackson, Mississippi, and at least one person died from adverse effects to the harmful substance.
Spice is advertised as having the same effects as marijuana but in a form that is technically legal in certain states — mainly those that don’t have medical marijuana programs, like Mississippi. Ironically enough, however, the University of Mississippi is home to the federal government’s only marijuana grow. Unfortunately, the government’s own safely grown marijuana, which is scientifically effective in medical treatment of many ailments and illnesses, is not available to the people of Mississippi, who, faced with a poor, dangerous alternative or nothing, continue to choose the former.
At what point will backward state governments who still disallow medical marijuana yet permit the sale of dangerous spice wake up and smell the death count? As far as I know, it’s still marijuana – 0, which is much more than we can say for the “alternative” killer, spice.
According to the Clarion Ledger, "Those seen at UMMC’s Emergency Department displayed agitation, sweating, hyperactivity, hallucinations, acute psychosis, and in some situations, were in a comatose state. Some of them had prolonged symptoms and complications of rhabdomyolysis, or rapid breakdown of muscle tissue, requiring hospitalization.”
While spice is marketed as a “safe” alternative to marijuana (meaning using it is not a federal offense like smoking weed), synthetic marijuana is extremely toxic, and its potency can be 100 times greater in affecting the brain than THC.
“Some of the patients we’ve seen over the weekend have said, ‘This is not like anything else we’ve used before,’” said Dr. Robert Galli of UMMC’s Emergency Department who helped treat the overdoses.
As long as the anti-marijuana camp continues to condemn it as unsafe and dangerous, keeping it outlawed and out of the hands of both people who want it and people who need it, the public will seek outside alternatives — and what sounds better than federally legal “synthetic marijuana” which egregiously claims to be a “safe alternative” to one the safest substance a person can use?