How Marijuana Can Help Treat Addictions to Opioids, Other Rx Drugs and Alcohol

Photo by Javier Hasse. 

This article was originally published on Benzinga, and adapted exclusively for HIGH TIMES.

People often talk about marijuana as an alternative to opioids and as a treatment for numerous addictions like alcohol and tobacco. But, like most praises (and condemnations) of weed, these claims are frequently based on hearsay rather than on actual science or quantitative evidence.

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Nevada Opens Pot Distribution to Non-Liquor Wholesalers

CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) — Nevada’s marijuana regulators have decided to start issuing pot distribution licenses to businesses other than liquor wholesalers to keep up with overwhelming demand since legal recreational sales began July 1.

The Nevada Department of Taxation voted Thursday to open up the market previously limited to liquor distributors under the state ballot measure voters approved in November.

Department spokeswoman Stephanie Klapstein said they’ll begin reviewing about 80 applications they received in May from other businesses.

Read more at High Times

Weed and Booze Sales Skyrocket as Oregon Prepares for Solar Eclipse

Photo by Vortex Farmacy. 

With an estimated one million extra people headed to Oregon for the total solar eclipse, demand for weed and booze is at an all-time high.

The Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC), which is expecting anywhere from a 20-40 percent increase in sales surrounding the eclipse, is urging stores to stock up early so their deliveries don’t get stuck in traffic. Big money can only be made if the product gets there in time.

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New Study: Alcohol, Not Weed, Manipulates Brain Structure

We’ve been saying it for a long time, but now scientists are confirming: alcohol negatively manipulates the structure of the human brain and cannabis does no such thing.

The powers that be, especially within the deteriorating administration in the White House, continue to disseminate blatantly erroneous information about cannabis and ignore authoritative academic work, such as one most recent study.

Researchers from the University of Colorado, Boulder and the Oregon Health & Science University evaluated neuroimaging data among adults (18 to 55) and adolescents (14 to 18) and identified an association between alcohol use and negative changes in brain structure.

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Study: Alcohol Use, But Not Cannabis, Associated With Changes In Brain Structure

Alcohol consumption is associated with negative changes in gray matter volume and in white matter integrity, while cannabis use is not, according to data published online ahead of print in the journal Addiction.

Investigators from the University of Colorado, Boulder and the Oregon Health & Science University evaluated neuroimaging data among adults (ages 18 to 55) and adolescents (ages 14 to 18). Authors identified an association between alcohol use and negative changes in brain structure, but identified no such association with cannabis.

“Alcohol use severity is associated with widespread lower gray matter volume and white matter integrity in adults, and with lower gray matter volume in adolescents,” they concluded. By contrast, “No associations were observed between structural measures and past 30-day cannabis use in adults or adolescents.”

Read more at NORML

Nevada’s Legal Pot Pits Liquor Lobby, MMJ Dealers

BY SCOTT SONNER

ASSOCIATED PRESS

CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) — If Nevada officials have their way, tourists and residents alike will be smoking pot ahead of Independence Day. But before recreational marijuana launches in the state best known for slot machines and showgirls, a judge must decide who has the right to distribute what promises to be Nevada’s newest cash crop.

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Nevada’s Plan for Early Recreational Marijuana Sales Might Be Sabotaged

Nevada’s concept of using its medical marijuana market to temporarily service the recreational sector is scheduled to launch sometime within the next month.

According to a report from the Las Vegas Sun, there are more than 140 applicants vying to become the first to sell weed in manner similar to beer.

The goal of the “early sales” initiative was to give adults 21 and older the freedom to walk into a state licensed dispensary and purchase up to an ounce of weed without flashing a medical marijuana card. Meanwhile, it would give state officials some breathing room while putting together the regulations for the full-scale market set to launch next year.

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Marijuana Legalization Is Protecting Kids Better Than Alcohol Legalization

The anti-legalization group Project SAM recently reported on the sales of marijuana to minors by licensed establishments in Washington State.

In a tweet showing a pie chart of marijuana violations, Project SAM noted “>125 for selling pot to a minor,” labeling Washington’s legalization of marijuana a “failed experiment.”

If anything, that data shows us that marijuana legalization is succeeding at protecting kids.

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Philly Mayor Wants Pot to Be Sold in Liquor Stores

It is no secret that Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney would like to see marijuana made legal all across the state of Pennsylvania. Last month, when questioned about a major pot bust that took place in the city, which lead to the arrest of 22 people and the seizure of more than 100 pounds of pot products, Kenney called the raid “overkill,” saying that types of incidents would no longer be an issue if the state would simply legalize marijuana.

Earlier this week, Kenney emerged once again to shed some light on exactly how Pennsylvania should approach legalization. He told WHYY’s “Radio Times” on Wednesday that the state could sink its teeth into a substantial new revenue stream if it could get past itself long enough to see that it already has the infrastructure in place to sell marijuana in the same fashion as alcohol.

“To me, we have the perfect system to set up the legal recreational use of cannabis through a controlled state store system allowing the state to capture all the income that is going to the underground,” Kenney said.

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Pot-Smoking Moms Say They’re Tired of Being Judged by Wine Drinkers

A meme on the Moms for Marijuana International Facebook page reads: “Some moms take a bubble bath with a glass of wine. I sit in the garage and smoke a joint.”

And moms who smoke weed for whatever reason are tired of being judged by wine-drinkers, according to several women recently quoted on Today.com.

“Being judged for doing something nontoxic and totally organic, enjoying a god-given plant, by moms who suck back two bottles of Chardonnay like sports drinks feels like shit,” complained one busy mom who did not want her named used. “Any hypocrisy is hard to swallow. A drunk mother is pathetic, and I often leave parties when I experience other mothers tying one on.”

Read more at High Times