Our guests on this week’s Cannabist Show: University of Denver law professor Sam Kamin and Cannabist writer (and concentrates expert) Ry Prichard.
This week in weed news: A new study has concluded that medical marijuana laws do not trigger an increase in teen pot smoking — and that’s regardless that some opponents of cannabis have said that legalizing pot’s medicinal uses could send a message to young people that smoking pot is no big deal and encourage them to experiment with weed and harder drugs. The researchers’ data includes the responses of more than 1 million students.
We’ve reported before that pot smoking by teens has been increasing in America, and earlier research has shown that fewer of them see marijuana as risky. But this new study published by the Lancet Psychiatry journal, suggests that medical marijuana laws are not the reason for that uptick.
In other marijuana news this week, the same activists who in 2012 successfully legalized recreational marijuana in Colorado are starting their next big initiative: The push for regulated public pot consumption in the state’s largest city. The activists are Mason Tvert of the Marijuana Policy Project and attorney Brian Vicente, and they’re hoping to redefine public places to create an environment for the public consumption of cannabis.
In Denver, the only places you can really legally smoke or vaporize weed is your private property. You can’t do it in the park, at the bar, on the sidewalk or inside a marijuana shop. And some say it’s ridiculous that tourists can come to Colorado and buy legal weed — yet they have almost nowhere to legally ingest it. While most government officials have avoided this issue entirely, saying there are more important problems to address, a few have talked about the idea of cannabis-only clubs that could be licensed and regulated like, but separately from, bars serving alcohol. This new initiative is way more liberal and far-reaching than the cannabis club plan; It would allow existing bars, clubs, venues and other spaces to designate areas as 21-and-older and 420-friendly — with vaping inside and smoking outside (and out of public view).
In this week’s Pot Quiz: We’ll quiz you on a weed-loving rapper’s troubles with the law, a major decision from Canada’s highest court and a record-breaking April for marijuana taxes in Colorado.