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Synthetic Marijuana Third-Most Abused Substance by High School Students


Synthetic marijuana was the third-most abused substance by U.S. high school students last year, behind alcohol and marijuana, according to the Center for Substance Abuse Research (CESAR) at the University of Maryland, College Park.

The report found 57 percent of high school students reported using alcohol, compared with 39 percent for marijuana and 12 percent for synthetic marijuana. “In reality, youth who report using synthetic marijuana likely have no idea what specific synthetic cannabinoid they are using or what the effects will be,” the report notes.

Eric Wish, Director of CESAR, told The Baltimore Sun the federal government has had difficulty cracking down on synthetic marijuana. Makers of the drug continually change the formula to evade laws designed to ban synthetic marijuana and other designer drugs.

In July 2012, President Obama signed legislation to ban synthetic drugs. The law outlaws harmful chemicals in synthetic drugs such as those used to make synthetic marijuana and bath salts. Synthetic drugs are readily available online. The law outlaws sales of synthetic drugs by both retail stores and online retailers.

5 Responses to this article

  1. mac / May 22, 2013 at 8:00 pm

    These poisons have little structural relationship to marijuana,and were never designed as a recreational drug.They aren’t synthetic marijuana.

  2. James / May 10, 2013 at 8:57 pm

    There is, absolutely, no reason for the government to do less about this stuff. If they just let it go it is going to get even more out of hand than it already is. Regardless of the current drug policies effectiveness, they should still try.

    Take a look at some of the experiences people are having with this junk. Synthetic Marijuana is ruining lives.

  3. Avatar of James
    James / May 7, 2013 at 12:28 pm

    Frankly, the Govt. just needs to do more. Synthetic Marijuana should be banned once and for all. People are dying from smoking this stuff. This should be a very high priority for the lawmakers before it gets even more out of hand.

  4. Joshua / May 7, 2013 at 5:29 pm

    Or perhapse the government should be doing way less. do you honestly think that synthetic MJ would even exist if not for the messed up nature of our current drug policy?

  5. Joshua / May 13, 2013 at 1:02 pm

    I’m not arguing at all that synthetic MJ is positive or healthy. but the only reason it exists is because of current drug policy. i even concede that kids using Marijuanna is a bad thing, but it is insane to even equate the negative side effects of real vs. synthetic MJ. the full responsibility for every death or injury caused by synthetic MJ can be traced 100% to the ridiculous policies that created the market for these drugs. this is not a case of brilliant chemists saying “hey guys, you know what would be cool?” it’s a group of chemists saying “how can we make something like that – only legal?” and because supplements don’t have to get FDA clearance (thanks Congress) they can market without testing, and aren’t sued when their products are deadly.

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