Archive for June, 2014
As more states legalize cannabis, more jobs will be created in the United States – jobs in production, distribution, and sales. Like working at a brewery, jobs in the marijuana industry sound pretty cool. But of course with all the high, creative minds out there, we expect to see the industry grow in different ways as well. We’re excited to see some new business models out there. For instance…
Do you believe that the movement of the planets can affect the happenings in our daily lives? Take Mercury, for instance. Three or four times a year, Mercury slows down and appears to stop and move backwards. It isn’t really moving backwards, but it does slow down significantly, and many people (people who don’t even believe in “this kind of thing”!) believe its retrograde impacts us.
We’re currently coming to the end of one of these retrogrades – one of the most intense weeks being THIS week. According to astrologers, Mercury rules over communication, clear thinking, truth, and travel. That’s why during the retrograde, people claim they experience strange travel delays and mix-ups with contracts and communication. Everything seems foggy, and as Mercury gets back to its normal pace, the air seems to clear.
Whether or not Mercury is really affecting us, we have you covered with coping mechanisms here at The Glass House!
During the retrograde, we recommend the following survival tips:
- Mind the glass! Mishaps and broken glass aren’t unheard of during this time. Of course, if you need new glass, we can help you out. But we’d prefer you not break yours in the first place!
- Take it easy. This isn’t a time for finalizing huge changes or signing contracts. If you have travel plans, add a little wiggle room for delay. Use this time to give yourself physical and emotional rest, especially with a little help from our friends – essential oils, shisha, and tobacco. A little toke goes a long way.
- Spend time with the ones you love. Communication might be hard during this time, and arguments may develop over stupid shit. The best remedy? Come together over a glass pipe or a hookah. There’s nothing like the peace pipe to make you forget what you were fighting about in the first place.
- Stargaze. I mean, why not? Toking and stargazing are two activities that go together like a fat kid and cake. Let Mercury’s movements remind you that there is an entire universe out there – and many, many universes beyond it. Any hiccups in your day, week, or month will never change the fact that you are made of stardust.
Whatever you believe, stop by the Glass House and let us help you out with all your smoking and toking needs!
On Friday, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the Compassionate Care Act, finally legalizing marijuana for patients with one of a small number of medical conditions including cancer, multiple sclerosis, and epilepsy.
If you’ve been following our blog or news about this bill as it made its way through the state Senate, you know that its sponsors had to make several changes in order to satisfy Gov. Cuomo’s demands. Doctors can only prescribe the drug to patients with a limited number of conditions, and they can only prescribe edibles, oils and lotions – nothing will be smoked, and we are fairly certain no one will be seeing bud – just extracts.
As New York Daily News points out, this basically means that instead of giving medical doctors the permission to prescribe as they see fit based on their patients’ specific needs, the New York state government is giving them extreme restrictions. Basically, New York doctors, the government doesn’t trust your judgment. Because you know, it’s not like you spent years in school for this kind of thing, right?
So, when Gov. Cuomo says things like, “We believe this bill strikes the right balance” in regard to marijuana’s medical benefits and restrictions to curtail any risk factors, we think he’s pretty much full of shit.
The silver lining, though, is that medical marijuana will finally be an option for at least a number of patients suffering from chronic pain, effects of chemotherapy, epileptic seizures, and more.
Now, the State Health Department has up to 18 months to establish regulations, policies and procedures, including who can dispense and grow the drug. Initially, five organizations — both businesses and nonprofits — will be allowed to dispense marijuana, each at up to four locations around the state. The drug will be grown in New York, and the sales of it will be taxed seven percent.
Have you ever gotten lost in the world of the internet? Have you started with a legitimate Google search about something as simple as “how to fight a cold,” and after a series of rabbit trails and distractions, found yourself googling photos of action figures riding animals? We do it all the time, which you should have noticed if you’ve ever checked out our Facebook page (hint – check it out).
So anyway, rabbit trails like these are really the best explanation we have for why we decided to take on today’s topic of marijuana intoxication in cats and dogs. It’s a weird one, we know. But don’t pretend you’ve never wondered! Can they get high from secondhand smoke? What if someone blows it in their faces? What does it feel like? Does it relax them or give them anxiety? Does it kill their brain cells?
According to Pet Poison Helpline, dogs and cats can be poisoned by marijuana through secondhand smoke or through direct ingestion, with a toxicity level of moderate to severe. Over the past five years, Pet Poison Helpline has never had a marijuana-related pet death reported. A veterinarian in San Francisco, Eric Barchas, says that serious, long-term health consequences from pets ingesting marijuana are rare. So basically, if they’re just getting a little secondhand smoke, it won’t kill them, and likely won’t really hurt them either.
But, tokers should still be careful that their cats and dogs don’t take in too much of the drug. According to Dr. Barchas, symptoms can range from the typical “high” lethargy to anxiety, impaired balance, vomiting or diarrhea, and loss of bladder control. Although the drug itself may not hurt them, it’s possible that they could injure themselves or become dehydrated due to their lack of coordination.
Barchas also points out that people who know their pet has had exposure to marijuana don’t feel comfortable telling their vet the root of the symptoms. However, it is important to be completely honest with your vet, as their primary concern is for your pet and they probably could care less about your recreational activities. If the vet isn’t aware of the marijuana exposure, the symptoms are so similar to other more serious problems that they may order expensive tests and treatments that are completely unnecessary. So, honesty is the best policy!
What is New York Governor Andrew Cuomo smoking?! Obviously nothing. The negotiations on the Compassionate Care Act, which would legalize medical marijuana for certain health conditions, are ongoing. The bill’s sponsor, state Senator Diane Savino, made several amendments after conversation with Gov. Cuomo (you can see his many demands in our last post), but wouldn’t budge on a few specific points, most notably Cuomo’s wish to prohibit any smoking of the drug.
The act would ban smoking for anyone under the age of 21, but that’s not enough for Cuomo. He wants the drug to be administered only through a vaporizer, edible form, or oil. Savino’s response is quoted in the New York Times: “Smoking needs to be an option for people. And we’re going to hold to that.” Smoking is the fastest way of ingesting marijuana, and will quickly help with the nausea associated with chemotherapy.
The legislative session ends tomorrow, so we’ll know soon whether Savino and her supporters are able to come to a compromise with Gov. Cuomo.
Traveling further south, Republican Governor of Florida Rick Scott signed two bills on Monday called “Charlotte’s Web,” legalizing strains of marijuana high in CBD (“non-euphoric”) to treat conditions like epilepsy, cancer, and Lou Gehrig’s disease. Additionally, a broader medical marijuana referendum will be up for vote in Florida this November. According to the LA Times, if the state approves it, Florida will be the first in the Southeast to do it and could become the biggest market outside of California.
You know, guys…we’re just rooting for compassionate care for everyone.
We’ve been following New York closely as medical marijuana bill “Compassionate Care Act” passed through the State Assembly and the Senate Health Committee, and appears this week in the Senate Rules Committee - often the last stop for a bill before it goes to a full floor vote.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo and legislative leaders have begun negotiations on the bill and hope to reach a consensus before the legislative session concludes this Thursday. However, Cuomo has some edits that might take longer than a few days to actualize. He says, “We think there’s a lot of problems with the Gottfried-Savino bill. They haven’t thought it through – the public health and public safety point of views.”
Cuomo has asked the Senate bill sponsor Diane Savino from Staten Island to change the bill to prohibit the smoking and sharing of medical marijuana. While Savino has already restricted the smoking of medical cannabis to adults over 21, Cuomo believes allowing anyone to smoke the drug instead of vaporizing or using edibles would be sending a message contrary to the many anti-smoking campaigns they state has strongly promoted over the past several years.
He has some additional demands, as well. They are:
- Anyone unlawfully seeking, selling, or prescribing pot will be charged as a felon
- The only diseases allowing a marijuana prescription s will be cancer, epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, HIV/AIDS, diabetes, and spinal cord injuries – basically, only neuropathic conditions with “true nerve pain”
- Doctors would be in charge of prescribing cannabis in one-month doses at the level they deem appropriate. They would also be pre-certified by the state Health Department, verifying that they are truly specialists in the field they are treating with the marijuana.
- Patient prescriptions or medical marijuana approvals from other states will not be recognized. They would have to re-register in the state of New York.
- Only 20 dispensaries will be licensed in the first two years.
These aren’t just minor changes – Savino will have some big edits to make in order to have this bill pass. We anticipate the hardest change will be to further restrict the conditions that constitute a prescription. Leaving post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and child epilepsy off the list will still prohibit a large population of people who could benefit from medical cannabis. What will happen over the next few days? I guess we’ll have to wait to find out.
It’s finally happening in Washington State – they’ve emerged from their quiet phase and we now have some idea of when and how legal marijuana will be marketed.
According to an article on Seattle PI, it’s crunch time for growers and retailers. There’s a lot of “wheeling and dealing” with prices, and as grower/owner of CannaMan Farm Brian Stroh says, “Folks will be squeezing each other and not making many friends.” He says he has been contacted by producers, processors, and retailers, “all with their own game on squeezing the market.” What ever happened to the term “peace pipe,” anyway?
Right now, growers seem to be estimating the price of legal marijuana at anywhere between $15 and $25 a gram, which is right in line with Colorado’s prices. It’s more expensive than the Black Market, but it’s also legal, so…you know, it’s to be expected.
But anyway, that’s the background drama, and here’s the down and dirty:
- Anyone over 21 can buy it, not just residents of Washington.
- The first retail stores are expected to open during the first week of July.
- Licensed retail stores are the only place recreational marijuana will be available to purchase.
- These stores may be open from 8:00 a.m. to midnight.
- Unlike Colorado, hash, hash oil, and other concentrates will NOT be sold at retail stores. But, to qualify as “infused,” a concentrate can just contain a little bit of inert oil or orange juice.
- A single transaction is limited to ONE ounce of marijuana, sixteen ounces of marijuana-infused product in solid form, or seventy-two ounces of marijuana-infused product in liquid form.
- No public smoking will be permitted.
- You can’t legally grow your own bud without a license.
So, that’s what’s up in Washington, in case you were wondering. Anyone visiting soon? Who wants to check it out for us in person?
P.S. The New York State Senate passed its medical marijuana bill. Next and final stop – Governor Cuomo.
Whether you pay attention to news outlets or just social media, you’ve likely heard a lot about hookah lately. Several major publications have been covering hookah research, including popular outlets like U.S. News & World Report, Reuters, The Atlantic, and The Huffington Post.
If you only pay attention to the headlines, here’s what you may have read:
“Yes, College Students, Hookahs Are Bad For You”
“The Dangers of Just One Evening Of Hookah Smoking”
“Hookah Use Tied To Exposure To Cancer-Causing Compounds”
As folks who enjoy the occasional evening of hookah, these headlines freaked us out. We thought we should share our findings with you, because maybe you’re a little freaked out too.
The study referenced by these recent articles involve asking regular hookah smokers to abstain from smoking for a week, and then to provide a urine sample. The participants then spent an evening smoking hookah and gave another sample at the end.
At the end of the experiment, after the participants’ evening of smoking, they had 73 times higher nicotine levels and 14 percent to 91 percent higher levels of breakdown products of volatile organic compounds that are known to cause cancer, heart and lung diseases.
What does this mean for those of us who want to smoke hookah every once in a while?
It means if you’re worried about smoke in your lungs or carcinogens in cigarettes, hookahs should not replace them as an alternative source of nicotine – that’s what e-cigarettes are for. It means we shouldn’t encourage children and teenagers to smoke hookah.
But, we continue to live by the phrase, “everything in moderation.” We enjoy an evening with friends, sitting around the hookah like it’s a peace pipe, participating in an ancient middle eastern tradition. We find the value in it to be almost spiritual in nature.
If you smoke hookah on the reg, you should also consider checking out Xhale Steam Stones. Xhale Steam Stones are tobacco-free and allow you to use the hookah as a vaporizer, so you can avoid the carcinogens that come with tobacco smoke. They come in plenty of different flavors, and we carry them right here at The Glass House. Come visit us today!
A huge THANK YOU to all those who came out for the 2nd annual Texas Regional NORML Conference at the Norris Conference Center in Fort Worth this past weekend! According to DFW NORML’s Board of Directors, the event was a huge success that will help propel Texas into a much “greener” future.
Something special about this conference and those like it is the diversity of legalization advocates, and their unique reasons for supporting it. You meet mothers, politicians, health care professionals, former law enforcement officers, clergymen, and patients of all ages. For instance, a few of the speakers from this weekend:
Reverend Russell Elleven of Westside Unitarian Universality Church spoke about the connection between drugs and religious practice, both now and through the ages. He is a health coach, a vegan, and a minister with strong convictions about social justice.
Joy Strickland, Founder & CEO of Mothers Against Teen Violence, believes that drug policy should be moved from the criminal justice system where it has been failing miserably to the public health arena. She and her organization also believe drug policy should be rooted in science, equity, and compassion.
Mike Hyde with the Cash Hyde Foundation, a foundation dedicated to children fighting cancer, premiered the documentary entitled American Drug War 2. Directed by Kevin Booth, American Drug War 2 describes the cutting edge of cannabis research and how it can help in the struggle against pediatric cancer.
Terry Nelson with Law Enforcement Against Prohibition spent 3 decades as police officer on the borders of Central and South America, along many drug routes. “We’re not going to win [the drug war] that way,” he says. His pal Larry Talley, also with LEAP, is a libertarian and retired officer for the US Navy. He believes decisions about marijuana should be in the hands of the people.
Derek Cross, author of Hemp Healthy Cooking, cares about drug policy specifically because of hemp prohibition. He believes both in the nutritional and the economic value of hemp.
Forest Scott of Tinctura spoke about using cannabis as a form of holistic medicine.
What about you? Why do you care about legalization? And have you thought about the role you can play in breaking down the stereotypes surrounding marijuana policy and use?
For our Friday entertainment, we’re taking a cue from High Times and reading Maureen Dowd’s New York Times article entitled, “Don’t Harsh Our Mellow, Dude.” Cool title, Maureen. Also, hilarious – because she took her first taste of edible pot (or any pot, it seems) by herself in a hotel room in Denver and then balked at how anxious it made her feel – “thirsty, panting, paranoid.”
Why do we care about marijuana legalization?
Many of us are ready to see marijuana legalized for recreational use – especially after hearing about Colorado’s success and drooling over innovations like cannabis coffee (wake and bake!). While this has been an extremely active time for marijuana legislation, it’s been mostly medically-inclined. It might be cliché, but it’s important to remember that Rome really wasn’t built in a day.
Last week, the United States House of Representatives voted to let the states decide their own medical marijuana laws, prohibiting the feds from interfering with state legislation. The bill hasn’t hit the Senate yet, so don’t hold your breath (unless you’re trying to get higher) – but if a Republican-dominated house can vote it through, it’s looking good.
So far, twenty-two states and Washington, D.C. have legalized cannabis for medical uses. We’ve seen a lot of action in the past month, even:
- Last week, Minnesota became the 22nd state to legalize it for medical purposes, and has some of the strictest laws the states have seen.
- In South Carolina, Governor Nikki Haley signed a bill Tuesday to allow doctors to prescribe a non-psychoactive oil form of cannabis to children with severe epilepsy.
- In Florida, similar to South Carolina, a bill passed in May to allow doctors to prescribe a non-psychoactive form of cannabis to patients with severe epilepsy.
- And, as we discussed, the New York State Senate will vote on a proposal to approve medical marijuana as soon as this month.
It’s easy for people with no medical need to whine about how marijuana is safer than alcohol, not a lethal drug, could kick start the economy, etc. – we’re as guilty of complaining as anyone. But right now, our voices are needed in support of legalization for patients suffering from a number of chronic illnesses, living in constant pain. And for minorities being targeted and jailed for simple possession. And for a failing American drug war that is, as is so well-put by High Times, “diverting the time of police, attorneys, judges, and corrections officials away from violent crime, the sexual abuse of children, and terrorism.” We need to first raise our voices for those who can’t do it themselves.
And that’s why we want to legalize.
It’s high time for a change in Texas marijuana law! With the overwhelming support of the Marijuana Policy Project and the tides of public opinion changing, there’s no better time than now for Texas to come together to learn and advocate.
Become a participant in an important part of Texas history. Join DFW NORML at the 2nd Annual Texas Regional NORML Conference, June 6-8 at the Norris Conference Center in Fort Worth. That’s right – if you have plans for next weekend, change ‘em! This is THE drug policy event of 2014, and if you’re serious about ending cannabis prohibition in the Lone Star State, NORML needs your voice.
The Conference will feature:
Educational speakers and panel discussions, including…
Kinky Friedman, Texas singer, politician and activist
Jodie Emery, public speaker & political activist, wife of Marc Emery. Owner of Cannabis Culture Headquarters store, Cannabis Culture magazine, Pot TV, and BCMP lounge
Peter Gorman, award winning investigative journalist and former editor-in-chief at High Times Magazine
Texas patients, parents, veterans, politicians, activists, legal and medical professionals, members of the media, and everyday citizens like you and me
420 Jeopardy (We’ll take Stoned Scientists for $100, Alex…)
Documentary film screening
Vendor booth hall
Swag bags and prizes
An interactive workshop
And so much more!
The detailed conference schedule is posted on the Facebook event page, but the basics are below:
Day One – Friday June 6
6pm – 12:00am – Registration Party at
Froggy’s Boat House (4400 White Settlement Rd, Fort Worth, TX 76114)
Day Two – Saturday June 7
8:30am – 6:00pm – Conference Hours
6:30pm – 12:00am – Party at Red Goose Saloon (306 W Houston St, Fort Worth, Tx 76102)
Day Three – Sunday June 8
8:30am – 6:00pm – Conference Hours
6:30pm – 12:00am – Reggae Madness Party at Shipping & Receiving (201 South Calhoun, Fort Worth, Tx 76104)
We hope to see all of you there!
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