Whatever happened to Mexican weed? – Juan Verde

Right? Acapulco Gold. Michoacan. A really nice Oaxacan. It’s a shame that most of the old-school Mexican landrace strains died out in the ’80s after the DEA started spraying Mexican cannabis fields with the pesticide known as Paraquat. You can still find Acapulco Gold (purportedly) in Seattle and you can buy some Mexican landrace seeds from a few Dutch companies (though note that buying or selling cannabis seeds internationally is a federal offense), but it is hard to find in California.

However, the Mexican government is hard at work on a new law that would legalize recreational cannabis. Just last week, Mexico’s Senate leader Ricardo Monreal predicted that cannabis could be legal in Mexico by the end of October.

Have they invented a THC breathalyzer yet? – Ped Xing

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Yes, and it’s a pretty good one. A team from the University of Pittsburgh has invented a breathalyzer that not only detects THC, but can determine the amount of THC in a person’s bloodstream. They just unveiled it last month, so it will be a while yet before the cops have them.

Here’s the thing though: No one knows how much THC is too much. According to a 2010 study published in the American Journal on Addictions, “Case-control studies are inconsistent, but suggest that while low concentrations of THC do not increase the rate of accidents, and may even decrease them, serum concentrations of THC higher than 5 nanograms per milliliter are associated with an increased risk of accidents.” The state of Washington uses 5ng/ml as its limit. Drivers who have more than 5ng in the bloodstream can be arrested for DUI even though, according to Washington Traffic Safety Commission Research Director Staci Hoff, “More and more research is coming out debunking this mythical link between THC level in the blood and level of impairment.” The same study also points out that “experienced smokers who drive on a set course show almost no functional impairment under the influence of marijuana, except when it is combined with alcohol.”

Getting stoned and driving is not cool (not to mention dangerous), but until we determine how much is too much, maybe cops should skip the breathalyzers.

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