Potent Pot Myths Exposed (Again)
“This ain’t your grandfather’s or your father’s marijuana. This will hurt you. This will addict you. This will kill you.”– Mark R. Trouville, DEA Miami, speaking to the Associated Press (June 22, 2007)
Having spent over a decade debunking the ‘potent pot myth‘ — the false yet wildly popular notion that today’s cannabis is dramatically more potent, and thus more dangerous (or as British Prime Minister Gordon Brown likes to say, “more lethal“) than the marijuana of the 1960s, 70s, and 80s, it’s nice to finally get some back up.
Writing in the forthcoming issue of the scientific journal Addiction, researchers at the University of New South Wales, National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre, examined the potency of over 100,000 pot seizures from around the word. They concluded (drum roll please), “Claims made in the public domain about a 20- or 30-fold increase in cannabis potency and about the adverse mental health effects of cannabis contamination are not supported currently by the evidence.”
The investigators also addressed the equally popular myth that ‘potent pot’ is responsible for an increase in the number of people seeking ‘treatment’ for cannabis, finding, “Another reason for increase in treatment seeking could be the introduction of cannabis diversion programmes, some of which involve mandatory treatment for those who have committed a cannabis-related offense” — a point we’ve made here on several occasions.
Want more details? NORML podcaster extraordinaire Russ Belville has an extensive summary of the study here. May 28, 2008