Drug Law

Synthetic Marijuana Inventor: Legalize the Real Stuff

| by NORML
By "Radical" Russ Belville

We get many comments on our stories about K2/Spice, the chemical “JWH-018″ and others like it that the media have dubbed “fake pot” or “synthetic marijuana.” The reason there is even such a chemical is that the scientist who invented it, John W. Huffman, could not get access to natural cannabis to study cannabinoids. Now he’s telling ABC News what we’ve been saying for decades: prohibition creates more dangerous drugs!

(ABC News) now that “Spice” and other forms of imitation pot are sending users to emergency rooms across America, the retired professor has an idea of how to stem the epidemic. If the federal government would legalize the real thing, says Huffman, maybe consumers wouldn’t turn to the far more dangerous fake stuff.

Huffman, who developed more than 400 “cannabinoids” as an organic chemist at Clemson University, says that marijuana has the benefit of being a known quantity, and not a very harmful one. We know the biological effects of THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, Huffman told ABC News, because they have been thoroughly studied. “The scientific evidence is that it’s not a particularly dangerous drug,” said Huffman.

“I talked to a marijuana provider from California, a doctor, a physician,” explained Huffman, “and he said that in California, that these things are not near the problem they are in the rest of the country simply because they can get marijuana. And marijuana, even for recreational use is quite easy to get in California, and it’s essentially decriminalized. And marijuana is not nearly as dangerous as these compounds.”