November 2012 was an exciting time for marijuana supporters when Colorado and Washington made history by being the first states to legalize the use and sale of recreational cannabis. As a result, these states have witnessed a staggering transformation to their economies and culture largely due to the rapid growth and prosperity of the marijuana industry.
This November, marijuana supporters will once again get to vote for marijuana legalization. But this time Oregon, Alaska, Washington D.C. and Florida are on the ballot.
Oregon – Recreational Marijuana Legalization
Beginning with the decriminalization of weed in 1973, Oregon has historically had some of the most progressive marijuana laws in the United States. And the time has come again for Oregonians to make one of the biggest decision yet on the legality of marijuana.
Measure 91 will be on the ballot this November, and if passed, will legalize the sale and use of recreational marijuana for adults 21 and over. According to a recent poll, 52% of the population of Oregon supports the legalization of recreational marijuana.
Proponents of marijuana legalization believe that allowing the use of recreational marijuana in Oregon would mean less arrests for petty drug use. Even though marijuana is “decriminalized” in Oregon, there are still at least 12,000 arrests and citations for marijuana each year.
If Measure 91 passes, this could mean millions of dollars in tax revenue which would go to school funding, drug treatment prevention, mental health programs and state and local police. Annual tax revenue is estimated at $16 – $40 million annually.
Alaska: Marijuana Legalization
Alaskans are not newbies when it comes to marijuana. In fact, private use of marijuana has been legal in Alaska for nearly 40 years. And, according to a survey, 18% of Alaskans smoke marijuana but lack legal access to it.
This November Alaskans will be voting on Measure 2. If the measure passes it would allow adults 21 and older to possess up to an ounce of pot and maintain six marijuana plants. The measure would also legalize productions and sales, which would be regulated by the Alcoholic Beverage Control Board.
Support for Measure 2 is currently only around 50%. So whether this measure passes, really depends which side has a stronger campaign. Voter turnout will also be a major factor. If you need some motivation look to Alaska’s biggest advocate, Charlo Greene. The former news reporter that quit her job on live TV while doing a story on the on her own medical marijuana business, the Alaska Cannabis Club.
Washington, DC: Legalization of Marijuana for Personal Use
Our nation’s capital will get to vote on Initiative 71 this November. If it passes, adult citizens, 21 and older, would be allowed to possess up to two ounce of marijuana for personal use, as well as up to six cannabis plants, with a maximum of three mature flowering plants. Initiative 71 would also allow up to an ounce of marijuana to be transferred from one person to another without payment.
Initiative 71, which is currently supported by 65% of the population, is expected to win the majority vote. But that’ll only be the first hurdle. Unlike other states where majority vote wins, every bill passed in the District of Columbia requires the approval of Congress before it can be a law.
Florida: Medical Marijuana Legalization
This year Florida will vote on legalizing marijuana to treat “debilitating medical conditions”, such as cancer, AIDS, glaucoma, and parkinson’s disease. Amendment 2 would require a doctor’s approval before medical marijuana patients could use or possess weed.
Supporters of Amendment 2 will be fighting an uphill battle. For one, 60 percent of voter approval is required, and polls are showing only 48 percent approval so far. Also, marijuana supporters are facing well-funded conservative opposition. A strong voter turnout of marijuana supporters would be needed to rock this vote.
So, you’ve managed to grow your own weed, congratulations! You’ve been growing your plant for several weeks now, and you’re anxious to clip what look like decent buds, but how do you really know your plant is ready for harvest? Well, no worries. All it requires is careful observation. Here are two basic ways of determining the optimum time to harvest marijuana.
1. The Easy Way
The easiest way to determine whether your plant is ready to harvest is to simply look at the plant. In particular, you want to look at the white hairs, or pistils, that cover the plants buds. As the plant matures and the flowering period comes to an end, the white hairs which initially stick out straight begin to darken and curl. You don’t want to start harvesting until more than half the hairs have darkened from white to amber in color. Buds will have their highest level of THC when between 50% -70% of the pistils have darkened. Harvest at this time for more of a psychedelic head high.
You can still harvest your plant when 70%-90% of the pistils have darkened. As your plant matures further, THC breaks down and oxidizes from exposure to air. As this happens the plants chemistry changes, making for a more calming, sleepy, body high.
2. The Precise Way
For a more accurate method of determining the ideal time to harvest, you will need to look at trichomes. In particular, you’ll be looking at the color and clarity of those trichomes. Trichomes are tiny, glandular, outgrowth on the leaves and buds of your plant. They often have stalks and a bulbous head, looking similar to a mushroom. The sticky resinous coating you’ll see on the trichomes is where the THC and other psychoactive components are stored. To get a good look at them you will need to invest in a Jeweler’s loupe/magnifying glass of 30x-60x.
Take a close look at the trichomes with your magnifying glass. Clear colorless trichomes are an indication that your bud is not quite ready yet. When your trichomes are more opaque or milky in appearance then you should start to get excited. But don’t harvest until most of the trichomes are milky. This is when THC is at its peak. For the most potent buds, with the most psychoactive effects, harvest when most of the trichomes are cloudy. Eventually the trichomes will turn amber or gold in color. Some strains will even turn purple or red. If you Harvest when most trichomes have changed from milky white, to one of the colors I have just mentioned, you will get more of narcotic, stoney, body high. However, your plant has past its ideal harvesting period when more than 75% of your trichomes have darkened.
Whether you have been prescribed medical marijuana, use it religiously, or blaze for recreational purposes, we have all been hit with the burning question (pun intended), is it better to smoke marijuana or vaporize it? Although there are many forms of ingesting the medicine such as eating medical marijuana “edibles”, for those who want to avoid eating extra food to get their marijuana fix, inhalation is the preferred method. Smoking marijuana has always been the norm by conventional standards both for recreational and medicinal purposes.
With the latest glance at the daily news, people see images of their favorite celebrity or in some cases politician, smoking a “blunt” on stage or have been caught blazing a “joint” in a picture from their college years. In the last decade however, vaporizing devices have inundated the market and have shifted the culture into being more conscientious about their cardio vascular health by providing safer alternatives to marijuana use.
Vaporizers come in different shapes and sizes, some of which you can put on your coffee table and others you can carry in your pocket on your way to the movie theater. Numerous methods of vaporizing are available on the market today, ranging in price from $20-$300 depending on caliber of the device and the quality of vapor extracted from the herb.
Although price may be an issue to someone with a low budget, the vaporizing process cuts out up to 95% of smoke toxins from the mist that is inhaled, which can prevent lung harm and potential risk for disease in your later years.Not only are a majority of harmful toxins and chemicals excluded, but 95% of the THC is absorbed in the first few seconds compared to minutes needed to feel the effects of smoked marijuana.
The way vaporizers work is that they only get the cannabis hot enough to release the most important aspects of the plant as vapors. Marijuana begins to combust at about 392 degrees Fahrenheit, where as in most vaporizers, the ideal sweet spot for vaporization occurs at 338 degrees, right below smoke temperature. Users tend to “sip” the vapor through their particular device of choice, rather than “smoke” the medicine.
Smoking is the more prevalent way that marijuana is ingested. Marijuana that is smoked is usually done so by using rolling papers, blunt wraps, pipes, water pipes, or concentrate pipes. Price ranges for most smoking devices can range in a few cents for single joint paper to a few hundred dollars for high end pipes.
Most people have the false impression that holding in marijuana smoke will somehow make you feel “higher”. Research has shown that this is in fact not the case, and that users can get just as high by taking “shallow puffs” without jeopardizing the harsh feeling on their lungs.Smoking anything will eventually if not immediately cause irritation of the lungs which according to most medical marijuana doctors, can be a cause of a more serious lung conditions later on in life.
The major difference between smoking marijuana and vaporizing, is that smoke contains substances other than beneficial ones found in the plant, where as vaporizing reduces these substances drastically. Studies have shown that there are no known risks in the marijuana plant that pose a risk to human health; however, smoking the herb can lead to possible respiratory conditions later in life from the continual irritation of the lung tissue.
Step 1 (Preparation): Before starting this sequence, it is very important that you take proper precautions, have the proper supplies and the a decent preparation area.
You will need the following supplies: 1 ounce of super dry marijuana, 1 gallon of high proof alcohol solvent (Everclear works best), medium sized Pyrex mixing bowl, large wooden spoon, straining device (Muslin Bag works best), a separate container to catch strained liquid, double boiler setup, silicon spatula, plastic syringes.
Preparation Area: You must also be sure to have the proper ventilation(open windows/fan), as well as an electric stove (gas stoves are more dangerous with solvent), and a fire extinguisher.
Step 2 (Grind): Place 1 ounce of extremely dry and ground up marijuana (sativa or indica) into a medium sized, Pyrex glass mixing bowl. Make sure you can spare a few inches above the marijuana grind, as liquid will be added soon.
Step 3 (Dissolve): Add Everclear or another high proof alcohol solvent which will cover the marijuana in it’s entirety, with about an inch of additional solvent on top.
(Caution: never use rubbing alcohol as a solvent)
Step 4 (Mix): Slowly mix the Everclear and marijuana together in the bowl for just about 3 minutes. Use a large wooden spoon/large fork to mix the marijuana with the solvent, allowing for the solvent to dissolve resin and oils from the herb.
Step 5 (Strain): Delicately pour the marijuana solvent mix through a straining device e.g(muslin bag, grain, cheesecloth, Thai filter, steeping bag, etc) into a separate 2 quart mixing bowl or large bowl.The strained concoction should be dark with greenish undertones.
Step 6 (Repeat): Place marijuana material back into original mixing bowl and repeat steps 2, 3, and 4 in order to remove all oil and resin from the marijuana a second time.
(Caution: repeating the straining process a third time will ruin your batch as the remaining marijuana resin will have little to no benefit.)
Step 7 (Boil): Pour dark green mixture from both washes into the top of a double- boiler. Make sure that the bottom pot of the double-boiler is filled with water before turning on the heat.
(Caution: if you don’t have enough space for all of the mix in the double-boiler you can continue to add the remaining marijuana mix as the level in the double-boiler begins to drop during the evaporation process. )
Step 8 (Evaporate): Begin heating the liquid on high setting until the top pot of the double boiler starts bubbling, then turn the heat off promptly.Allow the heat from the bath of water to heat the top pan until the Everclear or high proof alcohol solvent has evaporated. Once you see that the dark green mixture is bubbling, immediately turn off the heat. This process can take anywhere from 15-25 minutes.
Step 9 (Almost Done): You are done when the liquid has become a thick green substance and no longer bubbles. If the liquid has ceased to bubble but is somewhat runny, you can turn the heat back on low until it starts bubbling again and you are satisfied with consistency.
Step 10 (Cool Down): Use plastic syringes to draw up the remaining which will allow you to create individual portions for future medical use. The semi thick liquid will become thicker once it cools. Be sure to dry the left over oil in a cool, dry place.
Timing is everything isn’t it? Just when we voiced our opinion at Dat Dank about the NFL Commissioner’s comments about possible marijuana legalization in the NFL, destiny brought us a Super Bowl featuring the Seattle Seahawks vs. the Denver Broncos. For those of you who have been keeping up with marijuana legalization, you may have put one and one together and noticed that these two teams represent states that are on the forefront of recreational marijuana legalization. For those of you wondering why people are calling it the weed bowl, marijuana bowl, stoner bowl, or bong bowl, if you haven’t already heard, Colorado was the first ever state to legalize recreational marijuana regulated by the state government with the state of Washington soon to do the same.
What makes this significant in sports? Well nothing in particular because marijuana is still categorized as a banned substance in the NFL and any other professional sports for that matter. But what makes it significant at Dat Dank is the fact that, as Seattle Pi puts it: These two states aren’t “the only two states in the union (and two of only three places on the planet) where marijuana is not only legal but have a budding legal system for growing and selling will face each other in the Super Bowl.” And with the statement made by Roger Goodell (Commissioner of the NFL) regarding the possible legalization of medical marijuana use among players in the future, the Denver Bronco and the Seattle Seahawks facing off in the Weed Bowl, er, Super Bowl in New Jersey’s MetLife Stadium couldn’t have come at a better time for marijuana advocates and supporters in the United States. I’m not complaining but imagine this game was played at Mile High Stadium back in Denver, we would be talking conspiracy as opposed to a high coincidence.
So this year, fill up the Doritos bowl, and pack a fat bowl, cause this game’s gonna be a doobie!
One of the few places I found with good prices on dabs, wax, and shatter making tools and accessories: http://www.marijuanapackaging.com/smoke-shop-supply/concentrate-tools.html
DISCLAIMER: This is just a guide laying out the steps to how shatter is made using butane. I am not recommending that any of you try this at home without proper equipment or experience because it could involve in injury as butane is highly flammable and can be explosive. This is an article meant to inform, not meant to inspire recreational weed smokers to screw around with butane and their leftover stash.
We all know that the National Football League (NFL) has banned numerous players for the use of marijuana due to the league’s strict substance ban and abuse policy. But this may no longer be the case in the near future. The head commissioner of the NFL, Roger Goodell has opened up to the Associated Press about his stance on the NFL and marijuana use since the successful legalization of recreational marijuana in Colorado at the beginning of this year. According to ESPN reports, commissioner Goodell stated that he could envision a time when players could turn to marijuana to treat pain in states where medical marijuana has already been legalized: “I don’t know what’s going to develop as far as the next opportunity for medicine to evolve and to help either deal with pain or help deal with injuries, but we will continue to support the evolution of medicine.”
The major setback from this issue being pushed faster is the league’s 10 year collective bargaining agreement. Marijuana remains a prohibited drug under the NFL’s substance abuse policy and this agreement was last set in place in 2011 and isn’t set to expire until 2021. The loophole pointed out by Rt.com shows that the CBA only bans the “illegal use of marijuana, meaning a potential gray area exists concerning situations and states where legal and medical marijuana is permitted.”
In a sport where players are beat and battered week after week with pain, the NFL would be a prime example for the sports world in which medical cannabis could properly be used and regulated for the benefit of the players and sports as a whole. What do you think?
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo of New York has long been known for his hard stance against legalizing marijuana of any kind in New York. This change of position comes a shock to many but digging deeper into his political history, we can see that Gov. Cuomo lead the charge in the legalization of same-sex marriages in New York in 2011. Gov. Cuomo has made major moves in the past few years in the area of social policy in an effort to bolster his popularity with the voting public. Because of Gov. Cuomo, gay marriage is now legal in New York and gun laws in the state are one of the nation’s toughest. Although he has began spearheading abortion rights in his state, that effort has not achieved the success of his other campaigns that have most recently put him in the glowing spotlight of public approval.
Although New York is not going to be competing in the liberal likes of Colorado or California, this shift in legislation allowing those with serious illness have access to medical marijuana is a huge leap for the state of New York where possession and distribution of drugs carry some of the heaviest penalties in the nation. The legislation proposed will allow 20 hospitals in the state to prescribe medical marijuana to patients with cancer, glaucoma, and other diseases that meet the standards set by the New York State Department of Health.
Moves like this are big in cannabis legalization efforts because it gives the public a chance to understand that when all efforts to treat medical illnesses are exhausted, medical marijuana can be used positively. When you have highly populated states such as California and New York setting examples of effective regulation, others will follow in due time. It’s hard to say if Colorado had any affect on Gov. Cuomo’s new plans to offer medical cannabis, but one thing is for sure, he’s not afraid to tackle big issues and go with what he thinks is right. Keep on advocating Gov. Cuomo, we’re all behind you