States Rush To Control Synthetic Drugs

Over the past few years, the nation has seen an influx of what are being called “synthetic” drugs. Spice, K2, LOL, and BZP are just a few of the substances causing a scramble as lawmakers grapple with creating laws for these formulas not previously seen and adults and kids alike rush out to buy up the substances before they are completely banned.

It currently seems as if the purchasers of the widely available “synthetics” are mostly teens, looking for a legal way to catch a buzz. Because the majority of the synthetics can be found at head shops and even gas stations, they are easy for teens to get a hold of.

K2, one of the more popular substances, is a combination of chemicals sprayed on certain plant leaves. The product is marketed as“incense” and is even labeled as “not for human consumption”. However, it was created by a Clemson researcher to reproduce the effects of THC (marijuana) in laboratory rats.  Even the creator calls those people who choose to smoke K2 “idiots” in an article from the Detroit News.

Another popular synthetic drug has experienced a boom in just the past week, after a former Disney pop star was seen online smoking Salvia out of a bong at a party. This substance is currently legal in about 35 states, though that number is expected to steadily drop. Researchers at Johns Hopkins, however, having just released findings on their studies of salvia, suggest it’s actually not harmful and that it may hold value in medicinal developments and the study of the brain.

For now, these substances fall outside of most state drug possession laws. But the DEA has taken a firm stance on K2 in particular, banning it at the federal level. Because it’s made of a mixture of chemicals that can easily be reformulated, the DEA banned five separate chemicals often used in similar “incense” products.

It’s important to note that not a lot of information is available on the effects of these substances as they are relatively new. But because some of these substances may lead to medical problems legislation is being drafted across the country.

While criminalizing yet another substance before it’s long term effects are known may seem rash, states want to control any potential danger to children, which is understandable. With recent pushes to decriminalize marijuana, however, one wonders how things may be different in regards to “fake pot” if cannabis was, in fact, a legal option.

Whether you live in a state where theses synthetics have been banned or if you are facing marijuana charges, contact us to speak with an attorney who can advise you on your case.

About David Matson