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A Fight Over Weak Government Weed Stalls Research Into Pot And PTSD
A long-planned, landmark study on the potential use of marijuana to treat post-traumatic stress in veterans has stalled again, this time after a debate arose over the unhip un-skunkiness of the government ganja grown for use in the experiment.
Johns Hopkins University, which had been tasked with registering local veterans to use the marijuana in clinical trials, is pulling out of the study, a move one partner attributed to negative publicity, the Washington Post reports.
The issue may have been some dank comments that partner, the California-based Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, made about the experiment’s grass being dirtweed.
“We waited 20 months to get going, and then we got this sub-optimal study drug.”
In January, Hopkins cleared a batch of pot for use in the experiment, the Post reports. That pot came from the same place all marijuana used in DEA- and FDA-approved experiments must come from: a special, government-run grow operation on the University of Mississippi campus.
MAPS, the organizer of the experiment, had long opposed the government’s monopoly on experimental pot — but Johns Hopkins’ stash was particularly long dregs and short on skunk, the Post reports. The weed set aside for use in the veterans’ experiment was low in THC, but high in mold and lead, MAPS argued.
Hopkins had no complaints about the shibby, so a MAPS researcher went public with her complaints last month, telling PBS reporters that the government weed “didn’t resemble cannabis. It didn’t smell like cannabis.”
Which it decidedly doesn’t, if you’re used to, say, the Sour Diesel or the OG Kush:
Hydroponic skill level: Jedi.Wikimedia Commons
Nevertheless, the fuss over the gubmint sensimilla being muy malo may have convinced Hopkins that all this weed business was too seedy for them.
The experiment continues, with a dozen vets signed up to test the weed in Scottsdale, Ariz., and more volunteer drives are planned by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Colorado.
Meantime, veterans continue to fight for increased research into medical and recreational marijuana. The American Legion’s membership has called for the de-scheduling of cannabis as an illegal drug and asked feds to work with private growers to provide “safe and efficient cannabis drug development research.”
And the Santa Cruz Veterans Alliance, a California grow operation, offered to donate some of its kush for the PTSD experiment. “Cannabis grown by veterans for veterans is how SCVA began,” the group’s spokesman, Seth Smith, told Task & Purpose. “Wouldn't it be amazing if the first federal study on the potential benefits of cannabis to treat PTSD symptoms in US veterans used safe, quality medicinal cannabis grown by veterans themselves?”
The Pentagon's top spokesman tried to downplay recent revelations by the Washington Post that U.S. government officials have consistently misled the American public about the war in Afghanistan for nearly two decades.
Washington Post reporter Craig Whitlock first brought to light that several top officials acknowledged to the Office of the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction that the war was going badly despite their optimistic public statements. The report, based on extensive interviews and internal government data, also found that U.S. officials manipulated statistics to create the public perception that the U.S. military was making progress in Afghanistan.
An Army colonel's alleged abuse saddled his wife with ongoing medical needs. Escaping him could bring that care to a screeching halt.
Katherine Burton was sitting on her couch when she heard a scream.
Though she had not yet met her upstairs neighbors, Army. Col. Jerel Grimes and his wife Ellizabeth, Burton went to investigate almost immediately. "I knew it was a cry for help," she recalled of the August 1 incident.
Above her downstairs apartment in Huntsville, Alabama, Jerel and Ellizabeth had been arguing. They had been doing a lot of that lately. According to Ellizabeth, Jerel, a soldier with 26 years of service and two Afghanistan deployments under his belt, had become increasingly controlling in the months since the couple had married in April, forcing her to share computer passwords, receipts for purchases, and asking where she was at all times.
"I was starting to realize how controlling he was, and how manipulative he was," Ellizabeth said. "And he'd never been this way towards me in the 15 years that I've known him."
Taliban fighters attempted to fight their way into Bagram Airfield on Wednesday by invading a medical facility just outside of the base's perimeter, a spokesman for Operation Resolute Support said Wednesday.
J.P. Lawrence of Stars and Stripes and Jim LaPorta of Newsweek first reported that the battle lasted for several hours after using car bombs to attack the hospital, which is near the base's northern corner. Helicopter and fixed-wing aircraft were reportedly used to drop ordnance on the hospital.
Actor Mark Wahlberg will be visiting troops overseas to plug Wahlburgers, a fast-casual restaurant chain owned by the actor and his two brothers, Donnie Wahlberg, and chef Paul Wahlberg.