Is K2 Marijuana Really Legal?

Marijuana, Crime, Rights

For years, there has been debate all across the country about legalizing marijuana. Well, it appears some have gotten tired of fighting this war, and instead, they’ve now created a substance that mimics the drug’s effects on the brain. And it’s totally legal.

The product is known as K2. The product contains various herbs and spices that are sprayed with a synthetic compound that’s very similar to THC. THC, of course, is the ingredient in marijuana that gives the herb its, shall we say, most desirable effects.

K2’s key ingredients aren’t currently regulated in the United States, and as you can imagine, lawmakers are in a panic trying to fight K2 usage and make it illegal.  In the meantime, those who wish to try K2 can easily find it in local head shops, hooka lounges, online and even gas stations.

K2 already banned in some states

Recently, Missouri became the fifth state to ban K2. Those who possess K2 after August 28th in Missouri face jail time or fines just like they would if they were carrying real marijuana. Currently, K2 is banned in:

  • Missouri
  • Arkansas
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Alabama

Additionally, the U.S. Army has banned K2, so soldiers are not permitted to smoke it. The synthetic pot alternative is also banned in much of Europe.

Other states weighing bans

According to a recent piece in USA Today, several other states are debating bans on K2 at this very moment. The states fear its use is spreading among the youth, and they believe it could cause a serious epidemic.

Some of the states currently fighting to ban K2 include:

  • Georgia
  • Tennessee
  • Illinois
  • Louisiana
  • Michigan
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Texas

Speaking of Texas, State Sen. Florence Shapiro recently took to the air on Fox News to voice her concerns about K2—the legal pot alternative. Shapiro said she will introduce legislation in the next session to ban K2 because it’s “a public health risk.”

Advantages of K2 over marijuana

Why has K2 become so popular? Its users claim it boasts a wide range of benefits that include:

  • Undetectable in drug tests
  • Same effects on the mind as marijuana
  • Costs about the same as marijuana (between $20 and $50 for three grams)
  • Is still legal in most states

Is K2 safe?

When you hear the word “synthetic”, you probably immediately get curious about potential side effects and overall safety. This begs the question, “Is K2 safe?”

Despite some doctors claiming K2 causes hallucinations, the simple truth is there isn’t really any research that shows how this pot alternative affects humans. There is no known data on the drug’s toxicity. However, it’s worth noting that the packages of K2 do say it’s not “for human use.”

Furthermore, Dr. John Huffman, the unintentional creator of K2, said that “people who use it are idiots.”  Huffman was “researching the effects of cannabinoids on the brain when his work resulted in a 1995 paper that contained the method and ingredients used to make the compound. That recipe found its way to marijuana users, who replicated Huffman’s work and began spraying it onto dried flowers, herbs and tobacco.”

What do you think about K2? Should it be banned across the country?