Ask The Mayor: LEO’s New Cannabis Column Answers Your Questions

“And a very good day to you sir!” exclaims Mayor Wando as he departs his residence and wanders the streets of Freetown. He tips his hat to the townsfolk, who nod as they wend the streets of Freetown. “For the public to be responsible to consume cannabis, education is key,” he opines. “We need to educate taxpayers about the benefits of quality informational materials, personal investment of time for everyone to know the ins-and-outs of consumption — and, most importantly, redress any social grievances and give those who have been incarcerated because of low-level cannabis crimes, the ability to expunge records and reintegrate into the voting public.”

As the Mayor of Freetown, Mayor Wando wants to answer the questions that will inevitably pop-up as the growing, transfer and responsible use of cannabis and cannabis products becomes more mainstream in America. Currently, there are 38 states that have medicinal cannabis, and still a patchwork of states with varying legal status. The social issues surrounding questions like ‘has cannabis been decriminalized?,’ and ‘is there recreational use available?,’ are many. 

Welcome to Ask The Mayor, a new column for the LEO where we will delve into the educational aspects of cannabis as we explore the new horizon of responsible cannabis consumption in Kentucky. Here, we will talk openly and honestly about the whats and wheres of personal adult use cannabis and cannabis products. We will discuss the Executive Order regarding medical cannabis issued by Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear and effective Jan. 1. 

Here are some examples of questions that consider the overall history and educational aspects of cannabis consumption.

Q: I used to consume weed in high school, but it’s different now. Everything seems much stronger and more potent. Am I correct or did I just get older? ~ A. Stoner

A: Hey A. Stoner, you are not dreaming, things are more potent almost across the spectrum than what was historically available in the ‘60s and ‘70s, but, there is good news for you. In cannabis legal states, there is often much more testing done to ensure that there are consistent crops harvested over time. Depending on the state, there is testing done on crops/strains/harvests that give an accurate representation of the chemical makeup of the strains. The percentages usually target 15% – 26% THC, depending on grow areas, temp/heat. etc.

Q: There are so many terms now. I’ve smoked weed forever, but I am confused as to what it all means. What gives? ~Grumpy Old Guy

A: Grumpy, I promise you aren’t alone. We are in a new era for weed and cannabis consumption. Overall usage might have gone up with accessibility, but many of the old rules still apply. Many people are confused about different strain names and whether their weed is an indica, sativa, hybrid, etc. These might be a good starting place but there has been a lot of innovation and crossbreeding, so it’s harder to pinpoint exactly what something is, unless there is actually DNA mapping of that specific harvest. That’s expensive, so there are other things that we can do to find the provenance of the strain like purchasing from reputable sources. There is a lot of new technology and some cool things happening, so buckle up.

Q: Help me understand Gov. Beshear’s Executive Order? ~ Concerned Citizen

A: Under Gov. Beshear’s executive order, preemptive pardons for marijuana possession are issued for people who have one of 21 qualifying medical conditions. But there are a few caveats. For one, it has to be purchased outside of Kentucky in a state that it is legal. The person will also have to keep their receipt for the marijuana and have a “written certification” from a physician documenting their qualifying medical condition. And you can’t have more than 8 ounces.

The overall situation is confusing; for more on the executive order, check out LEO’s previous coverage on the issue.

Q: Why does there have to be such a smell to cannabis? I was in a legal state and I smelled weed everywhere I went. ~Smelly  

A: That’s one of nature’s jokes — that cannabis is so fragrant while cultivating and growing, while processing and curing, and even when consuming. Some of the smell awareness is expected as the public consumes cannabis in legal states. There will be a time where the public will be acutely aware of the cannabis smell. It’s up to individual users to have their cannabis contained in airtight containers or smell-proof dispensary bags. All consumers should take it upon themselves to responsibly consume and store their cannabis.

Please direct all questions to: [email protected]

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