This is a letter I hope you will consider publishing under "Reader Commentary".
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On May 29, 2012 I published an article about bath salts (BS) and legal weed (LW) on my blog.
Here is a link to my well read article which shares a plethora of links, data, and related issues that anyone may use to do their own due diligence in which to draw personal conclusions from.
It is quite a thorough article and it is updated often with new material.
Although it is rather lengthy, it is full of valuable information on this current topic being debated on a local as well as a national stage, if not international.
The article covers topics including, but not limited to, the science behind these chemical compounds as well as their resulting issues with legality, crime, legislation, symptoms of usage, and the possible mountain of unpredictable side effects, and ultimately death, etc.
It covers both the human sides of the issues as well as the scientific sides of the issue.
In October of 2010 I had the honor of being published at The United States Departmet of Energy.
As it is easy to track my readership statistics, amazingly the article about bath salts and legal weed has been read in three months at a ratio of 4:1 compared to the article at The United States Department of Energy which has been pulished for nearly two entire years.
Each article is independntly about important issues, but obviously what peole prefer to read is about the pressing and very threatening issue of bath salts in particular often overlooking the equal threat that legal weed (a.k.a. potpourri) carries.
I have also started a petition to raise awareness and help outlaw these dangerous chemical compounds.
I hope you will each sign the petition and please urge your friends and family to sign it as well, as you may find it at the following link..
I have also written our local, state and federal representatives about this issue as well as shared with them the contents I have writen herein, and I ask that you each take the time to do the same individually, as there is nothing quite so powerful or eloquent as our language when properly expressed and utilized as a catalyst to provoke positive action. .
I have also started a facebook page titled, "Ban BathSalts and Legal Weed", and hope you wil visit the page, "like" the page, and re-post it with your friends and family as well.
I am building a network of support to have these heinous chemical compounds outlawed, as well as raising the level of awareness for parents, spouses, or friends or family about the symptoms of use or abuse as well as plans for seeking treatment, not to mention sharing other sources of information that you, the reader, may study to form your own position upon about this garbage.
The major emphasis has been on bath salts, however please do not overlook the legal weed, as it can and often does have the exact same chemicals in the multitude of brands and blends as well.
These chemicals are often in the cannabinoids family tree, the Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) family tree, and the amphetamine family tree.
Here is perhaps another frightening facet of this muti faceted issue.
The raw chemicals, which are very inexpensive and, as reportded by Dateline NBC, can garner profits that are unbelievable and are easily ordered and shipped right to a manufacturers or private individuals door.
I think a much larger emphasis needs to be placed on shutting down these sites immediatelly and also making it illegal to purchase any of these chemicals or compounds outside of perhaps an authorized research lab.
Certainly no individual private citizen needs these chemicals or compounds for any useful purpose.
My blog goes into much greater detail about the "science" behind the chemistry that is being utilized to skirt around the laws that have been passed thus far in various localitie, states, and federal law as well, and it also covers different initiatives that are transpiring right now in different many different jurisditions.
I am pleased to see a lot of news coverage, and that this coverage is increasing as well makes me feel better to know that these issues are being very closely scrutinized and in the forefront of the public's and government's concerns.
I have researched this topic for several years now and finally decided it was high time to write about it and expose what I have learned thus far from my collective data gathering.
It is obvious to any rational citizen that these chemicals compounds are sold only for greed and profit.
It is equally obvious to the sellers that the people making these purchases of these extremely dangerous chemicals are consuming them in any number of methods, and are most certainly not using them as a "potpourri" (one false pretense in their promoton) or as actual "bath salts" we have come to know, such as epsom salts(promotional mis-leading propaganda again), but on the other hand these purchasers and users have only the intent on using them to get "high", and we have all seen in the news what the effects these chemicals have upon the users, the families and the innocent, as people are dying across the country and comittig crimes at an increasingly break neck speed, and most unfortuantely it is too often our promising curious young children and youtful adults that suffer the greatest peril.
It is so higly profitable that it is hard for some of our own local businesses to do what is morally right and simply stop indiscriminately dispensing this throughout our comunitty.
I always do my best to take action and also use words to communicate the truth of any situation at hand, and in this case what is happening now today here and abroad are true atrocities.
I earned a Sceince Degree with a Major in Police Science, and this epidemic that is quickly growing out of control reminds me far too much of the crack cocaine epidemic of the 1980's I studied whle in college, as well as the ongoing crytal meth issues we are also in the throes of combating.
We also have a serious heroin problem in this community, as well as a plethora of legal pharmaceuticals that are dispensed at the many pharmacies in town to patrons, some of which finds its way into the black market as well, because whe there exists a demand, unfortunately a supply will follow, as will the criminal element and the violence that it brings along with it.
What ultimately concerns me more then anything it the resultant effect upon the user, and ultimately the victims to be, as the mixture of any of a number of these drugs together and their resulting exponential effects are just so unpredictable, while the quantity of all of these drugs is so readily available.
Rumor has it that one shop in town distributing, at least, legal weed, if not both LW and BS, was grossing $ 28,000 per month in sales.
Again that is a rumor, but I do not think that is too far fetched by any stretch of the imagination.
$ 1000 per day selling small packaged quantities at $ 25 -$35 each would be quite an easy number to achieve in gross sales.
I despise these chemicals and the companies that produce them as well as the local businesses that are selling this garbage at a huge cost and ultimate burden to our local citizens.
I also despise what it is doing to the already delicate fabric of our community, and again equally despise when I go to some of my favorite hiking areas or overlooks and see empty packages of this garbage littered about.
For example, just a few short days ago while taking my dog for a ride and run up to Iron's Mountain, there were four empty packages where I usualy take breathtaking pictures of the mountains at sunrise, or butterflys and bees pollenating blossoming puprple thistle, or yellow finches perched on branches or deer running in the now defunct orchards.
It appears that most of the folks using these sinister heinous chemical compounds buy more then one bag at a time (because there are price breaks for purchasing quantity), and many folks become highly addicted very quickly and are often observed waiting for the store(s) to open each morning as their cravings are that strong.
Again, my blog goes into greater detail about these, as well as other particulars, and it is well worth reading.
I do hope you explore the contents there and check it often for the many updates I add each week to stay abreast of this distressing topic.
My objective is to get as many signatures I can on the petition, as well as many members of the page on facebook, and a lot of local support is wonderful, but, as this is a nationwide and even international issue now, I invite anyone to join in on this crusade to make these chemical compounds illegal in any and all forms at all, as well as any chemical compounds in the same or similar family tree of chemical genetics, if you will.
Perhaps the most important primary objective is seeking treatment for those that are using and abusing these substances, as well as knowing how to spot the symptoms of the abuse.
Education in the comunitty starting with the family and then a properly coordinated effort for testing (when available) and treatment, and perhaps most especially and immediatelly, boycotting these local immoral businesses that are operating on the pretense of free enterprise is the onus upon us now, lest this problem will certainly just explode into a larger problem maybe even quite a bit more unmanageable at a later time.
I would like to challenge the local citizens, the local news paper, the local radio stations, and other media outlets as well as local businesses and even government to take out an advertisement, or publish website, and list and expose all the businesses in and around town or anywhere in our vicinity, that are selling any of this garbage, so we may all be aware of who it is that is preying upon our comunitty.
I urge any leadership as well as readership in any locations that reads this article to do the same, as being proactive, and thus preventing problems, is a much better solution then waiting for the problems already at hand to further proliferate.
That may sound radical at first, however, the businesses selling these drugs should certainly be made public knowledge at the very least, and should also easily be accessible in one location in a simple list form for anyone to investigate so we can further raise awareness for parents, family, friends, politicians, law enforcemnet, ad infinitum, as well as use our voice to demand these businesses to do the right thing, or we will no longer support them.
Just go where this garbage is sold and see who "lurks" around these places, then ask yourself is that who you would like near your childrens' bus stop or school?
Speaking of schools, I know for a fact that a few places that sell this are in very close proximity to schools and I state that only because I find it as just another great concern.
I hope that each of you will sign the petition I have started, as many have already done.
I have had some great feedback from some public officials, and I have heard nothing nor seen signatures from quite a few others.
Is there any real reason to not sign a simple petition that promotes a better comunitty by reducing the sale of such salacious substances?
I hope that we can stand together united as one strong comunitty that will not tolerate these businesses or substances and the dire effect that they are wreaking upon us already, and signing a petition and writing letters to your local and state, and federal officials is one way to le everyone know whwre you stand.
Perhaps you will personally choose to not sign the petition or participate in a meaningful way to rid our city of this problem that will only continue to grow, and to not act at all in the face of this current nightmare would be, and is certainly, shameful.
Please also read the blog article (link above) and it's many related links so that you may fully grasp what we are actually up against be it legally, in either a civil or criminal perspective, logistically concerning health, crisis management, treatment, symptoms, the uptick in crime, or any other of a number of factors.
Lastly please join the facebook page, as well and share it and invite your friends to join too, so that we may display our collective support and demand very swift and decisive legislation immediatelly.
If you have read this far, I appreciate your individual time and thought about this issue and I hope that you will join the rest of us and use your voice as we organize to outlaw this garbage and prevent what otherwise will happen if we choose to rest on our collective laurels.