Health

Using Marijuana Responsibly

Marijuana is now legal for recreational purposes in 10 states as well as in the District of Columbia. That’s great news to the many people to whom marijuana brings joy. But as marijuana becomes a legal and normal part of our everyday lives, we need to be conscious of how we’re using it and how we’re behaving. As marijuana users, we have a responsibility to keep our habit safe and show the world that marijuana use can be a part of a happy, healthy, and responsible lifestyle. Here are a few things that marijuana users should remember as they enjoy their drug of choice.

Obey all marijuana-related laws

Just because marijuana is legal, doesn’t mean you can do anything that you want with it. In states with legal marijuana, you’ll still find plenty of red tape and regulations. You won’t be allowed to toke up in school zones, for instance, and you certain will not be permitted to get high and drive (more on that later). States with legal marijuana restrict the amounts that can be bought or carried, and they have all sorts of limitations on where you can actually smoke.

These laws may seem annoying sometimes, but they’re there to protect us and to ease the minds of those who don’t like marijuana themselves. As responsible smokers, we should recognize that obeying the laws is the way to go.

Never take marijuana across state lines

Marijuana is legal within certain states, but the federal government still has laws against the drug on the books. Fortunately, the feds have shown no willingness to enforce federal laws on marijuana within states with legal weed (and if they did, it would almost certainly spark a court fight).

But when you take marijuana across state lines — even when you’re going between two states that both have legal marijuana — you’re in the jurisdiction of the federal government. Interstate commerce is their responsibility, and if you’re hopping from state to state with weed, you could end up being slapped with a felony charge. So enjoy your time in Colorado or Washington, but do not get on a plane with marijuana in your bag. You’ll be in a world of trouble if you try it, and you’ll definitely need a lawyer to help you out.

Never smoke and drive

Few marijuana-related laws are as important as those that protect us from intoxicated drivers. Even if it were legal to smoke and drive, you would have a responsibility not to do so, because it puts others in danger.

Some people believe that smoking and driving is safe, but those people are wrong. While the jury is out on how much marijuana smoking hurts our abilities to drive, we know that it must matter to some degree because marijuana has already been established to affect things like our reaction times and our abilities to pay attention. No matter how well you think you “hold your smoke,” you should never get high and get behind the wheel of a car.

Get some reliable gear

Marijuana accessories tend to be pretty safe, but don’t buy cheap plastic stuff that could possibly raise health concerns. Opt for brand-name materials that will give you reliable performance, such as the Wulf Vape SX.

Consider your impact on those around you when you smoke. A vape can be more polite and less likely to subject others to your secondhand smoke. There are also environmentally friendly and sustainable smoking products out there. You can make a big difference and be responsible just by buying different smoking accessories.

Mind your manners

Marijuana use has long had a culture all its own, but now that culture is a part of the mainstream. And when cultures collide, we all need to adjust.

Thinking about marijuana use as similar to drinking alcohol may help you understand what sort of etiquette rules should be applied. You wouldn’t get drunk alone while your guests become uncomfortable, so you shouldn’t get high alone around non-smokers unless you have a close relationship and a mutual understanding. You should offer to share your stash with those who would be comfortable with such an offer, but you should never pressure anyone who would prefer not to smoke — just as you wouldn’t push someone who declines a drink.

Marijuana and maturity haven’t always gone hand-in-hand, but legality has helped call attention to the many mature, polite, and responsible adults who enjoy marijuana. Do your part by being a responsible smoker.

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Jacque Amaya

Jacque Amaya