Resolution Introduced in the Senate by Senator Pete Ricketts and in the House by Rep. Pete Sessions
Highlights Risks Associated with the Commercial Marijuana Industry’s Addictive High-Potency Pot Products
(WASHINGTON, DC) – In a first-of-its-kind move, U.S. Senator Pete Ricketts (R-NE) and Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX) have filed a Concurrent Congressional Resolution outlining the dangers associated with today’s high-potency marijuana and increasingly addictive, commercialized THC drugs. The resolution, designated at “Randy’s Resolution,” urges action at the local, state, and federal level to combat the growing threat to public health and safety from these dangerous products.
H.Con.Res.87 (Randy’s Resolution) in part outlines that, “the use of high-potency marijuana has become increasingly prevalent across the United States” and that “Congress urges federal, state, and local governments to collaborate with public health organizations, medical professionals, and community stakeholders to develop evidence-based policies that address the public health and safety concerns associated with high-potency marijuana.”
The legislators are using the Concurrent Resolution to raise awareness about the danger of these industrialized products including candies, drinks, vape oils and other edible drugs that are often 6X as potent as regular marijuana. Marijuana remains federally illegal, and few states have enacted potency caps on the industry’s products. High-potency THC drugs are increasingly linked to IQ loss and significant mental health issues including depression, suicidality, psychosis, and schizophrenia.
At a press conference today on Capitol Hill, Senator Pete Ricketts said, “The average THC potency in marijuana has increased by 287% since 1995, and it’s killing young Americans like Randy Bacchus Jr. Randy’s Resolution is a call to arms for every level of government to do more to combat the dangerous, addictive high-potency marijuana products flooding the market today. We can’t stand by and do nothing while the big marijuana lobby gets the next generation addicted to a drug that causes mental health disorders and cognitive impairment.”
“The staggering increase in abuse of potent THC products, and the associated health risks, cannot be ignored,” said Congressman Sessions. “High levels of marijuana use pose a significant risk, particularly to our youth, increasing the incidence of psychosis five-fold. I am proud to work with Senator Ricketts to introduce Randy’s Resolution and advocate for better safety and mental health among Americans.”
“Randy’s Resolution” received strong support from Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), the nation’s foremost authority on marijuana policy.
Former Representative Patrick J. Kennedy (D-RI), Honorary Chair of SAM, said, “This is a predatory industry that is preying on the most vulnerable among us. More potent drugs drive higher profits that line the pockets of industry executives and shareholders while damaging the lives of millions. Our leaders in both parties must come together and like Senator Ricketts and Congressman Sessions, be proactive on this critically important public health issue.”
Former Obama White House drug policy advisor Dr. Kevin Sabet, President of Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), said, “Americans should thank Senator Ricketts and Rep. Sessions for taking a proactive leadership position to address this growing threat to public health. The industry is using high-potency products to hook a new generation of users, especially young people, with increasingly stronger drugs that are having devastating impacts on communities across the nation. We need a comprehensive approach from leaders in Washington and at the state levels to implement potency caps that can protect public health.”
The members of Congress and drug policy experts were also joined at the announcement by Randy and Heather Bacchus, who lost their son, Randy, to suicide after suffering a psychotic break brought on by high-potency pot.
“Randy’s months-long struggle with psychotic episodes and paranoid delusions didn’t have to happen. Too many people think today’s highly industrialized marijuana is harmless or even, as Randy thought, improving their quality of life. But the reality is far more tragic. We’re here today to ensure other families don’t endure the heartbreaking loss of a son and brother like we’ve suffered,” said Heather Bacchus.
Misinformation about the risks of today’s high-potency THC drugs abounds. In a recent “Friday Fact” issued by SAM, it was highlighted that three notable marijuana stores currently advertise THC vape products with potencies exceeding 100 percent, a scientifically unattainable figure. Even when pressed on these figures, all three stores’ products exceeded 85 percent THC – well above the THC concentrations that are generally associated with the Woodstock Weed of the 1960s and 70s, which was generally around 1-3 percent THC.