Texas tries to ban Salvia Divinorum

By chillinwill · Nov 12, 2008 · ·
  1. chillinwill
    A Texas State Representative has filed legislation to ban the possession of the herb Salvia Divinorum.

    For those who have never heard of the plant, Salvia Divinorum is a psychoactive herb which can induce strong dissociative effects, and is often billed as a legal alternative to Marijuana. Salvia divinorum has been used for centuries in Mexico for spiritual and healing purposes

    To back his case, State Rep. Doc Anderson appeared on Dr Phil Tuesday to discuss the drug, saying that “The substance is dangerous, incapacitating, and serves no medical use whatsoever…[and] has possible dangerous health effects and is unregulated in Texas.”

    The proposed bill would make possession of Salvia Divinorum a Class A Misdemeanor. Anderson had previously tried to ban Salvia Divinorum in 2007, but the legislation never made it past committee.

    The internet seems to have played a role in the growing awareness and concern around Salvia Divinorum, with videos of users appearing on YouTube.

    Author : Duncan Riley
    Posted November 11, 2008

    Well thanks Dr. Phil for starting the whole process of getting this herb banned in every state now

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  1. chillinwill
    Editorial: Legislatures Need To Ban Salvia

    A substance with an active compound that may be the strongest hallucinogen gram for gram found in nature, according to an article by the New York Times, is currently legal in Texas. Salvia divinorum, or salvia, produces vivid hallucinations in users and should be banned in the state and across the nation.

    Salvia has historically been used in Mexico under the supervision of Mazatec shamans in order to have revelations, but in the past 10 years, the drug has become popular for teens and college-aged people around the country. According the Times, studies at college campuses have estimated 7 percent of students have used salvia.

    In males between the ages of 18 and 25, salvia is twice as popular as LSD and almost as prominent as Ecstasy, according to estimates published by the federal government.

    Even with so many students using the drug, not a lot is known about it. The long-term effects of salvia are unknown. Charles "Doc" Anderson, a state representative in Waco who is trying to get salvia banned, said that it may injure users' thought processes and affect their moods permanently. On a recent episode of Dr. Phil where salvia use was discussed, Dr. Travis Stork, an ER physician, said it's possible that salvia may stunt brain function in developing brains.

    Though these long-term effects haven't been confirmed, the short-term side effects are dangerous enough that Texas legislation should be passed to keep salvia off the shelves.

    The short-term effect of salvia is often a sudden out-of-body type experience, which can be solitary, introspective, but often fearful, according to a 2003 bulletin from the Department of Justice. One Baylor student who tried salvia told the The Baylor Lariat she didn't feel like she had a body anymore. Another tried it in a parked car and reported seeing a semi-truck driving directly at him and had to jump out of the car to escape.

    While these stories may seem harmless and maybe even funny to watch, they can be dangerous. If a student were to get behind the wheel of a car or were unaware of what they were doing, they could do serious harm to themselves or others. A ban on the product would keep most people from putting themselves into this situation.

    It could be said that alcohol, a legal drug, also endangers users if they get behind the wheel, but it takes much more alcohol to achieve the dangerous effect that a small dose of the stronger types of salvia can have after one hit. The effect of salvia may wear off anywhere between five and 20 minutes, according to a WebMD Health News report, but that's long enough for users to hurt themselves.

    There have also been deaths that may have been linked to salvia, though it hasn't been possible to confirm the extent of salvia's involvement.

    In March, 42-year-old Mario G. Argenziano from Yonkers, N. Y., shot himself in the face only 10 minutes after smoking salvia, according to a police report that was cited in a Times article. Argenziano's wife told police that her husband was a gun collector and had grabbed a handgun from the bedside table to show friends and then pointed it at himself. She said he was laughing right before he fired the gun. Yonkers police could not determine what part salvia played in his death. One would have to consider salvia's role, especially since Argenziano had no psychiatric history. He's also a gun collector, which means that he probably knew how to handle on of his own guns. It's no coincidence that he was smoking salvia 10 minutes before he accidentally shot himself.

    The Times article also talked about the death of a 17-year-old in 2006. Brett Chidester was a good student with no history of mental illness. He had been smoking salvia several times a week and committed suicide. Entries he had made in his journal suggested that salvia had contributed to his feelings of hopelessness. Months after his death, a medical examiner changed Chidester's death certificate to show his salvia use as a factor contributing to his death. Delaware, where he died, then passed a bill to ban salvia.

    Some scientists say banning salvia will make it difficult to research medical uses for the drug and slow medical progress, but a drug should not be available to the general population when the negative effects are unclear. What is obvious is that the drug can be dangerous; it produces vivid hallucinations and users become unaware of reality. If anyone is curious of how people on salvia act, there are dozens of videos on YouTube showing salvia users falling over or reacting to their hallucinations. Users are not only endangering themselves, but they also pose a danger to others.

    Texas and national legislatures need to act now. They have to be pro-active in protecting citizens instead of waiting for a salvia-related injury or death to prompt action.

    Pubdate: Thu, 20 Nov 2008
    Source: Baylor Lariat (TX Edu)
    Copyright: 2008 The Baylor Lariat
  2. Heretic.Ape.
    Oh jesus, people have begun citing Dr Phil as a source. I think I know why we are failing the drug war: we're actually trying to use real science and appeal to reason.
  3. libertalism
    Whoever is dumb enough to drive and do salvia will die of his own stupidness sooner or later , the legal state of salvia won't have mucht to do with it.
    The other guy ... well salvia never crafted a gun or never pulled a trigger , USA has their own weapon law to blame for that.
    The kid who commited suicide was underage , people who are underage usually don't have the mind to be able to coop with trips.
    An age restriction would be more appropriate.
  4. dyingtomorrow
    I'd say the thing I hate the most about human society, is that one charismatic asshole who can scare people can take our whole species back 5 steps for every 1 we take forward.
  5. Potter
    Fucking YouTube morons... What makes people think it's a good idea to do such a stupid thing. I really hope police start prosecuting posters of videos if they are going to ban the sage.
  6. vinylmesh
    If it was legal at the time, I don't think there's anything they could do.
  7. Potter
    Yeah... Nobody knows you can't be prosecuted in retrospect.

    Doesn't mean they don't deserve it. Salvia wouldn't be as well known and under so much scrutiny if these idiots weren't posting videos. And what's the point, to show the world what a dipshit you are for taking a drug and screaming uncontrollably, falling all over your self, treating your friends like shit? Have yet to see one that was at all interesting from the external perspective.

    On the other hand, there are plenty of videos with illegal drugs in them too. Not as many people using them in said videos, but nobody distinctly remembers one girl talking about anal use of mushrooms or something, full face shot and video confession...

    Of course nobody's seen plenty of x-tian terrorist groups making direct threats of violence, war, and treason, on video, broadcast to television. They never get prosecuted either.
  8. entheogensmurf
    Make legal for 18+ and I'll vote for the age restriction.
    Else, F them.
  9. Greenport
    Don't just sit there and read about it, fight it!

    People of Texas, if you feel this is wrong than do what you can about it. Write or call your congressman, put posters and banners up...

    Don't let it happen!
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