Hemp, pot not same substance

Photo illustration by Jubenal Aguilar | Although hemp and marijuana are in the same genus of plants, they have different levels of active chemicals.

By Dr. Dank
Cannabis Columnist

If a person holds a nug of their favorite marijuana strain in one hand and a nug of hemp flower in the other, they probably couldn’t tell the two apart. Marijuana buds and hemp flower come from the same type of plant – cannabis. But there are very distinct differences between the two.

Marijuana plants contain higher concentrations of tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the active chemical that gives users a high. Hemp plants, on the other hand, have higher levels of cannabidiol, or CBD, a non-psychoactive chemical in cannabis that reportedly relaxes users, according to the World Health Organization.

“In humans, CBD exhibits no effects indicative of any abuse or dependence potential,” according to WHO. To date, there is no evidence of public health-related problems associated with the use of pure CBD.

We could call them fraternal twins or brother and sister, but the public should understand they are not the same based on the levels of their chemical compounds.

CBD is found in marijuana and hemp and can be extracted from both. But extracting CBD from marijuana plants can affect the legality of its use depending on the state. Even though hemp contains CBD, the plant also has minimal traces of THC. This is because all cannabis plants, marijuana or hemp, contain CBD and THC, according to WHO.

Marijuana buds and hemp flower look and smell the same, so if the police take you to jail because your hemp made your car smell like weed, don’t be surprised.

According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, on March 15 police officers confiscated over 30 pounds of what they believed was marijuana from a smoke shop in Duncanville. The owners’ attorney said, “If they don’t know the difference between CBD and marijuana they need to study more,” according to the Star-Telegram.

In 2015, low-THC cannabis became legal in the state under the Texas Compassionate Use Act, according to The Texas Tribune. However, the law only allows epilepsy patients to use this cannabis with a doctor’s prescription and only after conventional medication has been ineffective.

According to the federal farm bill, Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, CBD is legal in all 50 states. Companies market and sell CBD-infused products including creams, patches and sprays.

Marijuana plants grow wide with thick branches, broad leaves and dense buds that look like clusters of oats. Hemp plants have a thin palm tree-like appearance, with thinner leaves and narrow proportions overall, according to CBD Origin.

Both plants can be grown indoors or outdoors.

Marijuana plants are mostly grown for their THC. Growers focus on increasing the THC content from each harvest by using various farming techniques involving plant food, fertilizer and nutrient-rich water. Hemp farmers look to increase the CBD content of their yields instead.

Marijuana oil, often referred to as wax or shatter, is concentrated THC, and is made by extracting mushroom-shaped trichomes from the plant’s raw material. Although THC levels found in marijuana plants average between 10-30%, the THC content of concentrated marijuana oil can exceed 90%.

CBD oil will not get a user high, but its reported positive effects could be described as magical. You could say it works in a reactionary way. It gets in your body, assesses the problem and combats the issues you’re having. There is a distinction, despite what local authorities might think.

Nicotine arouses brain activity

Photo by Eriana Ruiz | Research suggests nicotine excites areas of the brain, such as the one associated with memory, though tobacco consumption is both harmful and addictive.

By John C. McClanahan

Tobacco consumption, regardless of means – smoking, vaping or chewing raw leaves – is addictive and dangerous. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, smoking alone causes more than 480,000 deaths each year in the U.S. – more deaths than by drug and alcohol use, motor vehicle injuries and firearm-related incidents combined. Continue reading Nicotine arouses brain activity

Ask a Professor: How do I coordinate a long leave of absence from my classes?

– Column –

By Brianne Sardoni
Brookhaven College English Professor

Dear student,

The first step is to ensure you’re informed of school policies. Every school has a policy regarding students who need temporary accommodations due to injuries. A student should first check their school’s policy to see what can be done. If your injury is not severe enough to require extensive accommodations, you can always reach out to your instructors and ask them how to best complete their courses while you heal. Continue reading Ask a Professor: How do I coordinate a long leave of absence from my classes?

Underdog Luka Dončić becomes phenom in NBA

Illustration by Suha Kim | Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle and Real-Madrid Baloncesto coach Pablo Laso gawk over Luka Dončić, a 20-year-old Slovenian basketball player.

By Malen Blackmon
Sports Editor

Luka Dončić, a 20-year-old Slovenian basketball player, has set fire to the Dallas Mavericks and the NBA. Coaches, general managers, scouts, players and fans across the globe have taken notice and marveled at the rookie’s impact on the NBA. Continue reading Underdog Luka Dončić becomes phenom in NBA

College educates on cannabis

By Dr. Dank
Cannabis Columnist

While extensive jail time is handed out for possession of small amounts of cannabis here in Dallas, Oaksterdam University in Oakland, California, is thriving on cannabis production and education.

Founded in 2007, Oaksterdam is the first cannabis college in America, according to its website. Over 35,000 people worldwide have earned certifications in various degree programs offered at Oaksterdam. Continue reading College educates on cannabis

Ask a Professor: How do I stay on my professor’s good side?

Dear Student,

Brianne Sardoni
Brookhaven English professor

Your question is interesting because it implies students feel as if an instructor may not “like” them. That is far from the case.

The truth is, instructors have expectations for students in a college classroom, and when these expectations are not met, we often struggle with how to help the student. Continue reading Ask a Professor: How do I stay on my professor’s good side?

Cannabis affects students’ academic performance

Photo illustration by John C. McClanahan | A student lights a blunt of weed during a study session.

By John C. McClanahan

College students are one of the largest groups of drug abusers nationwide. Stress, peer pressure, course loads, boredom and curiosity can contribute to students’ use of mind-altering substances, according to addictioncenter.com. 

Continue reading Cannabis affects students’ academic performance

I came to America, seized my chance as a reporter

By Thao Nguyen
Contributing Writer

Photo courtesy of Thao Nguyen | Thao Nguyen, a Brookhaven College student, visits the State Fair of Texas.

Many people come to the U.S. to pursue the American Dream, and so did I. I thought about studying abroad since I was 10 years old, asking my family if I could go to America when I grew up. Years passed by, and I still dreamed about it. Then, one day in 2016, I left my hometown in Vietnam when I was 19 for the land of the free and better opportunities.  Continue reading I came to America, seized my chance as a reporter

Church shooting evokes emotive thoughts

A Brookhaven Courier contributing writer shares his personal experience covering tragedy.

By Jacob Vaughn
Contributing Writer

Photos by Jacob Vaughn
A teddy bear and flowers lie behind police tape Nov. 6 in front of the First Baptist Church where 26 people were killed the previous day.

I did not lose anyone that day. I was not connected to the town in any way.

But in the midst of conducting interviews and taking photos throughout the night, I felt like one of the locals who had just lost 4 percent of his town’s population. Continue reading Church shooting evokes emotive thoughts