« | »

Yippee! More Growing ‘Medical Marijuana’

From the ‘Education’ section of a cheering New York Times:

At This School, It’s Marijuana in Every Class


November 29, 2009

SOUTHFIELD, Mich. — At most colleges, marijuana is very much an extracurricular matter. But at Med Grow Cannabis College, marijuana is the curriculum: the history, the horticulture and the legal how-to’s of Michigan’s new medical marijuana program.

“This state needs jobs, and we think medical marijuana can stimulate the state economy with hundreds of jobs and millions of dollars,” said Nick Tennant, the 24-year-old founder of the college, which is actually a burgeoning business (no baccalaureates here) operating from a few bare-bones rooms in a Detroit suburb.

The six-week, $485 primer on medical marijuana is a cross between an agricultural extension class covering the growing cycle, nutrients and light requirements (“It’s harvest time when half the trichomes have turned amber and half are white”) and a gathering of serious potheads, sharing stories of their best highs (“Smoke that and you are … medicated!”).

The only required reading: “Marijuana Horticulture: The Indoor/Outdoor Medical Grower’s Bible” by Jorge Cervantes.

Even though the business of growing medical marijuana is legal under Michigan’s new law, there is enough nervousness about the enterprise that most students at a recent class did not want their names or photographs used. An instructor also asked not to be identified.

“My wife works for the government,” one student said, “and I told my mother-in-law I was going to a small-business class.”

While California’s medical marijuana program, the country’s oldest, is now big business, with hundreds of dispensaries in Los Angeles alone, the Michigan program, which started in April, is more representative of what is happening in other states that have legalized medical marijuana.

Under the Michigan law, patients whose doctors certify their medical need for marijuana can grow up to 12 cannabis plants themselves or name a “caregiver” who will grow the plants and sell the product. Anyone over 21 with no felony drug convictions can be a caregiver for up to five patients. So far, the Department of Community Health has registered about 5,800 patients and 2,400 caregivers.

For Mr. Tennant, who is certified as both a caregiver and a patient — he said he has stomach problems and anxiety — Med Grow replaces the auto detailing business he started straight out of high school, only to see it founder when the economy contracted. Med Grow began offering its course in September, with new classes starting every month.

On a recent Tuesday, two teachers led a four-hour class, starting with Todd Alton, a botanist who provided no tasting samples as he talked the students through a list of cannabis recipes, including crockpot cannabutter, chocolate canna-ganache and greenies (the cannabis alternative to brownies).

The second instructor, who would not give his name, took the class through the growing cycle, the harvest and the curing techniques to increase marijuana’s potency.

Mr. Tennant said he saw the school as the hub of a larger business that will sell supplies to its graduate medical marijuana growers, offer workshops and provide a network for both patient and caregiver referrals. Already, Med Grow is a gathering place for those interested in medical marijuana. The whiteboard in the reception room lists names and numbers of several patients looking for caregivers, and a caregiver looking for patients.

The students are a diverse group: white and black, some in their 20s, some much older, some employed, some not. Some keep their class attendance, and their growing plans, close to the chest.

“I’ve just told a couple of people I can trust,” said Jeffery Butler, 27. “It’s a business opportunity, but some people are still going to look at you funny. But I’m going to do it anyway.”

Scott Austin, an unemployed 41-year-old student, said he and two partners were planning to go into medical marijuana together.

“I never smoked marijuana in my life,” he said. “I heard about this at a business expo a couple of months ago.”

Because the Michigan program is so new, gray areas in the law have not been tested, creating real concern for some students. For example, it is not legal to start growing marijuana before being officially named a caregiver to a certified patient, but patients who are sick, certified and ready to buy marijuana generally do not want to wait through the months of the growing cycle until a crop is ready. So for the time being, coordinating entry into the business feels to some like a kind of Catch-22.

Students say they are getting all kinds of extra help and ideas from going to class.

“I want to learn all the little tricks, everything I can,” said Sue Maxwell, a student who drives each week from her home four hours north of Detroit. “It’s a big investment, and I want to do it right.”

Ms. Maxwell, who works at a bakery, is already a caregiver — in the old, nondrug sense of the word — to a few older people for whom she thinks medical marijuana might be a real boon.

“I fix their meals, and I help with housekeeping,” Ms. Maxwell said. “I have an 85-year-old lady who has no appetite. I don’t know if she’d have any interest in medical marijuana, but I bet it would help her.”

Ms. Maxwell said her plan to grow marijuana was slow in hatching.

“We were talking at the bakery all summer,” she said. “Just joking around, I said: ‘I’m going to grow medical marijuana. I’m a gardener, I’ve always dreamed of having a greenhouse, I think it would be great.’ And then I suddenly thought, hey, I really am going to grow medical marijuana.”

How can there be any concern about the economy when there is such a future for all of these “patients” and their “caregivers”?

Certainly Michigan needs more brain-fried people.

This article was posted by Steve on Saturday, November 28th, 2009. Comments are currently closed.

11 Responses to “Yippee! More Growing ‘Medical Marijuana’”

  1. Rusty Shackleford says:

    “So, like, dude, are you gonna look fer, like, a job and stuff?”

    “Nahhh, they have like, too many rules an’ junk….here, pass that over dude.”


    “Shaa, like I had this job one time…and like the boss was all like, ‘Put this over there’ and like, ‘Don’t say that’ and junk..what a tool”

    “Yeah…like they like, get off on all these rules and everything, like you can never sit and listen to your iPod or watch TV or nuthin’ ”

    “I KNOW….It’s like…all they care about is like…making money and expanding their business and stuff….never about like…letting people have time off to like, go to a concert or anything….what a bunch of tools”

    “Yeah, tools” ssssssffffffffffffffffttttttttt

    “Good thing we found this program up here in Michigan, man….they, like, know where it’s at”

    “Yeah….hey…..do we get extra credit for this?”

    “I dunno” sssssssssssfffffffffffffffffttttttttttt “Who cares?”

    “Yeah, who cares?”

    And so Dave and Marty spent their 20’s, their 30’s their 40’s and are now into their 50’s, living in the basement, wearing ratty jeans, living their dream life smoking all the weed they can handle. But they will get a degree.

  2. GL0120 says:

    Ain’t it grand?
    Medical Marijuana will be the new wonder drug; to hell with anti-anxiety pills, forget anti-nausea medication, this will be what cocaine used to be (and probably will be again.).
    Got cramps? Have a toke.
    Work got ya down? No problem, light up and the boss can kiss off!
    Of course some standards will have to be dumbed down; your employer will have to be more understanding if you come in stoned and customers will have to get used to inferior products, (hey, it’s not my fault, I’m on medication.), but since we’ve had to get used to grossly inferior national leadership, we’ll get by.

  3. morninggloryseed says:

    Why is everyone so anti-pot? People who don’t smoke act is if they are BETTER than those who do…and half of those seem to drink EtOH. Personally, I feel booze is the most disgraceful high there is, and it only brings out the worst in a person…but I don’t judge you personally if you choose to drink it. Clearly, unless you have your head up a tree…cannabis IS safer than alcohol and tobacco….so why be so dismissive against those who enjoy it?

    I too agree that this ‘caretaker’ and ‘caregiver’ nonesense is…well…nonesense. It should simply be legal the way guns, cars, and booze is.

    Just don’t see why so many folks are so judgemental…comments like ‘fry a brain.’

    Getting drunk and going to work is NOT acceptable…and neither is going to work high.

    • Rip Cord says:

      Everywhere drugs have been legalized crime goes up. Why? Because druggies have a hard time keeping/finding work. But they STILL have to have drugs so……………………… I think even a liberal could figure this one out. ;-)

    • proreason says:

      Well there is that little legal detail.

      Or do you have a special dispensation because of the way you “feel”?

    • Confucius says:

      A few thoughts come to mind:

      (1) “Frying a brain” is not judgmental. It’s descriptive.

      (2) “Not acceptable” is judgmental.

      (3) I believe any and all substances that can alter sensorium to the point of impairing judgment–good or bad–should be controlled. I also believe that someone living in this country relinquishes their “right” to free and unfettered access to such substances because their use poses a serious danger to themselves and others who happen to be around them. Consequently, I believe this social contract allows for the state to intervene and control them. We currently do this with narcotics and sedatives.

      (4) I also believe that social stigmas have wrongfully eliminated the legitimate use of some substances for medical purposes. Cocaine, when applied topically, is a superior local anesthetic with unparalled vasoconstrictive effects. Hence, it is perfect for nasal and oral surgeries. However, because of the social stigmas that arose in the 1980’s, it’s medical use has been virtually banned in the U.S. There currently is no good substitute.

    • proreason says:

      Now we know why your name is Confucious, Confucious

  4. Media_man says:

    The fewer prison inmates from the bogus POT prohibitions the better. The Public Employee Union / Prison Guard MAFIA served by these laws are the direct enemy of pretty much all of the readers of this website. I’m not sure why that isn’t clear to all. I don’t smoke the stuff but can safely say the laws against it are much more evil than what it supposedly causes. The jail time & wrecked lives invoked are the true evils. Am I off the mark here?

    • Rip Cord says:

      Way off. If the ObaMAO administration is for it than it’s against America. No one is saying alcohol is good but there is a law against drugs and it’s for a reason.

  5. The Redneck says:

    I still think drugs ought to be legalized (although the idea of a public employee union/prison guard mafia was good for a laugh). Not because legalizing drugs will immediately stop the illegal drug trade and nobody will do drugs anymore once it’s illegal and all the Crips and Bloods will put down their rifles and open head shops instead–that won’t happen, and people who think it does are either stupid or simply letting their ideology blind them–but because the government doesn’t have the right to stop you from doing stupid things to yourself.

    (Nor do I think that marijuana is a wonder drug that will stop cancer and AIDS patients’ suffering, make clothing and rope and fiberboard, make you smarter, never cause you any harm, etc. In fact, I’ve always said that the things NORML says about marijuana sound suspiciously similar to the things Phillip Morris used to say about cigarettes.)

    That doesn’t mean at all, that the people who do drugs are bright people–And Mr. Austin is a perfect example.

  6. BigOil says:

    Why do you think there is a push to legalize marijuana by Obama and his Marxist buddies? They understand “medicating” the people will serve as a means to pacify and make the unwashed masses more accepting of the oncoming misery.

    Look at the Soviet Union. The one item in abundance was vodka.

« Front Page | To Top
« | »