Can Pot Smokers Be Good Parents? The Answer May Shock You.


ABC News

Last night ABC's Nightline introduced the nation to "pot-smoking moms" who are "unapologetic about getting high." Watch as Denver pot party planner Jane West, founder of Edible Events, patiently explains to Juju Chang that marijuana is not inherently more problematic, vis-a-vis parenting or any other responsibility, than alcohol. The same practical and ethical distinctions apply to both drugs, West argues. I agree. It's nice to see this straightforward argument getting respectful treatment from a national news outlet, although it's annoying that what West and her friends do to "let loose" is still treated as semi-scandalous. Also irritating: the two-way sexism of assuming that women have a special responsibility to stay sober and that men never take care of children.

I interviewed West for a story about pot tourism in the November issue of Reason, which is not available online yet but which you could already be reading if you were a subscriber.

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  1. NO! If parents even keep the debil weed around the house, it will jump out of the bag and attack the childins!

    1. Well, on the other hand my parents had to stop smoking it in the living room when I was a kid because the smoke would drift upstairs into my bedroom and the resulting contact high would sometimes cause me to to weird shit, including falling down a flight of stairs.

      Just pointing out that it’s a bit different than alcohol in some ways in regard to responsible parenting.

      1. Your parents have to be hotboxing your room for you to get a “contact high”. Does your family live in a tiny box? The cannabis PPM in the air around you has to be ridiculously dense before you’ll get a high from it. Contact highs like described here are mythological.

        1. No, it was real. I was a very young child when it happened (7yrs old) and they would clambake with their friends all night sometimes on the weekends. It didn’t happen frequently, but it did occur.

          BTW, was a pot smoker myself for many happy years.

          1. they would clambake with their friends all night sometimes on the weekends.

            Let’s spoon some tops, dude!

            Ok, I’m going to tell a story from my childhood. Trigger warning: no milfs or milf raping bears involved.

            So when I was like 17, me and a friend of mine were at some friends house and there was this really crazy guy there. Everyone knew he was nuts. Apparently, he had done LSD a lot and some people said that the guy was a sort of genius who had dropped out of MIT and come back to the hometown just to sit around and do drugs all the time, his parents were very wealthy. I know there was at least some truth to the rumor.

            So he shows up with a huge bag of the best weed, he always had the best, and he says to me and my friend, ‘HEY DUDES, let’s spoon some tops’! We were like ??? So an hour later I was more stoned than I had ever been in my life and this guy has my friend pinned in a corner in the kitchen with some buds between 2 white hot spoons, and I swear I couldn’t even see the guy from the smoke and he’s choking and the crazy guy is saying ‘inhale, inhale, dude!!!!’. LMAO. Good ol days.

      2. Really? That’s a lot different from most folks who have to actually directly inhale the stuff and hold their breath with their lungs full of it to actually feel anything, and I have seen some folks who it took months before they even felt anything. I think I felt it for the first time after like 5-6 attempts.

        I’m not sure about your story of falling down the stairs from being too high because your parents were smoking downstairs.

        Also, bears didn’t rape any milfs in that story, so it sucks, dude. (;

        1. Some people are ridiculously sensitive to it. I had a friend in college who would be nearly incoherent if he took one toke and who got pretty silly just being around people smoking.

          1. I think that’s not real. I’ve also seen people who will take one drink of alcohol and start acting drunk, and it’s just that, an act. Some people need attention very badly.

            1. I second that. Aside from true hotbox scenarios, I’ve never once encountered a person I credibly believed was stoned from a contact high.

              1. including myself with my own vast experience.

            2. It’s real. I have seen that sort of thing with people and MJ as well. There is a great deal of variety in the way people react to the same intoxicating substances. Most fall into the norm, by definition, but there are some who also exhibit greater and lesser tolerances as well. No reason to ban anything, but no reason to deny it exists either.

              1. It might be real, but I don’t think it’s from the drug, or entirely the drug, I think it’s a psychological phenomenon. IOW, the person imagines that they are stoned and they are.

                1. I think it just has to do with when you have a sample size as large and varied as humanity you are going to get the occasional odd result. NBD, really. I wish I was one of the lucky bastards with a sensitivity to weed. It would have saved me a ton on money. 🙂

                2. the person imagines that they are stoned and they are.

                  I’ve known some people like that too. There was this dipshit kid in high school who some not-very-nice person sold fake acid (i.e. a little piece of paper) to and who convinced himself he was tripping to the extent that he shot a .22 through his bedroom ceiling.

            3. Nah, pretty sure it was legit with this guy. I knew him pretty well and got drunk with him a lot. And he really wasn’t the attention whore type.

      3. If you are inadvertently getting you r kids high, that might be a problem. But as far as the actually being high goes, I’d say alcohol is going to be worse for pretty much everything having to do with child rearing.

        And before anyone tries to start a weed/alcohol fight, I think alcohol is a marvelous thing too. But in my experience, weed is a lot less destructive when used as a lifestyle drug. I know loads of wake and bake stoners who are perfectly functional. The people who sleep with a 12 pack of Natty Ice next to their bed, not so much.

        1. The only people wanting a weed alcohol fights are those who love their alcohol. In fact, the noble elevated status of alcohol as an intoxicant is often used as an argument as to why weed should remain verboten.

  2. What shocks me is that Nightline is still on the air.

    1. So, if my trash is 10% condoms, I get fined? I guess I can donate my excess to Elizabeth Nolan Brown.


    2. Then stop wasting money on recycling.

    1. Don’t recall who wrote this, but seems apt:

      they should replace “WARNING: HIGH VOLTAGE” signs with “WHAT HAPPENS NEXT WILL SHOCK YOU!” signs

  3. Denver pot party planner Jane West, founder of Edible Events, patiently explains to Juju Chang that marijuana is not inherently more problematic, vis-a-vis parenting or any other responsibility, than alcohol.

    Yes it is! Yes it is! Maybe you haven’t noticed that alcohol is LEGAL, and therefore acceptable, and marijuana is ILLEGAL, and therefore very, very bad. They should take this woman’s children away from her before she does irreperable harm to them.

    1. +1 Greater good

    2. Who names their kid “Juju”?

      1. Anne Frank’s parents?

      2. Tevye the stutterer?

        1. ‘Irrapeable’ is an awkward modifier of ‘harm.’ Would be a good thing to be unable to be raped.

          1. Would you call Andrea Dworkin lucky?

    3. But she’s in Colorado. SO how are we supposed to figure out which one is more bad?

      1. I hadn’t thought of that. Which substance can generate greater tax revenues?

  4. Oh, Speaking of the Devil Weed

    Tony Stewart not indicted for killing Kevin Ward.

    It was disclosed that Ward had the Devil Weed in his system when he was killed. Feel free to draw whatever conclusions fit your worldview.

    Tantillo also said Ward was under the influence of marijuana that night “enough to impair judgment.”

    1. He shouldn’t have been charged regardless. Kevin Ward’s decision-making was impaired by his stupidity, as demonstrated by trying to confront and intimidate a speeding vehicle. I suspect that if he were high at the time, a bit of paranoia about getting run down may have changed the outcome.

    2. Anyone have an opinion on the Rob Bironas thing? My best guess is some sort of Ambien-induced sleep driving, but the whole thing is pretty bizarre.

      1. The interwebs tells me that he suffered from acute dickhead driver disease.

        1. That was all on the same night. No history of such behavior, and his wife reported that he went to bed and noticed later he had disappeared. Was almost like a psychotic break, and similar to how some have described encounters with people sleepwalking on Ambien.

    3. Yeah, I’m calling bullshit on this (referring to Tantillo, not you DWT.) As far as I know, they can’t tell when you used pot when they detect it in your system, but you wouldn’t expect a DA to have a clue about that.

  5. Burn the Witch!

  6. Sorry, but I am not going to take seriously any adult who goes by Juju, Katty or Cokie.

    1. Juju Katty Cookies are the best.

    2. I don’t mind the name. But I can’t take anyone seriously who appears on TV presenting such a silly story as news.


    1. Can Buzzfeedesque madness be stopped? The answer may surprise you!

  8. I fucking hate Sweeps week.

  9. It takes a village (to condemn otherwise adequate parents for their indulgences).

    Seriously, though. The presumption of the question is never whether or not the parent has contravened any law, be it secular or spiritual, but whether she offended the sensibilities of society at large. Parents who negligently leave their toddlers in the car to bake to death have authentically legally trespassed; they deserve the consequences. Society reacts by then castigating any parent who leaves a child behind while she transacts at the ATM.

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