Higher Ground: Down the weed rabbit hole

Apparently there is a third marijuana legalization petition that has been given the thumbs up by Michigan election officials — and it's not the investor-backed plan from the Michigan Responsibility Council that made some waves last year. This new one comes from a group calling itself MichICan and its petition is called Abrogate Prohibition in Michigan 2016.

This particular effort has been running under the radar for a short while but its plan is pretty much the most radical of all proposals so far. It calls for the legalization of marijuana without restrictions of any kind. In the words of the petition: "The agricultural, personal, recreational, medicinal, commercial, and industrial use of cannabis in any form shall be a lawful activity."

That's the MichICan plan in a nutshell. In case you didn't understand it, the petition later states: "All prohibition on the use of cannabis in any form by any person is hereby null and void..."

In addition there shall be "no excise tax, no fines, no regulations to diminish use..."

That's pretty much the whole enchilada. Now there may be many folks who harbor such a hope in their hearts, realistically most of them don't expect anything near that.

I went to the YouTube feed for Abrogate Prohibition Michigan called Let There Be Pot and was confronted with some head-banging music accompanied by some sort of slideshow streaming images that have something to do with marijuana — magazine covers, molecular diagrams — along with some classic motorcycle stills.

It's a little interesting but certainly not the kind of organizational message that makes me think this group can get it together and run a viable petition drive and do enough educational work to get voters behind the cause. On the other hand, politics have gotten kind of strange these days and the MichICan project seems to follow the Donald Trump formula — say outrageous things, entertain the masses (with head banging music), and they will come. Nobody's actually voted for Trump as of yet so we don't know if that strategy works. But just like Trump is making political pundits' heads explode, the idea of totally unregulated marijuana is the kind of thing that makes the heads of the reefer madness contingent break into pieces and splash pieces of brain matter all over the place.

This brings me to more things that make the heads of the anti-weed contingent spin, wobble, explode, and other unusual things. Many of these things can be found online. While watching the images from the Abrogate Prohibition video on YouTube I glanced to the right and saw a title called "Weed Grandma Shows Us How to 420 Braise It." This edition of the Bong Appetit series featured a tiny, 91-year-old woman known as Nonna Marijuana preparing a meal of weed-infused chicken cacciatore and gnocchi.

Nonna Marijuana claims that she does not eat her own infusions. "I do not get high on my own supply," she rhymes.

Nonna Marijuana cooks cannabis meals for her daughter who suffers from seizures due to brain trauma in a car accident many years ago. "I was taking so many drugs I was very strung out on pharmaceuticals," the daughter said.

Anyhow, Nonna Marijuana is a hoot as she goes through preparing the meal with the host from Bong Appetit — joking, flirting, and playing the straight gal as her daughter and the Bong host get sillier and sillier as they eat her food.

In a follow-up video, "Nonna Marijuana Responds to You Tube Comments," she continues her shtick. In response to one comment suggesting that she get high she says, "Thirty eight years ago I did. I inhaled once, I slept for over 12 hours, and so it's not for me. I don't like the taste of it; I don't like what it does for me, however if you need it, by god go ahead and use it."

And in response to a guy who chides her for her activities, she says, "Oh wake up Christopher for crying out loud. Grow up; keep away from the drugs that the pharmaceutical companies would like you to try."

Check her out, and while you are there check out some other head-exploding offerings. There are a ton of them there. For example, "2 Chainz Smokes Out of a $10,000 Bong."

2 Chainz is a rapper who also has a series called Most Expensivest Shit wherein he consumes really expensive stuff and talks about it. There are other episodes in which he samples a $1,000 ice cream sundae and one where he has a $295 burger.

When he goes into the shop the clerk starts showing him bongs that cost $600 and up. But when 2 Chainz says, "The name of my show is The Most Expensivest Shit," he pulls out the Armageddon. 2 Chainz quips, "Cuz it's the end of the world if you hit that motherfucker."

In his later musing, 2 Chainz says, "It was made out of glass, it had chandeliers, it did everything except glow in the dark."

I'm not exactly sure why 2 Chainz toking out of a $10,000 bong would make anyone other than 2 Chainz' head explode, but I really think it has that effect.

If they still have any brain matter left, maybe "How Much Weed Does Snoop Dogg Smoke?" will finish them off. Everybody knows that Snoop loves weed, and on this Reddit Ask Me Anything session, the hosts give Snoop's responses to various questions. In response to the question how much weed he smokes each day, Snoop responds, "81 blunts a day seven days a week."

Hmmm... that's a brain-exploding amount. The hosts doubted that he actually ingested that amount but it was a spirited discussion. In Negril, Jamaica, one time I watched two Brits try to smoke a pound of weed in 24 hours. They couldn't do it.

I also watched Nigerian Afrobeat master Fela Kuti chain smoke spliffs through a concert in Detroit. I can't remember for sure if it was when he played at the Fox or if it was at the Majestic. I'm a little confused. I may have got a contact high.

Anyhow, back on YouTube there are plenty of videos to scare your non-marijuana cooking nonna. Another episode of Bong Appetit is titled "Cold Stoned Sundaes With the Cannabis Creamery." It shows how a family in the ice cream business has crossed the weed threshold in a new generation. The dad in the family tells how long ago he made some kind of grapefruit sensimellia thing for the Grateful Dead some time many years ago. And he kind of remembered it recently when his son started asking about cannabis-infused ice creams. Well one thing led to the next and now there is a cannabis creamery with ice cream that will make you silly and needs to be kept away from the kids.

Another edible instruction is called "How to Make Weed Hot Chocolate" and taught by a guy who refers to himself as a chocolate-maker and ethnobotanist. Right away I think some folks will find the "ethnobotanist" tag to be a little weird. But this guy knows all about chocolate and you have to get cocoa pods to make this. "Cannabis and chocolate are perfect complements to each other," says the ethnobotanist. "Cocoa paste has about 50 percent cocoa butter content." That cocoa butter is what extracts the good stuff from the cannabis for this concoction. By the way, turmeric is used in the recipe. I've heard that populations that eat a lot of turmeric (like in India) there is a much lower incidence of Alzheimer's.

Anyhow, the reason this kind of talk makes people's heads explode is they just don't want people to get high on marijuana. And when they see all these different means of copping a buzz it drives them crazy. They're putting it in their food; they're spending their life savings on a $10,000 bong.

And at the extreme is the Abrogate Prohibition proposal, which pretty much lets anybody do anything they want with marijuana without the carrot of tax revenues. And that's just too much for the majority of people.