Greensboro’s pot not as local as we think


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Throughout the United States, Mexican drug cartels sell marijuana to dealers, who in turn sell it to anyone willing to buy. Circulating in most major U.S. cities, the amount of drugs has spiked sharply in recent years, as has the number of drug-related deaths, according to the National Post.

In Greensboro, most of the drug traffic is controlled by one group.

“This part of North Carolina has always been under the control of (one specific) cartel,” said Greensboro Police Department Detective Clarence Schoolfield. “It’s been that way for years. They’re still in the trade. Anything cartel-related will come back to them in some shape or fashion.”

The cartel’s drug trafficking affects both the U.S. and Mexico.

“There’s been a lot of violence in Mexico,” said Schoolfield. “That violence is centered around the cartels and who controls the drug trade.”

Unlike other cities, however, Greensboro is also located near local farms, where farmers grow their own marijuana.

“There are two farms within an hour of here, just outside of Greensboro,” said former marijuana dealer “John Doe.” “There’s a small one near highpoint and a massive one near Asheville. There’s plenty of production within the state.”

Because the farms have a reputation to uphold, the marijuana from farms tends to be safer to smoke.

“Farms would never (lace weed) because it’s their industry,” said Doe. “The cartels will lace weed. The cartel has this idea that they’re the only people that you can go to, so people will keep going to them no matter the risk, so they lace weed.”

Since marijuana has become legal in Alaska, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington, it has become easier for cartels to buy and sell it.

“Instead of having to smuggle marijuana across the border, the cartel can find people to set up shop in places where it’s legal,” said Schoolfield. “They can grow it in states where it’s legal (and) they can take the excess and ship it across state lines.”

In spite of all this, however, cartels may not be selling weed as much anymore.

“Cartels are shifting towards growing poppy,” said Schoolfield “It’s cheaper to produce and easier to hide.”

The majority of students interviewed by The Guilfordian had no idea where the marijuana comes from.

“I know there are certain kids who sell it, but I don’t know where they get it,” said sophomore Coleman Ikenberry.

Once told that the marijuana comes from one of two places, students definitely have a preference as to where their pot comes from.

“The cartel might try to mix it with other things,” said sophomore Hannah Swift. “I would definitely go with local.”

Not knowing can cause severe health problems, or even death.

“I had a minor heart attack in high school because I smoked a lot of laced weed from the cartel and didn’t realize it was laced,” said Doe. “I had to go to the hospital.”

Regardless of the source, students will continue to use weed.  Being informed about a specific product’s origins could protect students from making a dangerous decision when it comes to smoking.

“People hear so much bad stuff about it,” said Swift. “You have to be careful where you get it from, (but) it’s not as bad as people make it out to be.”