GarbageTalk: Musing On The NFL’s Cannabis Drug Policy

Shane Ray got caught with “fresh, unsmoked marijuana” three … that’s right three days before the draft leading to immediate speculation that his draft position could drop, costing him millions of dollars Thursday night.  My reaction to this speculation was, really?

Apparently Shane was cited for possession of 35 grams or less of marijuana.  35 grams is the equivalent of almost 1.25 ounces of reefer.  So, how much weed did Shane have on him?  I dunno, but my uneducated guess is anywhere from a half an ounce to an ounce (or 28.4 grams), which would, according to Colorado weed prices, run him about $150 for a half and $300 for an ounce (assuming decent quality).  I know … now you want to know what a half an ounce looks like … err, at least I was curious … so, here is a picture of a half-ounce of weed that I found on the internet:

a proper sactown half ounce

How do I know that?  It’s a guess based on the fact that the arresting officer was able to smell the unsmoked weed.  I don’t think he would be able to smell, what is known as a “dime bag” that could be easily hidden in a sock, in your shoe.  See below:

Dime BagWhat was Shane Ray going to do with all of this cannabis?  My guess is that he was going to celebrate being drafted in the first round of the NFL Draft on Thursday night with friends.  Think this is odd?  Come on now.  Remember Arnold Schwarzenegger did the same thing (though he also ate fried chicken) after being declared Mr. Olympia.  Don’t believe me?  Here’s a picture from the documentary, Pumping Iron, which by the way gets 96% on Rotten Tomatoes!

Pumping Iron

You’ve got to love the t-shirt … (and I know you just said to yourself “Arnold is numero uno” in an Arnold accent!).

Now the NFL is no stranger to reefer.  According to a former Detroit Lion, Lomas Brown, about 50% of NFL players likely smoke it.  My sense is that 50% is probably conservative as it seems to me from what I read that players use it for pain relief to offset the savagery of the game they play … and of course to chill out after taking all that Adderall to help them concentrate during the game.

And, according to the NFL drug policy, which was revised in 2014 to lessen the penalties for marijuana, players without any previous positive tests will only be tested once between 4/20 … and August 9.  After that test has been administered, the player pretty much has a blank slate to smoke as much as he wants until next year without fear of consequence (unless of course he is arrested for it).  Once tested positive, however, the NFL can test up to ten times per month, though the penalties for a positive test (which is now 35 nanograms of carboxy THC per milliliter of urine instead of 15 … note that the Olympic standard is 150 ng/ml!) are less than they were in Ricky Williams’ days.

Ricky Williams

Ricky Williams

Under the new marijuana policy set to take effect this year, a first-time offense gets you put in the substance abuse program and no suspension … a second offense is a two-game fine, a four-game fine for the third.  Then the suspensions begin.

So, as you can see, the NFL policies are changing along with the collective American psyche that has seen medical marijuana approved for use in 23 states (and D.C.) and recreational marijuana approved in four states (and D.C.) … so that all of our lawmakers can cope with their “stress.”

As a matter of fact, I was recently in our nation’s capital and got an opportunity to sit down and talk with one of our distinguished congressional representatives whose identity I will not reveal.  Here’s the transcript America:

FBGT: Congressman, thanks for taking some time to sit down with me.

Rep: Abso-tootin-lutely my man.  What can I do fo’ ya?

FBGT: Well, sir, I’d like to talk about the United States’ policy on marijuana and the NFL’s revised drug policy.

Rep: Why, yeaaas.  I know somethin’ about that there issue.  Ya’ know, I was instrumental … instrumental in getting Mary Jane passed in the District of Columbia.  You know what Mary Jane?  It’s mari-ju-aaannnnaa.

FBGT: Well, good for you sir.  But, don’t you think it’s going to be a big brain drain and halt productivity in the capital in terms of getting laws passed, etc?

Rep: Son, don’t you pay attention to politicin’?  It’s all about one thing and one thing only. Grid lock.  That’s what congress is all about.  That’s what America’s all about.  That’s all we want.  And because we serve the public, what we down here is make sure there’s a lot of grid-effin-lock.  You stick to your guns, you voice your party’s positions and you negotiate with the other side to stick to their positions.  The consequence?  Nothin’ gets done, the stock market goes up, and everyone’s happy.  Don’t tell me I’m the first to tell you that son.  Shoot.

FBGT: Wow.  I guess that and the fact that representatives aren’t subject to insider trading rules means y’all get rich while you participatin’ in some grid-lock, huh?

Rep: Now don’t you get coy with me boy’h.  How much money you think we make as lawh-maka’s?  Not enough son.  Not enough for all the stress in causing the grid-lock causes.  I mean, we have to say we’re here to get stuff done, but we know the American public doesn’t want us to get stuff done.  It’s all very stressful.

FBGT: Oh, I see.  So, here’s a question: Do you smoke weed to cope with the stress?

Rep: Well, now, y’a see, we all love the American public.  We are dedicated to service.  That’s why we run.  We run, so that we can serve the American people.  To make this place better for all of us.

FBGT: Sir, with all due respect, you didn’t answer my question.

Rep: I disagree with you. And now if you’ll excccuuusse me, I’ve got a 4:20 meeting with my colleagues from the other side of the row to walk through some issues.

FBGT: What?  A meeting at 4:20?

Rep:  Yeah.

FBGT: Oh, I see.  So you can smoke the peace pipe I suppose.  Alright-y then.  Thanks for your time today and keep on … well, keep on keepin’ on.

Rep: Haha.  That’s my boy’h.  Yeah. Keep on keepin’ on.  You can quote me on that.

FBGT: But you didn’t even say it … I was the one who said it.  And in fact it wasn’t even me.  It was a saying popularized in modern day by David Spade in the movie Joe Dirt.

Rep: Well, whateva’.  I got to get to my 4:20.  This conversation has done stressed me out.

FBGT: Apologies … oh, sir?  Excuse me (as he gets up to walk away).  You left your lighter on your desk …

Well, folks, I can’t say I learned much in Washington about the NFL policy on drugs, but I can tell you that at least one of our lawmakers is coping with their everyday stresses legally … in D.C. at least.  Whether use in the capital approaches use in the NFL of greater than 50% is a good question.  Someone should poll our lawmakers.  Now, if Hillary gets in the White House, we know that the first lady, I mean man, first man … no first gentleman?  Whatever.  We know that we can at least put a plus 1 in the “Yes, I’ve smoked before” category for Bill.  Ha!

Cheers America!

By John Kirkland

Twitter: @FBGarbageTalk

Disclaimer: GarbageTalkTM (this Column), is a news and football satire web publication. All articles contained within this Column are fiction, and contain presumably fake news. As such, any resemblance to the truth is purely coincidental. All characters and events referenced, even those based on real people, are entirely fictional. Any and all overheard conversations referenced herein have occurred solely in this author’s warped brain and are meant entirely for entertainment purposes.