Entries in Ban (14)


FDA Panel Proposes Removal of Menthol Cigarettes from Market

Stockbyte/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The U.S. Food and Drug Administration made recommendations Friday against the sale of menthol cigarettes on the basis that the minty flavoring may make smoking more appealing, causing youth to try smoking.

Menthol is the only flavored cigarette still allowed to be legally sold, but now an FDA panel has found that removing menthol smokes from the market would benefit public health in the U.S. 

Now ant-smoking groups are coming out hailing the findings, saying that banning the cigarettes would go a long way to keeping youth -- who often choose menthol flavored cigarettes -- from lighting up.

While the FDA agreed that menthol cigarettes do not present a greater health risk than other cigarettes, the panel said that taking menthols off the market could save lives.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


K2 Crackdown: DEA Bans Fake Pot

Photo Courtesy - ABC News(NEW YORK) -- The sale of K2, a once-legal but potentially dangerous form of synthetic marijuana, is now banned nationwide.

The ban, proposed in November 2010 amid increasing reports of seizures, hallucinations, and dependency linked to the fake pot, was "necessary to prevent an imminent threat to public health and safety," according to the Drug Enforcement Administration. It has now banned K2 and five chemicals used to make it.

K2 was sold openly in head shops and online as incense. It largely avoided regulation in the United States because it was sold in packages that stated it was not for human consumption.

Little is known about the long-term effects of the fake pot, also known as Spice, Demon, Genie, Zohai, and a host of other names. But its short-term effects, which include soaring heart rates and paranoia, have landed some of those who smoked it in the hospital. In some instances, the drug has been linked to suicide.

K2 was first developed by an undergraduate student in the lab of Clemson University chemist John Huffman. Its active ingredients are synthetic cannabinoids, chemicals that imitate the effects of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the active ingredient in marijuana. Huffman said the chemicals were designed as "research tools" and never intended for human consumption.

Three of the five banned chemicals -- JWH-018, JWH-073, JWH-200 -- bear Huffman's initials in their names. The other two are CP-47,497, and cannabicyclohexanol. 

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Senator Looks to Impose Nationwide Ban on Bath Salts

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- Following bans in Florida, Louisiana and North Dakota, and a warning from White House Drug czar Gil Kerlikowske, New York Senator Charles Schumer has proposed a bill that would add bath salts to a list of federally-controlled substances.

"These so-called bath salts contain ingredients that are nothing more than legally sanctioned narcotics, and they are being sold cheaply to all comers, with no questions asked, at store counters around the country," Schumer said in a February 1st statement.

The synthetic drugs, sold online, in convenience stores and in smoke shops, can affect the body in ways similar to cocaine and methamphetamines.

"The longer we wait to ban the substance, the greater risk we put our kids in," Schumer said.  "These so-called bath salts are dangerous drugs masquerading as a harmless product.  They offer a cheap and deadly high, and we need to move immediately to get them off the shelves."

Schumer has also asked New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Nirav Shah to ban the chemicals statewide.  Other states, such as Idaho, are following suit.  The United Kingdom, Australia, Canada and Israel have already banned the chemicals.

The recent flurry of legislation stems from mounting reports of bath salts, plant food and incense made with methylenedioxypyrovalerone and mephedrone causing hallucinations, paranoia, suicidal thoughts, even some deaths.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Nebraska Eyes 'Power Hour,' Excessive Drinking Ban

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(LINCOLN, Neb.) -- Nebraska lawmakers are aiming to kill the buzz for excessive drinkers across the state.

Legislators are considering a bill that would ban so-called power-hour drinking on 21st birthdays. At the same time, the Nebraska Liquor Control Commission has proposed a ban on high-risk drinking games and promotions.

LB294 in the Nebraska Legislature, introduced by Sen. Russ Karpisek, would prohibit alcohol sales immediately after midnight to people on their 21st birthday. The other measure being considered would ban games and promotions such as beer pong and “bladder busters” that encourage intoxication in bars.
The target of both measures is binge drinking, which the United Health Foundation defines as five drinks for a male and four for a female in one sitting. According to the nonprofit agency, the Cornhusker state has the sixth-worst drinking record in the country, with 18.5 percent of the state population age 18 and older regularly binge drinking. The national average is 15.7 percent.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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