Twitter and Google drop cannabis restrictions

As attitudes toward cannabis change across the country, tech giants Twitter and Google have shifted to allow more marijuana-related content.

Late last month, Twitter quietly ended its partnership with the federal government that provided users with a warning that suggested cannabis users should enter into a drug treatment program when certain cannabis-related keywords were searched or posted.

The warning message said: “Help is available. If you or someone you know is struggling with substance use, you are not alone.” It also linked to the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website and help line.

At some point in December, the company ended the program. It is unclear if the termination was due to contractual reasons or if the company’s new CEO Elon Musk decided to end it.

Meanwhile, Google announced the day after Christmas that it would be ending its ban on cannabis-related advertising. The company announced that it would be updating its “Dangerous Products and Services and Healthcare and Medicines,” and will now allow cannabis advertising in California, Colorado and Puerto Rico.

Child Cannabis Poisoning Increases

A new study published in the journal Pediatrics found that the number of children accidentally ingesting cannabis has risen 1,375 percent in the last five years.

Researchers analyzed data from the National Poison Data System and found that there were more than 3,054 calls to poison control centers involving children who accidentally consumed cannabis in 2021. By comparison, there were only 207 calls made in 2017. There were more than 7,000 cases of exposure to cannabis in children between 2017 and 2021.

There were no reported deaths due to the drug, but over 22 percent of the cases involved hospitalization. More than half of cases were among two- and three-year olds.

According to the study more than 97 percent of the cases took place within a domestic setting.

Bill Filed For Cannabis Tax Relief

Last week a Republican congresswoman filed a federal bill that would allow state-legal cannabis companies to take federal tax deductions.

Under current federal laws, cannabis companies cannot deduct most of their business expenses from their federal taxes like companies in other industries. The law was made to keep drug dealers from taking deductions from their taxes for expenses associated with their illegal business.

Last week, with only days left in the legislative session, Rep. Nancy Mace (R-SC) filed the Small Business Tax Equity Act. The bill would presumably exempt legal cannabis operations from the law, but the text was never published publicly.

Since the session has already expired, the bill did not advance and will have to be refiled next year if lawmakers wish to see it receive a vote.