Quartz Hill and Marijuana


By Pranesh Kumar, Staff Writer

November 8, 2016, was a monumental day in the political history of the United States. Though overshadowed by the election of Donald Trump as president, there was a lot to be said about the new propositions that were voted for in California. The results of the voting and the outcomes of many propositions were widely predicted, while others, in particular, did raise eyebrows. California Proposition 64, otherwise known as the California Marijuana Legalization Initiative, was one such proposition.

Proposition 64 deals with the legalization of recreational marijuana and ultimately aims to build on to earlier efforts. In 1996, the acceptance of Proposition 215 legalized medical marijuana in California. The proposition was barely passed with 55% of votes in favor, and it served as a major point of controversy among initiatives passed at the state level and not at the national level. Despite the success of this proposition, it wasn’t until 2012 when states such as Colorado and Washington took the initiative to legalize marijuana for recreational activity. Seven more states up to now have permitted the use of Marijuana without a doctor’s prescription, with California serving as one of them.

After Proposition 64 was passed, California agreed to legalize marijuana as of January 1, 2018. The beginning of 2018 saw marijuana stores and facilities open up in multiple major California cities, including Berkeley, San Jose, and San Diego. Even more facilities are set to open up in Los Angeles and San Francisco, and there have been many marijuana users regularly visiting stores and supplying themselves with large amounts of the substance. The good news is that the majority of visitors who had already been gathering marijuana products through a complex black market system now have an outlet to legally buy the product.

The legalization of marijuana has had major impacts on society and has prompted many people to use the substance in public areas. Schools, including our very own Quartz Hill High School, have been affected by marijuana use, though not to as large of an extent as people may initially believe. At least this is what the main opinion has been according to many of the students on campus.  

Noah Heming, a freshman, has a simple message regarding what he believes is the state of marijuana use on campus. “Frankly, I don’t think marijuana is a major problem. Throughout the school year, I haven’t seen any instance of students using marijuana products on campus. If anything, they are using marijuana either secretly or outside of campus.”

Whether it be the understanding that Quartz Hill should be kept as an academic environment or the fear of getting caught, there seems to have been relatively few complications regarding marijuana use. Students should not have much to fear about the abuse of this substance on campus. However, this doesn’t deny the fact that Quartz Hill is a public high school and is most certainly not 100% marijuana free.

Miguel Aguirre, another student familiar with the issue, has a polar stance on what he believes is the state of marijuana use on campus. This is mainly because of a disturbing situation which he had to face. “At the beginning of the year, I went to the boys’ bathroom in the 200 quad hoping to avoid the “400 quad drugs.” And what do you know, I saw someone smoking in the bathroom. Immediately, I rushed out of there.”

Aguirre was not in the bathroom for long, but he did recall something suspicious. “I am not familiar with the smell of marijuana, but I do strongly believe that the smell was not tobacco.”

Whether or not the substance Aguirre referenced was marijuana or not, this story does highlight one important point. It shows that students are willing to discreetly use substances that are not permitted on campus. Who knows what other ploys students could be making in order to get away with using marijuana or even other dangerous substances on campus.

Ultimately, ever since the formal legalization of marijuana in California, the question regarding the use of marijuana in Quartz Hill has come into contention. We can assume that certain students are utilizing this opportunity to get access to more marijuana products despite the restriction that it can only be purchased by people ages 21 and over. However, the majority of students can agree that marijuana has not been too much of an issue on campus. Regardless of instances such as the story in the bathroom, there should not be much of a worry about marijuana as long as kids remain studious and stick to their business.