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Wild THC Edibles Article Widely Mocked

Plus MPS cyber attacks, Ojibwe language ambassadors, and St. Paul seeks snow ticketers in today's Flyover.

4:41 PM CST on March 2, 2023

Glen Carrie via Unsplash|

About as many weed edibles as Mr. Irani claims to have gobbled.

Welcome back to The Flyover, your daily digest of what local media outlets and Twitter-ers are gabbing about.

Cops Fret Over How to Police Now-Legal Substance in Weird MPR Story

“I think law enforcement does feel kind of hamstrung in their ability to do any kind of regulatory oversight on the edibles,” Jeff Potts, executive director of the Minnesota Chiefs of Police Association, tells MPR in this chaotic story on how cops are dealing with THC complaints now that the substance is legal in Minnesota. One bizarre example explored in the piece: 70-year-old diabetic Antoine Irani says he was inadvertently sold THC gummies at a smoke shop when he asked for something “sweet.” (He claims he was "tricked"; the store's lawyer denies the accusation.) He then took seven (!) of them, and ended up confused in the hospital. But when Irani called police to complain about his purchase, he quickly discovered that the shop wasn’t going to get a smackdown because... no laws were broken.

Then, in a section titled “Nobody really knows what you’re getting,” officials fret over Northland Vape in Mankato, which is being sued by the state for selling Death by Gummy Bears, a brand of gummies that contain 20 times the legal dose. But you do know what you’re getting if you purchase them; it’s right there on the packaging (we suspect that it was on the package purchased by Irani, too). The main takeaway from this Reefer Madness-y article, which is getting thoroughly ratio'd on Twitter? Cops are frustrated that they can’t bust legal THC sales. Another moral of the story might be that people should read packaging before they put things—anything!—inside their bodies.

In other weed hysteria news: This Star Tribune story covers employers who are concerned that they can't drug test and fire people who aren't meeting productivity demands or if they suspect someone is high on the job. (Side note: As far as we know there isn't a marijuana drug test that can determine if someone is actually high at the moment.)

Minneapolis Public Schools Slammed by Cyber-Attack

Early last week, Minneapolis Public Schools canceled parent-teacher conferences due to unexplained “technical difficulties.” On Friday, they disclosed that there had been an “encryption event,” without getting more specific. Finally, yesterday, the district went public with the news that its systems were slammed with an “encryption virus” that had accessed its data and might demand a ransom. (After squinting to read that press release, we're tempted to go to a school board meeting and complain.) If you'd like to learn more (and why wouldn't you?) Becky Z. Dernbach at Sahan Journal spoke with a cybersecurity pro about ransomware, why hackers would target schools, and what parents and employees should do to protect themselves. 

Learning Ojibwe at 'Grandma's House'

MPR has an adorable and important story out of Cloquet's Fond du Lac Reservation, where there's a new "language nest" called Gookonaanig Endaawaad (“Grandma’s House”) teaching kids and adults alike to speak Ojibwe. Very few learn to speak it as their first language anymore, but thanks to this program, seven families are learning Ojibwe traditions along with the language from elders who do speak it as a first language. Those elders travel to Cloquet from places like Ontario, Manitoba, and Wisconsin. The program has been around since 2020, and thanks to grant funding from the Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Minnesota Foundation, parents even get paid to learn alongside their children.

Job Openings: St. Paul Seeks Noble Car-Busting Narcs

We’re not wild about ratting out your fellow man to The Man. But we’re also fans of mobility amid a historically punishing winter, so it’s hard to argue with the new temporary positions being offered by St. Paul Public Works: snow ticketers! Interested parties must be on-call during snow emergencies (either night or day shifts), and they’ll be asked to prowl designated routes looking for scofflaw vehicles in violation of the ordinance. Instead of guns, these de facto blizzard cops will wield hand-written parking tickets. If you’re interested, are over 18, and have a valid driver’s license, you can apply here. The pay ain’t bad: $22/hour.

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