Wednesday, September 26, 2007


Thizz is a term heavily used in the Bay Area by the hyphy subculture that has emerged over the past few years, but it is also a slang term for being high on ecstasy, which many believe is becoming a major concern.

According to local Bay Area news channel KPIX, who talked to several people in the area -- including teens, police and rappers -- the heighten use is leading to several problems, even homicides, reports the Oakland Police.

The drug ecstasy is half psychedelic drug and half methamphetamine. Often those who use it experience a heightened sensual awareness, but as the drug has moved from suburban raves to inner city neighborhoods in recent years, police are seeing more homicides related to the drug.

"A lot of our homicides, if you talk to the suspects, a lot of them are under the influence of ecstasy when they're committing these crimes," Oakland Police Homicide Detective Tony Jones told the news channel. "I'm not saying that's the only reason we have a lot of homicides in Oakland, because I’m sure there's other things that contribute to our rate."

Even popular San Francisco rapper, San Quinn, is becoming aware of the increasing problem of ecstasy, and has gone as far as calling it the "new crack." A recovering addict himself, the rapper is worried because the cheap drug is "being introduced into increasingly demoralized inner city neighborhoods."

"Two dollars a pill, like crack was," San Quinn says. "You can get a $2 shot. You can get a $5 pill. And the kids are already mad. They're already walking around with people who they're mourning on their shirt."

Thizzin' is becoming so much of a problem in the Bay Area that police are making it a bigger priority, reports the channel. "We are working with the CHP to train more officers in the Drug Recognition Expert Program," Oakland Assistant Police Chief Dave Kozicki told CBS 5. "This will give them the skills to recognize when people are under the influence of ecstasy, particularly when they are driving under the influence."

Despite the problematic results of the drug, as mentioned, researchers say that their studies of the use of the drug does not cause "violent behavior."

"Our own findings, and those of numerous other studies that we have reviewed, have not reported violent behavior as one of the consequences of ecstasy use," Sheigla Murphy of the Institute for Scientific Analysis said in a statement. "In fact, ecstasy has an international reputation as a 'hug drug' -- a substance that makes people relaxed, friendly, and empathetic."

But, results were unclear when users took several ecstasy pills over the course of an evening, as many teenagers and young adults are doing.

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