PCC student Nick Shoemaker was perched on the side of the mirror pools, bouncing his leg up and down, glancing around occasionally.
“Speaking of which,” he said as he paused to flag down a friend of his. Shoemaker handed him 40 dollars and requested “two five gram deals”. Just like that the deal was done.
“Cops don’t really care,” said Shoemaker as he returned to his seat.
The mirror pools are a known gathering place for those who frequently partake in the consumption of marijuana on campus. Clouds of smoke can sometimes be seen surrounding those who congregate by the bodies of water.
A mirror pool frequenter and behavioral and mental health psychology major, Alixandria Gilchrist, said that while the legalization of recreational cannabis has decreased her anxiety of run-ins with the law, it has increased cannabis usage on campus and created disturbances with individuals who do not attend PCC.
“We don’t pick fights or anything…those are the people that don’t go here and they know that we smoke and they’re looking to either buy it or because they’re on some other shit,” Gilchrist said. “But most of the time it’s pretty chill.”
While confrontations surrounding cannabis are not unknown on campus, Gilchrist expressed that intervention via the law could cause more harm than good.
“If people aren’t complaining about it, why interfere?”
Even though this attitude towards marijuana seems to be prevalent with the students who hang out by the pools, second year student Arlex Contreras is against the usage of recreational marijuana and thinks that law enforcement should take more action against its use on campus.
“Everyone’s down to fucking smoke, the thing is people get away with smoking a joint more often than they did before,” said Contreras.
Contreras also expressed discomfort and what he described as a “second-hand high” when he is in the proximity of marijuana smoke.
While students have noticed an increase in cannabis consumption on campus, Police Sergeant Bill Abernathie said everyone knows that “schools are a no-no” and has not witnessed an escalation in such behavior on campus stating, “everything is status quo” and no new actions have been considered to prevent or control marijuana usage on campus.
If students are to smoke marijuana on campus, they are violating Public Law 101-226 “Drug Free Schools and Communities Act Amendment of 1989” and law enforcement will confiscate the substance, issue a citation, and file a criminal report.
Abernathie did drive home that although recreational cannabis is now legal in California and the city of Pasadena, it is still not permissible to smoke on the PCC campus