SALEM, Ore. (AP) _ Some young people are turning on, tuning in and dropping out for quick highs on a hallucinogenic drug that is legal and sold openly at novelty stores, smoke shops and adult video stores.
But some state lawmakers say the substance _ salvia divinorum _ is dangerous and have proposed a bill to ban possessing or selling it.
Used for centuries by shamans in religious and healing rituals in Mexico, experts say use is on the rise in the U-S.
The substance's Latin name means ``sage of the seers.''
Users call it Purple Sticky Salvia, Maria Pastora or Sally D.
Tim Plummer, a coordinator for Oregon's drug evaluation and classification program, says it's appealing to young kids because it is not illegal to possess in the state of Oregon.
One Portland retailer is selling a half-gram package for 15 dollars.
It is said to be good for five ``experiences.''
A 1994 study in the Journal of Ethnopharmacology described users who felt as though they were being turned into a variety of things, including a Ferris wheel and yellow plaid French fries.
Louisiana, Missouri, Tennessee, Oklahoma and Delaware already ban possession of the substance, but it is legal under federal law.