The Raleigh Police Department has arrested the mother, Brianna Ashanti Lofton, of the baby seen smoking in a viral video on Facebook (Photo courtesy of Raleigh Police Department/ Facebook video screengrab)
The video went viral.
A 20-year-old woman was sentenced to prison in North Carolina after a video of her passing a joint to her infant child went viral.
Brianna Ashanti Lofton was charged with two counts of child abuse and one count of possession. In a ten second video, she passes a blunt to her one-year-old baby, who then takes a drag. The video accumulated over one million views because people really want to see that baby smoke.
The video was reposted by a man in Rochester, New York, where it blazed up a storm. Police in Raleigh, North Carolina caught wind of the video and Lofton was arrested mere hours later. She has since confessed to making the video and sharing her pot with the baby. The baby is now in the custody of Child Protective Services.
The effects of weed on infants are inconclusive due to a lack of research. Even if we do not know the lasting effects of THC on infants, the effects of smoke alone are inherently harmful to undeveloped lungs. Until the body has matured enough to smoke, even second-hand smoke of weed and cigarettes can cause damage.
Lofton isn’t the first to get 15 minutes of fame for ten seconds of weed baby footage, she was just one of the first to receive jail time over it. Vine, the video app owned by Twitter, had a tiny epidemic of parents subjecting their kids to smoking weed for views. Consider them the forerunners to the epidemic on YouTube which spiked last year, where ‘prank videos’ saw parents torturing their own kids to become viral phenomenons. The most prominent of those users, DaddyOfFive, lost custody and has since become a FatherOfNone. This is all very normal. Things are just fine.