Why Does Smoking Out of a Gas Mask Make a Difference?

Once thought the potential top NFL draft pick, Laremy Tunsil was dealt a bombshell on Draft Day. Hours before selection started, his Twitter account released a video, shown above, showing him smoking what is apparently marijuana from a gas mask. While his agent insists that his Twitter account was hacked, and the video was deleted a few minutes later, several NFL teams believe it legitimately showed Tunsil, and only adds to the character issues that worried league performance before.

Smoking out of a gas mask is an extreme example of a practice known as “hotboxing,” where a user smokes marijuana in a confined, airtight space. Hotboxing is considered an effective technique due to the intoxicating effects of secondhand marijuana smoke; a recent Johns Hopkins study confirmed that secondhand smoke in extreme concentrations could get a person high even without direct inhalation. Directly inhaling marijuana, then exhaling it into an area where one can still breath it, allows the user to inhale more marijuana smoke without needing breaks from the effects on the lung of directly inhaling. While smoking experts often suggest relatively cramped areas like bathrooms and garages, the tiny surface area of a gas mask would undoubtedly concentrate the effect.

It’s still unknown whether the video is of Tunsil, and who released the video under his account. While the proximity isn’t any kind of evidence, it’s worth noting that Tunsil is currently being sued by his stepfather.