The Waste Management-sponsored Phoenix Golf Open is already known as one of the PGA’s biggest parties. And now, pot lovers are getting in on the fun.
The campaign to legalize recreational marijuana in Arizona recently unveiled a billboard to coincide with the Phoenix Open, which begins Thursday and is expected to host a half million people, according to the Arizona Republic.
The billboard reads, “If beer and golf make for the greatest party on grass …Why can't adults enjoy a safer party on grass?” A clever word play on the event's slogan, “Greatest Show on Grass.”
Arizona’s Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol is behind the billboard. Their goal is to raise awareness and garner enough signatures to have the issue voted on this November.
The campaign’s view is that the Phoenix Open is the perfect opportunity to highlight social acceptance of alcohol versus the stigmatization marijuana users face.
“There’s certainly going to be a lot of alcohol consumption there,” J.P. Holyoak, the campaign chairman, told the Phoenix New Times.
Holyoak said their message is simple—adults should enjoy responsibly and also be able to choose a safer alternative.
“Certainly there will be a lot of alcohol sponsors at this event,” Holyoak said. “Why can’t adults choose something that’s objectively safer than that? I’d be glad to have that conversation with the organizers. I’d be surprised if they disagree with me.”
Holyoak said the campaign made a deliberate choice to avoid the stereotyped marijuana user in favor of a clean-cut couple on the billboard.
Of course, not everyone is thrilled about the billboard.
“Using the laudable and charitable Waste Management Phoenix Open golf tournament as a springboard to publicize a political campaign to legalize marijuana in Arizona is the opposite of good health, good education and good public policy and certainly the opposite of good taste,” Seth Leibsohn from Arizonans for Responsible Drug Policy told Golf Digest.
(Photo Courtesy of Golf Digest)