A considerable percentage of HIGH TIMES readers have never seen a cigarette commercial on television. Some might not even remember Joe Camel who got wiped off billboards 20 years ago.
Now, nearly 50 years after Congress banned the advertising of cigarettes on television and radio, California’s Prop 64 might be putting weed ads on the air, alongside cereal and cleaning products, the Los Angeles Times reported.
While Proposition 64 prohibits ads on programs where roughly 30 percent or more of the audience would likely be under 21, it doesn’t explicitly bar TV ads.
Opponents of Prop 64, such as well-know drug warrior Senator Dianne Feinstein who is at odds with most of her peers, says TV pot ads will roll back decades of anti-smoking protections by allowing “marijuana smoking ads in prime time, on programs with millions of children and teenage viewers.”
Prop 64 proponents say the initiative includes rules to make sure ads are not seen by minors, for starters, by prohibiting the use of marketing techniques that are appealing to young people, such as the use of symbols, music or cartoons, as in Joe Camel.
Jason Kinney, spokesperson for Yes on Proposition 64, told HIGH TIMES that the broadcast controversy is a desperate attack on legalization.
“In fact, in regards to broadcast advertising, Proposition 64 is stricter than the current medical marijuana laws…and specifically includes more child protections than any marijuana legalization policy in America,” Kinney explained.
“Concerns that marijuana ads are somehow going to flood the airwaves are the same tired scare tactics from the anti-marijuana opposition that were tried in other states and ultimately proven false,” he continued.
So far, the Federal Communications Commission has declined comment on the issue, reported the Sacramento Bee.
Meanwhile, other forms of hysteria over Prop 64 are heating up as the vote draws closer.
For example, opponents are forming the oddest and most ironic united fronts, such as cops and cultivators. The latter fear global corporate interests, such as Big Tobacco and liquor companies, will move in and dominate the industry.
But, Prop 64 is intelligent and has provided a five-year moratorium on permits for large operators, which in theory, will allow mid-sized and smaller growers to establish their markets before the big players overrun the state in the California green rush.
And the former—cops—we all know why they (and private prisons) oppose legalization.