Comment of the Day

Reader: Big Marijuana is the Next Big Tobacco

Our post about an anti-pot legalization ad that many viewers may see as being in favor of pot legalization went viral, with plenty of folks weighing in about it. And while most saw the situation through a humorous lens, this reader isn't laughing due to fear that the marijuana industry could turn into the sort of mega-biz many people despise.

See also: Marijuana: Does Anti-Pot-Legalization Ad Accidentally Promote Pot Legalization?

pjmccoll writes:

Currently 7% of the American population use marijuana. That means that 93% don't. Putting marijuana into the hands of big business means commercialization, greater access, availability, marketing and advertising. BIG MARIJUANA IS THE NEXT BIG TOBACCO -- going after the biggest market they can find and that means kids and youth will suffer. 90% of people start smoking before their 18th. birthday -- why because a powerful industry knows to get to them young and they spend one million dollars an hour promoting their products in the USA alone. 20% of grade 8 kids in Denver Colorado are reported to be using marijuana, grade 12 is the biggest percentage with 30-53% region dependent. This is the market for marijuana obviously and it is and will remain an illegal market under legalization and kids will have greater access and crime will flourish under the guise of legalization. It makes no sense to legalize a product that is only used by a small small minority ( an elite) of the population when we know the facts, the harms and risks of use by youth and special populations - those that will fall to addiction, the pregnant, those with heart risk. What happened to protecting the vast majority who want to drive down a road without the added risk of drugged drivers, who want to go to safe workplace ?

The money behind the marijuana lobby has allowed them to pull the wool over the eyes of the nonsmoking and non-consuming public. They outspent the anti pot lobby in Colorado and Washington by a mile. The pushers of pot are about greed and money and one has to ask what ever happened to caring about the welfare and health of the innocent, about taking responsibility for someone other than just yourself. Anyone who would use these recreational products knowing they are contributing to the advance of a real threat to the well being of the next generation of kids is operating from an elitist position that should be challenged.

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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts