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Marijuana ads prove unnecessary and a waste of American tax
    #1481697 - 04/22/03 09:01 AM (16 years, 1 month ago)


Marijuana ads prove unnecessary and a waste of American tax dollars

posted: April 18, 2003

by Kris Hassinger

In the past couple of years, the much-vaunted war on drugs entered a new phase when Congress decided to use public money to create a media campaign aimed at teenagers.

Originally, the proposal included anti-alcohol themes, but that was soundly thwarted after intense lobbying by the alcohol industry. They decided public money was best spent trying to prevent teenagers from experimenting with marijuana, despite the fact alcohol is responsible for 145 times as many deaths.

Instead of using the billions of taxpayer dollars to give facts about marijuana effects and abuse, they decided to go back to the government?s "reefer madness" approach of the 1930s. However, their approach is failing.

A June 2002 evaluation of the federal ad campaign by the University of Pennsylvania found teens who were most exposed to the ads used drugs in greater numbers than those who were less exposed. This is not at all surprising to anyone who has witnessed the outright deceitful and under-handed advertisements plaguing television today.

In one ad, a teenager becomes pregnant because she smoked pot. It?s a little ironic that a few years ago they released commercials connecting smoking weed with a decreased libido.

In my experience, smoking pot makes most girls just want to make love to a carton of Ben and Jerry?s, not you. Weed doesn?t create teenage pregnancies ? slutty 15 year olds do.

If weed supports terrorism and pregnant teens smoke weed, then next year?s Super Bowl ad should read "pregnant teens support terrorism."

Then there?s the one where the teenagers are at the fast food drive through. The message here is if you smoke weed you will drive and invariably kill someone.

Studies have been conducted suggesting smoking weed does indeed affect one?s driving ability. However, it has also been shown those who smoke and drive compensate for their state, unlike alcohol, and are actually more careful.

When was the last time you saw someone high drive more than five mph? If everyone lit up before going anywhere, the roads would be a much safer place.

My biggest problem with this commercial is it doesn?t indicate smoking is harmful, but that smoking and driving is. So is drinking Nyquil and driving ? so shall we ban that, too?

The only ad with any real merit is the one showing kids getting busted while smoking in a bathroom. However, the logic of this ad really gets to me.

So, people shouldn?t smoke weed because it?s illegal and the law could bust you? Why is it illegal again ? because you can get in trouble?

Virginia Tech has recently forayed into the anti-marijuana campaign with its own advertisements. Cards have been placed around campus asking the question, "do you have money to burn?"

The rules at Tech say those found with pot will be kicked out for a year. The math majors responsible for the ads state this will cost the offender $54,000.

The logic behind this is a year at Tech costs $17,000 and the average salary of a Tech graduate is around $36,000. But wouldn?t one be saving the money that would have been spent at school?

Furthermore, anyone can find a job and make $20,000 to $30,000 over the course of a year, not to mention the benefits one would get from some real-world experience. So if you want some extra spending money and time off, go ahead and light one up.

More than 70 million Americans have used marijuana and one-fifth smoke it occasionally. Marijuana is the most widely used illicit drug in America. In fact, it is the only widely used illicit drug.

Its use occurs in all regions of the country, among people of all social classes, all ethnicities, all occupations, all religions and all political persuasions.

In an important sense, marijuana use is already a "normal" part of the culture. The only thing making marijuana deviant is its continued criminalization.

The most disturbing aspect of the war on drugs is the attack on civil liberties. The demand to win this seemingly endless war has led to wiretapping, entrapment, property seizures and other abuses of Americans? traditional liberties.

The government needs to realize marijuana use is not going to diminish and the war against it is costing America billions, breaking apart families and placing unnecessary risks on law enforcement.

The recent binge of propaganda is only going to create more dissent and distrust toward government representatives.

One of the broader lessons they should learn is this: Prohibition laws should be judged according to their real-world effects, not their promised benefits.

The fact is, drug abuse harms some of us, but the loss of liberty harms all of us.


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Registered: 02/28/02
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Re: Marijuana ads prove unnecessary and a waste of American tax [Re: motaman]
    #1481847 - 04/22/03 10:42 AM (16 years, 1 month ago)

They decided public money was best spent trying to prevent teenagers from experimenting with marijuana, despite the fact alcohol is responsible for 145 times as many deaths.
I don't think marijuana use has ever killed anyone....ever.

Weed doesn?t create teenage pregnancies ? slutty 15 year olds do.

Great article man.

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