March 30, 2010

First Ad Hits the Airwaves for CA Legalization Effort

March 30, 2010

One of the most important rules in politics is getting the word out in order to mobilize voters. Another rule is to shoot down the opposition whenever you get a chance. Supporters of ‘Control & Tax Cannabis California 2010’ have done both now that they officially launched their new radio ad, which is working its way around the Bay Area and LA airwaves (click here). The ad features Jeffrey Studdard, a former Los Angeles County Sherriff’s Deputy, voicing his opposition to marijuana prohibition. In the ad he says, “Like many other cops and law enforcement professionals, I’ve seen firsthand that the current approach on cannabis is simply not working. It’s led to violent drug cartels, dealers in our schools and our streets, and cost millions of dollars – without reducing consumption. That’s why cops support Tax Cannabis 2010, the initiative to control and tax cannabis. It will provide billions to fund what matters, and allow police to focus on violent crime. It’s time to control it, and tax it.” Click here to listen to the ad.

Of course, the response from current law enforcement officials was almost instant. “I can tell you categorically that legalization of marijuana will only increase the challenges facing us,” said San Mateo Police Chief Susan Manheimer. “To balance the budget on the backs of the harm caused by illegal intoxication is mind-boggling.” Look for these generic, unwarranted claims to continue on the ‘no’ side. In order to combat the opposition’s claims, the ‘Control & Tax Cannabis California 2010’ campaign has released a ‘public safety benefits fact sheet’ on their website (click here). My favorite fact from the press release is “According to the FBI, in 2008, almost 60,000 violent crimes went unsolved in California. That same year, over 61,000 Californians were arrested for misdemeanor cannabis possession.”

Some people are claiming that the ‘yes’ side with have more campaign money that the ‘no’ side. I think as of THIS MINUTE that is true, but it will certainly change as the campaign goes along. Let’s look at who is likely to line up on the opponents side. Law enforcement has already volunteered to lead the fight, with The California Peace Officers Association taking the driver’s seat. I personally think that ads like the new one, that use former police officers, as well as organizations like Law Enforcement Against Prohibition, are the best way to combat the opposition. Fight fire with fire! If you have police on both sides, they don’t necessarily cancel each other out, but it does minimize the impact of police saying things like ‘marijuana is a drug that will ruin society if it is legal.’

Another anti-marijuana lobby that is likely to surface during the campaign is big alcohol. Anyone who has done their homework knows that the alcohol industry does not like marijuana legalization; they see it as a competitor in the ‘intoxicant marketplace.’ They will fight it like hell, and to say that they have enough cash to throw around would be a huge understatement. Even the tobacco industry may enter the fight. America’s lungs are their real estate, and I doubt they will give up such ‘lucrative property’ without throwing some cash at the campaign. I’m not saying it is guaranteed, but it certainly is a possibility.

The Mormon Church crushed the opposition during the Proposition 8 campaign. I have to assume that they will mobilize over this issue as well. I have yet to see a press release involving them, but believe when something as radical as this is on the ballot, they will be working in the shadows, if not outright public condemnation via billboards, radio/tv ads, etc. Look for other ‘Conservative Christian’ groups to join the fight; I use quotation marks because it is my personal belief that God made marijuana, and he intended us to enjoy it, but we will save that for another post!

Opposition is might include groups that people don’t think about. Starbucks has funded anti marijuana groups in the past, will they make some behind the scenes donations?? Parent groups and teacher groups are likely to join the fight, and will make wild claims like ‘I don’t want my kids doing pot once it’s legal; nothing will stop them.’ Even insurance companies may join the fight, due to being leery about providing insurance for marijuana users. The possibilities are virtually endless as to who initiative proponents will be up against. My point is this, BE READY! Like I said in a previous post; can billions of dollars brainwash 6% of people in California to vote against this initiative? Because, according to some polls, that’s all it would take (click here).

DON’T JUST SIT BY YOUR GRAVITY BONG AND DREAM OF THE DAY YOU CAN GROW YOUR OWN PLANTS LEGALLY. GET OFF YOUR ASS, BRING AS MANY FRIENDS AS YOU CAN TO THE VOTING BOOTH IN NOVEMBER, AND MAKE YOUR VOICE HEARD. YOU WANTED THIS DAY TO COME, AND IT IS FINALLY HERE. THIS IS YOUR CHANCE TO PROVE EVERY CONSERVATIVE REPUBLICAN WRONG, AND ROCK THE VOTE!!!!!!! Also, if you happen to see Richard Lee, give him a HUGE hug for me. That guy is so kick ass, and has done so much for this movement that every marijuana consumer in America should have a picture of him in their living room. I bow to you Mr. Richard Lee; you are the greatest American patriot in the US today!