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.

Send your story tips to the author, Michael Roberts.

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Ben Cochran
Ben Cochran

Yup, there's always that one dickbag that tries to make it a liberal versus conservative discussion.

Levi Wilbert
Levi Wilbert

I'm thinking the percentage of users of marijuana is higher than 7%

RobertChase topcommenter

Yes, if you like the sound of this slogan, you might be interested in Project SAM.  Cannabis is not comparable to tobacco in terms of its threat to public health; there is reason to believe that the appropriate medical use of cannabis will improve public health!  Tobacco is extremely addictive; cannabis, merely habituating, so the evocation of some imagined threat posed by profiteering off the promotion of addiction is inapt.  In Colorado, people who use cannabis can stop worrying that corporations will be able to take total control of cannabis, because our Constitution grants every adult the right to grow at least a little -- nationwide, cannabis is easier to grow than tobacco, and there is no justification for applying the tight controls over the cultivation of a drug responsible for killing ~435,000 Americans every year to the cultivation of a drug not shown to pose any significant harm to health.  Instead of expostulating about imagined threats to cannabis from evil Monsanto, get involved politically, and militate for our right to grow cannabis on the evidence that it is innocuous.

Clayton Capra
Clayton Capra

Very dramatic. The writer also assumes a vast influx of people who all of a sudden will say "Oh hey it's legal now I'll smoke it". People who want to smoke pot, do. And depending on the poll, I would say more that 7% use it.

Daniel Shalik
Daniel Shalik

Liberals are the ones with the anti - smoking agendas on their minds. However, since they are high a good portion of their day they only think about it when they are straight. Then they get high again and forget about it. So it will be a while.



I feel the same way, but for different reasons. I don't think cannabis is harmful, even to teenagers, but the secrete ingredients commercial growers use are. Like the tobacco industry, they will, and already do, use addictive additives and flavor enhancers to cover up their low quality products. Also like the tobacco industry, political power and monopolies the weed industry is creating will only invite corruption. Corporations are pushing their agenda, and helping create regulations that suppress the free market, all in the name of safety. 

I expect future limitations on THC, GMO cannabis strains, increased prosecution of home growers, increased restrictions on extracts, and a re-classification of marijuana instead of de-scheduling it, so pharmaceutical companies can take over the medical side. All in the name of public safety, even when the plant is one of the safest substance on the planet. 

Fearing the use of marijuana, and the tactics "big marijuana" will use to increase use is understandable, especially for people who haven't had much experience with the plant. But I fear the much larger role of "big marijuana", Political power furthering a corporate owned government, dangerous additives concocted by corporate scientists to avoid the testing capabilities of regulators, and the further destruction of a free market.


Cannabis is not compatible to alcohol in terms of public health.

Only idiots and prohibitionists would attempt to regulate it as such.


No more than 10% use marijuana regularly.

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