A judge’s ruling last week blew the lid off of the deceptive practices of the marijuana legalization program in California. San Luis Obispo County Superior Court Judge Ginger E. Garrett made a ruling that bans certain billboard advertisements. The decision affects the entire state. Hopefully, children will see fewer large signs promoting marijuana.
State officials allowed hundreds of billboards advertising marijuana along California highways, in contrast to voters’ expectations. A 2016 ballot initiative that legalized the sale of pot for recreational use was supposed to ban this type of advertising.
We quote from the Los Angeles Times : “The lawsuit was filed by Matthew Farmer, a San Luis Obispo construction contractor who is father to a 15-year-old daughter and a 12-year-old son.
“One of his two attorneys, Stewart Jenkins, said Farmer voted for Proposition 64 in 2016 because he did not think adults should go to jail for smoking pot but was concerned when cannabis ads began appearing along the 101 Freeway traveled by his family.
“ ‘He remembered that in the proposition it said that there would not be any advertising to children,’ Jenkins said Monday, ‘and that there specifically would not be advertising on interstate highways and the major state highways that get all the way to the border, like 101.’
“The ruling prohibits billboards along 4,315 miles of interstate highways, including Interstates 5 and 80, and state highways that cross state borders, said Saro Rizzo, another of Farmer’s attorneys. It is not clear if the cannabis industry will appeal. Here’s another article on the issue.
Other news, other comments, other states
California has, by far, the oldest and largest marijuana market in the country. It seems so obvious that regulations are not working, but the marijuana industry is good at bullying politicians and regulators. Ballot proponents break all promises to voters, and tax money is only one third of what was promised. The illegal market exploded in size after legalization.
Other news came out last week that dented the façade of California’s legal pot program.
The expensive dinner Governor Gavin Newsom attended in the Napa Valley on November 6 was a birthday party for Jason Kinney. Kinney, a prominent lobbyist, had been the spokesman for Amendment 64, in 2016.
Also last week, Lori Ajax, head of the Bureau of Cannabis Control, announced her retirement, which will be effective December 2.
Other states such as Washington, abandoned promises made to voters in their ballot propositions, also. Residents of Colorado and Washington have pushed back against the pot industry, trying to cap THC potency. So far, their efforts have failed. Social equity remains a huge concern, and every state with legal pot grapples with this issue. Proponents sell marijuana legalization to voters as “social justice,” but that promise fails too.
Marijuana legalization isn’t working. And by the way, that bit about people going to jail for marijuana possession only was never true either.