Boycott T-Mobile for its Superbowl Ads
In December, a grandmother protested the marketing of leggings printed with marijuana leaves to young toddlers. Now a group of angry parents is taking aim at T-Mobile, a larger target they say is trying to normalize drug use by targeting the message to children.
During the broadcast of Super Bowl LI on February 5, T-Mobile aired an ad with lifestyle guru Martha Stewart and rap artist Snoop Dogg (real name Calvin Cordozar Broadus, Jr.) during which the two bantered, making several not-so-veiled humorous references to marijuana.
The ad is meant to play off Stewart and Broadus’ VH1 reality show, “Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party,” a show geared to millennials that some reviewers concede is nothing more than an effort to normalize the use of marijuana.
Parents are not having it
During the Super Bowl, a T-Mobile ad ran with such references as ‘pot,’ ‘can o bisque,’ ‘greenery,’ and ‘purple cushions’ [Purple Kush is a popular strain of marijuana]. How much more of an attempt to normalize this to youngsters can you get? The Super Bowl is something whole families watch. This was the worst place to air a commercial like this UNLESS the goal was to make drug use a joke and get kids to think marijuana is ‘no big deal,’ “explained a Missouri mom who has had several friends lose children to drug abuse, including marijuana addiction.
She has organized a petition to boycott T-Mobile, understanding that she faces an uphill battle against a society that increasingly believes marijuana is not harmful.
However, she has the support of drug policy experts who have been warning of the same for years. Drug policy expert Kevin Sabet, co-founder and President of Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), explained, “Ads like this show exactly what the marijuana legalization movement is about—addiction for profit. Last year, tens of millions of pot lobby dollars bankrolled an initiative in California that would allow pot smoking ads to run on television. Three months later, the same lobby promotes this ad during an event when millions of kids were watching. It’s Big Tobacco all over again.” (Originally published in The Marijuana Report, February 15 edition.)