Parents around the country are reportedly upset with “pothead” lollipops and ring-pops, which are sour apple-flavored suckers in the shape of marijuana leaves. According to the Washington Post, the lollipops sell for about a dollar and the ringpops sell for about three for $1.50. But, in an egregious example of false advertising, “pothead” candy doesn’t contain any THC. Instead, the packaging just shows a stoner-looking dude flashing a peace sign and the word “Legalize.” So, you know, the kids think it’s the cat’s pajamas.
One City Councilmember in Buffalo, New York, has threatened to refuse licenses to stores that sell the “pothead” candy and promises to keep making a stink. In reality, though, he is only drawing more attention to the candy and the media coverage may well be inspiring other shops around the country to sell it. It seems to me like if this councilman and others who share his sentiment want to be more effective at stopping illicit drug use and abuse, there are much more significant things they could focus on.
I realize all-too-well how drugs cause serious problems. My older brother has been a drug addict (opiates/heroin) for over a decade and I have plenty of opinions on legalization, criminalization and treatment. However, pot doesn’t bother me much at all — and I say that as someone who hasn’t smoked the stuff since I was 19. IMHO, marijuana gets unfairly stigmatized when the far more dangerous drug is alcohol. It may be comparing apples and oranges; however, in my own life I’ve seen alcohol, not pot, cause the overwhelming lion’s share of problems in people’s lives. Alcohol, generally speaking, is easier to get your hands on as a kid or young adult. Plus, the short-term effects — blood alcohol poisoning, drunk driving, blackouts, etc. — are a hell of a lot more dangerous than the short-term effects of smoking pot (laziness, excessive Cheeto consumption, poor memory). American’s modern day prohibition against marijuana has never seemed sensible to me at all.
Alas, marijuana is illegal for most people in most parts of the country. Obviously people who use it are taking a risk with the law. Yet I believe it should be legalized, as well as far less stigmatized. If people didn’t freak out about smoking pot — or silly things like pot leaf-shaped lollipops — it would surely lose some of its criminal appeal. (I can’t be the only one who thought drinking alcohol legally when I was 21 wasn’t as much fun because it was no longer “bad”!)
Am I off-base with my apathy over “pothead candy”? What do readers think? Let us know in the comments!
Contact the author of this post at Jessica@TheFrisky.com. Follow me on Twitter at @JessicaWakeman.