The End is Near??!!
Of the plethora of organizations that support the War on Drugs, the Partnership for Drug Free America is certainly near the top in terms of power and influence. Started in the midst of the crack cocaine epidemic in the mid-1980’s, the Partnership used media experts to design anti-drug abuse advertising campaigns. They are probably best known for the famous commercial starring a fried egg with the tag line, “This is your brain on drugs!”
Despite the fact that the egg spot became a national source of amusement, over the years the Partnership has been one of the most powerful and perhaps effective voices supporting drug prohibition. So it was notable when they released a recent survey of parents in which the majority of those questioned supported the legalization of marijuana. (See news story)
The survey confirms the growing sentiment in the country for legalization of marijuana. Yet the most interesting aspect of the survey relates to the spin put on the results by the Partnership for a Drug Free America. The news release put out by the group emphasized that even parents who support legalization expect strict regulation of legal weed. Specifically noted by survey authors were a legal use age of 21, no advertising and no public consumption.
The impression one gets is that the battle over legalization has now moved from away from the decision to legalize or not to decisions on what rules will govern legalized pot. In war terms, we are now discussing the terms of surrender and for a group like the Partnership for Drug Free America to even consider these terms is a sign of how far the country has moved.
I used to believe that marijuana will eventually be legalized, but not in my lifetime as I’m approaching 70. Legalization in Colorado and Washington proved me way too pessimistic. There is important work left to be done, but the momentum has clearly shifted.