The Washington State Senate is considering a legislation concerning the medical use of cannabis.
It includes a new section about advertising.
NEW SECTION. Sec. 802. (1) No licensed producer, processor of cannabis products, or dispenser may advertise cannabis for sale to the general public on broadcast television or radio or on a billboard in any manner that promotes or tends to promote the use or abuse of cannabis. For the purposes of this subsection, displaying cannabis, including artistic depictions of cannabis, is considered to promote or 33 to tend to promote the use or abuse of cannabis.
I'd like to focus on a couple of parts. For example, "No licensed producer, processor of cannabis products, or dispenser may advertise...." Would a person or organization that isn't a producer, processor or dispenser be able to make such advertisements? Quite likely so and an amendment addresses that.
On page 25, beginning on line 27, after "No" strike all material through "billboard" on line 29 and insert "person, partnership, corporation, association, or agency may advertise cannabis for sale to the general public"
But there's another part that I'm wondering about. It's the wording "may advertise cannabis for sale to the general public". Would an ad for cannabis pass muster as long as it explicitly stated that the cannabis is not for sale to the general public? Would the wording "may advertise to the general public cannabis for sale" be a better way to ban all cannabis advertisements? What if the cannabis is not for sale but donations are accepted? Keep in mind I'm not English major but the way sentences are parsed in legal battles it seems these are fair questions.
However, some legislators were concerned that the advertisement ban should apply to other forms of communication so the amendments also includes this:
On page 26, line 10, after "radio broadcast licensee," insert "newspaper, magazine,"
EFFECT: Advertising of cannabis for sale to the general public is prohibited. Newspapers and magazines are not subject to penalties for disseminating advertising in good faith without knowledge that the advertising promotes or tends to promote the use or abuse of cannabis.
Our own Senator Michael Baumgartner expressed his support for this amendment.
"When all of us open these newspapers that have the current forms of medical marijuana advertisements, I think it's quite clear that they're promoting, or have a risk of promoting to children... Let's not lure kids into this sort of a behavior or lifestyle."
I appreciate his concern for children but I hardly think the marijuana dispensary ads in the Inlander and Nickel Nik lure children into "this sort of behavior or lifestyle". And what does he mean by "this sort"? If anything, the kids might point it out to friends or relatives for the shock value. They might even ask their parents about it who would then have to provide an explanation just as they probably do for those ads promoting alcohol, condoms, K-Y Intense arousal gel, and erectile dysfunction pills.
"Mom. Dad. Why do you have to see a doctor if you have an erection that last more than four hours?"