Cool Ad Watch

A big step toward normalizing pot as a positive good:

Fans attending a major NASCAR race this weekend will see a most unlikely video posted on a giant video screen shortly before entering the track: a pro-marijuana legalization ad. Outside the NASCAR Brickyard 400 in Indianapolis, the same track that hosts the famed Indianapolis 500, Marijuana Policy Project, the nation’s largest pro-marijuana legalization advocacy group, has purchased space to air – dozens of times over the weekend – a video that pushes the theme that marijuana is less harmful than alcohol.

It marks the first time a pro-marijuana legalization ad will appear so close to an entrance gate of a major sporting event. The Brickyard 400, in its 20th year, is regarded as one of NASCAR’s biggest races.

Update from a reader:

After the ad ran for several hours on Friday, it was pulled. A spokesman for the company that pulled that ad issued this statement:

“We in no way support marijuana at family events,” the spokesman said. “We didn’t expect this ad to be interpreted the way it did. We don’t want anything to do with it anymore.”

So, a major event with huge alcohol sponsors (Crown Royal & Miller Lite, anyone?), and a sport with a huge culture of alcohol consumption “doesn’t want anything to do” with marijuana. Not even a simple ad that isn’t promoting “marijuana at family events” but simply promoting the idea of an alcohol alternative in general. Wow.

I live in Colorado, so I can see first-hand that the tide is starting to turn, but decades of culture war are going to be tough to crack in some places.