INDIANAPOLIS, IN — Fans attending this weekend’s NASCAR Brickyard 400 in Indianapolis will be greeted by a giant video board displaying the latest ad in the Marijuana Policy Project’s (MPP) “Marijuana is Safer” campaign.
The video ad, which resembles a beer commercial, compares alcohol and marijuana, pointing out that marijuana doesn’t contain calories, cause hangovers, or promote reckless, violent behavior.
“If you’re an adult who enjoys a good beer,” says the ad, “there’s a similar product you might want to know about.”
The video ends with the tagline ”Less harmful than alcohol, and time to treat it that way,” and provides a link to MarijuanaIsSafer.org, which provides an introduction to marijuana, as well as information on marijuana’s impact on the consumer and on the community.
“We think it’s critical that the public recognize that marijuana is objectively less harmful than alcohol,” says MPP spokesperson Mason Tvert, the co-author of the book Marijuana is Safer: So Why Are We Driving People to Drink? “We wanted to reach out to an audience that clearly appreciates that adults should be able to use beer and alcohol responsibly. They should also be able to use marijuana responsibly – since it’s less harmful.”
The ad is the latest installment of MPP’s “Marijuana is Safer” campaign, which helped lead Colorado’s Amendment 64 to victory last November, legalizing the possession, use and retail sales of marijuana for adults 21 or older.
It is the first such ad to appear at the entrance to a major sporting event, according to USA Today, who notes that the ad is outside of the racetrack, and isn’t affiliated with NASCAR, and may be “uncomfortable” for NASCAR’s alcohol sponosors:
NASCAR has no affiliation with the advertiser or the company selling the inventory, and the ad will not appear anywhere on track property. NASCAR executives declined to comment.
Even then, it makes for a potentially uncomfortable pairing for NASCAR. Crown Royal Whisky is a major sponsor of the race. Miller Lite also is a sponsor.
Tvert says the ad is scheduled to appear 72 times over the three day weekend, where up to 600,000 fans are expected to attend the race.
MPP Launches Pro-Marijuana Video Ad at Major NASCAR Event was written by Scott Gacek and appears in full on The Daily Chronic. ©2013
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