Looking for a topic guaranteed to prevent - or create - awkward pauses during Mother's Day brunch? Try bringing up marijuana with your mom. If she reacts poorly, just tell her you're doing it for a good cause. That's the message one activist group is trying to spread this week ahead of Mother's Day.
On May 2, Arizona's Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol (CRMLA) launched its latest ads in Phoenix and Tucson. The billboards feature a mother posing with her daughter next to the caption, "Have you talked to your parents about marijuana?"
The ad directs readers to a site with a form where Arizona residents can fill in the email accounts of 20 friends and family that they'd like to chat about cannabis with. And there's a pre-written message for locals to customize to write their own letter to the recipients.
CRMLA - which is currently gathering signatures for a ballot initiative to legalize recreational marijuana use statewide - launched the initiative because they believe that repealing prohibition depends on getting the older generation onboard.
"This November, Arizonans will have the opportunity to vote on a ballot initiative to end marijuana prohibition and replace it with a system in which marijuana is regulated similarly to alcohol," their website reads. "We will win this election if voters in their 50s, 60s, and 70s - like your parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, or, for some of you, your friends and colleagues - come to appreciate that marijuana is an acceptable and less harmful alternative to alcohol."
But the message is relevant beyond the Grand Canyon State. According to the inaugural Civilized Cannabis Culture Poll, a survey of 1,050 Americans conducted by Environics Research Group, almost three-quarters (73 percent) of cannabis consumers hide their use from someone. And for nearly one third (30 percent), that someone is their parent or parents.
Keeping cannabis in the closet could explain why cannabis stereotypes are still pervasive in America. According to that same poll, the average cannabis consumer in America is a highly educated, employed homeowner with children and an income of $75,000 or more. So talking about marijuana with friends and family this weekend might help break down the stigmas that help uphold prohibition.
And we also know from our survey that 41percent of parents hide their cannabis use from their children. So mom may have a surprise confession for you this weekend, as well.