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Washington Post Says Vote ‘No’ On Marijuana Legalization, Cites False Facts


washington dc marijuana legalizationMainstream media as a whole has not been very friendly to marijuana reform. For many decades, mainstream media took a very biased stance towards marijuana, perpetuating false propaganda in an attempt to keep marijuana prohibition in place. In recent years some large media outlets have moved to the right side of history, but not all of them. Yesterday the Washington Post came out with an article urging Washington D.C. residents to vote ‘no’ on marijuana legalization. Washington D.C. is voting on marijuana legalization this November.

According to polls, voters in Washington D.C., and nationwide, support marijuana legalization. But this didn’t stop the Washington Post from stating the following in their article:

It’s not been a year since Colorado became the first state to allow recreational marijuana use and, as the Smart Approaches to Marijuana has catalogued, there have been negative consequences, including increased instances of impaired driving and increased use by youth. With marijuana already decriminalized, there’s no reason for the District to rush the next step; why not at least give Colorado a bit more time to provide lessons?

It didn’t take long for activists and other media outlets to discredit the Washington Post’s article for numerous reasons. My favorite was from Fire Dog Lake, which pointed out the following:

This first statement is completely wrong. Recreational marijuana use for adults was legalized on December 10th, 2012 almost two years ago. While the state didn’t allow the first licensed adult use marijuana retail stores to open until January 2014, possession of up to an ounce and home cultivation of up to six plants has been legal for adults since late 2012. That is especially important in this debate because Initiative 71 would only legalize limited personal possesion (sic) and home growing by adults, so Colorado in 2013 provides a perfect test case.

In addition the “proof” that marijuana legalization has gone badly comes from citing an anti-marijuana legalization group without pointing to any data or studies. The best public data we have from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment actually found marijuana use among teens dropped after the state legalized marijuana, but the Washington Post might have missed this because they didn’t realize marijuana was actually legalized in late 2012 not in 2014.

The editorial board even ignored the Washington Post article by Radley Balko which highlighted the flaws in Project SAM’s argument about impaired driving, with data showing traffic deaths are down since the retail shops opened.

It’s pretty shameful that a media outlet as large as the Washington Post, which no doubt has numerous editors on their staff, didn’t fact check an anti-marijuana propaganda article like this one. If the Washington Post’s goal is to sway voters away from supporting marijuana legalization, this is obviously not the way to do it. Long gone are the days when mainstream media outlets can use the ‘boogeyman tactic’ to try to scare voters. We live in an age where facts are checked, and people have the ability to research claims and call out BS when they see it. I can’t wait to see Washington D.C. legalize marijuana, which I feel is likely this November. If you are able to do so, donate to the Washington D.C. campaign.


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Johnny Green


  1. I’ve only used Amazon a few times, but after I read about how they treat their (mostly temp) workers, I haven’t had a need to purchase through Amazon again. I wonder if they miss my business… :)

  2. I believe The Post used to be owned by Hearst Newspapers, before they sold it to Jeff Bezos. So their stance is not surprising.

  3. Project SAM is simply a lobbying arm of big pharma, big alcohol, and the forced rehab industry.

  4. The WaPo’s credibility on this issue was destroyed the instant they cited SAM propaganda as a justification for their position, and ignored the mounting real-world data that disprove those assertions. If their editorial board is unwilling to or incapable of doing enough research to separate fact from fiction on this issue, then that shows a level of sloppy journalism and lack of professionalism that belongs in a tabloid, not a major US newspaper. A news organization’s role should be to inform and educate, not mislead and obfuscate. I hope they lose lots of subscribers over this. Who can possibly take them seriously now?

  5. Thank you, Cyndysub, but I haven’t said anything new and if they were listening, congress has heard it too.

  6. The Post has historically published news stories using the mindset “don’t confuse us with the facts” as their informational platform.
    Rather than spending the time and effort gathering the facts they have found it much quicker, easier and less expensive to make them up as they go along.
    About the only thing this newspaper gets right is an occasional weather forecast.

  7. That’s just step one. If it passes, then the next step would be for the DC city council to set up a regulatory and sales regime.

  8. “Straight buyers”? I don’t know what you mean… As opposed to gay buyers?

    No matter, if you’re dissing Amazon, I agree.

  9. The way this legalization measure is laid out seems flawed. A disaster waiting to happen. 1) Able to have 2 oz’s on ur person at any time….(why so much?) – 2) It cannot be sold…..really? How does the DC regulate with no funding to pay regulators? No sales, no taxes…. right? 3) Amatures causiung house fires trying to grow. after all it is the only way to have cannabis, cause no one can sell it. VERY STRANGE – I’m all for legalizing, but this just seems misguided somehow….

  10. Washington post you are supposed to write the news. Not make up the news. How does it feel to get your lies thrown back at you.

  11. There were close minded individuals during alcohol prohibition too. Kids die from seizures and CBD does work. The number one killer in the U.S. is overdose of pain meds. News shocker? That includes Tylenol. Why would anyone believe large pharmaceutical companies would have our best interest in mind. They KILL thousands every year from people who suffer from pain. God made cannabis not man. Pharmaceutical companies lobby congress to keep cannabis illegal. I wonder why? I have lost all respect for your publication. This has to be the dumbass article I have ever read.

  12. Wow, you mean to tell me with the millions of cannabis users we didn’t have impaired drivers before the reform act? Really? Also this is a fact that CBD oil extract was discovered in Israel by a chemist in 1955. The chemist published his findings as an effective way to help with sezure disorders. Our government as well as large pharmaceutical companies has “HIDDEN” this information. Until Cambridge and Harvard university started their study and confirmed the research. George Washington used cannabis. Our U.S. constitution was written on hemp paper. The textile industries will stand to increase our economic standings by trillions of dollars alone. I personally suffer from chronic pain and I am prescribed 120 hydrocodone 10mg every month that doesn’t help. Actually according to my doctor they are killing me. I can smoke a bowl of weed and the pain is tolerable. So according to people who are opposed to legal cannabis it’s ok if I die as long as I trust our government and large pharmaceutical companies to have my best intentions? I think I will reconsider my source for journalistic integrity. Perhaps the national inquire would be more helpful then the Washington post. They post everything without truth as well. Does sezure patients have relief? Yes they do! Do I have relief from pain because of cannabis? Yes I do.

  13. Since Jeff Bezos from Amazon owns the Washington Post, their writers probably have to parrot the corporate line.

  14. A toast to you sir! Well said doesn’t convey it well enough. You should throw this at a congressional hearing if they would only allow it.

  15. and a little later on the same article: 6:51 AM EDT

    One more thought………I just noticed your ‘ignore user’ button for comments. That option should be available for us to use on the editorial board’s ill-considered uninformed comments. When I have the choice of articles on Google news I have a non-rigid hierarchy with my choices being NPR, Huffington Post, the WP, the NYT, The Guardian, all fairly high on the list, followed by in the middle with RT and Al-Jazeera and FOX “news” near the bottom. My revised list has the WP much closer to FOX.
    Keep up the good work Johnny.
    and it harm none, do what you will

  16. FYI: I posted this on the WP at 6:16 AM EDT here it is with no corrections,
    I read the comments section of articles that I have concerns about and I wonder if the writer, editors and publishers of these articles ever bother to read them. Since editors and publishers get to give an opinion I won’t hesitate to state mine.
    Cannabis has been associated with humanity for over 10,000 years with no dire consequences. The Marijuana Tax Act of 1937 was the tipping point for the prohibition. So we’ve had about 80 years of prohibition that was based on fabricated ‘news stories’, ala Hearst yellow journalism. William Randolph Hearst was a self serving racist bigot who stood to gain from removing hemp made paper from the market so his vast wood pulp producing lands became more profitable. The DuPonts were interested in removing hemp from the game to open up the market for nylon and other petrochemical products. Henry Anslinger was an opportunist who took the bureaucratic organizations from alcohol prohibition and built an dollar eating empire that has led to the DEA and it’s supporting alphabet agencies. These were some of the champions in the new prohibition. Hearst set the tone of for the only media of his day with ‘the big lie’. A few years later the film developing film industry gave us the ultimate stereotype of prohibitionist propaganda, “Reefer Madness”. A little later we had Tricky Dick Nixon, Nancy and Ronnie Raygun and others continuing the ‘big lie’ in reaction to the peace movement that helped end the war in Nam, now known as Hippy Bashing. The big surprise is that after 80 years of intensive propaganda some of us sheeple have been able to shuck off this brainwashing and question the ‘big lie’. 10,000 years without a blip of a single death versus 80 years of prohibition with all kinds of casualties and deaths from enforcement of prohibition, not to mention the rise of the privatized prison industry to house our disenfranchised and persecuted citizens. The smooth flow of history for 10,000 years or 80 years of misery?

  17. Sabet rides again! He probably had a hand in this along with his punk drug warrior and abuser Kennedy. I would think Kennedy would drop out since he has other ways to get money and everyone knows he had bigger issues then weed addiction lol.

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