• Marijuana Activists Force Removal of Misleading Ads

    by  • October 12, 2012 • Blog

    The National Cannabis Coalition is proud to help replace offensive, misleading anti-cannabis ads with ones that support an end to the harmful policy of cannabis prohibition.

    Cannabis law reform activists have had to battle years of Reefer Madness propaganda and lies.  A misleading billboard ad promoted by the prohibitionists at Protect Our Society, placed in several locations across Portland, Oregon, was just a recent example.  The ad was laughable to anyone with any common sense on the effects of cannabis and offensive to Oregon’s medical cannabis patients.

    Thanks to outrage from area patients and activists and the shadowy nature of Protect our Society’s funding, Clear Channel is removing these horrible ads.  Clear Channel released a statement regarding the removal of the ads, “The ads protesting marijuana are being removed because our policy is transparency of advertising campaigns and the advertisers who are sponsoring them.”

    KGW reported the story last night:

    Oregonians for Law Reform (OLR) are currently raising funds to replace the billboard ads with ones supporting an end to cannabis prohibition.  The National Cannabis Coalition is proud to pledge $1,000 towards these new ads because if Protect Our Society really wanted to prevent harmful consequences of drug abuse, they would support an end to the failed and harmful policy of cannabis prohibition.

    OLR’s press release announcing their intention to purchase the now-available ad space:


    *Contact: Sam Chapman (503) 396-9062


    *Anti-marijuana shadow group confuses meth with marijuana in new ads*
    *Marijuana activists force misleading ads to be removed*

    - *Oregonians for Law Reform to hold press conference*
    - *11am at Burnside Brewing Co. parking lot (7th & Burnside)*

    *(PORTLAND, Oct. 12)—- Oregonians for Law Reform (OLR), a local political action committee, will be holding a press conference today at 11am in the parking lot of Burnside Brewing Co., located at SE 7th and Burnside. The planned list of speakers will include; talk radio host and former Outreach Coordinator for the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws
    (NORML) Russ Belville; Communications Director for Measure 80 Roy Kaufmann, and Co-Director of Oregonians for Law Reform Sam Chapman.

    The press conference is being called to expose Protect our Society, an anti-marijuana shadow group tied to drug rehabilitation “torture” centers. Protect our Society was challenged by Oregon marijuana activists this week, resulting in the removal of seven recently purchased billboards.

    The ads depict a young girl, who appears sullen and festered with sores. When asked, Co-Director of Oregonians for Law Reform Sam Chapman said the image seems more reminiscent of anti-meth ad campaigns like “Faces of Meth” and not an accurate depiction of marijuana users.

    “It blows my mind that the prohibitionists over at Protect Our Society think Oregonians would buy into this ‘Reefer Madness’ propaganda.” said Chapman.

    The website listed on the billboards is registered to Calvina Fay, who currently serves as the Executive Director of Save our Society From Drugs, and the Drug Free America Foundation. Both of these organizations were
    founded by Mel and Betty Sembler after their first non-profit, Straight Inc., was accused running what amounted to “torture” centers in the early 1990′s.

    “From sexual abuse to false imprisonment, Mel Sembler and his organizations have profited off the struggles that youth encounter when entering drug rehabilitation; he also happens to be one of Mitt Romney’s main fundraisers”, Chapman said.

    Oregonians for Law Reform is in the process of buying billboards that will take the place of the ads that are scheduled to be removed by the end of the day. Oregonians for Law Reform has been working to raise money in support of Measure 80 and plans to put up billboards reminding voters about Measure 80, the initiative on the November 6th ballot that would end marijuana prohibition for Oregonians over the age 21.


    ****Side Note: The press conference will be held beneath one of the billboards, which is above the parking lot of Burnside Brewing Company. Burnside Brewing is allowing OLR the use of their parking lot for the press conference, but are in no way affiliated with the press conference, and do not want to be on record regarding the billboard. We thank you for respecting their wishes.


    Anthony Johnson is the executive director of the National Cannabis Coalition and our parent division, the American Victory Coalition. He also serves as a Board Member of Show-Me Cannabis Regulation, an organization working to end cannabis prohibition in Missouri. As President of the University of Missouri Law School ACLU Chapter, Anthony co-authored the measures that legalized medical cannabis possession and decriminalized personal possession for all adults within the city limits of Columbia, Missouri, in 2004. Following law school, Anthony practiced criminal defense for two years before working full time in the political field to help improve and protect civil liberties. You can follow Anthony on Twitter and also friend him on Facebook by following the links below as he posts mostly about civil liberties and politics with dashes of sports, music, movies and whatnot.


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