VIDEO: Colorado marijuana legalization effort launches first TV ad

The Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol (Amendment 64) will run its first television ad beginning tomorrow, May 11, during NBC’s “The Today Show.” The ad will also air during “Ellen,” and the Mother’s Day episode of “The Doctors.”

The ad features a young woman sitting at a laptop sending an email to her mother, explaining why she prefers marijuana over alcohol and asking her mother if she would like to talk about the issue. In particular, she tells her mother that marijuana poses less harm to her health than alcohol and that she feels safer around people using marijuana than she does around those using alcohol.

Betty Aldworth, advocacy director for the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol addresses the media in Denver a few weeks ago. She is surrounded by campaign volunteers. (Kersgaard)

“Our goal with this ad is to start a conversation – and encourage others to start their own conversations – about marijuana,” said Betty Aldworth, advocacy director of the Campaign to Regulate Marijuana Like Alcohol. “As more people talk to their family and friends about marijuana, more people understand that marijuana is objectively less harmful than alcohol and ought to be regulated like alcohol.”

The ad directs viewers to, a website in support of Amendment 64. The site complements the campaign’s strategy of encouraging young pro-legalization voters to talk about the issue with their parents, grandparents and other older voters.

“We will win this election if more older folks come to appreciate that marijuana is an acceptable and less harmful alternative to alcohol for adults,” Aldworth said. “For years they have been led to believe marijuana is more dangerous than it actually is, and that marijuana users are all slackers and losers. Once they hear from those closest to them that marijuana is used by millions of hard-working and professional people for the same reasons most adults use alcohol, they’ll be forced to think about why they would prefer people use alcohol instead of a less harmful substance.”

Polls have shown a tight election, but one in which the measure has a strong chance of passing. Even Denver Republicans voted in favor of the measure during the recent county assembly.

Scot Kersgaard has been managing editor of a political newspaper, editor and co-owner of a ski town newspaper, executive editor of eight high-tech magazines (where he worked with current Apple CEO Tim Cook), deputy press secretary to a U.S. Senator, and an outdoors columnist at the Rocky Mountain News. He has an English degree from the University of Washington. He was awarded a fellowship to study internet journalism at the University of Maryland's Knight Center for Specialized Journalism. He was student body president in college. He spends his free time hiking and skiing.

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