Dominic Holden’s Buzzfeed article revealing that the Donald Trump White House is choreographing a “secret war” on cannabis that calls upon various government agencies to publicize negative stories about marijuana brought out a variety of views. As I blogged, I didn’t think that the news was anything new or surprising as the federal government has been waging a Reefer Madness propaganda campaign and those entrenched forces aren’t going to give up their war easily.
I also opined that Trump may have not known anything about the secret war or could have been convinced after the fact that such a war could help his fellow Republicans at the ballot box in the upcoming mid-term elections. I sincerely doubt that this propaganda campaign was Trump’s idea, but now that it has been exposed, he does bear responsibility for it. Trump allies that also favor legalization, such as prominent supporters Roger Stone (longtime Trump friend and advisor) and Scott Adams (creator of Dilbert), have their own conspiracy theories, according to Marijuana Majority:
Asked about the report, Stone initially told Marijuana Moment via text message that the administration effort to produce data casting cannabis in a negative light was the “handiwork” of White House Chief of Staff John Kelly. But the next day, Stone sent a follow up text.
“Despite a very substantial effort on my part I have been entirely unable to confirm that anything in this BuzzFeed story is accurate or true,” he said.
Not everyone is flat-out denying the BuzzFeed News report, though. Some, like Adams, think this is actually part of a brilliant effort on the part of the president to embarrass Attorney General Jeff Sessions, a staunch prohibitionist and frequent target of Trump’s scorn.
During a Periscope session last week, Adams outlined a very intricate theory about why Trump would sign off on the anti-marijuana committee. Basically, it’s a plot to get Sessions fired without facing backlash from opponents, he said.
Holden completely stands by his piece, noting to Marijuana Majority that his story is backed by emails and documents. Also, very notably, no federal official, including anyone with the White House, has disputed the existence of the ongoing propagandist campaign. Trump backers that oppose prohibition may have a hard time believing that their guy would do such a thing, so he stated that he was inclined to support a states’ rights cannabis legalization bill, but politics can be complicated and the cannabis community is often thrown under the bus by supposed allies.
However, regardless of any so-called secret war or not, nothing is stopping the legalization movement. Cannabis legalization is more popular than virtually every politician, including Donald Trump and sooner or later, they will get on our train, or they’ll be voted out of office.