Although advertising remains a necessary part of the burgeoning cannabis industry, apparently, not everyone thinks so. A billboard in Modesto, California has caught the ire of several parents who think the racy advertisement is a bit too close to their children’s school for comfort.
Cannabis Billboard Sparks Outrage
The ad was made by Ignite Cannabis Company which is owned by Dan Bilzerian. As we expected from a company owned by Dan Bilzerian, the ad depicts two women in bikinis from behind, with each woman’s arms wrapped around the other’s waist. It says “Best Buds” in large white font across of their bodies.
The billboard itself has sparked plenty of outrage—both for its depiction of women, as well as its affiliation with marijuana. While recreational marijuana is legal in California, some parents think the billboard is too close to schools—it’s proximity to a local elementary school and high school has been alarming.
“I just don’t think our children need to see that,” Modesto resident Valerie Robers said to CBS Sacramento.“We have so much peer pressure that we’re, parents have to fight against, and now a billboard they can see every day, every time they leave home, every time they come home. It’s just really upsetting.”
“Basically selling sex and it’s derogatory towards women. I don’t want to see pictures like that, and a lot of other people don’t either,” she added.
Is the Billboard Too Close to Schools?
While several parents have complained about the billboard’s proximity to schools, a spokesperson from Ignite Cannabis Company told CBS that the advertisement meets all of the necessary zoning requirements. Under California state law, advertising signs for cannabis companies cannot be within 1,000 feet of a school for kindergarten through grade 12 students, a day care center, a playground, or a youth center. The billboard, allegedly, just makes the cut.
But while this may be the case, the contents of the billboard are actually unregulated. The city of Modesto does not require FCC-approval for their billboard advertisements. However, a city spokesperson urged angered Modesto citizens to notify the company about their racy billboards. Outfront Media owns the billboard itself, which, in turn, rents them out to companies like Ignite Cannabis to advertise their own product.
This particular ad advertises the use of cannabis and marijuana vaporizers, which the billboard states can be found in the company’s physical dispensary location. While these products are 100 percent legal for those 21 and over, parents still argue the message it sends to the city’s kids.
“I really do believe, it gives the wrong message, because what are we saying to the next generation, “ said another Modesto resident, Edward Cathcart.