While working on our story about the beer distributors giving money to an anti-Prop 19 group, I sent out requests for quotes to several organizations and individuals. One of the organizations I contacted was The California Police Chiefs Association, who gave the same group some $30,000.

I asked The CPCA their reaction to the beer distributors giving $10,000 to the same organization, and here is the response from Leslie McGill, Executive director of the association:

This is a public safety issue.

California leaders, transportation companies, businesses, local governments and law enforcement from throughout CA are opposing this poorly written initiative because it sets no regulations, no state oversight and does not collect one dime in state tax revenue.

Alcohol is regulated statewide by the ABC, whereas Prop 19 would leave it up to an unmanageable patchwork of 536 different jurisdictional entities to try and “regulate” and “control” marijuana.

The state has set standards on what constitutes DUI of alcohol but this measure omits any definition of what constitutes DUI of marijuana.

You might also consider that the Beer and Beverage distributors own and operate large vehicle fleets that are based, licensed and travel across the state. As such, I’m sure they feel a great responsibility to ensure their workers and drivers are safe.

I would think they would no more support allowing their drivers to drink beer before getting behind the wheel of their trucks or vans, than they would support them smoking marijuana before getting behind the same wheel.

Let’s be serious for a moment. If the beer companies were worried about public safety they wouldn’t sell a product that leads to so much death, misery, and violence. Cannabis is safer in every way than alcohol, including on the roadways.

As far as regulations, I agree that set criteria need to be established when it comes to what constitutes a DUI, for the safety of everyone, including the accused. And a state tax will come shortly after Prop 19’s passage; any casual observer of governments in action knows that.

And finally, let’s dismiss this notion that beer companies oppose Prop 19 because “it sets no regulations, no state oversight and does not collect one dime in state tax revenue.” They could care less; they want to protect their intoxicated and dying customers from the safer alternative of marijuana.

People die everyday from alcohol. Those aligned with the beer companies must take some responsibility for that.

Joe Klare

About The Author

Joe Klare has been writing about marijuana issues for the past 5 years online, in print and on air.

11 Responses

  1. Fedupwithstupid

    Public safety my ass! For the safety card to mean anything we first need to make cell phone use while driving an imprisonable offence. This issue is a much larger problem that effects many more people than DWI and DUI’s combined times 2. So please knock it off with the phoney safety garbage. I have tried over and over to spark a debate on stoned drivers vs. mobile phone booth drivers and to date I have no takers. Impaired is impaired whether it comes from a bottle, can, rolled up in a paper, or wraped in plastic with tiny buttons. The results are the same.

  2. Alcohol

    There are many warnings, education, strict laws, alcohol abuse treatment centers, alcohol abuse organizations surrounding the use of alcohol.

    With marijuana, there is NONE. It is open for all. The propaganda that PROP 19 is putting out there is MARIJUANA is a WONDER DRUG/SECOND COMING OF CHRIST DRUG that is safe for everyone. That is a complete lie. The pro-supporters of PROP 19 are not forth-coming with the dangers of using marijuana especially its use affecting the youth. Prop 19 is a poorly written socially irresponsible proposition that does not address or support the problems associated with marijuana use.

    That’s the big difference. That is why the Alcohol companies are against Prop 19 because they are socially responsible. You mix alcohol and marijuana which people do, that spells more trouble for many.

  3. echo134

    typical fear/smear B/S! we are talking about a subject/substance for people 21YRS. OR OLDER!!!!!!!!! it has nothing to do with ”affecting the youth” YES/19

  4. Son Of Liberty

    To Alcohol:
    Well written uneducated response. Typical of a monkey tied to the music box. There are no treatment centers for cannabis stativa simply because its not a physically addictive substance. The few that do exist simply do at our governments disposal. Alcohol on the other hand can be addictive to the point of death. Hence its often referred to as an intoxicant. Cannabis on the other hand cant be referred to in such a way. We are talking about a none toxic plant here. Please feel free to fact check. Get a gallon or two of fine grain alcohol and drink it up. Get 50 gallons of the most potent cannabis you can find and smoke it up. I recommend the cannabis first for you wont be alive after your alcohol.

    As far as children are concerned, legalizing the plant makes it available via legal and safe sources. This means kiddies get the ID check. Do you think local drug dealers check little Johnny’s ID? Besides parents need to look out for the children in which they have. This is not every citizens duty despite what you have been told. The alcohol industry fears cannabis re-legalization simply because it cuts into profits. Poison vendors dont get the privilege of worrying for my safety.

    Despite all of your “sky is falling”, those who use cannabis are here now. We have always been here. We will be here long after this civ has crumbled into dust. No matters what laws or injustices we suffer we will still be here. All you really loose is one target for your bigotry if you simply let us be.

    I hope one day you wake up, until then at least sleep well.

  5. Deuce

    Marijuana is a wonder drug. Why do you think people from many different cultures have been using it for thousands of years? Ofcourse, it does need to be regulated which it will, and a safty and warning labels on the product. Medical cannabis already does all of that. Alcolol companies don’t want competition. Let’s be honest, cannabis is harmless. It’s been proven to be safer than tobacco, alcohol, and 99.9% of perscription drugs. If one cannot accept the truth, go pop some pills and drink your booze!

  6. eff you

    i have never witnessed someone being responsible on alcohol.i have never seen someonesmoke a couple joints and beat their wife and kids like someone probably would if they drank alcohol. alcohol causes stomach ulcers and liver damage. so your argument abount anything or anyone being responsible with alcohol is bogus! alcohol distributor is no different than a crack dealer

  7. Fedupwithstupid

    Like I said, if safety was the real reason cell phones use while driving would have the same punishment and laws againt their use because it is irresponcalble as well.

  8. Shampoovta

    This is a very good start. Now we have what the cops would like to see in the law. However, how do we insure the new Marijuana industry will be as well regulated as the alcohol industry? It is brand spanking new! This is kind of chicken and the egg. How did New York handle it’s legalizing alcohol back in prohibition? Plus people are dyeing! The clock is ticking! We need to save lives in Mexico NOW! I’ll take the bird in the hand.

  9. Yes on Prop 19 Supporter

    Another confusing response from the Police Association! What stops legislators from being able to create rules to assign the ABC the additional task of policing Cannabis sales within weeks of passage of Prop 19? The ballot initiative even recommends in plain text that the legislature pass additional laws to cover regulation and hemp production in the final section as all the new controls and rules need to be fully debated by our legislatures AFTER the right to possess Cannabis legally has been re-granted back to Californians. There is no motivation for anyone to make any sensible rules until the people forces the issue to be seriously dealt with by the legislature, which is what this proposition does. The initiative system is NOT a replacement for good legislating, but it is a way to allow the people to have their voice heard, so please consider that point when you’re attacking the merits of the law.

  10. J707

    Im curious, did the 21st amendment detail the specific taxation policies, employee drug-screening, highway sobriety tests, and rules for personal home brewing?

    Surely all that would have to have been included in its text…lest the 21st amendment be as “poorly-written” and “irresponsible” as Prop 19 apparently is.

    Someone really ought to ask the police chiefs how many people are arrested each year for driving under the influence of substances other than alcohol. Since we keep hearing the claim that no critera exists for determining a DUI/DWI other than for alcohol…we can reasonably expect that number to be zero, right?

    @Alcohol:

    Marijuana is a drug which is impossible to overdose on and causes no actual chemical dependency.

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