It’s a bit of genius, when you think about it. Fans attending NASCAR’s Brickyard 400 races this weekend will be treated to pro-marijuana video ad on the JumoTron billboard just outside of Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
The ad is a spoof of a beer commercial, touting the wacky weed as a sensible alternative to alcohol. Pot, says the ad’s narrator, is “the new beer”, because there’s “no calories, no hangovers, and no violence” associated with its use.
The ad is produced by the Marijuana Policy Project, a Washington D.C.-based advocacy group.
Over the three-day weekend race, upwards of 600,000 fans may attend the race. The privately-owned track seats 225,000.
“We think it’s critical that the public recognize that marijuana is objectively less harmful than alcohol,” says Mason Tvert, who created the spot and who is a spokesman for the Marijuana Policy Project.
He says he bought the ad space from Grazie Media for a “non-profit” rate of $2,200. The spot, which he says he and two staffers made with stock film footage for about $350 over three days, is scheduled to appear 72 times over the three-day period.
NASCAR and Indianapolis Motor Speedway officials are powerless to to do anything about the ads, since the JumboTron is not on track property. No doubt conservative-leaning motorsports fans may get their noses bent out of shape over the ad (Ronnie Hults excepted), but maybe that’s what MPP is hoping for. Any publicity is good publicity, after all.
NASCAR is notoriously touchy when it comes to the noxious weed: they pulled the plug on Cannabis Planet TV’s car sponsorship deal in 2010 when they saw the marijuana leaf logo they were planning to use.
It’s a bit of delicious irony that the ad should be displayed at a NASCAR race — being that it will be the first time that a marijuana ad will be displayed near any major sporting event.
And not only is the ad pro-pot, it’s also anti-beer … and at a NASCAR event, that could cause riots.
Why Does NASCAR Hate Marijuana? | THE Weed Blog http://t.co/VTBUB7H
— Moms For Marijuana (@Moms4Marijuana) August 29, 2011