Sean “Jay-Z” Carter’s cannabis brand Monogram is setting up billboards on the borders of states with disparate cannabis laws, Ad Age reports. The message, “Here, Cannabis is Legal. Enjoy responsibly” will be on the ads when heading into legal states. When heading into states where cannabis remains prohibited, the billboards will read “Here, Cannabis is Illegal. Avoid the Bookings,” referring to arrests.
For two weeks the billboards, a combination of LED and truck, will be on the borderlines of Colorado/Wyoming, Colorado/Kansas, Illinois/Wisconsin, Michigan/Wisconsin, Nevada/Idaho, Oregon/Idaho, and Washington/Idaho.
A Monogram spokesperson told Ad Age that the borders were chosen because the two neighboring states have “the most starkly opposing regulations.”
“So the least progressive states bordering the most progressive – in order to best illustrate that a single state line can make a world of difference,” the representative said.
The campaign is tied in with the 50th anniversary of the Controlled Substances Act which outlawed cannabis federally, placing it in the Schedule I category claiming it has a “high potential for abuse” and “no currently accepted medical use.”
John Ehrlichman, a policy advisor to President Richard Nixon, admitted that cannabis was criminalized to “disrupt” the anti-war movement and the Black and “hippie” communities.
“The lasting effects of this law have reverberated through the past half-century, leading to injustices including mass incarceration for cannabis-related offenses. Progress has been made recently with states’ individual legalization efforts, but cannabis continues to be stigmatized by political agendas and the arbitrary borders that still demarcate who can benefit from it, whether that’s through entrepreneurship or the positive effects of its use.” – Monogram in a statement via Ad Age
Jay-Z, who joined cannabis company Caliva last year as a chief brand strategist, said that “cannabis culture has been marred by the effects of the [CSA] and stigmatized by political agendas.”
“While there has been progress, as we launch Monogram, we felt it was imperative that we call out the arbitrary borders that still demarcate who can benefit from cannabis, whether that’s through business or the positive effects of its use,” he said in a statement.
Jay-Z announced the launch of Monogram just last week, unveiling the brand’s website and Instagram page.