Few names are as commonly followed by the word “controversy” as Ann Coulter’s. The New York Times best-selling author is so well-known for her inflammatory comments and damning remarks that it is hard to actually be surprised by anything that she says anymore. However, at the nonpartisan political event Politicon, she railed against pot by saying that it is “destroying our country.” She then proceeded to double-down on her less-than-enlightened remarks by adding that pot “makes people retarded.” And that’s not all.
During the event, Coulter was in a debate with Young Turks correspondent Ana Kasparian on the subject of legal pot. Her anti-pot tirade began when Kasparian pointed out racial inequality in the enforcement of cannabis prohibition. In response, Coulter claimed to have read a study that suggests the black Americans lie more frequently about their use of the plant.
“There have been further studies where they actually drug test the person after asking ‘Do you smoke pot, or have you smoked pot in the last week?’ and it turns out there’s a racial difference in telling the truth on ‘Did you smoke pot’? Blacks were about 10 times more likely to lie and say they hadn’t smoked pot,” Coulter said but was unable to cite the origin of this study that she allegedly read.
When asked if pot should be legalized across all of the states, of course Coulter said no. In addition to her previous unfounded comments, she decided to inject some old-fashioned xenophobia into her criticism of America’s favorite plant: “Marijuana makes people retarded, especially when they’re young. We’ve got enough busboys. We’re bringing in busboys by the million through our immigration policy. We do not need a country of busboys. We’re destroying the country.”
Judging from the fact that more than half of the United States has legalized cannabis either recreationally, medicinally or both, her views are not shared by the majority of Americans. But they are a reflection of the critical lack of knowledge that is the very foundation of movements and organizations that oppose legalization. While it is easy to simply laugh off the words of someone so intent on sounding as ridiculous as possible, as often as possible, it is important to look to people like Coulter as an example of everything that the anti-pot crusaders get wrong.
Photo by Gage Skidmore