Parents can stop wringing their hands about Four Loko because there's a new product that's said to be encouraging kids to try illicit substances. "Pothead Ring Pots" and "Pothead Lollipops" don't actually contain marijuana, but many fear it's prepping kids to transition from an innocent sugar high to a drug high.
Amazingly, the product, which is produced by Kalan LP of Pennsylvania, has been on the shelves for six to nine months at 1,000 stores around the country, but parents are only complaining about it now. Buffalo, New York City Councilmember Dariu Pridgren has spearheaded the campaign to remove the sour-apple flavored candy from shelves after a parent brought it to his attention. Company president Andrew Kalan told the AP, "This is the first complaint I've heard, and people are usually not shy. I'm actually surprised this is the first."
The product isn't intended to introduce kids to the joys of weed. The packages are stamped with the word "legalize," and it seems they're supposed to appeal to adult potheads. Kalan resports "it does pretty well," and it's actually pretty genius, becaus buying legalization-promoting propoganda is as far as many pot users are willing to go to promote their political cause.
The problem is that whatever the intent, the products ended up in the candy aisle in some corner stores in Buffalo, not in the back of Spencer's next to the penis necklaces and boob-shaped cake pans (I haven't been in Spencer's in the past decade, but I'll assume not much has changed). Councilmember Pridgen says he won't grant licenses to stores in his district that plan to sell the products, and he says he'll embarrass any stores that already sell it. This may not be a problem because the candy is already disappearing from store shelves in Buffalo.
Kalan defended the product, saying, "It's just candy... It's sour apple flavor, it doesn't claim to be pot in disguise or anything like that." Some of the uproar may amount to grandstanding by local politicians. I enjoyed a few candy cigarettes in my youth and didn't become a pack-a-day smoker as an adult. But it's easier to have a candy removed from stores than to tackle the more serious problem of kids using pot and other far more serious drugs. Still, store owners should have enough common sense to display the product where kids can't see it, as no good can come from children picking up leftist pro-marijuana views from a candy wrapper.