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Washington State Drug Ad Is Aimed At Latinos

The Washington State Department of Health came up with an anti-marijuana campaign that they aimed directly at Latinos. In a billboard that popped up in Yakima, it shows a group of young Latinos and has as its slogan, “We don’t need pot to have fun. We’re Hispanics … We’re cool by default.” This, of course, angered many of the Latinos in Washington as it seemed like they were reinforcing stereotypes about Latinos taking drugs in general and pot in particular. I guess they watched one too many Cheech and Chong movies and thought that they were documentaries.

It’s hard to believe that this campaign was cleared by the bureaucracy of a state agency. Having first hand knowledge of how health departments usually work, I can tell you they are usually on the lookout for anything offensive. They claim that a group of 60 young people came up with the slogan. It’s sort of hard to believe that any percentage of those students were Latino. It just goes to show that stereotypes against Latinos are alive and well.

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