Jacob Sullum on Banning Marijuana Edibles and Flavored E-Cigarettes—for the Children


Jacob Sullum

Three weeks ago, a New York City councilman proposed a ban on flavored electronic cigarettes. Last week Colorado news outlets reported that the state health department had recommended a ban on almost all forms of edible marijuana products. As is often the case when politicians or bureaucrats demand new limits on liberty, both proposals were aimed at protecting children.

Although flavored e-cigarettes and marijuana edibles are intended for adults, appeal to adults, and can be legally sold only to adults, the prohibitionists argue that they cannot be tolerated because they also appeal to minors. The same rationale has been offered for bans on flavored tobacco products and sweet malt beverages. Jacob Sullum says this argument should be a non-starter in a free society, because it reduces adults to the level of children.