FOX News Says Marijuana Activists are "Internet Trolls"

Recent months have brought an unprecedented level of positive mainstream discussion about reforming our marijuana laws. To those who've been working for decades to create a national dialogue surrounding marijuana policy, it's a sign of hope and progress. To the folks at FOX News, it's a f#$king internet prank:

President Obama's pledge to open the White House up to the public through online forums faces an irksome challenge: a plague of Internet "trolls" -- troublemakers who work to derail cyber-conversations through harassing and inflammatory posts.

The problem became immediately apparent last month when Obama held an online "town hall" forum on the economy and invited the public to post questions on the White House Web site.

Those questions, in turn, were voted on by users to determine which ones the president would answer.

Three and a half million people participated in the event, but the "trolls" had their way: Following a coordinated campaign by marijuana advocates to vote their topic to the top of the list, questions on the future of the U.S. dollar and the rising unemployment rate were superseded by questions about legalizing pot as an economic remedy.


Really, FOX News? You are so incapable of understanding our argument that you would dismiss us as saboteurs? If the mere mention of reforming marijuana laws is such a grand affront to civil discourse, let me introduce you to a few more "trolls" out there on the internet spreading crazy ideas about not arresting people for marijuana:

There's Joe Klein at Time, David Sirota at The Nation, Kathleen Parker at the Washington Post, Paul Jacob at TownHall.com, Hendrik Hertzberg at The New Yorker, Andrew Sullivan at The Atlantic, Glenn Greenwald at Salon, Debra Saunders at the San Francisco Chronicle, Leonard Pitts at Miami Herald, John Richardson at Esquire, Margery Eagan at Boston Herald and many more. If these names sound familiar to you, it's becaue they aren't trolls at all, rather they are respected journalists who are joining the national conversation about the harms of our vicious marijuana laws.

In one of Obama's recent online forums, I saw this question: "How many donuts can I fit on my dong?" That was a troll, and it got deleted. This is a movement, and it isn't going away.  Our issue is bigger than the organizations backing it. It didn't win Obama's forum because marijuana reformers know something about online organizing that other interest groups don't. It won because it is this defining question that quickly separates petty hypocrites from bold leaders, that distinguishes self-evident truths from antiquated propaganda, and that pits common sense against the mindless drug war hysteria that maintains a frigid stranglehold on our political culture, rendering impotent the promise of change that inspired so many hopeful Americans to lay their hopes and dreams at the steps of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

It won because millions among us have been arrested and abused at the expense of our own precious tax dollars, with no credible explanation and no honorable conclusion on the horizon. And it won because President Obama himself once spoke of the "utter failure" of these laws, only to then embrace the endless drug war death march that destroys everything it was meant to preserve.

So no, FOX News, we are not "troublemakers" at all. We are here to solve a problem and anyone who thinks there are more important things to worry about would be well advised to stop making this take longer than it has to.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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To treat Fox news as

To treat Fox news as anything other than a corporate status quo, Republican entrenched mouthpiece, is to do your readers and yourself a disfavor. Americans and their journalists are speaking out. Hume, Hannity, Colmes and even Murdock himself have no meaning to offer - just fear, fear, fear.

Honestly, its true

let me explain, I love marijuana, I want it legalized pretty bad, but this IS true. On sites like reddit and digg stories referring to this Town Hall with instructions to go there and upvote weed stories reached the front page. Both of those sites have been known to bring down a many a weaker server if that website hits the front page, its likely to assume that a LOT of votes reached that site through these social media sites, and while most of those votes are pro-marijuana they aren't really all that indicitive of the population at large. Do you really believe that 90% of cnn viewers want weed legalized? that 45% think all drugs should be legal?

I even came here from reddit...

Just because it was on Digg

Just because it was on Digg doesn't make the people who voted trolls.
I would expect that most diggers are between 18 and 30 and hence this is probably of great importance to them.
Sure posting it on Digg will have made the questions different but I doubt it is any less legitimate because of it

It skews the results, but it

It skews the results, but it does not make them trolls. It just means that most of the respondents are those who are internet savvy.... not really surprising in the first place since they were online surveys.

Yes

"Do you really believe that 90% of cnn viewers want weed legalized? that 45% think all drugs should be legal?"

I believe this 100%

You forgot to mention...

Glenn Beck. Fox has probably heard of him.

I am heartened. Thanks for

I am heartened. Thanks for the link to Glenn Beck's pro-legalization stance video.

Epic

Scott, you go on the most epic rants...

Fox News Sponsors Terrorism

Who gives a fuck what fake fraudulent fox news thinks? Its not even real news just brainwash that the majority of the people can see very clearly. Look at what fox fake news did to its own journalists that were reporting on monsanto corporation which commits terrorism and industrial espionage every second. The drug war nothing but a terrorist wall street scam which creates misery and pain for profit.

Reformers Have Only One Use for FOX News

Troublemakers who work to derail cyber-conversations through harassing and inflammatory posts are one thing.  A corporate news network that derails national conversations through harassing and inflammatory newscasts is the same thing:  FOX News is the corporate troll of the television communications medium.

According to FOX Troll, American citizens are only expected to ask the president online questions about the economy, a topic being addressed every day ad nauseum by FOX talking heads and by every other news agency in the world.  Has FOX Troll forgotten who championed the political idiots who created the current recession/depression and who still have no clue how to fix the damage they caused?  It was FOX Troll, of course.

If FOX Troll serves any useful purpose at all for reformers it’s that it provides a window into the bizarre fantasies of those who imagine the kind of world they would prefer to live in and who then act upon their fantasy as if this vision actually represents the real world.  Drug free America?  Yeah, right; and the South and slavery shall rise again, like the ‘good old days’.

Giordano

The Criminal knights of malta

Take note that FOX owner Murdoch, as with that pile of sh*t William Randolf Hearst who pioneered yellow journalism for the criminal drug 'laws' were both members of the Knights of Malta:

http://continuingcounterreformation.blogspot.com/2008/07/roman-catholic-...

http://freedomofmedicineanddiet.blogspot.com/2009/02/there-is-special-pl...

http://freedomofmedicineanddiet.blogspot.com/2008/01/pharmacratic-mental...

Let's boycot Fox news

I already do nowadays, I used to watch it as much as any other news channel, until I figured out what they were all about. I plan to delete the channel off my TV all together.

Obama and Fox Are Both In Denial

What they seem to forget is that Obama's town hall site allows for people to downvote a topic they deem inappropriate, or even flag it for removal. Out of 96,000 participants in the recent online town hall, only a few hundred downvoted questions about marijuana legalization, while thousands gave these questions the upvote. To believe legalization advocates were really stuffing the site, you'd have to assume that only a few hundred of the participants were valid, and if you assume that, then you'd have to admit the online town hall was a dismal failure.

But it was not. There were many other questions which also got thousands of votes. The only conclusion, therefore, is that people want drug law reform and legalization of marijuana. Q.E.D.!

Really?

I thought Fox News reported that the Obama administration basically said Marijuana Activists are trolls. Don't just believe this crap because some guy wrote an article on it. Trolls.

How are we "internet trolls"?

If Fox News is so reputable, then why are they making baseless generalizations and accusations. Sounds like Fox News doesn't have any real journalists at all. Because a real journalist wants to get to the truth of a story, not just what sounds good. Anything Fox News says should be taken with a grain of salt. As far as I am concerned they have lost all credibility a long time ago. Also, go find your scapegoat for media attention whoring elsewhere Fox.

Sincerely,
AdventWeed

misplaced outrage?

Fox news is what it is, and doesn't try and hide it.

But those of you who thought Obama would take this issue seriously seem to look awfully foolish right now. Look at the way Obama answered the question. He didn't want to answer it, and when he did, it's not sounding the same as "running for President" Obama now does it?

So on the integrity scale, this issue shows Fox news it has more than the current President.

Well... sort of... I

Well... sort of...

I absolutely agree that Obama is hypocrite. But saying that Fox news doesn't try to hide what it is... or said differently... try to pass itself odd as something it's not...

No. Fox news is (at best) entertainment.

Unfortunately, the other news shows have slid so far down the hole that Fox has created, I can't watch much network news. It's just sensationalized crap.

Would you call people in law enforcement trolls?

Yes - people in law enforcement have joined their voices against marijuana prohibition. See the web site at http://www.leap.cc - that stands for Law Enforcement Against Prohibition! Are they trolls too?

Just My Opinion

Why get so pissed off to be called a Troll? It seems to me to be better than Anonymous! We are real people, we are taxpayers, we are the ones putting our asses, careers, family and friends on the line. I'm talking about people that use their real names, Scott Morgan, Keith Stroup, Dana Larson, Mark Emery. STOP HIDING BEHIND THE PUSSY SHIELD ANONYMOUS.

Robert Hutton
Virginia

FOX Trolls

So, Fox News thinks sick people who need to use Medicinal Marijuana to have better, less painful lives are Internet Trolls???!!!

While I'm sure, like with any topic you will have those who do not add much to the discussion, but Cannabis Activists are seizing momentum and the power of the Internet (kind of like Obama did to help win his election) to abolish 70+ years of Racist, Greed-filled Drug Prohibition. Maybe the dolts at Fox should Google: "Marijuana+Racism+Hearst+Anslinger+Mellon+Big Pharma+Hemp Prohibition"

Bitches.

~ @MaryJCannabian

Fox News = Dumbing down of America

I have boycotted Fox News for well over two years now and have utter disdain for those who love them!

My Boycott List:

Wal-Mart
Mother
Fox news
Exxon
BP
All Chinese foods

"Trolls"

Honestly, I didn't hear it, but I read about it. Considering what I've heard since Obama made his laughing comment regarding, "what that says about people on the Internet", I believe that the term "trolls" refers to what Obama may have also been referring to- that 'our side' was asking the same question several times, making it appear that many voters wrote a plethora of marijuana-related questions, when really, it was only a very few. I am not saying that happened. All I know is that I didn't ask, but wanted to know, so I was very disappointed when he ignored it. After all, in his candidacy he did say he favored legalization to some degree. And now, he's totally the opposite. He fell right in with the establishment. I'm surprised I haven't heard anyone say "Uncle" yet.

Greg Jones
Texas

Talk about immaturity.

Call us as many names as you want FOX. Trolls, trouble-makers, hoodlems, stoners, hippies. The fact is, you don't know anything about us and don't care to find out. Yeah I can see how you would not even bother to argue with a statement like "I want pot legalized because I like to get high." That is a stupid statement but when we front a legit argument about how legalization will help the economy, nobody knows what to say. You can't argue because you know it's true. I've only smoked marijuana once in my life but I'm still a supporter of legalization. Does that make me a troll? Some would say I'm upper-class but FOX would go as far as insult me by calling me a troll. Sure I'm a troll, and opposers are idiots. Now how far are we getting with name-calling?

Not technically trolls

"While Obama's marijuana advocates wouldn't technically be considered trolls, who are defined by their lack of definitive positions and a simple desire for disorder, these special-interest groups do muddle the president's message and related discourse."

I of course agree that it is ridiculous to call the marijuana-reform advocates trolls. However, I think it is important to point out that the cited article later on withdraws the comparison. It seems that Fox's real mistake is to think that these advocates are a special-interest group, rather than a significant portion of the US population. What Fox needs to realize is that questions about marijuana reform are serious business, not a distraction from more important topics.

can you read?

sweetie, you need to read the article first. Don't read what you want to read, but what it actually says. The guy says the internet trolls are trying to distract from a mature conversation, there to annoy and be stupid. We all know who they are, and this article is not even dealing with legalization of drugs but with "trolling". you can have a mature conversation about the issue, the trolls are not after mature anything. and that's what the article is talking about. and by the way, conservatives are actually very often for legalization of drugs because they believe in personal liberty. I'm a conservative and i'm all about legalization of all drugs and prostitution because i don't believe in government running my life. my democrat friend, who's nothing short of in love with barack obama, is against legalization of pot, against gay marriage and believes in creationism. so please, just cause you're too young to anything about people and this country, don't spread your ignorance like this. or at least, don't tell anybody it's you...

more supporters

don't forget the entire editorial team of The Economist, the conservative magazine that endorsed Bush in 2000.

Fox news

Fox news..you really need to get a grip. You call us internet trolls? We the people speak the truth..something that you are entirely affraid to do. Read your history. Cannabis hemp could put this country back on it's feet in two years. China is in that process right now. All you have to do is look at someone like the ever so great Bill O'Riely...the one who is NEVER wrong and ALLWAYS perfect..and who allways lets you know it by yelling over you like some little pantie waste momma's boy. You all make me want to puke. Keep on spewing out what the politicians want you to spew out...or maybe just try to get a life. Steven L Quillen...San Diego..medical cannabis user and advocate. P.S. The only trolls I know of are you and 90% of washington D.C.

get a grip

To be completely honest. It doesnt surprise me that marijuana topped the list. Why because it seems that people who use social media websites like digg or reddit tend to be liberally biased. When was the last time a pro-Republican/right wing got a fair shake or positive outlook? Never in my 3 years of constant digging have i ever seen it hit the top viewed. This also cooresponds to the tech-generation being much more liberal. Therefore, I dont think that FOX was totally wrong by saying that.

FOX TROLLS

I must be an internet troll, I have read each of the comment listed here; I have come to the conclusion that Fox's "troll" label suits me just fine. During my 45+ years of life I have been called many things, such as. "Freak, dope head, stoner, drug addict, pot smoker, drug dealer, drug user, worthless, druggy, bastard (ex-wife) and my all time favorite, shithead. Fox's Murdoch needs to modify the views of this network or the trolls will do it for them. Oh, did I mention, I am also called Doctor, father, husband, companion, sir, friend, nice guy, leader, great doctor, one hell of a good guy and much more. So as you can see labels do not bother me; however governmental fear mongering and news network reporters’ stupidity does.

CKS
TX Farmer

I saw the headline "Fox news

I saw the headline "Fox news says marijuana activists are just internet trolls" in Digg's Top in 24hr section and clicked on it because it was so ironic. Isn't there something more important you guys can put your energy into? What right are you fighting for exactly? The right to take a bong hit off the hood of a police car? Cause you can pretty much smoke pot with impunity in this country already.

Not going to jail would be a

Not going to jail would be a plus. Look up the incarceration rate for marijuana possession.

I guess the Mexican

I guess the Mexican ambassador is a troll..right?
He did say that it needs to be taken in a serious matter.
Yet Fox laughs at him.

LOL TROLLS

if you don't like the opinion of online crowd than don't put out polls online. it's that simple. ur asking people..."who cares about this subject?" people answer and you bitch. stop waiting for the answers you want and realize the answers your given

Really Fox?

Does anybody even take fox seriously anymore... i mean cmon, pretty much everything i hear from them i just say, hmm thats what they want us to think.

Don't blame Fox, maybe they read Wired

"Here's the big question: the marijuana lobby has essentially hijacked the process and the top questions in about half the categories listed are about drug legalization. How'd this happen?"
...
"This is trolling, albeit well-done trolling. The questions the pot-lobby have asked have been submitted in serious ways, and they aren't about Area 51. Obama thus now faces a classic Internet dilemma: how to deal with the trolls? Will he cave and answer one of the pot questions? Or will he just ignore them?"

"I was once given a good piece of advice — "don't feed the trolls" — and I think he should follow it here so as not to encourage this kind of ballot-stuffing in the future."

http://blog.wired.com/business/2009/03/will-obama-cave.html

ballot stuffing?

fuck off! Prohibitions were and still are run by terrorist frauds posing as government and news media. Everyone knows prohibitions are unconstitutional therefore illegal. Terrorism is not acceptable to be the way of life in a free and prosperous country. So keep ignoring peoples cries for help while disgruntled military prepare to destroy all terrorists and their prohibitionist fake government,wall st united nations installed scam!

Who believes FOX News,

Who believes FOX News, anyway?

Fair and balanced

This coming from the only news station that has to say it's fair and balanced

MJ concerns and consequences

A major part of the issue to keep the ban on MJ is the agribusiness, timber growers associations.
All of the parachute cords and shoe laces used by US troops during WWII were made from industrial hemp.
The growers of cotton and timber are major, major supporters of non legalization due to the fact their land would, in their paranoid opinions, become worthless.
You can grow the equivelent of a 20 year pine forest using industrial hemp in ONE YEAR. The threat to cotton growers is the same in that the tops of the plants are used for making cloth. The plants need no herbicides, chemical fertilizers nor specialized attention.
So, there is your third corporate power lobby to not legalize MJ. Big chemical companies stand to loose billions from the sale of these chemicals used to treat and fertilize cotton and herbicides used in timber farms.
There are NO hallucinogenic properties in INDUSTRIAL HEMP! But, the arguments are that it looks so much like the 'other' plant, it would be hard to tell them apart.
New Zealand, whose terrain is mostly rocky soils and terrain have made industrial hemp their most valuable export. Canada is beginning to produce industrial hemp.
So, I do not advocate the solution to the problems is legalization but just think those who are interested in knowing the truth should FOLLOW THE MONEY.
You can also realize the loss of revenues that would be suffered by brewers and distributors of alcoholic beverages!
When you look at the unorganized groups who want legalization as opposed to the organized groups who dont want it for their own selfish reasons, there isnt much chance the plant will be legalized any time soon.

Faux news

This network is nothing but a sad joke with zero credibility and even less intelligence.Why even give them any voice at all?They speak to a group that is smaller than we are and most are incapable of using a computer.I understand the anger and frustration that such a collection of morons has a platform but who watches them?The real trolls that wouldn't know an argument if it smacked them in the face.Let's relegate them to the slimy dark places that such use to hide and plot their insanity.Who takes Faux seriously?Limbaugh and Rove,who should be#1 in prison and #2 His cellmate.

Fox news hhuummm?

Wonder where they were with the news when the CIA rendition plane went down in Mexico with 3 tons of cocaine on board. Where was Fox news when George HW Bush and Gov Bill Clinton were trafficing cocaine and heroin in and out of Mena Arkansas..(see Clinton Chronicles..Google video or Youtube) See it's not about keeping your kids off drugs and marijuana is a gateway drug. Nope it's about these Govt criminal slime dealing the things that kill your kids and keeping it illegal so that prices are high and they make money. That's whats happening...Open your nose and smell the corruption. Legalize it, the prices drop and so does the corruption...If people want pot they get it legal or otherwise. Why are you and I paying $billions of dollars to house some guy/gal in a prison cell for doing something that hasn't harmed a soul...Think about that.

Merryjuana Christmas video on you tube

must see this video.MC Blitzen Merryjuana Christmas, hilarious
who wouldn't grow?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1G4MXy-NHVs

Internet Trolls

I had much rather be a troll than a corporate sponsored politician. It is my understanding they have special hot seats in hell reserved just for them.

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hat was a troll, and it got

hat was a troll, and it got deleted. This is a movement, and it isn't going away. Our issue is bigger than the organizations backing it. Regards Samuel Lozano

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