It was a lively give and take in the White Press press briefing yesterday and, in the midst of his usual routine of not answering questions, Press Secretary Sean Spicer fielded and avoided a lot of questions about the Trump administration’s take on medicinal and recreational marijuana use.
Perhaps most surprising in the exchanges was Spicer either not knowing that marijuana is not an opioid or knowing the truth and simply trying to convince Americans that smoking a joint is just like mainlining heroin.
“There is a big difference between that [medicinal use] and recreational marijuana,” said Spicer in answering a question about Trump’s views on enforcement of federal marijuana laws in states where recreational use is legal. “And I think that when you see something like the opioid addiction crisis blossoming in so many states around this country, the last thing that we should be doing is encouraging people. There is still a federal law that we need to abide by in terms of the medical — when it comes to recreational marijuana and other drugs of that nature.”
So remember that, people: According to Dr. Spicer, marijuana is right there in the same league with heroin, Vicodin and Demerol.
When the reporter asking that question — Roby Brock of Talk Business & Politics — did not accept that silly response and tried to follow up, Spicer moved on, while lecturing Brock on briefing-room manners.
Brock: What does that mean in terms of policy? A follow-up, Sean. What does that mean in terms of policy?
Spicer: Shannon. Glenn, this isn’t a TV program. We’re going to —
Brock: What is the Justice Department going to do?
Spicer: Okay, you don’t get to just yell out questions. We’re going to raise our hands like big boys and girls.
Brock: Why don’t you answer the question, though?
Spicer: Because it’s not your job to just yell out questions.
To her credit, Shannon — sorry, I do not know her last name or affiliation — used her time to follow up on the Trump administration’s stance on recreational marijuana legalized at the state level. Spicer then said only that the Justice Department will be looking into it further.
If Spicer really needs to learn about opioids, he should simply call White House booster Rush “Oxycontin King” Limbaugh. I’m sure he’ll be happy to explain everything.