Marijuana is an illegal narcotic, but you might not know that by watching TV.
Now marijuana use on television is often tied-into an aspirational lifestyle where good-looking, cool, affluent characters smoke pot or do things like bake it into food and sell it.
In response, the Parents Television Council is putting pressure on some TV shows to stop portraying marijuana use in a positive light.
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"We're seeing very casual treatments of that on shows that are very popular with young viewers including "Family Guy, The Cleveland Show, American Dad," Melissa Henson, a PTC spokesperson said. "All of which are animated programs and some of the highest rated programs among viewers as young as two to 11 and also very popular with teenagers 12-17 who are extremely impressionable at that age."
Historically we've seen marijuana use on TV portrayed negatively, such as in the context of an arrest or a precursor to another crime. But not anymore.
"If teens see attractive characters using pot recreationally with no consequences they come to view that as not only okay behavior, but even normal, acceptable, mainstream behavior," Henson said.
While pot smoking on TV is on the rise, cigarette smoking has decreased, purportedly because of the health risks of kids imitating what they see on TV.