Starbucks Backing Restrictive Medical Marijuana Laws, Boycott Planned

Hardly a day goes by without Mason Tvert, head of SAFER (Safer Alternative For Enjoyable Recreation), going after some individual or institution standing in the way of legalizing marijuana use for adults in Colorado and beyond. Still, his latest target is a surprise: Starbucks, the ubiquitous peddler of a highly addictive substance — coffee.

Why? According to a manifesto on SAFER’s website, “The Colorado Drug Investigators Association (CDIA), the group spearheading anti-marijuana lobbying efforts, is sponsored by several local and national businesses including Starbucks Coffee, Glock handguns, and — you guessed it — members of the alcohol industry!”

With this in mind, Tvert is staging a news conference at a Denver Starbucks at noon today, calling for a boycott of the chain until it disassociates itself from the CDIA. But don’t rest easy, gun-packers and booze manufacturers. He may be coming after you next. Get details about the press conference below:

Marijuana reform backers to boycott Starbucks Coffee nationwide until it withdraws sponsorship of law enforcement group lobbying to keep marijuana illegal and protect the “Arrest and Prosecution Industry”

WHAT: News conference to announce the marijuana reform movement’s nationwide boycott of Starbucks and other businesses until they withdraw their sponsorships of the Colorado Drug Investigators Association, a group of law enforcement officials lobbying against the establishment of a regulated system of medical marijuana dispensaries so they can continue arresting and prosecuting people for marijuana

WHEN: TODAY, Thursday, January 21, 12 p.m.

WHERE: In front of the Starbucks located at 300 E. 6th Avenue, Denver (NE corner of Grant St. and 6th Ave.)

WHO: Mason Tvert, SAFER executive director and coauthor of Marijuana Is Safer: So Why are We Driving People to Drink?

Statement from Mason Tvert

“According to a recent report in The Denver Post, state and federal law enforcement officials have been meddling in Colorado’s legislative process, lobbying for measures that would shut down every medical marijuana dispensary in order to protect their industry of arresting and prosecuting marijuana users and producers.

“About 65 percent of Coloradans want to regulate medical marijuana dispensaries and create new legitimate, state-licensed businesses with hundreds of new taxpaying employees. The Colorado Drug Investigators Association wants to ban these new businesses so its members can continue spending taxpayer money to arrest and prosecute people involved with medical marijuana.

“It’s no surprise that law enforcement organizations and their leaders — whose jobs are dependent on maintaining the war on marijuana — are lobbying to kill state-licensed medical marijuana dispensaries. But Starbucks and other companies’ funding of this war should strike any marijuana consumer or reform supporter as truly appalling. It’s time to stand up and send them all a message.

“Our call for a boycott went out late last night and our supporters have already sent hundreds of e-mails to Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz, letting him know we will keep pushing for this boycott — and will ask other marijuana policy reform organizations to join us — until Starbucks disassociates itself from the Colorado Drug Investigators Association.

“We won’t be giving our bucks to Starbucks until it stops giving its bucks to the Arrest and Prosecution Industry’s war on marijuana.”

– Article from Westword on January 21, 2010.

SAFER launches nationwide boycott of Starbucks

from Safer Alternative For Enjoyable Recreation

Law enforcement groups are fighting to maintain Marijuana Prohibition and their industry of arresting and prosecuting people for marijuana. SAFER is fighting back and we need your help.

According to a recent report in The Denver Post, state and federal law enforcement officials have been meddling in Colorado’s legislative process in hopes of rolling back the state’s progress toward safer, more rational marijuana laws. As a result, bills are being introduced on their behalf, which threaten to shut down every medical marijuana dispensary in the state and allow these officials to continue harassing medical marijuana patients.

We wish this weren’t the case, but these law enforcement officials are not motivated by maintaining public safety or developing a workable system of medical marijuana regulation. They are motivated by one thing — job security. Perhaps even more unsettling is the source of the financial support behind the arrest and prosecution industry’s war on marijuana.

In particular, the Colorado Drug Investigators Association (CDIA), the group spearheading anti-marijuana lobbying efforts, is sponsored by several local and national businesses including Starbucks Coffee, Glock handguns, and — you guessed it — members of the alcohol industry! This might seem a bit odd, but when you consider the fact that their Web site and merchandise features the grim reaper and military helicopters, a skull motif, and the slogan, “Death on Drugs,” it all makes a little more sense. These guys are not out to protect people; they’re out to fight a literal war on marijuana, ensuring alcohol — the substance that contributes most to the crime and violence that keeps them busy — is the only legal recreational drug available.

It’s no surprise that the Arrest and Prosecution Industry is determined to maintain the war on marijuana. But Starbucks and other companies’ funding of this war should strike any marijuana consumer or reform supporter as truly appalling. It’s time to stand up and send them all a message.

Please Take Action Today!

1. Boycott Starbucks and other sponsors of the CDIA (see below), and CLICK HERE to send Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz an e-mail letting him know you will not be buying Starbucks products until it ends its sponsorship. (Or visit

2. CLICK HERE to send a message to the heads of the organizations below, urging them to end their lobbying and stop harassing people for using a substance far safer than alcohol. (Or visit

Regardless of which action you complete first, you will be given the option of completing the other action, as well. We’ve provided pre-written messages you can edit or send as they are, then we hope you will spread the word about these actions to as many people as possible.

– Article from SAFER.



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  2. suchadambidiot on

    i had no clue that starbucks was anti pot…i go there to chill sometimes after a bowl…i munch i read a book or something and have some joe…i could see the big time componies anti pot cuz its basicly up to one pearson…the pres of starbucks…and i could see that…but i could never see that without actualy reading online about it…all the the workers at the stabucks i go to look like stoners…and i go there evey now and then…but i dont know anymore…im, not realy into useing other ppls ideas and puting them in effect in my life…i like to consider there ideas and thoughts…but throwing away starbucks all together…

    its pretty controdictery and sad of starbucks to be anti pot…its like stoners like them, but they dont like stoners…if i were the pres of starbucks i wouldnt say i was anti pot…even if i was…

  3. Gary Williams on

    I have to say that I’m extremely pleased, not to mention more than a little smug about finally seeing an article that openly and unhesitatingly points the finger at the police and prison-guard trade-unions (known as “fraternities” or “associations” among LEOs due their outright fear and hostility at being associated with anything even remotely left-wing…like a trade-union) as a major factor in the ongoing use of prohibition laws. That their strongest support comes from the conservative right is no accident. Conservatives, like police officers, are childlike with overly simple, black and white social values and stereotypes too.

    For far too long now these social misfits have been allowed to camouflage themselves as do-gooders. While at the same time social psychologists, criminologists, and other academic professionals have known that societies most violent, fearful, socially retarded, and sexually deviant personalities come from precisely the same ranks as those who seek out careers in law-enforcement, military, and political leadership positions. Yes!! But unfortunately a combination of factors, some their own, some having to do with business decisions and still others having to do with all of ours’ wishful thinking…see to it that this knowledge, the result of many. many studies now that were originally compelled by the bizarre spectacle of so many “normal” Germans who, after committing Nazi atrocities still felt that they should go unpunished. Why? Because they were “simply doing what their country and leaders demanded of them as patriotic Germans”.

    IOW, these otherwise normal people were, and continue to be, those who identify with political and social conservatism, rhetoric and leadership. Then, as now, they also blamed others for the violent impulse they themselves have but who are allowed by us all to blame homosexuals, drug-users, illegal aliens, racial minorities, etc,. etc. for the very things they themselves are compelled to do. As LEOs they are allowed to act it out against members of these marginalized “out-groups”….people whose marginalization first took place at the hands of other social conservatives whose need to blame everyone but themselves for their shitty little lives.

    They created them, and the news media loves to report things in the same easy to write and read simplified worldview of the conservative. And so it persists…. This ongoing status quo where nothing gets better. Why? Because the version we get in the MOTR media is the sick and twisted one that was created by the same parasites that created the false image of the homosexuals or drug users as the child molestor and murderer. It’s this false image that allows the RWA to escape while simultaneously blaming as the drug addict as someone who “only get what they have coming to them anyhow…”. But the statistics don’t lie. The vast majority of lifes truly heinous crimes take place at the hands of otherwise socially conservative individuals. People the neighbours all say they would have never expected in “a thousand years!”, despite the fact that they say this time and time again. A testament to the ability of those who determine what we read and seeto pull the wool over the eyes of most.

    The projection of psycho-sexual deviance onto others by social conservatives is a problem that is too complicated for many to understand — even if they heard about it. The media in capitalist societies also has a lot of profit potential to lose should they alienate conservatives by fairly reporting on just who and what this research reveals about the true nature of the RWA-SDO personality syndrome. And they all say it the RWA-SDO who is most likely to engage in violence and terrorism for both personal and political gains.

    But it’s all up there on the web now. So it’s up to us to first read it, then pass it on to others. These next two links are of papers on the Okla. Department of Corrections, with the next from members of DHS’s very own counter-terrorism research panel…one composed of the world’s leading social psychologists.

    “It appears that conservatism has pathological dimensions manifested in violence and distorted psycho-sexual development” (Boshier, 1983, p. 159). This is supported by a study conducted by Walker, Rowe, and Quincey (1993) in which there was a direct correlation between authoritarianism and sexually aggressive behavior. An investigation done by Muehlenhard (1988) revealed that rape justification and aggression toward subordinate individuals was much higher in traditional (conservative personality) than non-traditional personalities.”

    Yet we still hire and and place them in charge of detecting criminals?? Now you know why the pact among LEOs not to rat on other LEOs resembles that of the mafia killer. It’s the SAME PEOPLE…except only one of them is honest with themselves about who they are!!! This must stop.

  4. Anonymous on

    You didn’t mention hamster milk…please be all inclusive with your blog posts, we wouldn’t want the hamster milk people feeling left out.

  5. Anonymous on

    If you buy beans there go to Trader Joe’s instead! Beter beans , LArger selection and CHEEPER !!!

  6. Argh on

    I’ve loved Starbucks for almost 10 years and am an avid fan of their flavors and brand. I find their support of prohibition, and worse, paying law enforcement and anti-drug campaigns to keep that evil machine going sickening to say the least. I am already on a quest to find a tasty blend that’s not made by them.

    Is there a list of corporations that support anti-drug efforts with big money? I’d really like to know who all is into that and boycott the rest of them, too.

  7. Anonymous on

    Oh come ON, man….now you’re just pulling the “self-righteous” hippy bit.

    NO store will carry hemp milk. No grocery store, no bar (for your white russian?), no coffee shop.

    UNLESS they are appealing to your particular demographic (i.e. holistic, “natural”, etc…hippy stores).

    Seriously, no offense, I am not a fan of starbucks coffee, either, but you’re being unreasonable for two reasons:

    a) so what…you make some suggestions and suddenly this giant evil corporation is supposed to change?

    b) Businesses work on something called “supply and demand” (yes I am being condescending). They would also, most likely, look at you like you’re retarded should you suggest: goat milk, ostrich milk, pig milk, elephant milk or kangaroo milk (they all produce milk, by the way…drinkable milk).

    1. There just aren’t enough people to actually buy enough hemp milk to make it worth it for Starbucks to buy and stock it.

    2. The stigma, albeit unfounded, is also there. It would make them the coffeeshop associated with hemp. This is not the image they want and they don’t have to conform to it. As an adult, you should understand and accept this.

  8. Tony Aroma on

    I’m not defending anyone or own any stock. I don’t even drink coffee. I’m just saying before you pick a bandwagon to jump on, make sure it’s the right one. There are enough companies to boycott for various legitimate reasons without adding new ones to the list because of one post on one blog.

    Even worse than “journalists” who post articles on the web without checking their facts, are people who unquestioningly believe them. If Starbucks or any company are doing something you believe is wrong, then by all means boycott them (like Kellogg’s for firing Michael Phelps). But be sure they really are doing something wrong before going off half cocked. Or not.

  9. maryjanesuncle on

    starbuck might be cutting their own throats, i know a lot of tokers that do spend money in this coffee house, STOP. Speak with your dollars

  10. Anonymous on


  11. Anonymous on

    it’s even more sad then that ano 00:10

    During our latest bust, the cop even didn t say anymore that he was just doing his job.

    Instead he convessed to only beeing a SLAVE.

    No BS

    so there you have it !

  12. Anonymous on

    The police, alcohol companies, and to some extent Glock I can understand wanting to keep marijuana illegal but Starbucks? What could they possibly get from such stupidity? I suppose it’s probably that no one wants to buy their over-priced crap anymore and they’re just afraid that even more consumer dollars will end up with other companies. The bottom line is that anyone who’ll spend $5 or more for a cup of coffee is just retarded, and I have never bought anything from a Starbucks and now NEVER WILL. If they were smart, they’d lower their prices to try to keep what little business they have left. It would actually make some sense for them to be backing full legalization as being stoned is the only way most sane people would ever consider buying coffee from Starbucks in this economy. The alcohol companies can just suck it! Same with the police. I wish all those bastards would just fucking die! They all need to look in the mirror and admit to themselves that they’re sucking corporate dick or may as well be. Anyone who is willing to push fascist agendas like marijuana prohibition isn’t worth the bullets it would take to put them out of their miseries. Society has had enough of these assholes and we’re simply going to change the laws on them so they can’t fuck with us anymore. I hate the police and prison guard’s unions and want them all to burn in Hell for what they are doing to my country. Our communities are being destroyed and terrorized by these corporate whores who think that “being tough on crime” is what is needed in our society. They’re creating the crime in the first place by trying to control what people put into their own bodies. I say let’s legalize ALL DRUGS and simply control the with age restrictions, taxes, and more severe DWI laws.

  13. ToxicSludge on

    Fuck starbucks/glock/and whomever else wants to keep weed down.I never liked their coffee,I like Folgers Columbian much better.As for Glocks……..I’ve been carrying a 1911 for around 40 years and it has never failed me.It ain’t fancy,it ain’t light weight,but it is reliable and inexpensive compared to anything glock.I don’t drink alcohol,so fuck the breweries that make that shit.I’ll be go to hell if I let corporate anything try to keep me down.People have the power….just most don’t see that……yet.

  14. Anonymous on

    scary shit!!

    I just saw on one of the Seattle news stations that Starbucks denied that they support the stormtroopers of death

  15. Anonymous on

    Starbucks is corporate overpriced addictive caffeine and yuppie, fake, pretentious American marketing. I went to a Starbucks once, saw their high prices and never went back. As with other causes, vote with your dollars. Don’t support this anti-Labor, corporate rip-off chain. Never spend your money there. As for “Tony Aroma”, please don’t come on here and defend corporate idiots.

  16. Anonymous on

    Question, how much starbucks stock you have,and what div. of starbucks corp. you work for, and or what accounts do you trade in chould it be???/ staarbucks??? either way you talk like a scared wabbit there bud and dont ever call SAFER flase again ,bitch!

  17. Mr. G on

    Are there truly not enough bank robberies, homicides and violent crimes to be investigated or drunk drivers and assailants to chase down and are there no women and children to keep safe from predators in Colorado?
    The children!

  18. Tony Aroma on

    This story is not true. Do a little research before you boycott Starbucks for no good reason. CC, please remove this story or at least include Starbucks’ response to this allegation.

  19. Cremater on

    Grow your own pot and make your own beer. A person could go even further if they wanted by growing thier own food, tobacco (if you smoke or want to supply another who does). A person can do a whole lot on thier own and simply help to starve the beast.

  20. Anonymous on

    Because starbucks is spending monies also in the b.C. games we when to ceromony last night NOTICE**** The MOTHER will take all the snow from B.C. in the next three weeks!! There will be no games.CROWN the CROWN get rid of it form a REAL REPUBLIC!! Oh forgot slaves dont know about things like that?

  21. Anonymous on

    I’m now a FORMER Starbucks patron in NY and have forwarded this info to my friends in Boston who will also go elsewhere.

  22. Lygeia on

    I have been a loyal Starbuck’s customer practically since they opened their first store in my town. However, I am now done with them.

  23. Anonymous on

    i smoke pot and i make my own beer.
    Making your own beer is about 50cents a bottle for good stuff no tax going to government either. Which i like

  24. Anonymous on

    They don’t make the law they just enforce it, but they run around trying to pass the laws that benefit their pockets, I’ll never buy starbucks, or glocks, and I’ll stop drinking beer, law enforcement turned into legislators, that should be illegal, of course they have a vested interest in keeping draconian laws, look half of the drug taskforce in los angeles quit because they have to disclose their financial statements, they don’t like the fact they have to be transparent with their financial information.
    why would it be a big problem for them to show their financial statements?
    it should be illegal for the law enforcement to split drug money among themselves, it is appalling that this is happening, some of the drug money even goes to Judges.
    the drug war is a crime against humanity.

  25. Dave on

    They’re all over the place and so convenient. I was looking for a good reason to walk a few more blocks to the Mom and Pop down the street.

  26. Anonymous on

    meh star-bucks just doesn’t want to loose customers to OUR coffee shops 😀

  27. jackaroo on

    When asked why they continue to arrest non-violent plant smokers they always say “We only enforce the laws, we don’t make them“. Then they turn around like this and lobby for making the laws!!!

  28. Anonymous on

    Starbucks has just lost me as a customer as well. I’ll get my coffee at McDonalds from now on as it’s just as tasty and about half as expensive anyway. As for Glock, I was planning on buying a new handgun this year but I think I’ll purchase one from Smith and Wesson. For anyone who wonders why Glock would join in this effort consider this: Glock is the number one supplier of handguns to all police forces across the U.S. so it should come as no surprise that if the police are against something so are they.

  29. Anonymous on

    I’ll never drink Starbucks coffee again! (Or buy a gun or drink.)

    Marijuana shall be legal someday, reaping gifts of peace and happiness throughout the globe. Finally, life will be worth living… but when?