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Monopoly best term to use with Issue 3

Regardless of how much lipstick you put on a pig, it’s still a pig. And no matter how loudly a pro-marijuana legalization group in Ohio howls about references to their plan granting a monopoly to a few investors, it’s still a monopoly.

Issue 3 on the Buckeye State’s November election ballot would legalize sale and possession of marijuana. But the reason so much money is being spent to promote the idea is that, if approved, the plan would limit growers to 10 specific sites. All are owned by investors eager to cash in.

When election officials wrote ballot language describing Issue 3 for voters, they included the word “monopoly.” That has ResponsibleOhio, the pro-legalization group, very upset. Why, the organization says, that might bias voters against Issue 3.

Secretary of State Jon Husted was asked about the controversy last week.

“We are trying to use simple, plain language that accurately describes the issues,” he responded.

Of course. That is what voters like – easily understood descriptions that tell the truth about ballot issues.

And a monopoly – with all the negative connotations the term raises – is precisely what would happen in the marijuana industry if Issue 3 is accepted by voters.

In other words, this is a simple situation of not attempting to put lipstick on what voters should view as, well, a pig.