TV host Bill O’Reilly lambasted the New York Times’ call to repeal the federal ban on marijuana, calling the editorial board’s move “predictable” considering its left-of-center views — an act that he said would have a damaging impact on children and the poor.
“The legalization of marijuana, still full of unintended consequences, sends a signal to children that drug use is an acceptable part of life — that’s big,” O’Reilly proclaimed on Monday night’s show.
In addition to claiming that pot is a gateway drug, he questioned the wisdom of legalizing the substance in impoverished locations where he said intoxicants are already more than prevalent.
“Drug use and sales have devastated poor neighborhoods in this country,” O’Reilly added. “Drug use is a public menace. It helps no one. Same thing with alcoholism. Same thing with smiling tobacco. But you don’t add to those problems by legalizing pot. That’s stupid.”
While he seemed to support decriminalizing pot when it comes to use in one’s home, O’Reilly said he opposes full legalization, specifically when it comes to drug dealers and that he doesn’t believe the government needs to enter into the business of regulation.
He told guests Stephen Gutwillig of the Drug Policy Alliance and Kevin Sabet of Smart Approaches to Marijuana — opponents when it comes to legalization — that he believes marijuana is most damaging to children, with the poor also feeling the brunt of the drug’s impact.
“Any parent who would smoke marijuana in front of their child is abusing their child in my opinion,” he added.
Watch the segment below: