The Candy Lady speaks out on 'meth candy'
Posted at: 08/20/2012 10:08 PM
| Updated at: 08/20/2012 10:34 PM
By: Jill Galus, KOB Eyewitness News 4
If you watch the show "Breaking Bad," you will now find something in a local candy store that may look a lot like the meth the characters make and sell on the show - but it's not. Instead, it is candy that is being made and sold at "The Candy Lady" store in Old Town.
The store owner, Debbie Ball, said she is jumping on the "Breaking Bad" bandwagon. But some argue, that is irresponsible, considering New Mexico's drug problems.
Police said if they saw the candy on the streets, at first glance, it may be difficult to tell the difference between the candy meth and real meth. For that very reason, some are questioning the kind of message it is sending.
"It isn't, 'Oh it's crystal meth, you're bad,' it's, 'Oh you're selling Breaking Bad candy,'" Ball explained.
Ball said all she is doing is selling candy, not any drugs. "I haven't been to jail for that yet, and I won't ever be."
Small plastic bags are filled with crushed-up, light blue rock candy, Ball said. But the rock candy is meant to resemble methamphetamine, the drug that fuels the popular Albuquerque-based drama, "Breaking Bad."
"This is television, it has nothing to do with real life, as far as I'm concerned," Ball said.
But some feel, the sugary version is not so sweet and harmless.
"Meth is a terrible thing, not something that's a joke," said Albuquerque Police Department Meth Unit Detective Brian Sallee.
Meth is the most destructive and hazardous drug in Albuquerque, Sallee said.
Further, the faux-meth candy will send mixed-messages to kids. "TV may not be reality but kids are influenced by it and if they see this is something that's neat..."
Sallee also worries that a kid could mistake the real drug for the candy version.
"He's going to come across a bag of meth and think it's a bag of candy and eat it and overdose and we're going to lose a kid...and I would blame those people," Sallee said.
Some parents said despite the intention behind the fake-meth candy, it is setting the wrong example.
"We may think it's a joke or we may think it's something that's nominal but, it really makes a huge impact," Meghan Cross said.
"Saying 'candy meth' is just horrible because there is nothing good about meth," Carole Napier added.
"In the interest of our children, they should put that ahead of profits and get rid of it," Sallee said.
Ball said whether people love the idea behind the candy or hate it, it gets people talking and into her candy shop.
"All we want to do is have fun," Ball said. "With my adult candy it's all about fun, with any of this, it's all about fun."
Ball added that the producers of "Breaking Bad" actually came to her first, asking for some of her rock candy to use as a prop for the drug in the show; which is ultimately what fueled the idea to start selling it in her store.