While it may seem unbelievable given the groundswell of support for legal cannabis in the United States over recent years, there are still individuals serving life sentences in prison just for dealing pot. As states like California and cities such as Seattle move to wipe criminal records of convictions for cannabis in the era of legal marijuana, U.S. federal law remains woefully stuck in the past — incarcerating otherwise law-abiding citizens for activities now considered legitimate business in 29 states and the nation’s capital.
In the second episode of MERRY JANE’s new docuseries Prisoners of Prohibition, we examine the effects of systemic racism within the enforcement of marijuana law. Blacks are nearly four times more likely than whites to be arrested for cannabis, despite both demographics using marijuana at nearly the same rate. This episode features members of the ACLU, Color of Change, and more discussing the history and statistics of cannabis prohibition, revealing a tragic truth — that the War on Drugs is a war on people of color.
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