REPORT: War On Pot Is More Racist Than The KKK


USA TODAY: Black people are arrested for possessing marijuana at a higher rate than white people, even though marijuana use by both races is about the same, the American Civil Liberties Union reports in a new study. The analysis of federal crime data, released Tuesday, found marijuana arrest rates for blacks were 3.73 times greater than those for whites nationally in 2010. In some counties, the arrest rate was 10 to 30 times greater for blacks. An overall increase in marijuana possession arrests from 2001 to 2010 is largely attributable to drastic increases in arrests of black people, the ACLU said. The report comes at a time when Colorado and Washington have become the first states to legalize adult possession of small amounts of non-medical marijuana. A number of states and Washington, D.C., allow medical marijuana. Federal law still prohibits its use. Some states and some cities have eased punishments for possession of smaller amounts. Ezekiel Edwards, lead author of the study, attributed the disparate arrest rates to racial profiling by police seeking to pad their arrest numbers with “low-level” arrests in “certain communities that they have kind of labeled as problematic.” Blacks were arrested at a rate of 537 per 100,000 people in 2001. In 2010, their arrest rate rose to 716 per 100,000. The 2001 number for white people was 191 per 100,000 and rose to 192 per 100,000 in 2010, the ACLU said. Despite the disparate rates, far more whites were arrested in 2010 for marijuana possession, 460,808, compared to blacks, 286,117. MORE