When legal cannabis entered the US economy, tech startups, pot shops, and numerous brands flooded the space. Yet despite this explosive growth, Black and Brown entrepreneurs within the cannabis sector have been edged out since day one.
The overcriminalization of weed and over-policing of communities of color — even as more states regularly legalize every voting cycle — continues to be an insidious stain on the American justice system. Today, no one bats an eye at weed weddings, stoney sound baths, and entire festivals dedicated to the plant, but Black people and POC are still targeted by law enforcement. A 2018 Drug Policy Alliance report found that after Washington D.C. decriminalized cannabis, Black men and women were 11 times more likely than white people to be arrested for public cannabis use after two years of legalization.
We have seen throughout history that the Black community experiences harsh discrimination at every level of the judicial system.…
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