“Cannabis weddings: The perfect way to elevate your big day.” “California ‘nuns’ are selling pot products online.” “‘Marijuana moms’ claim pot makes them better parents.” These headlines are popping up across America, depicting cannabis usage as modern, mainstream, “progressive.” Each story stirs up hope that America will shift further from its puritanical past to embrace a substance that was only outlawed in part to demonize Mexican immigrants in the early 20th century.
But headlines attached to photos of happy-go-lucky white millennials are only half the story. “Over 60 partygoers arrested for less than an ounce of marijuana.” “Georgia linebacker arrested on marijuana charges.” These are the headlines attached to Black and brown faces, mirroring the decades-old tradition of punishing people of color for activities that white Americans can enjoy and profit from.
We should hold cannabis industries accountable to their progressive ethos and encourage them to make this right.
Marijuana companies, which are overwhelmingly white-owned, profit from inequities fostered by war-on-drug policies. Anyone praising the state of drug use in America is conveniently ignoring the thousands of marginalized