BLACK VOICES
01/26/2016 12:16 pm ET

The Booming Marijuana Industry Is Still Too White

Marijuana legalization efforts reveal the ways entrenched ideas about race and class impact the public's perception.
GUILLERMO LEGARIA via Getty Images

Legal cannabis is now growing faster than any other industry in the U.S. The enterprise deemed the "next great American industry" by the ArcView Group, a California-based investment and research firm, has grown from $1.5 billion in 2013 to $2.7 billion in 2014, the Huffington Post reported. This emerging market, however, seems to be benefitting all but the people who have been most impacted by draconian anti-drug laws in the United States.

Marijuana legalization efforts reveal the ways entrenched ideas about race and class impact the public's perception of users and sellers, and the state and federal policies established to criminalize them. Take, for example, the ways "drug dealing" is often talked about in public — especially when the dealer is imagined as black or Latino — but cannabis pushing has now been recast as a hip and lucrative business endeavor and no longer a sign of degenerative morals.

Read more on Mic

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