Will Florida legalize recreational pot? Medical marijuana is already legal. But who really cares? It's all bad for Miami's black community, where weed has helped drive the economy for years.
What governments aren't even mentioning is paying reparations to black-dominated countries or African-Americans who have lost or will lose their livelihoods from all of this legalization.
Legislators in Florida, more than anywhere else, have concentrated the power and money of pot in just a few hands — and almost none of them belong to African-Americans. Nationally, about 81 percent of cannabis business owners or founders are white, while only 4 percent are African-American, Marijuana Business Daily found last year.
And recreational weed, which has been legalized in ten states and the District of Columbia, has powerfully affected foreign trade from one of the few black-dominated Caribbean islands: Jamaica, the region's top exporter. Jamaica sends millions of dollars in ganja to the United States every year. So do Haiti, the Bahamas, and Belize, which also have significant black populations and are the next largest Caribbean suppliers of
In most cases, felons, many of whom make their livelihoods from the drugs we now say should be legal, are prohibited from owning or having anything to do with marijuana companies. A disproportionate number of them are black.
No, authorities just continue arresting black people at a much higher rate than white people for marijuana. In the
The marijuana system, like many other industries, is rigged against the black man. Change it.
Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.