New data from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report recently revealed that last year, over 1.5 million people were arrested for drug related offenses.
Despite medical and adult recreational use coming a long way, more than 41% of those arrests came from marijuana — that’s more than murder, rape, aggravated assault and robbery, combined.
So why are people still getting arrested for weed?
Someone is arrested for weed every 48 seconds, proving that the drug war is far from over. [tweet this]
While legalization is painting a pretty picture of progress across the states, there’s still a long way to go. There is some good news, though — the annual amount of marijuana arrests has actually been decreasing every year since 2007.
Why does this matter?
Arresting people for weed can tarnish someone’s record for life, making them unable to retain jobs, housing and stability.
On top of that, arrests disproportionately affect communities of color, sparking up deep-rooted issues of civil rights, racism, and criminality.
Conversely, activists claim that regulating cannabis can provide much needed tax dollars, create jobs and protect consumers. Since Colorado’s decision to legalize, for example, the state now has a cannabis industry larger than some countries’ entire GDP. Who knows…with that kind of economy, maybe Colorado can secede (and bring the 60% of Americans who support recreational use with them!)