70 arrested over 1 ounce of marijuana: weed is ‘trendy’ but Black people still get arrested
January 4, 2018
These days, even conservatives seem to be on board with decriminalizing marijuana. Stigma around the drug has shifted so much so that this New Year’s Eve, CNN newscasters reveled in it on live TV. The whole state of California just legalized recreational use, following 8 other states, out of 29 that allow medicinal use.
But the war on this drug is not over yet. Not for Black people.
There has been much said about how the new wave of decriminalization does nothing to rectify the damage done to Black communities who were targeted the hardest, and almost exclusively benefits white entrepreneurs. The latest egregious example of weed-related anti-Blackness occurred when 70 Black people ranging from 15 to 31 years old were arrested at a 21st birthday party over the weekend in Atlanta.
Atlanta recently decriminalized marijuana possession, but the parameters of this new legislation are still being ironed out. Witnesses say no one claimed possession of LESS THAN ONE OUNCE of the drug, so police simply arrested everyone involved.
But police also claim that suspected cocaine and cocaine-related paraphernalia were also located, as well as two stolen guns, according to Channel 2 Action News, but most of that was found on specific persons. Further, witnesses who spoke to Channel 2 described being mistreated by officers: “They claimed they were tied up with zip ties, threatened with tasers and hauled off to jail. Some of the men said they were locked in cages at the jail.”
It’s outrageous that so many people, including children, should be punished for such a small amount weed that could be anyone’s, particularly when there is such a wave to make sure that doesn’t happen to anyone who isn’t Black.