Thirty-nine states have legalized marijuana for recreational or medicinal purposes. The legal marijuana industry raked in $9 billion in sales last year and is expected to bring in $11 billion this year. Nevada netted $30 million in tax revenue in the first six months of legal sales, while Colorado has earned more than $500 million in tax revenue since recreational marijuana sales became legal in 2014.
Legalizing marijuana on the federal level could result in an additional $105.6 billion in revenue between 2017 and 2025, according to a report from the cannabis analytics firm New Frontier. That figure includes projections for business tax revenues, payroll withholdings, and a 15% sales tax. Meanwhile, fully legalizing cannabis today would add 654,000 jobs and up to 1 million jobs by 2025.
The problem is race. As white people exploit the changing tide on marijuana, the racism that drove its prohibition is ignored. So are the consequences for black communities, where the war on drugs is most heavily waged.
As of 2014 in Colorado, the marijuana arrest rate for black people was almost three times that of whites. In New York City, the marijuana arrest rate for black people in New York City was over four times that of whites; the Bronx has one of the country’s highest rates of marijuana arrests.
Meanwhile, black people make up an estimated 1 percent of marijuana dispensary owners, owning less than three dozen of the roughly 3,000 retail shops nationwide. On the show we will seek to explore how the nation can reconcile individuals having economic success by participating, through entrepreneurship, in the cannabis industry, with the disproportionate number of black and brown men incarcerated by the same substance.
How do we go about changing the laws? How do we go about changing the perception of the American public? Should we? Hear all this and more on The Mike Muse Show on Sirius XM Insight Channel 121. Guests: Heather Bohannan, Cannabis Pastry Chef Keith White, Assistant District Attorney for The Kings County (Brooklyn, NY) District Attorney’s Office Jessica Kelley, R Street Institute
About “The Mike Muse Show”
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“The Mike Muse Show” sits at the intersection of Music x Pop Culture x Policy. The show features music and conversation with guests ranging from athletes, entertainers, policy advocates and cultural icons to discuss social issues of the day.
Previous guests thus far have included Ryan Coogler, Ava DuVernay, Common, Andra Day, Anquan Boldin, Enes Kanter, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, Akon, and Nina Yang Bongiovi to name a few. The “Mike Muse Show” is the melding of several cross-sections of society to create provocative conversation. The “Mike Muse Show” will air on Sirius XM Satellite Radio on the top rated Insight Channel reaching a potential of our 35 million subscribers.
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