Ben & Jerry’s is celebrating 4/20 with a call for criminal justice reform, warning Congress that without it, marijuana legalization is a “half baked” idea.
In a video tweeted Saturday, which is known as the annual holiday for stoners, the ice cream brand pointed out that when it comes to pot, those who profit and those who are punished don’t tend to look alike.
“Ever notice how most people making $$$ off legalized cannabis are white? But a disproportionate number of people getting arrested for using cannabis are Black?” the company asked, demanding that officials start “making sure legalization doesn’t leave people of color behind and expunging everybody’s cannabis convictions.”
The company also extended its call to action to prosecutors, noting that certain big-city lawyers are
Ten states in addition to Washington, D.C., have now legalized recreational marijuana, while 33 states have approved it for medicinal use.
However, that doesn’t mean arrests are decreasing.
According to an FBI crime statistics report released in September and
In 2013, an American Civil Liberties Union report found that people in the U.S. use pot at about the same rate no matter what their race ― but that a black person is
Furthermore, the report ― which examined arrests from 2001 to 2010 ― concluded that more than 8 million of them were related to pot. That amounts to 97 busts an hour.
Now Ben & Jerry’s is speaking out with a petition on its website, which has garnered about 23,390 signatures so far.
Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), a 2020 candidate for president, is leading the charge in the current Congress. In February, he introduced his
The bill has received support from other Democratic contenders as well, with co-sponsorship from Sens. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).