A summer of racial unrest throughout the country has led to calls in the presidential campaign to “restore law and order.” It’s the same line used by Richard Nixon in 1968 to appeal to white nationalist fears of black criminality after the “long hot summer of 1967.” Racialized wars on drugs emerged in the late 19th and early 20th centuries—directed against Chinese people for opium use, African Americans in the South for charges of cocaine use, and Mexicans and Mexican Americans surrounding allegations of marijuana use. Then there is peyote, a sacred medicine and religious adjunct in Native American worship.
war on drugs
The "war on drugs" approach to marijuana has had major costs. But the dawning era of legal marijuana presents its own set of public health problems.
Twenty-two states now have legal cannabis markets of some form. Regulations are being made up on the fly, with consequences not yet known.
Americans seem to relish putting their fellow citizens behind bars. Lately, some conservatives have begun to see this as a problem.
"The U.S has created a vast legal system for racial and social control, unprecedented in world history. Yet we claim to be colorblind."