US Attorney General Eric Holder is pondering what to do about Washington and Colorado’s legalization of marijuana, a substance still illegal under US law. But it’s also become an international issue. Last Thursday, the United Nations issued a press release stating Washington state’s legalization actually violates international law. This statement comes amidst criticism from Latin American leaders calling America’s inconsistency between foreign and domestic drug policies hypocritical. The Obama administration has said a legalization strategy — at least abroad — is off the table. Ross Reynolds talks with Bruce Bagley, a professor of international studies at the University of Miami and expert on US-Latin America relations.
Marijuana has been historically cast as a dangerous drug for outcasts and societal dropouts. But with the passage of I-502, marijuana is going mainstream. A Seattle web entrepreneur is building tools for the masses to bring marijuana – and its users – into the 21st century.
Medical marijuana is available in 18 states, and the vote on November 6 legalized the possession of pot in Colorado and Washington. With the highest incarceration rate in the world, and more than $2 trillion dedicated to fighting the "war on drugs," we continue to fill our prisons with drug offenders. Is it worth it? From the series Intelligence Squared U.S., the motion is Legalize Drugs.
Paul Butler, Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center
A new study by Marijuana Arrest Research Project says more than 240,000 people in Washington have been arrested for marijuana possession over the past 25 years, and that those arrested are disproportionally Black, Latino and Native American.