The State of Marijuana: A conversation with a prominent thinker on the evolving law — and business — of pot (The Marshall Project)

By THE MARSHALL PROJECT | March 9, 2015

Medicinal marijuana plants in a Colorado grow house. FLICKR.COM/CWHITFIELD

Medicinal marijuana plants in a Colorado grow house. FLICKR.COM/CWHITFIELD

Mark Kleiman is a professor of public policy at UCLA, specializing in criminal justice and drug policy. In the summer, he will join the faculty of the Marron Institute for Urban Management at New York University. Kleiman is regarded as a sort of creative centrist on the subject of marijuana law. He does not favor making outlaws of people who enjoy a drug that is less injurious than alcohol or tobacco. (“At some point you have to say, a law that people don’t obey is a bad law,” he has said.) But he also believes that marijuana represents a public health problem, and he contends that the best hope of minimizing its harm may be a well-regulated market. The Marshall Project asked him to assess the current state of marijuana policy.

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