Reason Roundup

The Worst Areas in America For Weed Arrests: Reason Roundup

Plus: Pulitzers highlight unconstitutional bail systems, Weld 2020, Notre Dame Cathedral fire, and more...


With so many states, cities, candidates, and cultural authorities gung-ho about legalizing weed, it's sometimes easy to forget just how little has changed in terms of prohibition and enforcement for many parts of the country. Arrest numbers from the National Archive of Criminal Justice Data provide a good reality check.

Its data shows that in many jurisdictions, one-fifth of all arrests are still for marijuana possession. In a few areas, policing pot possession accounts for upwards of 40 and 50 percent of all arrests.

The worst offenders in the country:

  • Dooley County, Georgia (54.5 percent of all arrests)
  • Hamilton County, New York (43.5 percent)
  • Texas' Sterling County (42.1 percent) and Hartley County (42 percent)
  • Edmunds County, South Dakota (33.3 percent)

According to federal data, "marijuana possession led to nearly 6 percent of all arrests in the United States in 2017," writes The Washington Post's Christopher Ingraham, "underscoring the level of policing dedicated to containing behavior that's legal in 10 states and the nation's capital."

But this presents a positively rosy picture compared to local-level arrest data. Just check out this map:


What gives? The still-raging federal drug war, of course.

"The federal government incentivizes aggressive drug enforcement via funding for drug task forces and generous forfeiture rules that allow agencies to keep cash and other valuables they find in the course of a drug bust," notes Ingraham. "And because marijuana is bulky and pungent relative to other drugs, it's often easy for police to root out."

Arrest data doesn't neatly map to liberal/conservative, urban/rural, or any other particular trends. Places like North Dakota, Georgia, and Texas showed high marijuana arrest rates, but so did some East Coast and New England states (New Hampshire, New York, New Jersey) and areas outside Washington, D.C. Meanwhile, "Alabama and Kentucky—which are not known for liberal marijuana policies—also appeared to place a low priority on marijuana possession enforcement," the Post points out.


Pulitzer Prize winners for 2019 were announced yesterday. Poynter has a complete list of winners here. A few highlights:



St. Louis Post-Dispatch columnist Tony Messenger also won an award (best commentary) for a series on his city's bail problems.



Hannah Dreier of ProPublica won the best feature writing prize for this piece:



"Bethany and Justin Rondeau are in two very different but oddly parallel businesses: falconry and cannabis." The Stranger's Katie Herzog investigates:


Enter Bill Weld. After running for vice president on the Libertarian Party ticket in 2016, Bill Weld will return to his Republican Party roots to mount a 2020 primary challenge to President Donald Trump

Read more from Matt Welch.


  • Fires ripped through both the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris and Jerusalem's Al-Aqsa Mosque on Monday, sending watchers around the world into a sort of cosmic panic that very quickly gave way to the same old culture war bullshit and speculation. The fire at Al-Aqsa only affected a small bit of the mosque. As for Notre Dame, French rich folks and companies have already been offering up billions to help repair the damage.
  • The ACLU is leading a class action lawsuit to change Detroit's bail system. "Bail was originally intended to ensure a person returns to court to face charges against them," said ACLU of Michigan Deputy Legal Director Dan Korobkin. "But instead, the money bail system has morphed into mass incarceration of the poor. It punishes people not for what they've done but because of what they don't have."
  • In case you're interested in Beto O'Rourke's tax returns.
  • "The Trump campaign is spending nearly half (44%) of its Facebook ad budget to target users who are over 65 years old, as opposed to Democratic candidates who are only spending 27% of their budget on that demographic," reports Axios.
  • Tiger Woods is getting the Presidential Medal of Freedom, because why not?
  • Land of the free:

NEXT: Republican Senators Introduce Bill To Cut Legal Immigration in Half

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  1. …it’s sometimes easy to forget just how little has changed in terms of prohibition and enforcement for many parts of the country.

    You people keep telling us prohibition is coming to an end, BUT IT’S A VERY SLOW END.

    1. Because no state has completely repealed their unconstitutional marijuana laws. Obviously the federal government has not either.

      A constitutional amendment is required to ban any product or service and so far only alcohol fit that bill.

      Undermining laws while the law is still on the books, popular with old people, and enforced is a sloppy way to do things. As we still see many thousands still arrested for weed.

  2. One of the round stained glass windows at ND survived the fire.

  3. Fires ripped through both the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris and Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque on Monday, sending watchers around the world into a sort of cosmic panic…

    I was beginning to think that Notre Dame de Paris’s lasting legacy was going to be the number of people who got canceled for daring to crack le wise about it online.

    1. It appears to have been accidental, but I did not see much jumping to conclusions about it. It is not as if people who hate Judeo-Christian civilization have ever been so bold as to carry out attacks in Paris.

      1. je suis Charlie.

  4. As for Notre Dame, French rich folks and companies have already been offering up billions to help repair the damage.

    The pope let the insurance lapse.

    1. Under a 1905 French law, it’s the property of the French state. Why would the Pope pay insurance on it?

  5. Tiger Woods is getting the Presidential Medal of Freedom, because why not?

    Just wait until the Grand Wizard in Chief sees how multi-ethnic Woods is!

    1. Its a trap to force him to give Trump free golf lessons under threat of deportation.

      1. The only problem with that theory is that Trump is a much better golfer than Tiger. Just ask him.

  6. In case you’re interested in Beto O’Rourke’s-

    Stop right there.

  7. The Trump campaign is spending nearly half (44%) of its Facebook ad budget to target users who are over 65 years old, as opposed to Democratic candidates who are only spending 27% of their budget on that demographic…

    Young people don’t vote and old people don’t use Facebook. This isn’t how any of this works.

    1. But rest assured that 44% of one thing is larger than 27% of another thing, that is how math works.

      1. +10

    2. Only old people use facebook these days…

  8. But instead, the money bail system has morphed into mass incarceration of the poor. It punishes people not for what they’ve done but because of what they don’t have.

    It’s almost like criminal justice has become some sort of industrial complex.

  9. The fire at Al-Aqsa only affected a small bit of the mosque.

    Chalk one up for Allah.

  10. The president’s persistent “tax dodging”?!

    They almost make it sound like subjecting yourself to a double-taxation and redistribution of wealth is some kind of civic duty! I suppose I might make voluntary contributions to national defense, etc. even if it weren’t for the govenrment’s threat of violence, but it’s hard to know for sure–since if we don’t pay income tax, the government will freeze my bank accounts, charge me fines up the ying-yang, destroy my credit, and maybe even lock me in a cage.

    For all I can tell now, the only reason I pay income tax is the same reason businesses pay the mafia in protection rackets. I owe them money because I earned it! Somehow that gets transformed into a civic duty to pay protection money? I’m supposed to be mad at Donald Trump because he gets out of paying protection money? Does a good American drop his drawers and grab his ankles when he’s told? And they give people Pulitzer prizes for writing shit like that?

    1. I’ve put it this way to my parents who think you should be meticulously honest in all things including filing taxes: when the mugger in the alley asks you if you have any more money do you offer up the fact you’ve got a $100 hidden in your shoe? That’s what paying taxes is like.

    2. “The president’s persistent “tax dodging”?!”

      It’s like Apple is ‘tax dodging’. It’s what those with TDS call ‘obeying the law’.

    3. And we’re supposed to take journalism seriously… Trump really did show the true colors of what is a pathetic and diminishing group of elitist virtue signalers

  11. I’m in! #Weld2020

    — Gov. Bill Weld (@GovBillWeld) April 15, 2019


    -said no one.

  12. …underscoring the level of policing dedicated to containing behavior that’s legal in 10 states and the nation’s capital.

    It’s easier than actual police work.

  13. Tiger Woods is getting the Presidential Medal of Freedom, because why not?

    Because playing golf every day and rawdogging porn stars while cheating on your wife is the new standard for the Medal of Freedom.

    And why not? It is the Age of the Reality Star Con Man.

    1. Speaking of porn stars, got any Stormy Daniels updates today?


    2. good thing none of that matters in the slightest

    3. Poor turd. Lost along with that hag and can’t seem to grow up.

    4. New standard? Let’s look at a few previous recipients:

      Arnold Palmer, 2004.
      Jack Nicklaus, 2004.
      Charles Sifford, 2014.

  14. …a young couple that grows some of the finest weed in Washington state and breeds some of the most prized falcons in the world.

    Prized and laid back falcons.

    1. I’d buy an ounce and a falcon from her.

      1. Quit making jokes – it’s her own falcon business. Can’t she train a falcon bird without being subject to marijuana jokes?

  15. “See, if you look at the drug war from a purely economic point of view, the role of the government is to protect the drug cartel. That’s literally true.”

    – Milton somebody or another

    1. this is absolutely accurate for both the Mexican and US governments. The only difference being that Mexican government protects individuals in the cartels, and the US government goes after individuals while propping up the organization itself

    2. Milton the Monster?

    3. John Milton, in one of his sonnets?

  16. Swalwell continues to represent the Michael Hihn school of libertarianism.

    Rep. Eric Swalwell, 2020 Candidate, Proposes Jailing ‘Assault Weapons’ Owners If They Don’t Surrender Guns

    There is literally no need for civilians to own deadly assault weapons. As libertarians, we should want these killing machines exclusively in the hands of the military and law enforcement.

    1. Nothing demonstrates more how retarded, provincial, and insular the Bay Area has become than SwallowWell’s manic obsession with gun-grabbing. This fucker was raised in Iowa and ought to know better that no one outside white hyper-urbanite neighborhoods gives a damn about this issue.

    2. What I find amusing is that in US v. Miller, one of the earliest rulings on the 2nd Amendment, the supreme court determined that only military-style weapons were protected by the Constitution; sawed-off shotguns had no use in a militia so they didn’t count. This was factually wrong at the time, as thousands were used in the trenches during WW1, and definitely wrong now since both the police and military use them.

  17. In case you’re interested in Beto O’Rourke’s tax returns.


    1. Isn’t he the guy that was in 9 1/2 Weeks?

    2. You know, Bob. Bob O’Rourke.

      1. seems more a Robbie

  18. Pulitzer Prize winners for 2019 were announced yesterday.

    As if that Prize is not a gimmee like the Nobel Prize.

    1. I’m ashamed to admit I used to see these “winners” as the cream of the crop. Journalism is a virtue signalling circle jerk

  19. “Tiger Woods is getting the Presidential Medal of Freedom, because why not?”

    Beats a beer at the 19th…

  20. Enter Bill Weld. … Bill Weld will return to his Republican Party roots to mount a 2020 primary challenge in the GOP


  21. Even more bad economic news.

    Trump’s Trade War With China Doesn’t Look Like a Win

    Until late 2016, we were in the strongest 8-year run in the history of the American economy thanks to Obama. Then Drumpf ruined everything.

  22. Cell of French women guided by Isis behind failed Notre Dame attack

    ENB didnt cover this part…because WOMEN.

    ISIS is “defeated” and now this? Trump is to blame.

  23. KMW said the site would be janky when the update went through – she wasn’t wrong.

    1. The herd of skwirrls seems to have grown.

  24. I’m still waiting for the article praising Donald Trump for saying he will send illegal immigrants and asylum seekers to Sanctuary cities. Isn’t that what all you beltway libertopians want? Why aren’t you praising this idea, and why aren’t you encouraging democrats to jump all over this marvelous opportunity?

    I don’t understand why you’re not taking this opportunity to praise sanctuary cities as a bastion of freedom.

    1. Trump set a completely obvious trap, and the Left fell face-first right into it. They’re going to have to up their game to have much of a chance in 2020.

    2. The CBP dropped off 180 immigrants in my city this weekend, which appears to be putting a strain on resources for the homeless. But we’re just scummy flyover country, so whatehvs.

      1. The food trucks will be ready in a week, hold tight!

  25. How ‘Liberal’ Late-Night Talk Shows Became a Comedy Sinkhole

    “Monologue-wise, there’s just a bunch of shortcuts-to-jokes that every writer knows to hit for Trump stories now,” the exasperated TV writer tells me. “Talk about Trump loving fast food, reference a photo where he looks awful, call him orange, mention the Stormy Daniels thing (always in some not-so-thinly-veiled anti-sex-work way), say he tweets a lot, use one of his catchphrases like ‘Fake News,’ etc. Everyone’s on autopilot.”

    He adds, “Trying to push any new idea, even if it’s low-risk, is a series of hurdles that almost always ends in different producers saying they ‘don’t see it,’ or shutting it down because they don’t get a reference that the entire rest of the world would get, or bristling at the idea of even mentioning race/gender/sex in any creative way that isn’t already some catchphrase on a department store T-shirt.”

    1. Very much like Bill Clinton “Bubba” jokes from the 90s – a McDonalds loving trailer-trash Paula Jones chasing ogre in the White House.

      Except now when it is a conservative being parodied the little snowflake pussies whine like it never happened before.

      1. Well said.

        The fact is, as terrible as the Drumpf regime has been for the country in general, it has at least ushered in a golden age of comedy. I know whenever I hear Stephen Colbert say “Trump” in a sentence I’m guaranteed to LOL at the punchline.

      2. Shrieky-poo having to go back 20-plus years to whine about his fellow Democrats supposedly getting slagged, is a new level of desperation even for him.

        1. I guess he took time out from surfing the dark webs for child porn.

      3. Reminder that Democrat supporters cheered the firing of a rodeo clown who dared wear an Obama mask. And that the SNL writers excused their lack of jokes at his expense by saying he had no quirks to make fun of. Their earnestness goes down the memory hole.

    2. The bitchy comment about Leno deliberately avoids the fact that Leno kicked Letterman’s ass in the late-night ratings for over 20 years, and his effort to poke fun at both sides, in a manner that wasn’t mean-spirited or juvenile, had a lot to do with that success.

      I suspect that’s really why the comedy mainstream hates Leno so much and kisses Letterman’s ass, even though by any objective measure Leno was the more successful host.

    3. Why go to the trouble of writing new material when you can just serve up the SOS and the audience will still love you for it?

      1. The writer’s main complaint seems to be that these guys aren’t left-wing enough, which is laughable by any measure. The lament about them “defending the status quo” shows that not being a bat-shit leftist is the true state of rebellion and cultural subversion in The Current Year.

        This is the Trotskyites and Stalinists in a struggle over who they think will actually control the American Soviet Socialist Republic.

  26. “The Bureau of Land Management wants to encircle Burning Man’s makeshift desert town with thousands of physical barriers and have security guards screen attendees, called “Burners,” for contraband.”

    The Burning Man organizers aren’t just opposed to the plan because it would add some $24 million to the cost of the festival. They think it would ruin the experience having the BLM searching everybody on the way in, etc.

    The BLM is arguing that it’s not just to funnel people through checkpoints. The festival is a big draw for a mass shooter or some terrorist who wants to mow the place down with a car, the BLM says, which is why they want to require the physical barriers.

    “At another hearing on April 8 in Sparks, Nev., nearly 200 Burners derided the screening plan as excessive government interference. “Tell us how many more rangers we need,” Jennifer Kallmes, a veteran attendee, told federal officials. “We’ll do it ourselves. We don’t need you.”

    Becky Andres, a BLM ranger, told the Burners the screening would be to their benefit. “This is about helping to keep you safe,” she said. The crowd responded with sarcastic laughs.”


    1. Could there be anything more ironic than holding a festival of “independence from society” or whatever such nonsense they claim on public land?

      1. It’s hard to find a spot outside of Vegas in Nevada that isn’t public land. I think they were just looking for somewhere isolated but close enough to both SoCal and NorCal.

        If there’s anything ironic, it’s probably that regulation drove them out of California. When I was a kid, we’d have bonfires on the beach all the time. You can’t do that anymore. I understand Rainbow Family has the same kinds of problems, but they want to hold their gatherings in the most spectacularly beautiful mountain areas they can find–which usually means National Parks. In the case of Burning Man, nobody would give a shit about that piece of dirt if it weren’t for Burning Man. Its isolation is its only advantage.

        The other ironic thing I see about this is that some of the progressive types that are bumping heads with the BLM over Burning Man are likely the same types who were applauding the BLM over their treatment of the Bundy clan in Nevada. They thought it was funny when the BLM was poking the Bundys in the eye! Not so funny when the BLM turns its attention to you.

        1. Nevada isn’ the only state. There are huge areas of West Texas that are in private hands and just as remote as anywhere in Nevada.

        2. “They thought it was funny when the BLM was poking the Bundys in the eye! Not so funny when the BLM turns its attention to you.”

          This right here is what makes it funny to me. These people are huge statists when it comes to everyone else’s businesses, but they sure do hate it when the government pokes its head into their business.

      2. You don’t think, if this festival was being held on private land, the gov’t wouldn’t be even more aggressive in its regulation? Up to and including forfeiture of the land for permitting it to be used for unlawful (sex, drugs, burning without a permit) uses?

        Now, that’s ironic thinking.

        1. Sadly, you make a good point.

    2. What’s the point of Burning Man if people can’t bring along their drugs?

      1. The art? The nudity? The Ted Talks it inspires? The chance to meet Gover Norquist?

        1. None of that matters without drugs to wash it down.


    Socialism always starts by claiming to help the less fortuneate but ends with murdering the weak because they are a drag on the collective.

  28. Texas sheriff’s commander asked deputies to have sex with ‘Live PD’ producer, lawyer alleges

    Deaton first told the deputies during the meeting that he needed to know which one of them had slept with one of the producers of the show, the grievance said.

    “No one in the room responded,” the document said. Deaton then said that he knew someone in the room had had sex with the producer, the grievance said.

    “After getting no response from those present, Deaton then began to explain how ‘Live PD’ exchanges producers after each season,” according to the grievance. Deaton said it was his goal to have one of his deputies have sex with the producer before she left, the complaint said.

    “There was an awkward silence in the room, which prompted some deputies to start making jokes about who might be the one to accomplish this goal for Commander Deaton,” according to the grievance. Four women were present during the meeting, including three deputies and one sergeant, the complaint said.

    1. The story doesn’t have a picture of the producer. Without seeing the producer, you can’t judge whether this was abusive or not.

      Bad journalism.

  29. Fires ripped through both the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris and Jerusalem’s Al-Aqsa Mosque on Monday

    The roof
    The roof
    The roof is on fire


    No injuries or damage was reported during the short blaze

    No. fire didn’t rip through the mosque. The two events are in no way comparable. It is a good thing they both didn’t burn down, but they are not comparable events.

    1. Morning Joe: The Notre-Dame fire was akin to a dagger being plunged through the heart of western civilization.

      Chris Cuomo: delivers a moving elegy on Notre-Dame.

      Mika: Watching fire just heartbreaking.

      Don Lemon: Awed by presence of Notre-Dame. Claims it makes one believe.

      Our resident misanthrope: I don’t cry over burning buildings.

      Life sure presents some dramatic contrasts.

      1. No kidding. I just don’t get people like that.

      2. Life sure presents some dramatic contrasts.

        Biggest contrast: I’m not some TV talking head that needs to maintain an audience.

        1. Hey Sparky,

          I hear the Sistine Chapel burned down and the Michaelangelo’s David was blown up.

          Oh just kidding. Didn’t mean to get your hopes up.

          1. You probably hear this a lot so I’m sure you don’t need me telling you, but you’re not very bright.

        2. Spark, do I need to spell it out for you the way Ethan Edwards did for his nephew in The Searchers?

          You, by your long term presence here, and to be fair, by the content of many of your posts, arguably have more regard for liberty and western civilization than the talking head progressives to whom I referred above.

          Wow. I would not want to be on the south side of a comparison with those blokes concerning regard for one of the great symbols of civilization.

          Even Mike Barnacle, that wretched plagiarist, noted how Kenneth Clark said that while civilization is an abstract proposition, he saw it and felt it while standing in front of Notre-Dame.

          1. Cool story. I guess I’m just not as attached to buildings as some people.

  31. Jordan Peterson, And the New Chivalry

    To cast down the proud and lift up the lowly. To do justly and love mercy. To walk boldly, yet humbly. Herein is the art of manliness.

    May its practitioners increase.

    1. +1

    2. As the student collapses in sobs, Peterson can be seen kneeling down to put a calming hand on his heaving shoulders. After the student is escorted offstage, the video feed comes back up as Nasser and Peterson return to their seats. Peterson seems shaken and visibly moved to tears.

      I have nothing against Jordan Peterson, but WTF?

  32. Anybody here read Dave Weigel? I’m not sure I agree with his analysis of Sanders.

    The thing that Dems fear the most about a Sanders nomiination is the thing they can’t really say: Howard Schultz would charge in and hand the election to Trump.

    But Drumpf is the worst President ever and has completely destroyed the economy. Why would Democrats fear Sanders couldn’t beat him, regardless of what Schultz does?

    1. Dave Weigel is one of our longest-tenured commenters.

      1. Really? I’ve been here about a year and a half and I’ve never seen him.

  33. Trump has no regrets about attacking ‘very disrespectful’ Rep. Ilhan Omar

    President Trump said he has no second thoughts about blasting Rep. Ilhan Omar for her controversial comments about the 9/11 terror attacks while on a swing through the Democratic lawmaker’s home state of Minnesota.

    Asked during an interview on Monday with KSTP-TV if he would apologize to Omar after the freshman lawmaker said his tweet led to death threats against her, the president said, “No. not at all.”

    “Look, she’s been very disrespectful to this country. She’s been very disrespectful, frankly, to Israel. She is somebody that doesn’t really understand life. Real life,” Trump told the ABC affiliate in Minneapolis
    This is a winning issue for Trump.

    1. And the thing of it is, the media think they can score points against Trump by continuing to bring it up.

      1. If Omar wasn’t such a stereotype herself and could make an argument that wasn’t bog-standard, third-world boilerplate that hasn’t changed in over 70 years, it wouldn’t be a big deal if Trump constantly brought her up. But making her and the other two SocJus Musketeers as the new face of the Democratic party highlights just how much its current incarnation actually despises the US and the people who live here.

      2. the media think they can score points against Trump by continuing to bring it up

        Showing (yet again) how thick their bubble is. If there’s one thing most Americans agree on, it’s that you don’t minimize or joke about 9/11.

    2. Why would he apologize to her? It’s not like she has said anything remotely thoughtful or nuanced about the US or Israel. The best thing you could say about her is that she is the Trump of Muslim-American politicians. But that is way too generous, because he has never said that anyone who disagreed with him on generation is just being paid off by Mexico which is also hypnotizing the world. Or that any immigrant casualties are “some people did something”
      She is an exotic-looking ignorant hillbilly

      1. (wtf, autocorrect?)*on immigration

  34. Fuck the New York Times.

    It’s staffed by assholes.

    By the way, where are the fucking WMDs you reported about you fuck faces?

  35. reparations for being jailed on Mary charges makes entirely more sense than the other kind.

  36. Has anybody been following the Al Qeada and ISIS intercenine war in Yemen? Both sides have been popping each other. AQAP has offered cash money for the heads of ISIS-Y.

    1. My representative Ilhan Omar tweeted: ” We will cut the throats of the ISIS-Y dogs and revel as their pig-mothers weep, inshallah.”


    2. Where can I donate money to both sides?

  37. “St. Louis Post-Dispatch columnist Tony Messenger also won an award (best commentary) for a series on his city’s bail problems.”

    It’s related to bail, but his series is on the practice of rural counties throughout the state to charge people room & board bills for the time they spent forcefully incarcerated. If you can’t pay, you may end up back in prison on a “probation violation” (even though you’re not on probation) racking up additional bills.

    So, not the city, not bail, but still worth a look.

  38. Responding to the ENB Quick Hits observation that DC police are authorized by their courts to use all necessary deadly force to stop people loitering on their own front porch: the precedent cite is U.S. v. Balint, a 1922 prohibition case involving

      plant leaf products

    !! Mens rea is never an issue when it comes to prohibitionist railroading and asset forfeiture looting. I’d lay 3 to 2 odds this was another of the “cocaine negro” cases the NY Times invented to gain passage of the Harrison Act.

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