Today's SF Chron has a story on page C-4 about Dr. Jon Gettman's new report on Marijuana Arrests in the US. Marijuana arrests from 2003-2007 increased nationally by less than 3% annually, but in California increased by over 5% per year. Also, Californian African Americans are now arrested for marijuana possession at a rate of 270% over Caucasians, versus about 75% nationally.
Gettman concludes that the overall national marijuana arrest rate (between 3%-6%) is too insignificant to deter crime. So what public policy goal is served by using my tax dollars on incarceration?