Article by Angela Stelmakowich, Growth Op
“Legal marijuana is rigged,” according to Hasan Minhaj.
The host of the Netflix show Patriot Act pulled no punches while calling current and past weed laws “pretty racist.” Lamenting how few people of colour are represented in the legal industry, he said big corporations, mostly headed by white men, dominate the landscape in stark contrast to the actual population in the U.S. and Canada.
“States are building systems that are good for giant weed companies and are bad for almost everyone else,” Minhaj argued, noting that regulatory schemes and licence allocation favour big over small.
In California, for example, he said large companies were supposed to be limited, but several corporations have stacked hundreds of licences, which has small farmers struggling to keep up. And in Florida, where vertical integration or seed-to-sale is required, only five companies control two-thirds of the state’s medicinal marijuana market.
Minhaj saved most of his ire for Adam Bierman, co-founder and former CEO of MedMen. In a previous interview, Bierman was recorded comparing himself to the Eminem character in 8 Mile. “You’re not 8 Mile. You’re (expletive) Ladybird,” Minhaj said. “And if I have to stand here and listen to you pretend to be from Detroit any longer, I’m going to go chug a gallon of their water,” he said of the native of San Diego and USC graduate.