When he's right, he's right …

In an Op-Doc on the front page of the New York Times this morning, the 'Best Rapper Alive' points to the booming legal weed industry in Colorado as a dope state of affairs.

Yet, even as Jay may be crushing on the piles of dough we have here, he also points out rank hypocrisy of the War on Drugs, as he so often does. In the clip, he directly compares Colorado’s ganjapreneurs — who are celebrated and enriched — to the vilified “drug dealers” of his old neighborhood, who are still in prison.

Mr. Shawn Carter started dealing at age 14, with one source claiming he sold a kilo of cocaine every week in his heyday. But it was dicey, as his buddy Emory Jones received 16 years in prison for the same thing. "I got out of there just in time," Jay writes in his autobiography, Decoded

But while drug users today are getting lighter sentences, “there’s still no compassionate language about (old school, underground) drug dealers,” Jay says in the video, “unless we’re talking about places like Colorado, whose state economy got a huge boost by the above ground marijuana industry.” 

Lots of people argue that marijuana isn't a drug — it's an herb, man — and shouldn't even be in the same conversation as crack or cocaine. But Jay, like many, believes that a drug dealer is a drug dealer, and the reason mostly-white Colorado is prospering is because of subtle racism, since cops and judges long thought black slingers looked good in handcuffs while white pushers felt more comfortable under house arrest.

He’s got a point. Imagine if Jay Z’s Brooklyn neighborhood or South Central Los Angeles suddenly declared weed legal, the way Colorado did. Tanks in the streets, probably. Certainly not a booming new industry, higher tax revenues, and general approval from the country and the world, like in Colorado.

Of course, it isn't fair. There's still a ways to go both on a state level and certainly on a national one. Understanding where the War on Drugs came from and where it's continuing to sit is necessary if Colorado is to make the cannabis industry as 'progressive' as it touts itself to be. 

Everyone deserves a piece of the pie.