On Nov. 27, Rice issued a strong statement of support for decriminalization, a concept he's repeatedly backed in the past.
"Decriminalization is not, as I've seen in media reports a 'second choice,' a 'stop-gap measure' or a 'short-term solution.,'" Rice said. "It certainly isn't a reason to be 'disappointed.' It's a long sought-after and hard-fought victory for any person or family caught up on the wrong side of a small-scale marijuana arrest, particularly people of color and those without the means to hire proper legal representation."
"Because black and brown people are arrested and incarcerated for small amount marijuana use and possession at a rate of three times more than whites, decriminalization will go a long way to correct social injustice and an unfair, biased system," Rice continued. "It downgrades offenses to misdemeanors, allows those in jail to go home to their families, and frees people from the yoke of a criminal record that prevents better housing and jobs, student financial aid or the driver's license necessary for a fresh start on life."