MSNBC's Hayes: I Wasn't Arrested for Pot 'Because I'm White'

MSNBC's Hayes: I Wasn't Arrested for Pot 'Because I'm White'

On the heels of New York Times columnist David Brooks’ admission that he smoked pot as a youth, MSNBC’s Chris Hayes had a personal pot story of his own to relate. He was confronted by a policeman once while carrying “$30 of pot” but got off because, Hayes claims, he was a white kid.

In a January 2 article, columnist Books admitted that he and his teenaged buddies smoked weed but after a time advanced to real things of pleasure such as literature and the love of their wives. This personal tale inspired MSNBC’s Hayes to open up about his own personal history with weed. Only Hayes’ tale wasn’t as benign.

The day after Brooks’ column appeared, Hayes went on his show, All In With Chris Hayes, to tell of his own experience with pot. The incident occurred during his attempt to gain access to the 2000 Republican Convention when he was 21-years-old.

Hayes recalled the time when he was passing through the security checkpoint while on his way inside the convention center and as he neared the Philadelphia policeman manning the bag searching station Hayes told his audience that he suddenly remembered that he had “$30 of pot” in a eyeglasses case inside his bags.

Hayes was terrified thinking that the policeman was going to come down hard on him when he found the pot. But, after conferring with two other officers, the policeman put Hayes’ pot back in his bag and waved him right on into the convention.

The MSNBC host said he was shocked at both his stupidity and his luck. But he had one steadfast idea on why the policeman let him go free.

“I can tell you as sure as I am sitting here before you that if I was a black kid with cornrows instead of a white kid with glasses, my ass would’ve been in a squad car faster than you can say George W. Bush,” Hayes proclaimed.

But even Hayes noted that the police were at the convention to screen for dangerous articles like guns and bombs and a little pot was something that would only have brought the officer “a whole bunch of headaches.”

Apparently it couldn’t have been that. It had to be a practical application of racism.


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