America's fentanyl problem is far deadlier than past crises with other illegal drugs. New ideas, be they public policies, technologies or law enforcement strategies, are desperately needed. Continuing to treat fentanyl just like previous drug epidemics will likely be insufficient and may condemn thousands more to early deaths.
Sep 3, 2019 Los Angeles Times
Given China's recent decision to ban the unauthorized manufacture of fentanyl, authorities there appear to recognize a growing problem. But China cannot solve the U.S. opioid problem. The United States could do more to reduce demand for opioids as well as drug users' exposure to these powerful drugs.
May 22, 2019 Los Angeles Times
With drug overdose deaths mounting, some American cities are trying to create designated spaces where people who use heroin and other drugs can have their consumption supervised by medical professionals. The Department of Justice argues these sites would violate federal law, but federal decisionmakers have several options.
Mar 14, 2019 The Hill
As the next round of states debate marijuana legalization, they would do well to contemplate allowing state governments to control the wholesale prices and linking the price of cannabis to its potency.
Dec 4, 2018 The Hill
How will legalization of recreational marijuana affect alcohol consumption? Will drinking go down because people substitute cannabis for alcohol? Or will drinking go up because cannabis and alcohol complement each other? These questions have important implications.
Feb 13, 2018 GreenState (San Francisco Chronicle)
Californians have a lot to consider when it comes to decriminalizing possession. But now is the time for a rigorous discussion about removing criminal penalties for drug possession, rather than rushing to judgment in the heat of a future election season.
Jul 20, 2017 San Francisco Chronicle
Data lags and the elimination of the ADAM program complicate estimates of U.S. cocaine consumption. New users who haven't yet developed cocaine dependence are also a factor. It may be prudent to start planning for an increase in heavy use even before all of the evidence is in.
Apr 28, 2017 Brookings - Up Front
The new administration has at least six options for addressing marijuana. These are not mutually exclusive, and each comes with tradeoffs. All six are compatible with a federal approach that encourages discussions about prohibition and its alternatives.
Jan 17, 2017 The Hill
There are many ways to legalize marijuana supply besides the for-profit approach. But to learn what effects various models have, the federal government will have to make it easier for states to implement some middle-ground options.
Dec 1, 2016 USA Today
At least five states will vote on legal recreational marijuana this November. Drug policy expert Beau Kilmer hosted an “Ask Me Anything” session on Reddit to shed light on this and other issues.
Sep 13, 2016
Setting the cannabis tax should not be considered a one-time event. Smart jurisdictions will revise their decisions over time to incorporate new data about taxes, testing, and the cannabis plant itself — without being influenced by those seeking to maximize profits.
Aug 22, 2016 San Francisco Chronicle
In California, many efforts to reduce repeat drunken driving focus on the driving. What if the state targeted the 'drunk' aspect instead?
Jul 6, 2016 San Diego Union-Tribune
Beau Kilmer, co-director of the RAND Drug Policy Research Center and a co-author of the nonpartisan primer Marijuana Legalization: What Everyone Needs to Know addresses developments in marijuana policy and why reasonable people can disagree about legalization.
May 26, 2016
Legalizing and allowing profit-maximizing firms to produce, sell, and advertise recreational marijuana would likely increase marijuana consumption. But how would this increased consumption influence the use of other substances?
May 16, 2016 Los Angeles Times
Criminal justice reform requires creating demand for bold ideas about simultaneously reducing incarceration and crime. Given the prominent role alcohol plays in crime — and the strong results from South Dakota's 24/7 Sobriety program — suspending one's “license to drink” seems well worth considering.
Jun 23, 2015 CNN
Marijuana policy is a growing topic of discussion, and laws are starting to change. Ten choices confronting jurisdictions considering legalization cover many of the critical decisions that will determine whether removing prohibition is a good idea.
Jun 22, 2015 Berkeley Review of Latin American Studies
The marijuana policy landscape changed dramatically in 2014. Legal sales for nonmedical purposes began in Colorado and in Washington state. Voters in Washington, D.C., Alaska, and Oregon passed initiatives to liberalize their marijuana laws. Uruguay also started implementing its marijuana legalization law.
Apr 30, 2015 Britannica Book of the Year
California and a handful of other states will probably vote on legal pot in 2016. Here are five suggestions to help policymakers who want to promote productive discussions.
Jul 13, 2014 San Francisco Chronicle
Any truly honest discussion about how to regulate cannabis markets must start with clear objectives and goals. How these markets are opened can be as important as the decision to legalise cannabis.
May 2, 2014 The Conversation
Due to budget concerns the federal government just shut down a critical data source that provides insights into abuse, dependence on, and spending on heroin and other hard drugs like crack and methamphetamine.
Mar 10, 2014 USA Today
Since Colorado and Washington allow profit-maximizing firms to grow and sell marijuana, there is concern they will use advertising to promote consumption by heavy users. With help from the federal government, the states will be better positioned to head off the negative consequences associated with commercialization.
Jan 15, 2014 NYTimes.com
Colorado and Washington will remove the prohibition on commercial marijuana production and distribution for nonmedical purposes and start regulating and taxing it. Not even the Netherlands goes that far, writes Beau Kilmer.
Oct 18, 2013 CNN
If you want to reduce cocaine consumption and drug-related crime, you get more bang for the buck if you put money into treatment rather than paying for the increase in incarceration produced by federal mandatory minimum sentences, writes Beau Kilmer.
Aug 13, 2013 BBC.co.uk
Driving Mexican marijuana out of the U.S. would probably reduce the traffickers' export revenue by a few billion dollars a year, writes Beau Kilmer. But would reducing that revenue lead to a corresponding decrease in trafficker violence?
May 23, 2013 NYTimes.com
Policymakers in Washington and Colorado are confronting some new and tricky issues that have never been addressed. For them, and for anyone else thinking about changing their pot laws, there are seven key decision areas that will shape the costs and benefits of marijuana legalization.
Apr 26, 2013 USA Today
Beau Kilmer, codirector of the RAND Drug Policy Research Center, discusses South Dakota's 24/7 Sobriety Project, which requires those arrested for or convicted of alcohol-related offenses to take twice-a-day breathalyzer tests or wear a continuous monitoring bracelet. Those who fail or skip their tests are immediately subject to modest sanctions—typically a day or two in jail.
Nov 15, 2012
This November, Washington state, Oregon, and Colorado voters will consider ballot measures to legalize the production, distribution, and possession of marijuana for nonmedical purposes. Even if voters pass these measures at the state level, marijuana will still be prohibited by the federal government, writes Beau Kilmer.
Sep 13, 2012 The RAND Blog
Beau Kilmer, senior policy researcher and codirector of the RAND Drug Policy Research Center, discusses what makes marijuana legalization so dramatically different from mere decriminalization.
Jul 25, 2012
An excerpt from Marijuana Legalization: What Everyone Needs to Know, by Jonathan P. Caulkins, Angela Hawken, Beau Kilmer, Mark A. R. Kleiman, published by Oxford University Press (c) 2012 Oxford University Press.
Jul 13, 2012 Huffington Post
Being honest about the uncertainties involved is the price of admission to any serious discussion about marijuana legalization, writes Beau Kilmer.
Apr 23, 2012 The Wall Street Journal
The illicit drug trade is the ultimate value-added chain. As cocaine and heroin make their perilous journeys from the fields of Colombia and Afghanistan to markets in U.S. and European cities, each border crossed and each trafficker involved adds dollars to a price, write Beau Kilmer And Peter Reuter.
Oct 19, 2009 Foreign Policy