About Jacob Sullum

Jacob Sullum

Jacob Sullum

Jacob Sullum is a senior editor at Reason, a monthly magazine that covers politics and culture from a libertarian perspective. During two decades in journalism he has relentlessly skewered authoritarians of the left and the right, making the case for shrinking the realm of politics and expanding the realm of individual choice.

In addition to Reason, Sullum's work has appeared in National Review, Cigar Aficionado, Seed, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, USA Today, the Los Angeles Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, and many other publications. He is a frequent guest on TV and radio programs, including The O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, Paula Zahn Now, The Charlie Rose Show, and NPR.

Sullum is the author of Saying Yes: In Defense of Drug Use (Tarcher/Penguin) and For Your Own Good: The Anti-Smoking Crusade and the Tyranny of Public Health (Free Press).
Saying Yes has been praised in both National Review, which called it “a highly effective debunking,” and Mother Jones, which described it as “a healthy dose of sober talk in a debate dominated by yelping dopes.” For Your Own Good, Amazon’s No. 1 public policy best-seller in 1998, also was widely praised by reviewers, who called it “compelling” (The Wall Street Journal), “meticulously logical” (The New York Times), and a “cogent and thorough ... must-read” (The Washington Post).

Sullum, a fellow of the Knight Center for Specialized Journalism, has received the Keystone Press Award for investigative reporting and First Prize in the Felix Morley Memorial Journalism Competition. In 1998, his article on pain treatment for Reason was a National Magazine Award finalist in the Public Interest category. In 2004, he received the Thomas S. Szasz Award for Outstanding Contributions to the Cause of Civil Liberties, and in 2005, he received the Drug Policy Alliance’s Edward M. Brecher Award for Achievement in the Field of Journalism.

Sullum first joined Reason in 1989, as an assistant editor, later serving as associate editor and managing editor. He also has worked as the articles editor of National Review and as a reporter for the News and Courier/Evening Post in Charleston, S.C., and The Times Leader in Wilkes-Barre, Pa.

Sullum is a graduate of Cornell University, where he was an editor and columnist at The Cornell Daily Sun and majored in economics and psychology. Born and raised in Pennsylvania, he currently lives in Texas with his wife, two daughters, three cats, and one dog.

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The Whimsical Illogic of 'Assault Weapon' Bans: The Category Is Defined by Politicians, Who Focus on Looks Rather Than Function Jan 16, 2019

Since 1996, Gallup has been asking Americans whether they support a ban on "assault weapons." Gallup has never explained what "assault weapons" are, and there's a good reason for that: The category is defined by politicians, so its meaning is arbitra... Read More

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Are Boycotts Protected by the First Amendment? Only If You Like the Cause They Serve, According to Supporters of Laws That Target the Anti-Israel BDS Movement Jan 09, 2019

I am not one of those people who keep track of the policies, positions and practices of every business they deal with, lest they inadvertently lend support to a cause they abhor or undermine one they embrace. Still, I recognize that consumers who inv... Read More

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Trump's Right About 'Ridiculous' Misuse of US Forces Jan 02, 2019

Donald Trump has been complaining for years about the promiscuous use of American military personnel. Two weeks ago, he did something about it, announcing the withdrawal of 2,000 troops from Syria and 7,000 from Afghanistan. Republicans joined Democr... Read More