NY Gov. Cuomo again calls for marijuana legalization

Last year the New York governor promoted the idea but it met with resistance in the state Senate, where they killed the bill. Now that see the sun continued to rise following the recent legalization votes in Washington and Colorado, maybe resistance will go away in New York.

Marijuana

Marijuana via Shutterstock

Is 2013 the year New York re-focuses law enforcement?

Today, marijuana possession is the number one arrest in New York City. The governor cited the harmful outcomes of these arrests – racial disparities, stigma, fiscal waste, criminalization – and called on the legislature to act: “It’s not fair, it’s not right. It must end, and it must end now.”

A powerful statewide coalition of community groups, faith and civil rights leaders, parents and young people applauded the Governor’s strong leadership in tackling this issue.

“We cannot have the same laws applied differently to different groups of people when the dividing line is race,” said Gabriel Aayegh, New York state director for the Drug Policy Alliance. “The governor’s proposal is an essential step towards bringing greater fairness and equity to both our drug laws and policing practices in our state. The criminalization of our young people must end — the legislature must now act now to pass the governor’s bill.”


An American in Paris, France. BA in History & Political Science from Ohio State. Provided consulting services to US software startups, launching new business overseas that have both IPO’d and sold to well-known global software companies. Currently launching a new cloud-based startup. Full bio here.

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  • Robert Match

    The math on this one is easy,
    even stoned you can do it. Spend lots of money arresting, prosecuting, and
    jailing stoners; or legalize it, and tax it. One way we got non hirable people
    who need to steal for a living the other way we got more cash to spend on
    things like roads, bridges, parks, schools, and so forth that will make jobs.
    We as a society have already legalized gambling, and the use of alcohol, why
    not pot? I’ve yet to meet a violent pot head; can you say the same for a drunk?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jose-Gonzales/100003694111815 Jose Gonzales

    Decriminalization is a fraud. If the politicians are going to lie, it may as well be for legalization.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jose-Gonzales/100003694111815 Jose Gonzales

    Good point. One thing that politicians are masters at is lying.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jose-Gonzales/100003694111815 Jose Gonzales

    If the feds want marijuana to be illegal, they can do it properly with a constitutional amendment like they did for alcohol. It’s time to send a message to Congress that they overstepped their authority under the Constitution to wage a war on marijuana.

  • Evan

    Thanks for covering the issue. One quick thing: Can you change the headline to read “decriminalization” instead of “legalization”? The Governor didn’t come out in favor or legalization, but decriminalizing small amounts in public view.

  • Bill L.

    Not to be too cynical, but this would be just the time for Cuomo’s “pretend progressive” strategy to start paying off. Remember when Cuomo deliberately refused to back certain Democratic candidates, supported some Republicans, and ultimately stayed out of the “alliance” made between a couple DINOs and the Republicans? Here we get to see that gamble in action. My money says he only wants to appear progressive on pot legalization and is counting on nothing being able to actually get through for a signature. He wants to be President. Count on that and proceed accordingly.

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