It goes without saying that many have been critical of the United States government's handling of recreational marijuana, which has only been legalized in fifteen states. Now, it would appear that New York is looking to join the list, as confirmed by Governor Andrew Cuomo during a recent press conference. As he explains, the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on the economy will likely play a role in ensuring that recreational weed is indeed legalized, as the funds gained would assist in restoring the financial balance.

Weed

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"We will legalize adult-use recreational cannabis, joining 15 states that have already done so," Gov. Cuomo explained. "This will raise revenue and end the failed prohibition of this product that has left so many communities of color over-policed and over-incarcerated. Those, my friends, are the immediate issues for our focus: crushing COVID and the short-term economic consequences for our state." 

While there is no set date as to when he plans to follow-through with the legalization, Cuomo clearly intends to enact the new policies before the end of the year. Judging from his language used and stances taken throughout the speech, it's evident that Cuomo is no fan of the current model, and we can only hope that these future implementations will have a positive impact on people of color, many of whom have found themselves unfairly incarcerated over marijuana-related offenses. For those interested in hearing more from Cuomo and his goals for New York in 2021, consider checking out his Outlines Agenda speech below. 

Where do you stand on the legalization of recreational marijuana?