Democratic Lawmakers in New York Reintroduce Marijuana Act

(Photo credit: YouTube/SenatorSchumer)

Over the last few years, the United States government has switched its position on marijuana. Once heralded a gateway drug, weed use is now celebrated in pop culture and recreational use is even legal in several states.

On Thursday, Senate Democratic Leader Charles “Chuck” Schumer and Chairman of the House Democratic Caucasus Hakeem Jeffries announced their plans to reintroduce the Marijuana Freedom and Opportunity Act.

According to Schumer, the groundbreaking act “gives states the right to make their own choices when it comes to regulation; better equip all Americans, particularly communities disproportionately impacted by marijuana’s criminalization, to participate in the growing marijuana economy; and, by incentivizing sealing and expungement programs, provide Americans with low-level marijuana convictions the opportunity to move forward.”

Noting the difference in how marijuana laws and incarceration rates impact minority communities, Jeffries said, “This critical effort works to correct that injustice by providing $100 million toward expungement programs and creating an investment fund for people of color and female entrepreneurs who wish to enter the lucrative legal cannabis industry.”

Along with support from Schumer and Jeffries, the act has been endorsed by the Center for American Progress, the Drug Policy Alliance and NORML. Check out their discussion on the Marijuana Freedom and Opportunity Act below.