Alex Berenson’s allegation that public support for marijuana law reform is waning (“Marijuana Activists Pass Their High Point,” op-ed, June 26) is nothing short of a pipe dream.
Nearly one in four Americans reside in a jurisdiction where the adult use of cannabis is legal, and 33 states regulate medical marijuana access by statute. No state has ever repealed a marijuana legalization law, and two-thirds of adults—including majorities of self-identified Democrats, Republicans and independents—endorse making the plant legal, according to the latest Gallup poll. As more states amend their cannabis laws, public support for legalization continues to rise.
Moreover, 2019 has been an unprecedented year for the passage of state-level reforms. Illinois lawmakers voted to legalize adult-use cannabis sales, while legislators in three states—Hawaii, New Mexico and North Dakota—moved to decriminalize it. New York expanded its existing decriminalization laws, and nearly a dozen states including Illinois, Oregon, Nevada and Washington passed legislation to expunge past marijuana convictions. Legislators in several states including Connecticut, Georgia, Texas and West Virginia enacted laws this year expanding medical-cannabis access, while Alaska, Colorado and Massachusetts voted to permit business to allow on-site marijuana consumption. In Nevada and New York City, employers may no longer sanction workers for their off-the-job use of cannabis.
At the federal level, members of the House of Representatives for the first time overwhelmingly voted in favor of legislation halting federal interference