After over seven decades of good ol’ fashion American marijuana prohibition, it seems that marijuana advocates have finally gotten the word out to the political pukes still playing with themselves on Capitol Hill that marijuana reform in this country is coming hell or high bong water… like it or not.
Without a doubt, the results of the November election taught bloody knuckled pot supporters a valuable lesson: that as long as the federal government continues to allow individual states to legalize marijuana, citizens will show up to the polls to castrate those rotten pigs still enforcing outdated pot laws in their neck of the woods. This sentiment was made overwhelmingly clear in Alaska, Oregon, and the District of Columbia where the people decided to stand up and join the progressive ranks of our nation’s forefathers of legal weed, Colorado and Washington state.
On the coattails of victory, advocates are now greasing up the opposition for a full on backbiting attack in 2016, where they plan to put Uncle Sam face down in the shallow end of the prohibitionary cesspool that has been producing societal stench since the 1930s. Although it is still too early to determine who will be next to legalize marijuana, drug policy experts maintain that it is going to take much more support on a statewide level to force the government to change its policy.
“A lot more states are going to have to approve this before it gets to the point where repeal can pass,” said Ethan Nadelmann, with the Drug Policy Alliance. “When you look at medical marijuana and how slowly that moves on Capitol Hill, you see that it wasn’t until this year that we actually got something passed, and that was just to stop federal interference in medical marijuana states. I’m more optimistic about winning votes like that next year, to get the federal government out of the way.”
No one seems to know just how many more states are needed to legalize marijuana before the federal government gets serious about repealing prohibition, but most agree the answer will become clearer following the next presidential election&. A recent article from The Street speculates the next eight states most likely to legalize marijuana will encompass areas from all across the nation. Here they are in no particular order:
California: The Godfather of the medical marijuana program is poised to legalize weed for recreational purposes in 2016 with the help of the Marijuana Policy Project.
Florida: Amendment 2 missed during the 2014 general election, but the movement is expected to come back strong.
Maine: Measures to decriminalize marijuana have been successful in recent years, and supporters believe the state could be the next to legalize a recreational market.
Massachusetts: Supporters are currently drafting an initiative in which they plan to launch just in case lawmakers do not make an effort to legalize in 2016.
Michigan: With efforts to decriminalize wildly successful, some believe the state could be the first in the Midwest to establish a recreational pot market.
Minnesota: Although the state has one of the most restrictive medical marijuana programs in the country, supporters predict changes will be introduced in the coming years.
New Mexico: Support for decriminalization has been strong, and the issue of a tax and regulated pot market is expected to go before state lawmakers in 2015.
New York: Governor Cuomo signed the Compassionate Care Act earlier this year, and New York City has officially decriminalized less than 25 grams of marijuana. Recreational weed could be around the corner.