How the Awakening turned New York into Weed City
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New York City is being overrun by unlicensed marijuana dealers. It seemed to happen almost overnight. Suddenly there were signs outside smoke shops promoting pre-roll THC joints; Edibles are available in many bodegas. Gotham is overrun with weed. How did it happen? Awakening. let me explain.
20 months ago, New York State legalized the retail sale of marijuana, but with an unexpected catch. As a form of redress, the state decided to grant licenses to sell marijuana almost exclusively to people previously convicted of marijuana crimes.
Putting the madness of rewarding criminal behavior aside in this way, let’s focus on the fact that the first 36 licenses were granted just last month. Thirty-six. Since March 2021, when legalization took place, hundreds of unlicensed retailers have sprung up like weeds.
NEW YORK’S FIRST LEGAL recreational marijuana dispensary is scheduled to open on December 11th. 29
Now Mayor Eric Adams says we need a crackdown on unlicensed marijuana sellers and tougher penalties for them or the licensed businesses owned by ex-convicts won’t survive.
Just to be clear, Adams says we need tougher penalties for illegally selling marijuana so people who have allegedly been unfairly severely punished in the past can now legally sell marijuana. It’s an absurdity that Lewis Carroll would have found too far-fetched for Alice in Wonderland.
It’s a master class in the pernicious effects of progressive wokism and its backward priorities. Cities and states around the world have legalized the retail sale of marijuana for over a decade by creating simple, straightforward, and open regulatory systems. It is not that hard.
Instead, New York chose to put justice at the center of politics, as the left put it. While the board responsible for all this was frantically thinking about how to give ex-criminals a monopoly in this new market for almost two years, entrepreneurs who wanted to play by fair rules simply opened a shop.
Now they are being punished for a crime that the state claims shouldn’t have been a crime at all. Make it meaningful.
Here is a condensed list of the downsides of regulation through unenforceable reparations inviting a black market. Sales are not taxed, no one controls sales to minors, products could be dangerous and are absolutely supplied by criminal cartels, edibles that look like regular candy are sold and can be eaten by children.
This is what has produced the New York political class, which cares more about virtue signs than sound politics.
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There were a number of ways the recalcitrant progressives who run the Empire State could have favored criminals in the marijuana trade that wouldn’t have caused a wild, wild west of flower, vape, and brownie. Tax credits or business loans, for example.
But they chose to stifle this new industry because they did not want the privileged, white, rich, or conservative to thrive in this new endeavor. And what was the result? A new criminal class, a new crackdown, and against whom? Not the privileged, but the marginalized.
Just to be clear, Adams says we need tougher penalties for illegally selling marijuana so people who have allegedly been unfairly severely punished in the past can now legally sell marijuana.
The sad fact is that there may be no turning back now. In an already crime-ridden city, how many NYPD resources do we want to focus on licensing issues for an already legalized trade? New Yorkers are used to buying their weed around the block, they won’t put up with legit dispensaries now.
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They say wake up and go broke. Here really is the perfect example: An already penniless state of New York has waived millions in sales taxes on weed to stand on a ridiculous principle.
Welcome to Weed City, all progressive horses and all progressive men will never piece together rational marijuana politics ever again.
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https://www.foxnews.com/opinion/how-wokeness-turned-new-york-weed-city How the Awakening turned New York into Weed City