With the New York Times reporting on stoned seniors forsaking shuffleboard for bong hits, you might think New York’s government is chillin’ too. Polls show that nearly two-thirds of New Yorkers think smoking weed in public should be a violation, not a misdemeanor. 51% of the state’s voters back full legalization of marijuana. Approval numbers for “medical marijuana” are even higher.
But unlike gun control and marriage equality– where lawmakers acted decisively on issues that normally give risk-averse legislators heartburn– the apparent consensus across party, geography and race for more liberal drug laws is stuck in Albany’s legislative rut.