Monday, June 4, 2012

NY Governor to Decriminalize Possession of Small Amounts of Weed

Andrew Cuomo, the governor of New York, is calling on lawmakers to decriminalize the possession of small amounts of weed -- 25 grams or less -- in public view. Those caught with the drug will be issued a ticket and fined, instead of jailed and charged with a misdemeanor. (Smoking weed in public -- no matter the amount -- will still result in an arrest and time behind bars, however. So don't be a donkey.) According to statistics released by the state, more than 500,000 New Yorkers were arrested in 2011 for possessing small amounts of weed. Critics have said that number is driven by the stop-and-frisk program that they believe targets blacks and Hispanic males. In fact, of those arrested after being stopped and frisked in NYC, 92 percent were minorities. “I think the law is flawed as it is, but I think it’s aggravated by the stop-and-frisk scenario where, legitimately, a police officer can say ‘turn out your pockets’ and the suggestion of the police officer transforms the action from a violation to a crime,” governor Cuomo said. “The effect of a criminal conviction on a young person can alter the trajectory of your entire life.” NYC mayor Mike Bloomberg, who hates fat people, supports the plan. The city's police commissioner is on board, too. Last September, he ordered his officers to stop arresting people for possessing small amounts of weed. Fourteen states have already downgraded the offense of carrying small amounts of weed.

source: WCBS
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