Gov. Andrew Cuomo calls for New York to legalize recreational marijuana
"We must end the needless and unjust convictions and the debilitating criminal stigma and let's legalize the adult use of recreational use of marijuana once and for all," the governor said.
- Governor Andrew Cuomo said he'd pursue the legislation in 2019.
- New York would become the 11th state to legalize recreational marijuana.
- The legalization of marijuana in a prominent state like New York would likely represent a landmark shift in how the country views marijuana regulation.
Governor Andrew Cuomo said Monday he's aiming to legalize recreational marijuana in New York in early 2019.
The Democrat governor, who was in Manhattan giving an address that outlined an agenda for his first 100 days in office for his upcoming third term, said "we have had two criminal justice systems: one for the wealthy and the well off, and one for everyone else," adding that some policies disproportionately affected African-American and minority communities.
"And that's going to end," he said in Manhattan. "We must end the needless and unjust convictions and the debilitating criminal stigma and let's legalize the adult use of recreational use of marijuana once and for all."
Cuomo, who as recently as 2017 called marijuana a "gateway drug," had ordered the state health department to conduct a study forecasting the impacts that legalization would bring to New York. The results, published over the summer, found that the benefits of legalizing pot for adults "would outweigh the potential negative impacts," and predicted that legalization would yield, at the very least, about $250 million in annual tax revenue.
It's unclear where that tax revenue would go, but some groups have suggested putting it toward New York City's subway system or investing it in black and Latino communities that have been hit hardest by drug enforcement policies like stop-and-frisk.
The 'great experiment' in pot-friendly states
New York would become the 11th state to legalize recreational marijuana if it passes the legislation, potentially joining Alaska, Colorado, California, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, Oregon, Washington and Vermont, as well as the District of Columbia. What's more, a total of 33 states allow for medical marijuana in some form.
It's hard to say exactly how recreational legalization is working out in other states so far, but it seems generally positive, at least in financial terms. In Colorado, for instance, total marijuana sales hit a record $1.51 billion in 2017, generating more economic output than 90 percent of all other industries in the state, as the Colorado Spring Gazette reports.
Still, it hasn't been without costs. The black market for pot is actually booming in Colorado, despite its legal status, due to illegal growers who move there to grow pot that they eventually sell in other states where marijuana is still illegal. Other reports show that more adults in Colorado are smoking pot after legalization, though consumption rates among kids have remained stable in recent years.
A shift in the national conversation
Marijuana remains a controlled substance at the federal level. But if New York decides to legalize recreational marijuana, it could represent a landmark shift in the way the country views marijuana regulation, given the state's prominence. The legislation likely wouldn't have a hard time passing, given that Democrats captured the State Senate in November, and a Quinnipiac University poll from May showed that 63 percent of New Yorkers favored legalization.
Nationally, a Pew survey from October showed that 62% of Americans favored legalizing recreational marijuana, up from 31% in 2000.
Researchers have just discovered the remains of a hybrid human.
90,000 years ago, a young girl lived in a cave in the Altai mountains in southern Siberia. Her life was short; she died in her early teens, but she stands at a unique point in human evolution. She is the first known hybrid of two different kinds of ancient humans: the Neanderthals and the Denisovans.
These thought leaders, founders, and entrepreneurs are propelling the kind of future we want to be a part of.
- The tech industry may be dominated by men in terms of numbers, but there are lots of brilliant women in leadership positions that are changing the landscape.
- The women on this list are founders of companies dedicated to teaching girls to code, innovators in the fields of AI, VR, and machine learning, leading tech writers and podcasters, and CEOs of companies like YouTube and Project Include.
- This list is by no means all-encompassing. There are many more influential women in tech that you should seek out and follow.
Most said they want to act on their desire someday. But do open relationships actually work?
- The study involved 822 Americans who were in monogamous relationships at the time.
- Participants answered questions about their personalities, sexual fantasies, and intentions to act on those fantasies.
- Research suggests practicing consent, comfort, and communication makes open relationships more likely to succeed.
Consensual non-monogamy fantasies<p>For the new study, published in <a href="https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10508-020-01788-7" target="_blank">Archives of Sexual Behavior</a>, researchers asked 822 people in monogamous relationships to:</p><ul><li>Describe their favorite sexual fantasy, defined as "mental images you have while you are awake that you find to be sexually arousing or erotic."</li><li>Select which themes apply to that fantasy, such as having sex with multiple people at the same time, experimenting with taboos, or engaging in a sexually open relationship.</li><li>Answer whether they intended to carry out these fantasies, and discuss them with their partner.</li><li>Complete assessments on relationship satisfaction, erotophilia and personality, as measured by the Big Five Personality inventory.</li></ul><p>The results showed that 32.6 percent of participants said being part of a sexually open relationship was "part of their favorite sexual fantasy of all time." More surprising is that, of that one-third, 80 percent said they want to act on this fantasy in the future.</p>
Pretzelpaws via Wikipedia Commons<p style="margin-left: 20px;">"The present research confirms the important distinction between sexual fantasy and sexual desire in that not everyone wanted to act on their favorite sexual fantasy of all time," study author Justin J. Lehmiller told <a href="https://www.psypost.org/2020/09/one-third-of-people-in-monogamous-relationships-fantasize-about-being-in-some-type-of-open-relationship-study-suggests-58102" target="_blank">PsyPost</a>. "This suggests that fantasies may serve different functions for different people."</p><p>Even though most participants said they want to act out their fantasy in the future, far fewer reported acting out sexual fantasies in the past. Other findings included:</p><ul><li>Men were more likely to fantasize about CNMRs.</li><li>So were people who scored high in <a href="https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Erotophilia#:~:text=Erotophilia%20is%20a%20personality%20trait,ranging%20from%20erotophobia%20to%20erotophilia." target="_blank">erotophilia</a> and sociosexual orientation.</li><li>The psychological predictors of fantasizing about CNMRs differed from predictors about infidelity fantasies.</li></ul>
Do open relationships work?<p>A <a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/00224499.2019.1669133" target="_blank">2019 study</a> from psychologists at the University of Rochester suggests it <em>is </em>possible<em>, </em>but especially when both partners practice a trio of behaviors: consent, communication, and comfort — or, the Triple-C Model.<br></p>But the study also suggests not all forms of open relationships are equally viable. For example, people in one-sided CNMRs — where one partner stays monogamous, the other seeks outside sexual relationships — were nearly three times more dissatisfied in their relationships than the monogamous group <em>and </em>the consensual non-monogamous group.
The results of this study showed depressive symptoms being highest in adolescence, declining in early adulthood and then climbing back up again into one's early 30s.