Legal Weed Going Up in Smoke?

Newark got the water crisis and public safety right, but it appears it’s fumbling the bag on the legalization of marijuana. Reporting from indicates the process has become a complete mess, with the usual suspects of inept city government and a vampiric private sector rearing their ugly heads. Even more tragic is suburbia’s conservative NIMBYism should be a boon for New Jersey’s cities. Cannabis-themed dispensaries and cafés would go a long way in providing people with jobs, attracting consumers from other towns, and filling in much of our vacant retail space. This isn’t just a chance for Newark to expand the tax base, but it’s also a social justice issue. A viable legal and regulated marijuana sector can help put a dent in black markets that fuel violent crime and a mass incarceration based criminal justice system. A city so starved for investment shouldn’t be so difficult to invest in.

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