"In this city, people are killing each other over marijuana more so than anything that we had to deal with an '80s and '90s with heroin and cocaine," said Bratton. "We just see marijuana everywhere when we make these arrests, when we get these guns off the streets."
Muriel Bowser, the mayor of Washington D.C., deserves at least an honorable mention, for standing strong in the face of threats of jail time from House Republicans, for allowing the will of the voters (70 percent of them) to become law this week.
Alaska's law legalizing recreational marijuana use went into effect Tuesday. While the law outlines conduct surrounding personal use, what commercialization will look like is left up to the state to figure out. The state has nine months to craft regulations for businesses.
On Tuesday, Alaska became the third state in the nation to legalize recreational marijuana. It turned out to be both a historic moment and a deeply understated occasion. With retail pot sales still at least a year off and public consumption banned, people who marked the moment mostly did so in private.
Kirsten Velasco, a medical cannabis patient advocate, says that Illinois' medical marijuana law has a serious flaw: It requires patients to be fingerprinted, a practice she says she is "sure" is "a violation of civil rights and privacy."
Legalization brings along a dizzying number of questions. What will businesses look like? How will existing criminal statutes change? Will communities opt to ban marijuana sales?
Marijuana has been an illegal drug for less than 1/10th of one percent of the total time it has been used by humans. The pendulum - and common sense - appear to be swinging in the other direction after decades of idiocy. But who knows precisely what will happen if a cop pulls you over and busts you for possession.
Almost every week he talks about our country's absurd war on drugs. Last week he did his best rap ever on the drug war that was both hilarious and blood-boiling.
The GOP wasted no time in creating yet another self-induced government shutdown showdown. Not even two full months into their control of Congress, and they are pushing a critical federal department towards shutting down, all in an effort to make a political point.
While many people are clearly in favor of legalization around the country, our leaders in Washington still think they know what's best for us. Logic and reason don't always prevail in America. The moral police do.
Myths around marijuana have created a great deal of injury. People's lives have been destroyed due to arrest records. We've deprived countless patients from a helpful medicinal plant.
When it comes to legalizing marijuana in Illinois, there are as many opinions as there are Illinoisans. But one Illinoisan, known only as the Devil's Advocate, has some particularly strong ideas.
Scott Walker wants to place new burdens on poor people. His justification? He's fighting for small businesses. He should stop pandering to the most extreme elements of the Republican base and start listening to employers across his state.
Barack Obama is the second Honorable Mention recipient this week, for his impressive public opinion polling on job approval in January. He had his best month (measured by month-to-month improvement) of his entire second term, and the fourth-best month he's ever had as president.
U.S. Surgeon General Dr. Vivek Murthy has joined the growing chorus of top medical professionals and organizations in favor of reforming marijuana laws to allow access for medical purposes.
As Alaska prepares for marijuana legalization, there are plenty of unknowns about what implementation will look like. But for supporters of Ballot Measure 2, one thing is clear: A strict timeline was built into the voter-passed initiative to guide rule makers and citizens through the legalization process.