Actress and candidate for governor Cynthia Nixon said on Wednesday she supports legalizing recreational use of marijuana.
Nixon, who announced her candidacy for the democratic ticket last month, said in a video posted to Twitter that she believes marijuana arrests unfairly plague poor people of color. Eighty percent of people arrested in New York for marijuana, Nixon said, are black or Latino. She also touted the potential tax revenue from regulating the drug.
“A lot of you have been asking about my position on marijuana so here it is,” she said in the video. “There are a lot of good reasons for legalizing marijuana, but for me, it comes down to this. We have to stop putting people of color in jail for something that white people do with impunity.
“The consequences follow people for the rest of their lives, making it harder to get jobs, or housing and for noncitizens, putting them in the crosshairs for deportation,” she continued. “In 2018, in a blue state like New York, marijuana shouldn’t even be an issue.”
Nixon linked to a website asking people to sign, saying “I agree with Cynthia: New York should legalize recreational use of marijuana.”
She also criticized the lack of “political courage coming out of Albany” for not having already legalizing marijuana in New York.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo, helped New York legalize marijuana for medical use in 2014. He has long-opposed recreational legalization, and as recently as February 2017 referred to it as a “gateway drug,” according to Politco.com.
His most recent executive budget, however, did allow for a study on the impacts of legalizing marijuana for recreational use. When asked at an unrelated news event Wednesday for an update on his stance, Cuomo reiterated that more research and discussion was needed.
“We now have states that have legalized marijuana. Let’s look at the facts and the experiences and see what happens there — happened there,” Cuomo said
Last week, first lady Chirlane McCray said in an interview on the Breakfast Club on Power 105.1 FM that she believes marijuana should be legalized, seeming to separate from her husband’s views on the matter.
“I believe we should legalize it because I don’t think people should be penalized and punished for using it, but I think that it should be highly regulated,” McCray said in the joint appearance with Mayor Bill de Blasio.
For his part, de Blasio said he was a bit hesitant.
“We know now what it looks like to legalize in our society, because some states have done it. And I’m trying to get a sense of what it’s meant with them,” he said.