Perhaps this is because the majority of cannabis smokers are not violent. Nor does cannabis make a person violent. Still, this latest news from Human Rights Watch is more evidence for nationwide marijuana reform.
The study was conducted during an eight year period and consisted of almost 30,000 people who were arrested and prosecuted for minor possession. The researchers followed the arrest history of those 30,000 to see if they were later arrested for a violent crime. The organization was smart to conduct their investigation in New York City. The majority of arrests made in New York are for small amounts of possession.. Police arrested more than half-a-million people between 1996 and 2011.
Of the 30,000 people the researchers studied, 99% of them had no other felony convictions of any kind. In their report, the researchers concluded that, “Neither our findings nor those of other researchers indicate the arrests are an efficient or fair means for identifying future dangerous felons. The study also showed that the majority of these arrests were of black males and Latinos–most likely as a result of the city’s controversial ‘Stop and Frisk” program.
At an earlier date we reported that Governor Cuomo said publicly that he would not authorize pay raises for the city’s police department until legislators were willing to consider marijuana reform laws.