Ask a Stoner: How Much Longer Until Weed is Legal Nationally?

Dear Stoner: How long would it take marijuana to be legalized nationally on a state-by-state basis?
Chug Rug

Dear Chug: That’s impossible to predict (or at least difficult to tackle in a 400-word column behind the sex ads). You’d have to look at each state individually while also trying to predict any federal interference and cannabis policy updates, which could either speed up or slow down progress. States with established medical programs and previous legalization efforts, such as Arizona and Ohio, are likely to legalize recreational marijuana sooner than states like Wyoming, Nebraska and Indiana, which haven’t approved any medical marijuana legislation and continue to show a disdain for the plant.
Going solely by the numbers since Colorado bucked the prohibition trend, the country has gotten about one-fifth of the way there in six years, as ten states have approved adult use since 2012. Following that trajectory, we have about 24 years before we manifest our cannabis destiny...but don’t count out federal help before then. More pro-legalization lawmakers are given power with each new election cycle, on both sides of the aisle.

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Herbert Fuego is the resident stoner at Westword, ready to answer all your marijuana questions.
Contact: Herbert Fuego