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Gaining

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Arkansas still trails other states in the enactment of modern marijuana laws but not by so much as it once did. A medical marijuana law was rejected by voters last year, but a similar proposal will likely be on the ballot this year, with a good chance for adoption. Sooner or later medical marijuana will be approved in Arkansas. The national trend has been set.

Colorado and Washington have legalized, taxed and regulated the growth and sale of marijuana. The Council of the District of Columbia, scene of some of the bitterest marijuana confrontations, is poised to approve a bill that would decriminalize small amounts of marijuana. The mayor has endorsed the proposal.

There are still people who argue that criminal penalties deter some people from smoking marijuana. Their number declines.

Seventeen states now have some form of decriminalization of marijuana, and federal agencies are losing their enthusiasm for the drug war. It should have happened long ago.

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