State police unions unanimously oppose legalizing marijuana

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo plans to legalize recreational marijuana.

(by Tina Moore, New York Post) – The New York state association of police unions unanimously opposes Gov. Cuomo’s plans to legalize recreational marijuana, calling it a “money grab,” the group’s president said Wednesday.

“We wanted to be on the record that we oppose it because it’s an act of total irresponsibility,” Michael Palladino, the head of the New York State Association of PBAs, said Wednesday.

“The Governor and lawmakers are trading public safety for a money grab to plug a budget deficit arising from mismanagement of taxpayer funds. Jeopardizing the public’s safety is not something cops support.”

The decision to come out against Cuomo’s proposal came at the group’s meeting in Albany Tuesday, said Palladino, who also heads the city’s Detectives’ Endowment Association.

Gov. Cuomo announced in December that he would push to legalize recreational marijuana, which could generate more than $1.7 billion in sales annually.

Ten other states and Washington, D.C., have legalized recreational pot with the proceeds going to a wide swath of initiatives, from schools to transportation.

The state association represents 45 police unions.

From NYPost .com. Reprinted here for educational purposes only. May not be reproduced on other websites without permission from the New York Post.


1. The first paragraph of a news article should answer the questions who, what, where and when. List the who, what, where and when of this news item. (NOTE: The remainder of a news article provides details on the why and/or how.)

2. Why did the NY state association make this announcement?

3. To what motive do the police attribute Gov. Cuomo’s (and NY lawmakers) move to legalize this drug?

4. How many other states have legalized recreational marijuana?

5. How much money could the New York state government take in per year in taxes on marijuana sales?

6. Watch the video under “Resources” below. Do you think the benefit ($$$) outweighs the cost (increase in traffic accidents, some/many fatalities; breakdown of society overall)? Explain your answer.

a) Ask at least 2 adults over 40 if they know anyone their age who has used marijuana for a long time and if that person displays any negative side effects. Do they think that person would be better off now if not for long-term marijuana use? (Note: People who smoke marijuana regularly will adamantly argue against the idea that it has any negative effects on anyone.)

b) Over recent years, state governments have legalized online gambling and recreational marijuana, neither of which improves a person’s life, but rather leads to problems for many.
State governments take in large sums of money by legalizing and then taxing marijuana sales (and gambling). What responsibility do you think state leaders have a to address the dangers (unintended consequences) posed by legalizing recreational marijuana? Explain your answer.

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