Jacob Sullum on States Opting Out of Pot Prohibition


By the time the 21st Amendment ended national alcohol prohibition in December 1933, more than a dozen states had already opted out. Maryland never passed its own version of the Volstead Act, while New York repealed its alcohol prohibition law in 1923. Eleven other states eliminated their statutes by referendum in November 1932. Senior Editor Jacob Sullum says we could see the beginning of a similar rebellion against marijuana prohibition this year as voters in three states decide whether to legalize the drug's production and sale for recreational use. If any of these ballot initiatives pass, he writes, it might be the most consequential election result this fall, forcing both major parties to confront an unjust, irrational policy that Americans increasingly oppose.