Here’s what NJ thinks about Murphy’s push to legalize marijuana

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    Editorial The best argument for legalization isn’t money – it’s morality. If sound drug policy and racial fairness dictate change to New Jersey’s longstanding criminalization of marijuana, the courses charted by both Vermont and the District of Columbia present a viable third option. To be certain, the absence of a full regulatory regime will deprive New Jersey of immediate tangible benefits (i.e., considerable tax revenues) — at least temporarily — and certain problems will remain unresolved, foremost being the existence of a lucrative black market that exclusively profits criminals. This respite, however, may ultimately prove beneficial as the state grapples with the complex and hard work of setting up an effective and comprehensive regulatory framework to govern commercialized legalization if that day someday arrives.  This approach, it should be added, also effectively removes New Jersey and other jurisdictions from the crosshairs of possible federal intervention by a local U.S. attorney inclined to channel the worst impulses of his boss, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, and prosecute large scale commercial operations.  Ben Barlyn served as a state and county prosecutor, as well as a executive director of the New Jersey Commission to Review Criminal Sentencing.  Bookmark NJ.com/Opinion. Follow on Twitter @NJ_Opinion and find NJ.com Opinion on Facebook. Registration on or use of this site constitutes acceptance of our
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