Best Public Image Rehab

A year ago, Paul Zukerberg was running for D.C. Council on one issue, and one issue only: Decriminalize marijuana. He got laughed at at forums, and he got 2 percent of the vote. But now the Council has passed, and the mayor has signed, a bill to do exactly what Zukerberg got called “Old Rufus Pothead” on the campaign trail for proposing. A long-delayed medicinal marijuana program is running, albeit slowly. And by November, District voters could approve a ballot question that would legalize, not just decriminalize, the drug in the city. The main reason for the switch? An ACLU study that showed black residents are far, far likelier to be arrested for pot possession than white ones, though usage is the same for both races. Those pothead jokes aren’t so funny, it turns out, when people remember there are actual consequences for America’s screwed-up drug laws.