Marijuana has been in the decriminalization process since 1973 with many states over the years passing laws to either authorize the use of marijuana or prohibit it. It is time to stop treating marijuana like a deadly drug, when science and public opinion agree that it is relatively safe for adult recreational and medical use. With recreational and medical marijuana on the verge of nationwide legalization, marijuana growers and dispensaries are popping up everywhere.

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Two Minnesota lawmakers have proposed legislation that would bring recreational cannabis to the state, hoping to start what they acknowledge will be a long and contentious discussion.

Edina Democrat Melissa Franzen introduced the measure and in the House, and Golden Valley Democrat Mike Freiberg proposed them in the Senate. They said at a news conference their proposal focuses on establishing a regulatory framework for legal sales of recreational cannabis starting in 2020 and for taxing them.

Franzen and Freiberg say they’re hoping to at least get hearings on the issue.

While there’s a new Democratic majority in the Minnesota House, Republicans still hold a slim majority in the state Senate, where Majority Leader Paul Gazelka issued a statement saying that he doesn’t think the legislation will pass this year.

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