Public pot smokers at different locations in NYC. Image: Hilary Swift for The New York Times

It wafts down the pavement, an unmistakable odor more Haight-Ashbury than New York — the tang of marijuana smoke in the city’s streets.

If the smell (and the lightheadedness a passer-by may feel) is anything to judge by, lighting up and strolling around seems increasingly common in pockets of Brooklyn, on side streets in Manhattan and in other public spaces.

Street smokers say they are emboldened by laws that have legalized the recreational use of marijuana in other parts of the country and by the relatively low-key comments by New York’s leaders, including the police commissioner, about the drug.

Interviews with people who said they had smoked marijuana in public yielded a general sentiment that they felt much more secure doing so today than they would have not long ago.

Click here to read the complete article

Sarah Maslin Nir ~ New York Times ~

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