decriminalize

verb
de·​crim·​i·​nal·​ize | \ (ˌ)dē-ˈkri-mə-nə-ˌlīz How to pronounce decriminalize (audio) , -ˈkrim-nəl-\
decriminalized; decriminalizing; decriminalizes

Definition of decriminalize

transitive verb

: to remove or reduce the criminal classification or status of especially : to repeal a strict ban on while keeping under some form of regulation decriminalize the possession of marijuana

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Other Words from decriminalize

decriminalization \ (ˌ)dē-​ˌkri-​mə-​nə-​lə-​ˈzā-​shən How to pronounce decriminalization (audio) , -​ˌkrim-​nəl-​ \ noun

Examples of decriminalize in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Users have been lobbying for more than a decade to decriminalize consumption of marijuana and its derivatives. Lissette Romero And Amy Guthrie, chicagotribune.com, "Mexican cannabis users eagerly await legal marijuana," 13 Sep. 2019 Users have been lobbying for more than a decade to decriminalize consumption of marijuana and its derivatives. Amy Guthrie, BostonGlobe.com, "Mexican cannabis users eagerly await legal marijuana," 3 Sep. 2019 Users have been lobbying for more than a decade to decriminalize consumption of marijuana and its derivatives. Washington Post, "Mexican cannabis users eagerly await legal marijuana," 2 Sep. 2019 When the debate turned to immigration, Biden rejected Julián Castro’s call—embraced many other candidates—to decriminalize border crossings. Matt Ford, The New Republic, "Status Quo Joe," 1 Aug. 2019 Other Democratic candidates for president have pushed to decriminalize missing school outside of their campaigns. Max Cohen, USA TODAY, "Jail parents over skipping school? Some 2020 Democrats threatened it," 17 July 2019 Julián Castro has challenged fellow 2020 contenders to join his call to decriminalize crossing the U.S. border without permission. Jamie Hancock, Dallas News, "Get ready for an epic Texas 2020 fight, plus three questions that could shape the presidential race," 9 July 2019 Julián Castro, with a shiny pate and a triumphant look, doubled down on his case against Beto O’Rourke, who does not back Castro’s call to decriminalize migration into the United States. Benjamin Wallace-wells, The New Yorker, "The Opportunities and Chaos of the Democratic Debates," 27 June 2019 The City Council voted unanimously to decriminalize the adult use and possession of magic mushrooms and other entheogenic, or psychoactive, plants and fungi. Samantha Maldonado, The Denver Post, "Oakland becomes second U.S. city, after Denver, to decriminalize magic mushrooms," 5 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'decriminalize.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of decriminalize

1969, in the meaning defined above

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Dictionary Entries near decriminalize

decretory

decretum

decrial

decriminalize

decrown

decrustation

decry

Statistics for decriminalize

Last Updated

2 Oct 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for decriminalize

The first known use of decriminalize was in 1969

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More Definitions for decriminalize

decriminalize

verb

English Language Learners Definition of decriminalize

: to make (something that is illegal) legal by changing the law

decriminalize

transitive verb
de·​crim·​i·​nal·​ize | \ dē-ˈkri-mən-ᵊl-ˌīz How to pronounce decriminalize (audio) \
decriminalized; decriminalizing

Legal Definition of decriminalize

: to remove or reduce the criminal classification or status of

Other Words from decriminalize

decriminalization \ dē-​ˌkri-​mən-​ᵊl-​ə-​ˈzā-​shən How to pronounce decriminalization (audio) \ noun

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with decriminalize

Nglish: Translation of decriminalize for Spanish Speakers

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