Happy Weedsday, everyone!
I hope everyone across the globe had an exciting and educational 420! I know I had some enlightening experiences! I spent my time for 420 in Colorado Springs at the World Famous SpeakEasy Vape Lounge and it was amazing. The culture was so different from Texas, an illegal state, to Colorado, which is a legal state. I even bought cannabis and paid taxes on it. It was my first legal cannabis purchase! It was crazy!
Some of you may be wondering about the history of 420. Well, supposedly, the story goes like this:
In 1971, five San Rafael, California high school students — Steve Capper, Dave Reddix, Jeffrey Noel, Larry Schwartz, and Mark Gravich — called themselves the Waldos because “their chosen hang-out spot was a wall outside the school.” The five used the term “420” in connection with a 1971 plan to search for an abandoned cannabis crop that they had learned about, based on a treasure map made by the grower. The Waldos designated the Louis Pasteur statue on the grounds of San Rafael High School as their meeting place, and 4:20 pm. as their meeting time. The Waldos referred to this plan with the phrase “4:20 Louis.” After several failed attempts to find the crop, the group eventually shortened their phrase to simply “4:20,” which ultimately evolved into a code-word that the teens used to mean consuming cannabis.
Mike Edison says that Steven Hager of High Times magazine was responsible for taking the story about the Waldos to “mind-boggling, cult-like extremes” and “suppressing” all other stories about the origin of the term. Hager wrote “Stoner Smart or Stoner Stupid?” in which he attributed the early spread of the phrase to Grateful Dead followers after Reddix became a roadie for the Dead’s bassist, Phil Lesh and called for 4:20 p.m. to be the socially accepted hour of the day to consume cannabis.
While no one knows for certain that this is how the now infamous 420 got started, it has certainly taken off and has global meaning outside what was probably intended at the time. Many thanks for whomever made this spread out for cannabis awareness!
So what does 420 mean, you ask?
Well, in my opinion, for cannabis activists all around the world, it is our day to bring awareness of the stupidity of its illegality. We raise awareness of people locked in cages for life for this healing plant and, yes, we celebrate how far we have coming in moving society toward a more natural way of healing themselves.
April 20 has become an international counterculture holiday, where people gather to celebrate and consume cannabis. Many such events have a political vibe nature to them, advocating the liberalization and legalization of cannabis. Vivian McPeak, a founder of Seattle’s Hempfest states that 4/20 is “half celebration and half call-to-action.” Paul Birch calls it a global movement and suggests that one can’t stop events like these.
I tend to agree with the both of them. Activism is usually a daily part of our lives.
So what we do on that day is protest and participate in civil disobedience by gathering in public to light up at 4:20 p.m. Often, there are the presence of protest signs and flags to express our feelings about this amazing plant still being illegal in many areas, and to bring awareness to those suffering because of its illegality. Many children and people are and continue to be sick without the aide of this plant.
As marijuana continues to be decriminalized and legalized around the world, Steve DeAngelo, cannabis activist and founder of California’s Harborside Health Center, notes that “even if our activist work were complete, 420 morphs from a statement of conscience to a celebration of acceptance, a celebration of victory, a celebration of our amazing connection with this plant. It will always be worthy of celebration.”