For marijuana enthusiasts around the country, 420 (pronounced four twenty) is National Pot Smoking Day. As legend has it, in 1971, a group of California high school students who called themselves the Waldos would met at 4:20 p.m. each day to toke up. They began using the term “420” as a code to get high, it caught on and the rest is history.
There are more than 400 events around the world today celebrating the holiday, the most well known taking place in Denver. Thousands gather at the Civic Center Park annually for a concert, smoke-off and legalization rally.
This year the celebration will take place on the eve of the 40th annual convention of the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws. NORML refers to itself as “a voice for responsible marijuana smokers,” and has worked since 1970 to decriminalize pot.
During this time they have lobbied to decriminalize minor marijuana offenses in 11 states and lower pot-smoking penalties in all others. Its sister organization, The NORML Foundation, works to educate the public about marijuana and marijuana policies.
According to NORML, marijuana is the third-most popular drug in the nation behind alcohol and tobacco, and almost 100 million Americans have tried it at some time. Government surveys show that around 25 million Americans have lit up in the past year, and 14 million are regulars.
Medical marijuana is currently legal in 15 states and Washington D.C., and 10 states (New York included) have pending legislation.
The real question is: do Taco Bell and White Castle bring in extra employees on April 20?