Dating for weed smokers
Whatever its origins, 4/20 has become a massive holiday for cannabis aficionados. In the 1970s, 4/20 was part of a smaller counterculture movement that embraced marijuana as a symbol to protest against broader systemic problems in the US, like overseas wars and the power of corporations in America.“Marijuana was the way you said you weren’t a suit,” Keith Humphreys, a drug policy expert at Stanford University, previously told me.Steven Hager, a former editor of the marijuana-focused news outlet High Times, told the New York Times that the holiday came out of a ritual started by a group of high school students in the 1970s.As Hager explained, a group of Californian teenagers ritualistically smoked marijuana every day at pm.In recent years, marijuana legalization activists have tried to bring a more formal aspect to the celebration, framing it as a moment to push their political agenda.Organizers for the 2014 Denver rally — during the first year marijuana sales were legal in the state — put out a statement comparing the battle for legal marijuana to “the time when Jews fled from slavery in Egypt,” a moment commemorated in Passover celebrations.
Another theory is that there are 420 active chemicals in marijuana, hence an obvious connection between the drug and the number.
Major rallies occur across the country, particularly in places like Colorado and California, where marijuana is legal.
But as support for marijuana legalization grows, the festivities are becoming more mainstream and commercialized.
Marijuana legalization undercuts that purpose: As big businesses and corporations begin to grow, sell, and market pot, marijuana is losing its status as a counterculture symbol — and that, Humphreys speculated, could bring the end of the traditional, countercultural 4/20.
“If a corporate marijuana industry adopts 4/20, it would still be a celebrated event, but not with the same countercultural meaning,” Humphreys said.
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The Cannabis Cup is only one of many events, which also include comedy shows (like Cheech and Chong), marijuana-friendly speed dating, and trade shows for glass pipes and bongs, offering businesses and celebrities various opportunities to push their products and brands.