Top Senate Democrat, Chuck Schumer Pushes Bill To End Marijuana Prohibition on 4/20
New York Senate Democrat Chuck Schumer plans to introduce legislation on 4/20, 2018 to decriminalize marijuana on the federal level.
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In a Thursday interview with HBO's Vice News, Schumer previewed his bill. He posed the question, "If smoking marijuana doesn't hurt anybody else, why shouldn't we allow people to do it and not make it criminal?"
His move comes on 4/20, Mary Jane's unofficial birthday and the day the world over celebrate all things cannabis related.
4/20 began at a San Rafael high school just north of San Francisco, where a group of teens would meet up to smoke marijuana at 4.20 pm. From there, the idea was picked up by countless counterculture musicians and cannabis advocates and has since become a staple in cannabis culture around the world.
Today, San Francisco continues its 4/20 tradition by celebrating the day at Hippie Hill in Golden Gate Park. The event is expected to draw tens of thousands of people and will feature the 2nd annual Bud Drop to countdown to 4:20 pm.
Chuck Schumer isn't the only lawmaker to make headlines with his pro-marijuana stance. Last week, former House Speaker John Boehner made headlines after he announced he was joining the board of a prominent cannabis company to advocate for marijuana legalization. The Republican's move indicated a sharp shift in his views on cannabis, which have been historically anti-weed.
Senator Cory Gardner (R-Colorado) was one of the most vocal in his opposition to Jeff Sessions' move to rescind the Cole Memo earlier this year. The Obama-era policy had prohibited federal law enforcement agencies from interfering in legal marijuana matters in states where it is legal.
In more recent news, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders became a co-sponsor of Democratic Senator Cory Booker's (New Jersey) bill to legalize marijuana and allow those convicted of past marijuana crimes to have their record expunged.
Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are becoming increasingly pro-marijuana as it becomes apparent that legalizing cannabis holds countless benefits. Chuck Schumer is the latest to make a name for himself as a friend to cannabis in the world of politics.
This 4/20, whether you're headed to a big event like Hippie Hill in San Francisco, or you're celebrating with a few select friends at home, remember that whilst cannabis has come a long way in the United States, there's still some progress to be made. Nevertheless, the culture is shifting and it's shifting in favor of Mary Jane.