What Is 420?
The term “420” has become synonymous with cannabis culture, and it’s a well-known code for smoking weed. But where did this term originate? The answer to this question is not straightforward, and there are several theories about how 420 became the unofficial code for marijuana use.
One of the most popular stories about the origin of 420 dates back to the early 1970s, in San Rafael, California. According to this story, a group of high school students called “The Waldos” used to meet at 4:20 pm every day to smoke weed. The Waldos had heard that a Coast Guard service member had abandoned a marijuana plantation in Point Reyes, and they decided to search for it. They agreed to meet at 4:20 pm after school to start their search, but they never found the plantation. However, the term “420” stuck as a code word for smoking weed.
Is 420 From The Grateful Dead?
Another theory about the origins of 420 comes from the Grateful Dead community. The band was notorious for its love of marijuana, and it’s believed that the term was popularized by Deadheads in the 1990s. According to this theory, “420” was a code for the time of day when the band would start playing. The theory goes that the Dead would often start playing at 4:20 pm, and their fans would light up in unison.
Is 420 A Police Code?
Despite the popularity of these theories, there is no definitive answer about how 420 became associated with cannabis culture. Some people believe that it’s simply a random number that caught on as a code word. Others suggest that it’s related to the number of chemical compounds in cannabis or the police code for marijuana use.
420 Is Here to Stay
Regardless of its origin, 420 has become an integral part of cannabis culture. It’s a way for people to signal their appreciation for marijuana without openly discussing it. Today, the term has gone mainstream, and it’s used in pop culture, advertising, and even legislation. For example, in 2021, the US House of Representatives passed a bill to legalize marijuana at the federal level called the “Marijuana Opportunity Reinvestment and Expungement (MORE) Act of 2021” which was scheduled for a 4/20 vote.
In conclusion, the origins of 420 are shrouded in mystery, but it’s clear that the term has become an important part of cannabis culture. Whether it originated with a group of high school students in California or the Grateful Dead community, it has become a universal symbol of marijuana use. And with the increasing legalization of cannabis around the world, it’s likely that the term will continue to be a part of our cultural lexicon for years to come.