An Ode to 4:20

marijuana leaf

I am an advocate of cannabis legalization. Anybody who knows me at all probably knows that. And so, on this day (4:20), I want to pay tribute to all those working towards the legalization and (at very least) de-stigmatization of cannabis and cannabis consumption.

I will start by saying that I have cut down immensely on my own personal use of marijuana. I find that while it enhances my creativity (which has helped me beyond words with my writing -no pun intended), it also triggers my anxiety and depression. I do still use recreationally, but hardly at all. I am very much okay with saying “no thank you,” and passing it on to the left.

However, that does not at all mean that my views on marijuana have changed at all. I believe we should all have the right to choose whether or not we partake in cannabis consumption. Aside from it’s mild effects (in comparison to harder drugs and, um, alcohol -which is legal) cannabis has been proven to be an excellent form of alternative medicine for a range of disorders. There are many people who depend on marijuana to help ease their pain, balance their emotions and take them to a happier place over all. While I don’t condone such things as smoking and driving, etc… I believe that if used with caution and good judgment, there is nothing wrong with marijuana use -certainly no more wrong than alcohol use, which again, is legal.

It is time that we reform these ancient laws that prohibit us from deciding whether or not to use a plant product for medicinal or recreational purposes. Doctors have no problem prescribing all sorts of horrible chemical concoctions to help with a rainbow of different ailments, and I can vouch from personal experience that these prescription pharmaceutical drugs can be much more detrimental to one’s physical and mental health, not to mention addictive. If smoking a plant can help someone who would otherwise be prescribed some chemical creation, why are we still persecuting people for it?

I could go on and on about the benefits of marijuana use, but that’s not the point here. The point is that we should have the right to choose, and should not be “criminalized” for our choices regarding cannabis consumption.

I will not be partaking in the Vancouver 4:20 celebrations today as I will be responsibly working all day, but it is a day and a cause that is close to my heart, regardless whether or not I use it myself or not. I will always support legalization and those who choose to use it for the right reasons. To all those working towards a future full of more freedom of choice, I salute you. Happy smoking to all today, and to those who choose not to partake, all my love: After all, it’s your choice.

Anna Wild

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