The day represents popular civil disobedience starting in 2001
Yet another 4/20 is upon us at CU, and the climate seems to be urging students to smoke marijuana on the Norlin Quad.
Earlier this week, a sidewalk chalk spread the message, “4:20. 4/20/2007. Norlin Quad. Be there!” Graffiti in one of the bathroom stalls in the Norlin Library reads, “4/20 in the Quad this year. Don’t get shut out.” And a spray-painted “Defend 420″ lurks on the ground for passers-by.
The 4/20 celebration has been going on at CU since at least 2001. The Campus Press made a reference to it in an article, written in 2002, titled “Up in smoke.” Prior to 2001, coverage is scarce in both The Colorado Daily and The Campus Press. Needless to say, the event has become very popular in recent years.
Farrand field used to be the designated spot to participate in the 4/20 celebration. The sprinklers were turned on, but the event continued. Last year, Farrand field was closed down. However, at about 4 p.m., the field was rushed.
Little did anyone know the police took photos of people on the field. The police later posted the photos on the Internet and offered $50 to anyone able to identify smokers.
Farrand field is closed this year because of construction, so the Norlin Quad may end up the new spot for a student gathering.
With the university cracking down on the 4/20 ritual, it opens the door for protest from students and community members.
“Go into it with the proper mindset,” said Paul Danish, who served as editor of the Colorado Daily when it was CU’s school newspaper. Danish worked with the school newspaper in 1964 when the University made its first big drug bust and has served as a Boulder County Commissioner.
“If you’re doing it, think of it as civil disobedience,” Danish said.
Sanho Tree is the director of the Drug Policy Project at the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C., and served on several panels during the Conference on World Affairs.
“You know, there are more effective things for kids to do to fight drug prohibition than go out and smoke pot in public,” Tree said during a CWA panel discussion.
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