Marijuana Activists Are Handing Out Free Joints In D.C. Today, But There’s A Catch

Happy 4/20.

When you think of 4/20, Washington, D.C. isn't a locale that immediately pops into your head, but it turns out our nation's capital is the place to be if you're looking to get high (for free!) today. All you need is a congressional ID.

In honor of the "high holiday," several D.C. residents and marijuana activists plan to hand out at least 1,000 joints to members of Congress and anyone else with a congressional ID, including congressional staffers and credentialed journalists. 

Adam Eidinger, an activist who advocated for the ballot initiative that legalized marijuana possession in D.C., tells USA Today today's event is a "celebration of cannabis culture."

While this may seem like an ill-conceived effort, there's actually a method to this (reefer) madness. Though it's legal to possess, grow and give away pot in D.C. because of the aforementioned ballot initiative passed back in 2014, Congress hasn't allowed the city to enact any laws that would allow people to buy or sell marijuana legally. Eidinger and other marijuana activists are looking to change that.

"It's a bipartisan issue," he told USA Today of marijuana legalization. "There are a lot of Republicans, not just Democrats and progressives, who support this, so we wanted to take a fun and lighthearted approach that brings people together."

According to The Washington Times, Eidinger and some of his fellow activists were arrested mid-giveaway — even though he believes that their actions constituted lawful behavior.

Congress is "totally out of touch," with relation to the legalization of marijuana, according to Eidinger. And with the current administration possibly looking to make a move against legalized recreational marijuana — Attorney General Jeff Sessions has said pot is "only slightly less awful than heroin" —  there's certainly some truth to that.

With Canada on the verge of legalizing pot, many Americans feel we should be next. Why? For starters, marijuana is a cash cow, and provides much-needed jobs and revenue in states where it's already been legalized. As of November 9, 2016, the use of recreational and medicinal marijuana has been legalized in Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington. In Oregon, Washington, and Colorado alone thousands of jobs have been created and marijuana tax revenues totaled $335 million last year.

Plus, there are much better uses for the $8 billion American taxpayers spend annually on prosecuting pot smokers.

Cover image via Rena Schild.