Monday, April 20, 2009

Welcome to 4/20

Click here to listen to today's 4/20 edition of the Radio or Not podcast (runtime 29:20)

What a day it is! I'm actually talking about the date. There are few dates on the calendar that have such different meanings to such disparate groups.

The first, which is dealt with at the very end of today's podcast, is one of those inauspicious anniversaries. Truly one which we'd prefer not to remember, but which we certainly cannot chose to forget.

Ten years ago today, two troubled teenagers in a suburban Colorado community brought a veritable arsenal with them to school, and proceeded to kill 12 students and a teacher and wound 23 others before committing suicide.

Unfortunately, the assault weapons ban that went into effect during Bill Clinton's presidency in 1994 expired 10 years later, under George W. Bush's administration. As promising as Barack Obama seemed on this topic, we're now seeing few, if any signs, that the ban is coming back. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who introduced the bill in 1994 said just last week on 60 Minutes that this is not the time to reintroduce the legislation.

If you missed the 60 Minutes piece on guns last week, today would be a good day to watch it:

The other significance of the day is somewhat happier.

The number 420 has taken on a new meaning, though there is some question about how the number came to signify marijuana! (For more on the origins of the meaning, read "What 420 Means: The True Story Behind Stoners' Favorite Number" from Huffington Post)

I worked at San Diego alternative radio station 91X in the late 90s, where at 4:20 every afternoon, it was "Mandatory Marley." And today, 4/20, all over the world, pot smokers will light up... especially at 4:20 this afternoon. (One big celebration is expected again this year in Boulder, Colorado on the campus of Colorado University.)

I'll use the day to once again call for the legalization of marijuana.

On today's Radio or Not podcast, I share some statistics, as well as an interview with Jack Cole, executive director of LEAP (Law Enforcement Against Prohibition).

For more on the day and the topic, all you need to do is search. Huffington Post has a number of articles commemorating the day, and agreeing with my stance. For example, 420: Thoughts on Pot vs. Alcohol from a Former Police Chief.

If you're 420 friendly, you might want to participate in the festivities of a worldwide marijuana march that will be held in over 544 cities in 54 nations around the world to celebrate the medicinal value and spiritual benefits of marijuana. Find out more here.

Finally, I'm embarking on an upgrade for Radio or Not. Details will be coming over the next few weeks. But the gist of it is that I'm moving toward creating the Radio or Not media station.

I plan on doing my show live every weekday, and incorporating some other elements into the site. For that, I'm hoping you'll participate in a survey. I'll be sending it out to members of my email list. So, if you haven't yet signed up, I hope you'll look to your right, and join. I promise not to spam you, but would like your input as I move into the future...

Thanks... and happy 4/20: National Pot Smokers Day, however you choose to celebrate it!

Click here to listen to today's 4/20 edition of the Radio or Not podcast (runtime 29:20)