With the 420 Marijuana Celebration Day quickly approaching, many in Winnipeg are asking what will happen to those who choose to partake in smoking marijuana right out open at a 420 festival. Although marijuana is slated to become legal, it isn’t just yet – and won’t be in time for the event.
That has led to a conflict of rules stemming from the city and the province in relation to the event. Provincial officials believe that the protest should be converted to a celebration. But getting the city to give permits for the celebration to happen is not going to be easy, since many officials believe that “illegal” is still “illegal.”
Changing it from a protest to a party: is that possible?
According to Winnipeg marijuana lawyer Marijuana is going to be legalized in Winnipeg in the summer of this year. Although it’s still in the process, and as the federal government figures out all the issues related to legalization, the 420 “protest” is nothing to protest about anymore. Many marijuana advocates see 420 as a way to introduce marijuana to the public and celebrate the fact that it has finally been legalized.
The 420 protest has been going on for many years by those who believed marijuana should be legalized. Their protest worked, and since it is now going to be legal, many believe that there is no reason for permits not to be granted to make it a celebration instead of something to argue about. In the past years, there has been absolutely no violence or upset that has stemmed from the protest, and there is no reason to believe that anything will be different this year.
There are those who want to start the tradition this year of making the protest into something that is accepted and where everyone gets along. Those who are looking for the permits want to test and see if they can make it a celebration every year to replace the protest – especially since the protest was probably one of the reasons that marijuana is now going to be legal in Winnipeg this summer.
There are many considerations to make about the festival, like what type of security needs to be in place, which vendors are going to be allowed to sell their goods, and what type of area – if any – should be sectioned off for the festival to take place. That doesn’t even take into account what type of insurance should be taken out or who is going to monitor the age of those who attend. Who will be responsible for ensuring the people are 19 or older and allowed to partake?
Some say that the City of Winnipeg is still holding fast to their grounds that until marijuana is officially legal, it is still illegal -so to permit the festival would be against the law. But a liaison has been hired to work with the City and the 420 organizers to try to find a happy medium where the event maintains its safety and that it remains the violence- and animosity-free event it has been in previous years.
A spokesperson for the City of Winnipeg insists that to date, no permits have been explicitly denied. The spokesperson maintains that they are working with organizers to figure out the details and to make sure that the event – if it happens – runs smoothly, doesn’t upset the city’s everyday operations, and that there aren’t any hurdles that could lead to something bad happening.
Obviously, if things go as planned, next year’s 420 will be a celebration without any protest. By next year, marijuana will be legal. But that begs the question whether the festival really needs to be held at all. It is unlikely that organizers won’t want to continue the tradition. And next year, there will be no reason for the City of Winnipeg to deny any permits – especially if the festival will bring in revenue for the city.