The New 420

5/20 is the new 4/20.

This month will mark the 124th anniversary of the birth of Harry J. Anslinger, the country’s first drug czar – and, arguably, one of the people who did more than anyone else to make cannabis illegal.

Anslinger was the first commissioner of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics, the forerunner of the Office of National Drug Control Policy. Despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, he declared cannabis a “dreadful, deadly poison” that “racks and tears not only the body, but the very heart and soul of every human being who comes a slave to it in any of its cruel and devastating forms.”

Suffice to say Anslinger was on the wrong side of history – but we’re still dealing with his legacy. On May 20, activists in Washington, D.C. plan to smoke out the White House for a second time this spring in “honor” of Anslinger’s birthday. We advise you to do the same, in Anslinger’s memory.