Break out those crappy Phish albums, friends. It’s time to celebrate Humboldt County’s highest holiday, the 4/20 homage to peace, love and unemployed smelly people.
The Humboldt hajj is now officially under way—but it looks like the local chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union might’ve been sneaking pipe hits a little ahead of schedule.
The Redwood ACLU issued a bizarre press release Saturday accusing the Arcata Police Department of a “pre-emptive declaration of war” against “peaceful protesters” who typically gather each year at Redwood Park to blaze a nug or two of the county’s most famous agricultural product.
The story goes that the APD, led by Tom Chapman, is allegedly planning vehicle barricades around Redwood Park to block public access to the park today—“even though no permits have been filed to require such an action,” the press release stated.
Give us a moment here—thankfully we’re not lawyers or cops—but it seems to us novices that if permits had been filed, if the city had granted thousands of ganja groupies permission to assemble at the park, only then would action by the APD violate First Amendment rights of assembly. But by the ACLU’s own account, no such permits exist.
So what exactly is the constitutional right our “local civil rights leaders” are trying to protect? And how is an annual spliff-smoking festival a “protest”?
We don’t doubt that 4/20 revelers are largely harmless individuals who get a laugh or two each year out of thumbing their nose at the man, and patting themselves on the back for their meaningful and inspiring counter-cultural lifestyles.
But the fact remains that people are gathering by the shit-ton today for the purpose of becoming inebriated. What if a couple thousand people got together in an unregulated public setting for the sole purpose of getting drunk instead?
The ACLU’s hysterics notwithstanding, we would expect police to take seriously the obvious health and safety challenges such an event would present.
Filed under: Humboldt County | Tagged: 4/20, Arcata Police Department, bathing optional as usual, crappy Phish albums, Humboldt hajj, Humboldt's highest holiday, it's also Hitler's birthday, meaningful and inspiring, ophishally under way, Redwood Chapter of the ACLU, snug as a bug with a nug, the trip to bountiful, this bud's for you, Tom Chapman, where's our Graphics Department today? |