WASHINGTON: Crowds of people bundled in winter coats celebrated the anniversary of marijuana legalization in Washington state Friday by sparking up at a city-sanctioned party under Seattle’s Space Needle.
While marijuana proponents were busy celebrating legal pot, U.S. Attorney Jenny A. Durkan raised concerns about the city apparently sanctioning the pot-smoking event.
Marijuana activist Ben Livingston said it took him three months to persuade city officials to grant him a permit for the party marking the anniversary of the day the legal pot law took effect. It began at 4:20 p.m., with a line of people streaming into a big tent that quickly filled with a marijuana haze.
Durkan, for one, isn’t sure it’s a move the city should have made.
“I think the city is going to have to look carefully whether this is a good use of their resources of their space,” she said. “That is an area well trafficked by children, and are you really cordoning it off to kids or are you sending a message to kids?”
Partygoers wished each other a happy anniversary and chanted, “Thank you, Washington!”
The free event, capacity 999, was set up behind a double perimeter fence at Seattle Center, with the pot smoking blocked from public view. Hundreds were expected to attend throughout the event.
“I want to make the point that cannabis consumers are good people, and we should be treated equally with other people when trying to utilize city facilities,” Livingston said.