The inauguration of President Donald Trump was tough on a lot of people, but free joints made the day a little bit easier – or at least more fun – for thousands who managed to get their hands on the free weed handed out by the marijuana advocacy group, DCMJ.
By early morning January 20, hundreds of people were lined up in Dupont Circle for the free weed, which was not given out in celebration, but in protest of Trump’s inauguration. The D.C. Cannabis Coalition had dubbed the giveaway the Trump 420 demonstration.
There are conflicting reports of how many joints were handed out, with media reporting anywhere from 4,200 to 8,000.
DCMJ was founded in 2013 in a successful bid to change marijuana laws in the District of Columbia. The group made its plan to hand out the joints known well in advance, and warned people that participating in the protest put them at risk for arrest. 
Nikolas Schiller, one of the founders of the group, estimated DCMJ had rolled about 8,000 joints, but he said that was only an approximation, as many volunteers brought their own stash.
Marijuana has been legal in D.C. since 2015, but it is illegal to use cannabis in public spaces. Schiller said the protesters were “encouraged to light them up if they want to engage in nonviolent civil disobedience.” It was up to each individual if and when they wanted to smoke, but DCMJ suggested they light up about 4 minutes and 20 seconds into Trump’s inaugural address.
Schiller said the group was not protesting Trump so much as it was protesting the nomination of Sen. Jeff Sessions for attorney general. Sessions is notoriously – and decidedly – against marijuana, and Schiller said the group fears Sessions would plan raids on marijuana dispensaries and cultivation centers. 
Said Schiller of Sessions:
“He’s said that good people don’t smoke marijuana. We found that to be insulting to the millions of Americans that do.”
Adam Eidinger, co-founder of DCMJ, said:
“There is absolute terror among the marijuana business community right now that all the progress we have made is going to be rolled back and that people who have invested millions and even tens of millions of dollars in marijuana grow operations are going to get a letter saying ‘you are violating federal law.
If someone wants to smoke in public at Trump’s inauguration and it smells up the place, it’s really no worse than smoking a cigarette or tobacco and it makes a powerful statement that you want change and you want reform.”
 Fox 5
Featured image source: Mic / AP