Marijuana enthusiasts reflect on how social stigmas have evolved

Published: Apr. 20, 2022 at 6:02 PM EDT
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BANGOR, Maine (WABI) - April 20, also known as 4-20, is a celebration of the marijuana industry.

Local enthusiasts say it’s a time to reflect on how social stigmas have evolved.

“We drove 90 minutes to be able to come down and finally celebrate everything on 4-20. And it’s just super exciting to be here,” said Brook Goodwin, customer.

“So 4-20, there’s a lot of different ideas out there of how 4-20 came to be everything from high school kids out in California that use it as a code for when they were going to meet after school, all the way over to law enforcement side and it being a code to report. For one reason or another, they made it illegal in this country and in many countries around the world and it cost people, good people a great deal for a long time. And for us to have righted that and to be in a position now where people can be free, to be free of shame and can enjoy themselves and to have unity is a pretty special thing,” said Matt Hawes, Brothers Cannabis. “For me, it being 22 years in legal cannabis for my whole career. This is something that is very excited to be a part of, right. To think back on how we’ve gotten to where we are in now on this day I’m able to stand behind these counters and watch people come in with big smiles on their faces, to not feel like they have to hide themselves, to not have to have any shame around them enjoying what they do in their free time.”

“I’ve been in the closet about this for so long, and I’m just happy to be here. I’m happy to be me and I feel so much better medicated and being off all of the other pills and I’m just really happy to be able to be out on 4-20 and celebrate,” said Goodwin.

“You know wellness is a big word, right, and wellness can mean a lot of things to a lot of people. It can be alleviating pain, it can be emotional, it can be making you feel better, it can be finding a friend, it can be find a community, it can be all of these different things, right. And I think cannabis has been a great incubator for people to express and experience their wellness in their own unique ways. And it seems like every shop kind of has their people, you know, in art, you know, for us as Brothers our staff is our everything, right, and our staff is first class all the way and they really connect with these group of people who come here. And I think that for the folks that shopped here, it’s the right fit for them. And maybe they find that somewhere else for a different group of folks. And I think that just having the access and having more locations where you can go find these products is better for everybody. It’s better for the market,” said Hawes.

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