Which States Have Legalized Weed? You Can Celebrate 4/20 In These 14 States

April 20, known as "420," has been associated with marijuana from back in the 1970s after a group of high school teenagers in San Rafael, California began regularly meeting at 4:20 p.m. in search for a cannabis plant hidden in the Point Reyes Forest.

Cannabis lovers can celebrate 4/20 in 14 states where the recreational use of marijuana is currently legal for adults. A bill for the legalization of recreational weed use in New Mexico was signed earlier this month but the law doesn't go into effect until June 29.

While the use of cannabis has not been legalized by federal law in the U.S., at least 34 states have legalized marijuana either for recreational use or medical purposes, such as in Mississippi. The state voted in favor of the medical legalization of cannabis during the 2020 election.

New Mexico became the latest state to officially legalize cannabis, as New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham signed the legislation on April 12. New Mexico lawmakers approved the Cannabis Regulation Act on March 31, which legalizes the possession and use of marijuana for state residents aged 21 and older.

The bill cleared the state's House 41-28, while the New Mexico Senate voted 22-15 in favor of its approval. Grisham said in a statement at the time: "This is a significant victory for New Mexico. Workers will benefit from the opportunity to build careers in this new economy."

On March 31, New York also legalized cannabis for recreational adult use. Signing the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said at the time: "This is a historic day in New York—one that rights the wrongs of the past by putting an end to harsh prison sentences, embraces an industry that will grow the Empire State's economy, and prioritizes marginalized communities so those that have suffered the most will be the first to reap the benefits."

According to a Gallup poll published in November 2020, 68 percent of Americans believe marijuana should be legal. The figure marked the highest percentage ever recorded in a national Gallup poll, with nearly 7 in 10 Americans supporting the legalization of cannabis.

States where weed is currently legal for recreational use

  • Alaska
  • California
  • Colorado
  • Illinois
  • Maine
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Montana
  • Nevada
  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • Oregon
  • Vermont
  • Washington

In some of the states, cannabis use is only legal for medicinal purposes or limited to cannabidiol (CBD) oils, such as in Louisiana, Oklahoma and Pennsylvania. The recreational use of marijuana in these three states remains illegal.

States where weed remains illegal

  • Alabama
  • Idaho
  • Kansas
  • Nebraska
  • North Carolina
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Wyoming
jar of weed Denver April 20, 2018
A member of the International Church of Cannabis holds up a jar filled with marijuana during the church's 4/20 celebration on April 20, 2018 in Denver, Colorado. Jason Connolly/AFP via Getty Images

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