Pot Not Kosher for Passover — Even on 4/20
It’s that time of the year again — Passover and 4/20, the unofficial marijuana celebration day. On the same day.
The celebration of all things green poses a particular problem for the chosen people. Namely, is smoking pot kosher for Passover?
Sorry to disappoint, but it seems not.
In 2007, Israel’s Green Leaf Party, which supports the legalization of marijuana, declared that cannabis is among the substances Jews are forbidden to consume during Passover.
“You shouldn’t smoke marijuana on the holiday, and if you have it in your house you should get rid of it,” Michelle Levine, a spokeswoman for the party, said at the time.
Why? Because hemp seeds are considered to be kitniyot.
While biblical law prohibits eating leavened foods, rabbis have since extended the rules to apply to foods like beans, corn and rice. Hemp seeds, found in marijuana, falls under that category. So voila , no Mary-Jane for you — if you’re Ashkenazi that is.
Sephardic Jews have traditionally been allowed to eat kitniyot during Passover, so when it comes to 4/20, they’re in the clear.
If you’re really desperate though, there have been reports in the past of kosher for Passover pot cookies . Cannabliss, an Israeli company that supplies medical marijuana to Hadassah Hospital, makes them with matzo meal or potato flour.
As the ancients said: Put that in your pipe and smoke it. But don’t. Still not kosher.
"This holiday we take for ourselves, no longer silent servers behind the curtain, but singers of the seder, with voices of gladness, creating our own convocation, and leaving ‘The Narrow Place’ together."— E.M. Broner
"The idea of opening the door is that we hope Elijah might actually be there this year – that we might actually have done enough to change the world to have had him arrive. And, if we don’t have even the tiniest bit in us that thinks he might be there, that thinks we have tried our hardest to bring around a messianic time, with no hunger, no war, no conflict, no pain – if we don’t believe that we have tried to end those broken parts in the world – well, then I tell my students – don’t do any of it."— Rabbi Leora Kaye
"The whole seder, for me, is the tension between two statements: We say, 'We were slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt and now we’re free,' but before that, we pick up the matzoh, we invite the hungry in and we say, 'This year we are slaves, next year may we be free.' We are the most fortunate, liberated Jews in history. But on the other hand, there are lots of things that enslave us."— Rabbi Arthur Green