(WANE/AP) April 20 has special significance for people who consume marijuana. The origin of the celebratory day is a little cloudy (no pun intended), however it may have been the result of a group of high school students in California in the 1970s who gathered after classes at 4:20 p.m. to smoke and eventually the time evolved into being synonymous with lighting up.

Since then, public perception regarding marijuana usage has changed dramatically. According to the Associated Press, currently medical marijuana is legal in 38 states and recreational marijuana is legal in 21 states. The use and possession of marijuana is still illegal under U.S. federal law.

Two surveys show just how much Americans view of pot has changed. The majority of Americans no longer view marijuana as the dangerous drug shown in the 1936 cult classic film “Reefer Madness.”

A CBS News Poll shows 53 percent of people view open marijuana use as socially acceptable. Just two years ago 53 percent said it was NOT socially acceptable.

Similarly, the Pew Research Center has conducted research that also shows just how much public opinion has changed. According to an October 2022 survey, around nine-in-ten Americans say marijuana should be legal for medical or recreational use. It might come as little surprise that Pew found that adults 75 and older and far less likely than those who are younger to support marijuana legalization for medical or recreational purposes.

Indiana is surrounded by states that have legalized marijuana in some way. Ohio and Kentucky permit medical marijuana use, while Michigan and Illinois have legalized both recreational and medical marijuana usage. Efforts to decriminalize pot or legalize any form of marijuana usage in Indiana have failed to gain traction in the Indiana legislature.