Holland’s backward step
When the world thinks of Amsterdam, it thinks of beautiful canals, coffee shops, red light districts, Vincent Van Gogh and perhaps Heineken. Holland is also thought of as a model example of forward thinking social policies, especially in regards to cannabis. On Tuesday however, they have taken a dramatic step backwards. The sale of cannabis in coffee shops is still legal but the growing and now even sale of growing equipment is firmly illegal.
As Holland was the only country to have legal cannabis for decades it received the worlds pot smokers. In the beginning this was fun I’m sure, but today those cranky Amsterdam folk are trying to ruin the global party. They don’t want the influx of visitors, tourism obviously isn’t important to their local economy so they are trying to restrict the growing of cannabis until the supply dries up. If we had legal pot everywhere the pressure of demand wouldn’t have been felt so squarely on Amsterdam’s shoulders. Starting this week, the sale of equipment specifically designed for growing pot will be illegal. As other European countries begin to relax their attitude to pot, the Dutch are moving in the opposite direction.
It wasn’t fair on Holland that they were the only country brave enough to legalize cannabis, but they will go down in history as playing a key role in the resistance against the absurd war on drugs. Crime rates went down after pot was legalized. Spain, Germany, Italy, Czech Republic and a few other liberal states all need to now pick up where Holland has left off. Legalizing pot would increase tourism hugely, and as we can see from the Portugese example, dealing with cannabis in a non criminal way benefits everyone. The treatment of problem users rather than the incarceration of all users has proven to be a much more effective strategy. Tax payers money is saved, and society is safer.
Dutch growers are at the cutting edge of marijuana innovation. It was modern day Dutch masters that gave us the infamous White Widow cannabis strain. It is sad news that such creative growers are now being targeted and having their supplies restricted. We have never had as much scientific information about the medical benefits of marijuana. Growers can now target traits within specific cannabis strains and improve on them until they give optimal medicinal benefit. Restricting growers will restrict the advancement of medical marijuana, at least here in Europe.
As evidence of the medicinal benefits of marijuana increases the true injustice of our current cannabis laws are highlighted. We need change, not only so the next White Widow or charlotte’s web strain can be created but so we can move away from police intrusion into our private lives. We were born free. No man, woman or state has the right to tell us that a non toxic, medically beneficial, plant is illegal. That prohibition is illegal. With the momentum we have from America, it is now up to each of us to advance our movement. Within your world, be the change you want to see. Look at the science and then speak out against prohibition.