Dutch Smoking Ban May Apply to Tobacco But Not Marijuana
Amsterdam without marijuana coffee shops? Is nothing sacred?
On July 1, the Netherlands becomes one of the last European countries to ban smoking in restaurants and bars.
The Health Ministry says the ban will apply to cafes that sell marijuana, known as coffee shops. But this being Holland, which for centuries has experimented with social liberalism, there's a loophole: The ban covers tobacco but not marijuana, which is technically illegal anyway.
It gets more complicated. [More...]
Dutch and other European marijuana users traditionally smoke pot in fat, cone-shaped joints mixed with tobacco.
So they won't be able to add tobacco to their joints any more.
"It's the world upside down: In other countries they look for the marijuana in the cigarette. Here they look for the cigarette in the marijuana," said Jason den Enting, manager of coffee shop Dampkring.
Possible solutions: Using vaporizers which eliminate smoke; using an herb called coltsfoot, which tastes like oregano, instead of tobacco; or turning to hash brownies and pure pot.
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