Europe: Dutch Smoking Ban Will Not Apply to Marijuana, Health Minister Says

As of July 1, it will be illegal to light up a cigarette in restaurants, hotels, bars, and coffee shops in Holland, but the smoking ban does not apply to joints constructed solely of marijuana. According to NIS News, Dutch Health Minister Ab Klink sent a letter to that effect to the Lower House Wednesday.

Under the tobacco ban, smoking tobacco in bars and other public accommodations will be allowed only in closed off areas where no service is provided. But the Tobacco Act applies only to the smoking of products wholly or partially made of tobacco. Pot smokers who roll their joints without adding tobacco will be able to continue to toke in peace in Holland.

But many Dutch and other European marijuana aficionados are accustomed to rolling their joints with tobacco. In his letter, Klink said he does not expect that marijuana smokers will switch en masse to non-tobacco-laced joints, but he will arrange a study to see whether the smoking habits of coffee shop customers change as a result of the new law.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
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WOW actually banning something bad

Maybe the US should take a clue and work to ban things that actually hurt people too! Alcohol and tobacco are harmful...marijuanna is not....when will the USA catch up to the Dutch!?


America is fast becoming a third World country . The people elect presidents who will dictate over them for the next four years . They are in fact elected dictators with Bush being an example . America and its people have no say so on anything . It's the Government of America that control its people . America calls itself free ? Third world countries are freer . Canada has got more freedom than the U.S. The Big alcohol Companies donated over 10 million dollars to George Bush & since marijuana is the alcohol's only true competition & Bush being bribed he continues his senseless war against marijuana to satisfy the alcohol companies . Phisner Drugs gave Bush another 13 million dollars . Why ? Because with marijuana use you will eliminate the need to take lots of drugs that the drug companies produce . Again , it's about money that marijuana is kept illegal . A world without alcohol would save America billions .


Ps - Don't get me wrong.........i am still proud to be an American after reading about the stories and drug wars across the globe . It's sad to see that this Country is going downhill fast . We need to change this Country & give it back to its people not to those few who get elected & i still want to cry out........GOD BLESS AMERICA but , fear GOD is wanting no part of our Country because we have become a Nation full of lies and immorality . WE need to turn to the Lord for redemption or surely we will lose our once beautiful Country . May God bless us all .

smoking allowed

I'm glad for this. Once again, the Dutch policy on cannabis has held, and the new law is actually very reasonable. If you want to smoke tobacco, you should go outside. Even in the winter, it's not really a big deal. Here is an example of drugs policy being rational, sane, and controlled. That's really all we should be asking for.

In my experience, the policy in America is crumbling--there are more and more aggressive speeches, more distorted projections and claims, and more attempts by the government to ideologize people using fear. This is happening more than in the past. Which means: the prohibition is crumbling, and more and more people don't buy into the danger theories conspired by government, big business, and special interests. Gradually we are seeing the government's grasp of prohibition become more desperate, more false, and less ethically useful.

shame on all of you!

You people amaze and disgust me. As long as you get to do what you want then to hell with anyone who wants to smoke tobacco! I am not against marijuana and I do think it should be legal but tobacco should also be legal and people who don't like it should mind they're own damn business!

borden's picture

there's a difference between regulation and prohibition

Just a thought to share on this. I personally think that blanket bans on smoking in public places go too far, and I don't support them. But even so, it's not quite the same thing as prohibition. Prohibition means that you wouldn't be able to legally buy cigarettes or smoke them anywhere. Restricting their use in public places is regulation, not prohibition. What regulations will be effective or what regulations are just are valid questions, and even anti-prohibitionists have varying opinions on those questions.

Again, I think this particular kind of policy goes too far, but I also think it's important that we be clear on this distinction. People smoking cigarettes in the Netherlands might have to step outside from their favorite bars or coffeeshops before lighting up their tobacco, but at least they are not going to be buying it on the black market or getting dragged off in handcuffs if they happen to get caught. Cigarettes are still legal in the Netherlands.

David Borden, Executive Director the Drug Reform Coordination Network
Washington, DC


It all started in the US in San Francisco in 1875, with concerns about young middle-class, white?, men using opium....
Next Alcohol phohibition.
Failed, but, what do you do with those who were employed to do the enforcing?
And so we started with the most nonsensical idea ever - "drug" phohibition, upon the backs of the few who felt morally able to go against what is a fundamental human activity: experimentation and use of various drugs, which has taken place in all societies across the globe.......... denial is not the cleverest approach to this normal behaviour.
Next, comes the lies and falsehoods: devils weed etc, targeting ethnic monorities, and demonizing them.
But, hey, its a good business this drug prohibition, with everybody but the citizens at the bottom benefiting... empires have been built, careers invented, and many people have suffered as a result.
But, wait, we can expand here: so the US uses its lapdog the UN to promote worldwide drug phohibition via the 1961 Single Convention.
Hey, isnt invading and subdugating nation after nation not enough for the US?
They have successfully brought every country in the world on board this insane trip, and we all suffer as a direct result.
Personally, I despise this exportation of madness which is causing so much harm to so many.
Its time to wake up and get the 1961 Single Convention recinded, and killed.
Until this happens, we can all expect the latest knockout ideas surfacing in the US to, unsuccessfully, deal with the "drug menace".to continue and perpetuate misery.
I live in the UK, in Scotland, and I have suffered stupid unjust and downright evil laws imported directly from the US being used against me and my family.
Enough is enough, cant the rest of the world unite in denouncing the evil manace of drug phrohibition, and those at the source of it?
Look to your own lobby groups, see if the Single Convention is a live issue: if not, make it one, as, if things are to change, anywhere, it has to go first.

You know, all you people who

You know, all you people who are pro-marijuana who jump at the chance to compare it to alcohol and tobacco and talk about how much worse alcohol and tobacco supposedly are, you are serious hypocrites. All of your arguments are the same ones being used against marijuana right now. So seriously, stop undermining this cause with your bullshit bigotry against other people's drugs of choice. I completely agree that marijuana is not as bad as tobacco and alcohol, but you're only giving the prohibitionists more fuel for their bullshit. What, you want a world with legal marijuana and illegal alcohol? How would that be any less fascist?

I'm so sick of reading these stories and seeing all these responses talking about the evils of tobacco and alcohol. You think prohibitionists are going to read your comments and just reverse all the policies? If anything, you're just giving them reasons to ban even more substances. "Alcohol is worse than marijuana"... this is supposed to be an argument in favor of marijuana legalization? Are you out of your mind? That's just an argument in favor of alcohol prohibition. Stop being so goddamn stupid and hypocritical.

raving by a sober old bastard

But ddn't it really start with the British in China?....Serve up an adictive drug, that was illegal, The perfect drug, a rock to hide behind,especially if your life is a pile,and you don't have to think about it when you're wasted. So that appeals to poor people the junkies that are the commodity of the "drug wars" So then bureaucrats can use 'em for making money. The cops, lawyers (prosecuting and defending) the judges, the legislators (who are lawyers) ,all making easy money! Why would they wanna give it up? My friend was shooting his Heroin when the cops broke down the door. He explained his defence strategy. He would give his lawyer enough money to bribe the ludge, prosecuter, cops . So everyone got what they wanted! Why would anyone give up this easy dough ? They'd have to get non parasite jobs like everyone else. Why give up cruising around in a Crown Vic, imposing power on the worms of sociely? Why would the mob want to stop making really big bucks running drugs? Just like allthe rest of the fore mentioned, they consider the suckers who become addicts to be chumps to be used as their money making apparatus. I usta be a drunkard. I usta get high. I was able to quit. I went to a few AA meetings.All that other shit like the whole war on drugs ,is just a setup so that the whole"rehab" industry can kick in and make more money off these poor bastards the junkies.It's a pity nobody seems to read. If they did, they could read about how Lucky Luciano's guy would go to the chief of police in New York with a paper bag filled with cash to bribe everyone from the top down. Anyone who thinks what is going on now is any different must have their head in the sand. Government and religion work the same way and use each other as models. "Let us controll you and you'll be happy" Or keep on throwing your money at us and we''ll form a comitee and come up with a solution, which you will have to throw more money at. It seems like America is self destructing. Throwing many good people into the pokey to get it in the ass, probably get AIDS. Why? cuz it's easy money for the law industry. It may be "The Law" but wasn't it once the law that Black people were worth three fifths of a white person? I'm peronally sick of foking over my tax money so cops can go play Eliot Ness and save the junkies from themselves. Just as the Great White Father is projecting a weird cartoon America n the world, while the world changes. The Russians and Chinese are probably kicking themselves in the ass now. Why did we piss away all that money trying to fuck America? All we had to do was sit on our hands and watch them self destruct! The Chinese will become the new consumer of goods.Maybe a few years will pass, but it's inevitable. The Russians have the largest oil reserves, they can sell it to their buddies the Chinese. Why would anyone in the world want the Americans fucking with their shit? Look at Iraq!!! One percent of Americans in stir.... what a country.

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