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Compromise on cannabis club passes 'on its way', says AD

Thursday 18 October 2012

Politicians in The Hague are working on a compromise proposal to end divisions over the introduction of the wietpas, a membership card for cannabis cafes, the AD reports on Thursday.

The paper says sources indicate the chance of the card being introduced nationwide from January 1 is very small.

The compromise would end the obligation on cannabis cafe owners to register users and would allow people to buy soft drugs all over the country. However 'foreigners' would be refused entry, the paper says, without defining whether this also includes foreign nationals officially resident in the Netherlands or just tourists.

Success

Justice minister Ivo Opstelten has described the new system, introduced in the south of the country in May, as a 'great success' but there have been numerous reports of increased street dealing and other drugs-related nuisance.

Labour and the VVD are currently in talks on forming a new government and the wietpas is one of the areas where agreement still has to be reached. The VVD wants to press on with the new system but the Labour party is opposed.

Opstelten is due to publish an official evaluation of the new system later this month.


Are you in favour of relaxing the new rules? Have your say using the comment box below.

© DutchNews.nl



 

Readers' Comments

Perhaps a return to a World War II protocol: allow entry to anyone who can correctly pronounce Scheveningen.

Seriously, allochtoon or not, the word is out, foreigners are not welcome in NL.

By Puck | 18 October 2012 8:13 AM

This is nothing more than a deliberate distraction from whats really going on in the country.While people loose their homes jobs and can barley feed themselves and family this story always seems to pop up.Don't fall for it.

By jason buttle | 18 October 2012 8:33 AM

How they are going to distinguish a tourist from a resident? If they do it by nationality and presentation of ID etc then it would be a discrimination over other residents. I mean that from the point that residents have a lot of obligations (tax etc), they should also have the basic rights.

I thinks that first they have to check What the aim is, and what residents, and dutch people want. Finally, i cannot understand how come they see problem in South Netherlands (an not north east for example). And how they justify that in the south is worse in comparison to amsterdam. Have anyone of them been to AMS center and see all the drug tourists?

By sorona | 18 October 2012 8:52 AM

I was working in the Netherlands May this year when the new law got out and despite i was working for a full year straight in the country and i had not my own house, i was denied for the necessary documents for me to get the wietpass. A week later i returned to my home country. I am not saying i do not agree with the law, but i find it very unfair and incomplete.

By Davjay7 | 18 October 2012 9:08 AM

so I guess I will not be going to the coffeeshop and be buying weed for all my visitors huh? ;) or anybody else that asks me to buy weed for them for that matter. and this will prevent foreigners from coming to NL for soft drugs huh ;)? whew, what a brilliant solution! I am always so impressed with our leaders these days

By B | 18 October 2012 9:30 AM

Opstelten.. a 'great success'..?
increased street dealing and other drugs-related nuisance?

'Seems like Opstelten's hopes to control all info on soft drug users has already been declared a failure.

This is exactly the type of politician NL could do without. (We don't need no education,
We don't need no thought control.)

If cannabis was really such a problem, there would be no coffee shops in the 1st place!!

Coffee shop cannabis soft drug = 5gr per customer.
Bar/cafe alcohol hard drug = no limit, drink until you drop!

How about some truth for a change?

By The visitor | 18 October 2012 9:56 AM

Yes, the law should relax, people that are not harming others deserve the protection of the law not punishment, and cannabis cafes or coffeeshops for adults is one way to do that - but they need to be fully legal including where and how they get their supplies

By Alun Buffry | 18 October 2012 10:54 AM

i love Holland and have visited for holidays and weekend breaks, fifteen times over the last ten years alone,i thought you beautiful dutch people were tolerant and did not discriminate against anybody, and as long as there are places in holland where i cannot go because of who i am, i shall not be coming back! it is akin to aparthied in the bad old south africa,albeit an insidious one.

By Doug Hughes | 18 October 2012 11:44 AM

"without defining whether this also includes foreign nationals officially resident in the Netherlands or just tourists."
Oh come on! What's next - sell it only to tall, blond and blue-eyed people?

By Bobby | 18 October 2012 12:05 PM

keep your caravans and dutch autos in your country..you are no longer welcome in germany,france,belgium

By Richard Jenkins | 18 October 2012 12:05 PM

So koffie shops are illegal, but not really because cops turn a "blind eye" as long as they keep less than a certain amount of pot in the shop and there are no schools near by. The back-end is completely illegal because cultivation and sale is illegal, except that individuals can have two plants for personal use, but that isn't nearly enough to actually supply the shops. And now "foreigners" aren't allowed in the shops, but the term foreigner isn't legally defined. Clear as mud!

It's a good thing that drug laws are so rigorously defined and enforced, otherwise there might be some confusion. In all seriousness, this is probably a good compromise; now both sides can claim victory.

By RC | 18 October 2012 12:23 PM

I do not agree with new rules as it will bring sadness across the world. Amsterdam is beautiful and the coffee shops brings an experience that no other country can offer. Why take it away. Why not put in new and harsh rules for those who try smuggle weed out of holland like a 5 year sentence in jail..don't change because it will bring new problems to the country. Find another option that won't cause a riot

By Paulo | 18 October 2012 1:23 PM

why mend something when its not brocken

By A.Murton | 18 October 2012 2:06 PM

Why would the Dutch want to implement a law which would drive away millions of annual visitors to their country and increase illegal street dealing?

By Chris Bovey | 18 October 2012 2:06 PM

Ivo Opstelten's weed pass has certainly been successful at killing the coffeeshops, as it was intended. The coffeeshops in the south that haven't yet closed are mostly empty now, and they are being forced to compete with an explosion of street- and house dealers. Only a few thousand Dutch citizens have taken the risk of registering with the government as a "drug user" in order to be allowed to visit their favorite coffeeshop. Predictably, facts like these will be excluded from Opstelten's "evaluation". The reality of the situation will be swept under the rug. Both Opstelten and his weed pass should be dumped immediately.

By James Morgan | 18 October 2012 2:09 PM

If the coffeeshops aren't required to become closed clubs anymore, then they also can't continue to refuse foreigners. Only closed clubs with members and rules for membership can exclude people. That's also exactly why Minister Ivo Opstelten wanted to force coffeeshops into that model. If you're allowed to admit everyone with a Dutch identification or passport, then you also let Dutch people in who don't live inside the Netherlands. So, it is CERTAINLY discrimination to refuse foreigners who live outside the borders and don't have a Dutch passport or I.D.

By Peter Lunk | 18 October 2012 2:33 PM

This will kill the Netherlands economy if it goes through. I like to visit as many times a year as possible at current, but without cannabis, seriously you as a nation have nothing else to offer. The Anne frank huis is upsetting, and madurodam is only really cool once

By Pete | 18 October 2012 3:09 PM

That is just bullshit Pete.
Last year the tourism in The Nederlands raised with 6%, just because people like you cant go to country because you cant smoke weed is your problem and only yours.

By Robin | 18 October 2012 3:24 PM

Lets understand economics and understand successful results.
No Taxis, No Tourists,No Work,No Taxs being paid, No thank you

I don't think the employment offices are that big to fill half the city of Amsterdam after they change a system that's been in place for 30 years. Everyone in the city built their business around Amsterdams laid back soft drug laws and the city and the country benefited. Know every major corporation in the Netherlands that's abroad from IBM to Krocs is pulling out since they can't see their eyes of the new direction holland is turning. All the corporations that set up business in holland don't show a profit they just think for business on soft drug policy is great

By David Kesner | 18 October 2012 3:25 PM

Do you think the city of Amstedam can really survive without a tourist x millions that's been gong back and forth for 20 years for the culture it introduced into the common world. It's already to expensive to go there and to go back to a party when no one is there to have fun with or no place to eat isn't my kind of vacation.
The city and the people and businesses that don't understand the tourists are the city's income period.... The Dutch won't ever recover and the property and jobs will fall off the cliff and the jails will be overfilled with theifs and drug dealers.Take away the tourist tax=no police,transit,or disability worker programs

By Ben | 18 October 2012 3:38 PM

I can pronounce Scheveningen.

Here goes... ahem... Shwenigen... DAMN!!!

By Nardo | 18 October 2012 4:14 PM

Take the weed away from Amsterdam & all your left with is a boring European city. Its tourism suicide!!!

By Martia Lant | 18 October 2012 4:33 PM

I have enjoyed the peaceful environment in the Coffee Shops where I have met more Dutch then tourist .It is a nice social scene without trouble or drunks fighting.
But , no backpack for me as many times I have stayed in four star hotels and I should add made friends and enjoyed the Dutch way of life.

Over the last four years I came three times a year.
In 2013 I am going to the beautiful state of Alaska and invite you to my home of Naples, Florida with tropical breezes and white sand beaches.
I can only imagine that the Dutch Government in their kindness to the USA is giving up their VAT and tourist business to us.

By Lee From Florida | 18 October 2012 4:34 PM

Amsterdam is my weekend retreat. How can my only enjoyment in life be taken away by people who have not got a clue as to how good ganja is? The Dutch Parliament should be sealed in and hotboxed until they can finally see sense.

By Scoobysnakks | 18 October 2012 4:40 PM

We cancelled our holiday because of this, the hotel owner was very understandably annoyed, six people for two weeks, sad day for him along with the restaruants, bars etc, fine for us though, we will go somewhere better instead :-)

By Morgansgoat | 18 October 2012 4:50 PM

So as a foriegner I may no longer be able to use the coffee shops? That makes great sense! I come to your country, pay for accomodation, buy your food, visit your museums and atractions and the most part of why I come is your relaxed cannabis laws, well all I can say is your going to murder the tourist trade, I have personally been a few times and only ever seen foriegners in the coffee shops, from the British like myself to people from China, Japan, Australia and America to name just a few foreign people who visit Holland! I am visiting in November and if I cant buy Weed after January 1st, I will not be coming back!

By Dom | 18 October 2012 5:02 PM

This will kill Amsterdam tourism and push the product on to the street. The growers are already in place if the coffee shops start to close down the growers are just going to sell else where in a less controlled environment and with 0% of the profit going to you guys.

By Michael W | 18 October 2012 5:22 PM

Legalize IT! (and all your problems are over) and you know something folks: you can do something too, by setting the legalisation of soft drugs on the political agenda of every country in the world. Peace!

By dutchman | 18 October 2012 5:33 PM

It is so sad to see a government moving backwards. Pushing everything into the illegal underground is what is going to happen. If this government reminds me of the corrupt conservative politics in North America. Why create more problems in a not only functional, but prosperous society? Are they planning on profiting off criminals like in North America? I think they would find it more profitable and beneficial to keep the laws the same. Hopefully the Netherlands is able to make changes in their government soon.

By coco | 18 October 2012 5:42 PM

How will you feel once the German parliament decides that Dutch citizens are not allowed to attend Oktoberfest?
How will you feel once the Belgian parliament decides that Dutch citizens are not allowed to enjoy Belgian lambic bieren?
How will you feel when the French government decides that only French citizens can have actual champagne from the Champagne region?
How will you feel once the Italian parliament decides that Dutch citizens are not allowed to have Italian coffee?
How will you feel when the moron mind-controllers in the U.S. government decide that Dutch citizens are not allowed to buy American tobacco?
How will you feel when the Japanese government decides that Dutch/foreign citizens are not allowed to enjoy Japanese sake?

By The One | 18 October 2012 5:50 PM

I am from Liverpool England and once this is introduced I for one will never return to Amsterdam and I am sure a lot of other tourists will be the same

I can get prostitutes and ale in England so why travel to Holland?

By Steve chan | 18 October 2012 5:56 PM

I am applying a "dutch tax" in my retail business to any sale to holland. Last month i spent a bit of money to see for the last time a coffee shop, traveled overseas to holland, got hotel... played my week as a drug tourist. I have been forced to spend those money since you are closing the coffee shops to foreigners and that was my last chance to enter a civil country before it shifted to nazi-like politics, which is a defect apparently trackable back to previous century. So now in order to recover those money i am applying a 5% major price on any sale to dutch people from my business. Eye for eye, tooth for tooth!

By jim | 18 October 2012 6:06 PM

Such a shame. I've been coming to AMS a couple of times a year for nearly 20 years. It's one of the most beautiful & tolerant places, Dutch people always so friendly. I class Amsterdam as my second home & have introduced many friends who have not been before. Yes I like to smoke, to visit the museums & other attractions, stay in lovely 4 and 5 star hotels etc. I'm not a drinker so don't go to the bars. Holland has benefitted from about £4K a year from me and my friends. I'll still come, maybe once every 3 years becasue it's in my blood, but don't wanna go where I'm not welcomed equally

By Brads | 18 October 2012 6:07 PM

Last year, when i ignored there was such a policy in preparation, i rented a room from a private (this year a 4 stars hotel instead...). He asked me why me and my friend came to amsterdam, we answered, sincerely, to go to coffee shops. From that moment he sealed half of the house, denied access to kitchen (against our verbal agreement), kept a constant eye on us and now and then told us "so bad, you came here just for that? amsterdam is so full of nice things else than that". We answered, as the most frankly, honest and spontaneous we could: "Which nice things????". You dutch gonna learn it the hard way, job losses and recession.

By jim | 18 October 2012 6:18 PM

Thank you DutchNews for the only open forum on this topic. But let this studious allochtoon observe that there was a heroin epidemic in NL in the 60's, to stop it exploding, house dealers selling wiet were tolerated in youth centers that had a zero tolerance of drugs like heroin. By 1972, the first coffeeshop was tolerated. By 1976, gov made it official policy but stopped coffeeshops from growing for the customers - the back-door-problem. Since that time gov has made life constantly harder on coffeeshops and wiet users. The latest part of this "die-off" policy is the Wietpas. Will this evaluation even mention control of drugs like heroin?

By Max Harmreduction | 18 October 2012 6:40 PM

@Robin, i work at a hotel in amsterdam and our business is up because MORE drug tourists have come to amsterdam this year after it was widely reported that the laws would change by 2013 and that this may be the last time they can ever enjoy the coffeeshops.

By Robert | 18 October 2012 6:52 PM

I cant believe this is actually going to happen poor Amsterdam. I love taking a quick flight out for a few days for the perfect chill. I won't be no more if there ain't no weed. Gutted

By Donna dude | 18 October 2012 6:58 PM

Of *course* street dealing will go up when stores aren't allowed to sell to customers! Do they think that demand will just magically disappear? No! It's going to switch from legal suppliers to illegal suppliers which will make our streets, our society and our children far LESS safe!! Drug Dealers Don't Card, Supermarkets Do.

By Jillian Galloway | 18 October 2012 7:08 PM

It amazes me, these people who say 'this will ruin the Dutch economy'. Do you really think this country relies on the dollars/currency of stoners, rastas, teens and old hippies buying pot (oh, and taking in the other delights of the Red Light Areas?) So they may lose the stag parties: most moved to Prague years ago anyway.

Tourism will continue. The Dutch economy will remain unscathed by this (where do you think the US imported capitalism from?) Non-Dutch-natives can indeed get wietpasses in their dorps. AMS Hotels will be filled by those visiting professional conferences, galleries or just to see an old European capital.

..and drugs will still be available on the street as they always were.

By osita | 18 October 2012 7:29 PM

If the UK and across America legalised cannabis and other country's had small coffee shop areas then none of us would be moaning I went to Amsterdam this year and I did not go for the country but the skunk and relaxed atmosphere to smoke it ( but once there I did appreciate the country and it's culture ) but if the UK did legalize cannabis last year then I would have never had a
reason to come to Amsterdam. So what I'm trying to say is that all these other country's like the UK need to legalise and then we could have no worries about the NL government saying we can't go and it wouldn't up set us.

By george vooght | 18 October 2012 7:43 PM

ive been to the NL b4 with my father several years ago,what a beautiful and history filld country u hav...im goin to the dam in november with my nephew i cant wait im sooo stoked,i should just move there??? it sounds like a big mess jus like we gots here in the good ol u s of a...see ya soon.......

By jake steel | 18 October 2012 7:52 PM

Close all coffeeshops. Drugs are illegal because they are dangerous. Stop selling drugs is a poisen not only for foreigners even for Dutch people.

By Renée | 18 October 2012 8:47 PM

I find it VERY patronizing and demeaning for people whose OWN countries don't allow legal use of marijuana to talk on "we'll not visit your country anymore" as if the Netherlands was the trash zone of Europe where people came to fulfill their addiction.

By Andre L. | 18 October 2012 8:51 PM

VVD is supposed to be "liberal" (ie libertarian). Why would they want to take this anti-business and anti-liberty policy? What is the reasoning? There is no longer a political necessity to form a coalition with a Christian fundamentalist party. Next thing you know, they will be trying for a coalition with the Muslim colonists.

By Kevin Bjornson | 18 October 2012 11:18 PM

They should sell weed in the filling stations on the motorway. What happens if people smoke at the wheel? Believe me, they already do......

By Marco | 18 October 2012 11:40 PM

I love the Dutch. Now is the time face the cannabis issue squarely, and legalize the cannabis. Become the World leaders of the advancement of a Empathetic civilization- you Dutch know you are the best at human rights, so demand humanization of the law and make it legal to buy and sell the herb. Stop taking a step back to a matriarchal approach that feminizes free choice. It is is not legal the criminal win. Cannabis is a peaceful herb and should be available in the coffeshops to everyone. Get sensible and don't yield to the jealousy of other nations who are not as advanced culturally as the DUTCH.

By Blondie | 19 October 2012 12:00 AM

This has damaged NL globally already. Their fixation on foreigners is isolating them. Have you seen the new ads on tv promoting tolerance? In stark contrast from the ads a few years ago promoting integration. Weitpas, kill it now before it does any more damage.

By Anne Onymous | 19 October 2012 12:42 AM

@dutchman. Exactly! NL has everything in place for cultivation and distribution and tourism of soft drugs. Totally legalise cannabis. The world already knows that the best cannabis is Dutch, so why would you not profit from that? Come on Dutch people, don't let your politics take away one of your major assets. Fight this madness!

By Anne Onymous | 19 October 2012 12:51 AM

Prohibition has not worked anywhere else in the world, why would the Dutch think that is could possibly work in The Nederlands? The fact that people could go to Holland and smoke weed legally created a massive tourist industry, and now you want to Kill the Goose that laid the Goldern Egg? Bizzare

By Russell Camel Wattie | 19 October 2012 5:10 AM

The weed pass is a really bad idea! It is discriminatory! Isn't there something in the Dutch constitution about NOT discriminating against other people? The sale of soft drugs has been successful for about four decades and now the government wants to screw that up? You had better hire 2 to 3 times more police to handle all the street dealing. Seriously, how many problems do they have with cannabis and coffeeshops as compared to alcohol and bars? Not many, I believe. Leave cannabis and coffeeshops alone! FREE THE WEED!!!

By puffin13 | 19 October 2012 6:22 AM

@Renee: Pls. re-educate yourself about Cannabis-you wrote that it is a poison-It is NOT. It is one of the least toxic plants on earth and a human cannot acheive a toxic effect with it. Alcohol though is a poison. Legalise Cannabis today-Amsterdam will lose millions of euros in tourist revenue.Fact.

By Andy Tours | 19 October 2012 9:36 AM

Hey Robin the reason your tourism rose last year is because all of us tourists were coming for one last smoke before the weedpass. I certainly did.

By Slip | 19 October 2012 10:58 AM

Renee' do you count alcohol as drugs? Should it stop too?

By Slip | 19 October 2012 11:01 AM

hold tight everybody it's not over until the fat lady sings, have a read of peter lunk's post.

By dean maddox | 19 October 2012 12:09 PM

Complete non sense. A nice way to end 80% of tourism in Amsterdam. And a gift to alcohol (hard drug) dealers.

By Philippe | 19 October 2012 2:52 PM

No entry to coffeshops = dsicrimination = no more tourism. I'll visit Scotland instead.

By Philippe | 19 October 2012 3:02 PM

54 comments by now. The pension article has only 9.

By pepe | 19 October 2012 3:34 PM

seriously folks, the news is littered with human rights abuses, job losses etc. and the article that receives the most comments is related to being or not being allowed to buy weed! Shame on you. As for you who plan a holiday just to take advantage of relaxed drugs rules (and cancel when they get changed!), get a life!

By Mazza B | 19 October 2012 3:39 PM

The actually want a "cannabis star" sown on people's clothes so everyone can see who smokes.

By Druhsmafia | 19 October 2012 6:33 PM

I have a brilliant idea which will complement banning sale of soft drugs to tourists, ban tourists from red light district and bars... how about that?

By Jay | 19 October 2012 6:48 PM

"Nederland - Drug Hub for Planet Earth!" If it is that by which a country wishes to be primarily known, then "Dutchie Drug Mecca" it is! What an ignoble legacy.

By Drawer 22 | 19 October 2012 7:12 PM

If I were a Dutch citizen I would have serious reservations about politicians that actually think this scheme is going to work.

By Bobke | 19 October 2012 7:14 PM

When they talked about stopping drug tourism, they were talking about the belgians and the germans who drive over the border purely to buy weed and take it back to their respective countries to smoke or sell. I will not miss the coffee shops myself, but before you all bitch about people in the Dutch government, this happened due to pressure from the neighbouring countries governments. How about you all go bitch to them instead?

By Mike | 19 October 2012 11:25 PM

I love Amsterdam. I'm sad that I won't be going back.

By Don | 19 October 2012 11:36 PM

@OSITA
"...Do you really think this country relies on the dollars/currency of stoners?..."
YES

"...AMS Hotels will be filled by those visiting professional conferences, galleries or just to see an old European capital..."
AHAHAH YOU MADE MY DAY

But in the meanwhile, keep feeling amazing by realizing that you allows the sales of women on the street.

By jim | 20 October 2012 8:07 AM

everybody that I know smokes weed, nobody I know goes to coffeshops. the cigg smoking ban in clubs is old enough now that most don't abide by it so you can smoke weed in a lot of night clubs again. nothing really changes for us or tourists that know what's going on in A'dam. Government will lose tax dollars, hard working locals will lose their jobs when coffeeshops continue to close. it is just yourself that you are shooting in the foot.

By Dutchlover | 20 October 2012 11:23 AM

Most nations are discussing the possibility of decriminalization and/or regulating drugs, but The Netherlands are doing the opposite despite research findings. It's a shame really.

By Semaphore | 20 October 2012 12:32 PM

Dutch Weed Pass to Feature a Yellow Star (satire) at
http://www.thesatirist.com/news/Dutch_Weed_Pass_to_Feature_Yellow_Star.html

By Daan | 21 October 2012 12:42 AM

I have traveled to Amsterdam at least 10 times since 1999. One reason was the coffeeshop experience of being free which we can't get here in America. If things continue to change and tourists like myself are banned from coffeeshops, I will not be coming back and Albert Hein, the Pax Hotel, the McDonald's on Damrak, the Thai Bird take out restaurant, the Rijks museum, and all of the other business establishments that I have frequented will lose my business for good. Is this really what the Dutch Gov't wants? Really? To the dutch Gov't: Don't cut off your ear to spite your face.

By Robert | 21 October 2012 1:03 AM

The WHO survey of 17 countries finds that the United States has the highest usage rates for nearly all illegal substances.

In the U.S. 42.4 percent admitted having used marijuana. The only other nation that came close was New Zealand, another bastion of get-tough policies, at 41.9 percent. No one else was even close. The results for cocaine use were similar, with the U.S. again leading the world by a large margin.

All that is about to change; Holland has thrown it's well-behaved baby out with the bath water. Why???

By Malcolm Kyle | 21 October 2012 7:24 AM

I have just spent over $4000 usd on accommodation, tour tickets and concert tickets including a ticket to the Annual Cannabis cup (the whole point of the trip) , I'll be staying in Amsterdam for 14 nights and intend on dining out and going on tours etc... I could go any where in the world but have chosen to spend my dollar in Amsterdam due to your current laws change it and you loose thousands of travellers like me

By NYC89 | 21 October 2012 12:51 PM

@Druhsmafia @Daan, disgusting to compare the fate of Jews and the holocaust with whether people are allowed to buy drugs.

By pepe | 21 October 2012 8:24 PM

I think most people ignore a basic fact. The goal of "soft on drugs" policy of the Netherlands is to avoid unintended damage to its own youth, those that live in the country, by preventing them from getting in touch with drug dealers that will introduce them to hardcore stuff.

It was never the purpose, intend or goal of that policy to make this country the drug supplier of Belgium or Germany who didn't update their own laws.

People living in Aachen, Liège and Hasselt should demand from THEIR governments more sensible policies instead of thinking of border cities as drug supermarkets.

By Andre L. | 21 October 2012 10:57 PM

What the drugs tourists don't understand is that Holland's policies are about dealing with a problem. Why would they want their beautifull country seen as some big drugs den?

By john | 22 October 2012 7:37 AM

@John. All other countries are big drug dens hence why there are calls for decriminalising drugs in many countries at the moment....I don´t know if you travel but drugs are freely available in cities and countryside all over Europe..when I go out in Amsterdam, it is the drunk and sex tourists that cause problems and make me feel awkward at times not the cannabis smokers but I don´t call for a ban on drinking or sex with ladies of the night, each to their own.

By Carol H | 22 October 2012 9:59 AM

Totally agree with Carol, I can easily score weed at home but prefer to go to Holland and do it in a peaceful civilised manner as part of a holiday. If Mr Rutte does not want the hudreds of Euros I and thousands of others spend every year (and unlike drunken stag weekend parties cause no trouble) than I will stay away from the Netherlands.

By IanY | 22 October 2012 11:59 AM

While the policy is highly questionable, if it means that people like Jim (with their vitriolic, vengeful personalities) won't be coming here anymore, then every cloud has a silver lining indeed!

To all those that "love" Amsterdam soooo much, but won't return: check out Nepal and India, you can smoke all you want over there, and I'm sure you won't be able to tell the difference...

@Jim - what's that business of yours where you plan to introduce that xenophobic 5% tax, so I can make sure I won't use it?

By radu | 22 October 2012 12:00 PM

I don't like the coffee shops - they smell awful when you walk past them, the people smoking weed often do so outside the shop. I find them awful. I do want tourist dollars to help our economy, but I would prefer to see mature tourists with a lot to spend rather than penny-pinching youths staying in the cheapest accommodation, only here to smoke and party and generally cause a nuisance. They are loud, rude and obnoxious thinking they own Amsterdam. I don't like having them here. Rather let them go to Ibiza. I just don't believe we need to sell our soul to attract the tourist dollars of Europes' riff-raff.

By A Nonny Mouse | 22 October 2012 2:33 PM

Coffee shops are, primarily,tourist attraction..in coffee shops seems to be more tourits then Dutch citizens...it's like Dutch Eiffel tower...and how would it feek if only French are permitted to walk on this famous Iron monster ?

By Martin M | 22 October 2012 4:03 PM

Are all those coffee shops in Amsterdam suddenly going to stop serving foreigners from Jan 1st 2013 ? They would have to close simply due to lack of business. Will the hotels, restaurants, bars etc cope with the lack of trade. I really think those coffee shops will have to be raided and closed - are the law enforcement and politicians in Amsterdam ready for this ?

By phrtao | 22 October 2012 9:14 PM

@ande l.
you are in bad faith. The point is not whether you are going to supply germany with 420, i am canadian so your statement is pointless. The problem is the DISCRIMINATION, which is a matter you know too well (south africa apartheid, nazi alliance etc.).
That's what triggers the argument, you are discriminatory, racist or whatever you want to call it, like it or not. It's not a case that the majority party politics in your country is quite similar to many Berlusconi's statement, congratulations. we, as smokers, are just happy, now that we realized how racist you are, that you are going in recession.

By jim | 23 October 2012 5:29 AM

@jim, what exactly has South Africa got to do with this? The Brits took over that country from the Dutch in 1806. Apartheid became the official politics after WW2. And yet there are still people trying to blame the Dutch for it. Pathetic.

And by the way, who says the Netherlands is going in recession?

By tim | 23 October 2012 10:02 AM

Wow lucky my friend posted this on facebook. I was going to bring my wife for her 40th birthday and a visit to a coffee shop would have been part of the experience. Would have been disappointed to arrive and not try it. I will probably visit another country that I can get to cheaply I don’t like the idea of being treated differently because I’m a tourist. I know some people will say oh well if you want to visit a coffee shop don’t bother coming and thats fair enough but im hardly a teenage stoner. I’ll spend my money were I can buy what the locals buy and do what they do . Think I will go to Italy instead. Will go with romance over fun on this occasion LOL

By chris | 23 October 2012 11:59 AM

Some 20 years ago, a treaty in... Maastricht talked about free trade within European union. Then, residents are Europeans I guess?

By bertrand | 23 October 2012 10:29 PM

@tim
I am saying it. Or you think you can produce money from trees as you did with weed?
But the really pathetic side, is that you are banning tourists, so on the base of where they are from, preventing them from buying goods, since you poor kids cannot be the supplier of germany... ridiculous, while you keep selling women. Now who is pathetic?

By jim | 24 October 2012 3:15 AM

Jim, "we" are not selling women. What century are you living in?
Everyone should be free to do whatever they want with their body, as long as it doesn't harm others.
And all drugs should be decriminalised, like in Portugal, because any ban on any substance generates a black market, with all that it entails.

By radu | 25 October 2012 8:54 AM

@radu
exposing a woman body in a window shop with the intention to sell it, is offensive to the humankind, your law allows that and that's what i meant when i told you that you are selling women, is the truth. but right now you are blinded by the proud of banning tourists on the base of their origin from buying some veggies to smoke. Which is ridiculous, because in the meanwhile you sell women's body like at a butcher.

By jim | 25 October 2012 7:53 PM

You are right jim, the Netherlands is the only country were prostitution exists. The fact that it is is illegal in other countries, of course means that it doesn't exist.

By pepe | 26 October 2012 11:55 AM

obviously, together with an skill for discrimination, you dutch people are pretty hypocrite too, again. I am not saying that you are the only country where prostitute's meat is sold, surely the only one with butcher shops for prostitutes. But while discriminating tourists you are also so hypocrite to forget that you are doing even worse with women.

By @pepe | 26 October 2012 6:00 PM

what i am trying to saying is this: you want to ban tourists from buying weed, since it's such a bad image for your country (typical of populist politics, no real problems, just appearance). But does it make sense in a country where at the same time women (human beings, fyi) are exposed as goods in shops?? You are driven right now by populist, demagogic and discriminatory values. You believe you gonna look good, but you are going to look: discriminatory, demagogic, populist, hypocrite (see conflict tourist discrimination/women meat sale) and definetly poorer and and much more lonly. Just waiting to see amsterdam streets empty and you eating your fingers.

By jim | 26 October 2012 6:14 PM

@@pepe and @jim, can you please translate that in English?
I've been reading comments by people that the Netherlands is doomed since, I think, 2005. And guess what, we are still going strong. Deal with it.

By pepe | 26 October 2012 10:59 PM

Weed is plentiful all over the world, and about the same price as in NL. I have a love for NL and will always visit when I can. The dutch culture and your cities are very beautiful and unique. Your country is exceptional because it is among the most densely crowded in the world. Coffee shops are very important to minimize some large and severe problems in society, and benefit the freedom and welfare of all. You will not believe what can happen by moving cannabis underground. PLEASE, for the sake of ALL, and I believe the future of NL, keep the coffee shops open. God Bless.

By LoveToVisitNL | 27 October 2012 10:49 PM

you should translate it in intellectual honesty first, whose luck is likely the reason that prevents you from understanding. Anyway, keep thinking that 30 millions tourists next year will come to amsterdam for the doner kebab shops or for the mechanically treated fries... you happy, everybody happy. good luck with your nazi-populists ideas and enjoy it.

By jim | 28 October 2012 9:45 AM

The gov't should not let women be sold especially with the aids epedemic. this law should come first before any coffee shop law.

By mary rogers | 12 February 2013 6:37 AM

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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