Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Weed Tourism Coming to America?

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Activist Post

When one thinks of marijuana tourism, Amsterdam is usually the first place that comes to mind. With over 700 cannabis cafes and 1.5 million tourists per year, much of Amsterdam's tourism industry is due to marijuana.

In the near future Amsterdam may have some stiff competition for marijuana tourists. Shortly after the states of Colorado and Washington passed legalization initiatives on Election Day, speculation began about how it may draw travelers who wish to openly consume cannabis.

Significantly, marijuana is not even legalized in Amsterdam. It was merely decriminalized in the 1970's and the Dutch government remains vague about its laws. Earlier this year they attempted to make it illegal for foreigners to visit cannabis cafes, which would have effectively destroyed Amsterdam's tourism. In late October, that law was scrapped much to the joy of travelers.

With Colorado and Washington passing full legalization, they would seem to have just as much potential to attract visitors as Amsterdam as long as the federal government doesn't interfere.

According to an article by the Associated Press, Washington state is looking forward to more weed tourism since it already hosts the annual Hempfest in Seattle:
Every summer on the shores of the Puget Sound, Seattle is host to “Hempfest,” which according to organizers attracted around 250,000 people over three days this year. For those three days, people are largely left alone to smoke publicly at a local park, even as police stand by. 
“People travel to Seattle from other states and countries to attend Seattle Hempfest every year to experience the limited freedom that happens at the event,” said executive director Vivian McPeak. “It’s reasonable to assume that people will travel to Washington assuming that the federal government doesn’t interfere.”
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Medical marijuana is enormously successful in Colorado with an estimated $1.7 billion in annual revenue and several small towns, like Breckenridge, already decriminalized marijuana years before this measure. So Colorado law enforcement has been very relaxed in recent years about marijuana consumption.

Already boasting a huge skiing industry with famous slopes in Aspen and Vail, ski bums may now have an even bigger reason to come to Colorado. However, under the new law people are still banned from smoking in public, which would make it difficult to rival the freedom and openness in Amsterdam.

Colorado's governor John Hickenlooper, who opposed Amendment 64, is not too optimistic about his state getting a boost from marijuana tourism,“I don’t think that’s going to happen.”

“They’re going to flock here to buy marijuana as if they’re going to take it back? On an airplane? That seems unlikely to me,” he added.

The Sheriff of the popular ski area of Pitkin County, Joe DiSalvo, told The Aspen Times that he will not pursue weed tourists. “For me, it’s going to be live and let live. If people want to come to Colorado because pot is legal — and that’s the sole reason — it’s up to them. I am not the lifestyle police.”

With that kind of welcome from law enforcement, "Aspendam" may indeed become a reality.

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Anonymous said...

WAY past TIME for some COMMON SENSE and these states would have made enough cash to have a PROSPEROUS STATE instead of a DEPRESSION like all us FOOLS that live in DRUG WAR conditions!

Anonymous said...

It's really not allowed anymore to smoke openly in Amsterdam. It's prefered you smoke in Coffeeshops, but sometimes they don't care.


Anonymous said...


Blue Sojourn said...

This issue has never been about getting high. The PTB honestly couldn't care less. Why would they? That's just the vote-getting meat the bought-and-paid-for politicos toss to the sheeple.

The REAL issue here, is INDUSTRIAL HEMP! The cotton, timber and petro-chemical (and now pharmaceutical) giants are the ones who criminalized canibus (then hemp) in the first place!

Legalize pot, and the door is kicked wide open for the logical re-legalization of hemp. The good 'ol boys club would be out of business practically over night... which is why the feds (whom the club owns) will crap all over this parade... relentlessly.

Why is it so few "activists" grasp that obvious fact?

Anonymous said...

Hemp was a very important crop in early America as it can be used in so many productive ways; it is like a wonder plant. When the 'Robber Barons' came to power, there was a concern that Hemp production would conflict with their plans for an industrial economy based on petroleum products; at that point Hemp as a crop was outlawed, and the rest is history---but it looks like 'history' might be changing. It is absolutely ridiculous that the federal government would even want to control what plants we as citizens choose to grow. Seriously is this like prohibition or what!!!!!!!!!!! Someone said that legalizing weed would not stop the illegal sales, etc.----honestly, how many people do you think bought liquor from illegal sources after it was legalized (except for moonshine in the hills). Let's just hope the authorities use common sense and figure out just how much money we can generate from the sale of Hemp alone, not counting the revenue, etc. that would come from the legalization of marajuana. Write your congresman!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

If hemp is so superior, why don't we see more of it?

I don't mean in America. It's banned here. I mean, why don't we see more of it in countries where it is legal?

Uruguay grows hemp legally. Why isn't South America flooded with hemp items? It's not taxed any higher than cotton. It doesn't require any special licensing. And yet, it makes up only a small amount of the country's total production.

If hemp is so superior, why?

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