There has been some international uproar of late regarding the closure of some “coffee shops” in Amsterdam as well as the closure by local authorities of dispensaries allowing communal “medicating”.
Don’t get me wrong. I like the idea and freedom of being able to smoke in private clubs with a group of like-minded individuals. Perhaps in the future this will be the direction to head; however, it would have to be at a time when the political climate accepts the use of Cannabis for purely recreational reasons. Under today’s laws, using Cannabis for recreational reasons is clearly illegal, if only a misdemeanor in some states.
My problem with cafes, at least in the US, is that we are struggling to simply get Medical Cannabis accepted legally at regional levels as well as hopefully ultimately nationally. As a physician, I just can’t see the medical benefit of medicating as a group in a public setting. Until a lot more education and enlightenment occurs, It is just too hard to justify in the current setting and as far as I can see, for some time to come.
Alcohol is very different, and as far as I know, it is the only drug we use socially in public groups that are legal. At the same time, I just don’t know many – if any – physicians, including myself, who would be drawn into “prescribing” alcohol for a patient. Even in the waning years of alcohol prohibition nobody was pushing for Medical Alcohol!
So, I would prefer to keep Cannabis in the medical arena and out of the café world. Many of us need this medication for help with serious issues. Let’s all please be careful not to become insensitive to the big picture.