Anorak News | Cannabis cafes are refuges for the sad, boring and controlled

Cannabis cafes are refuges for the sad, boring and controlled

by | 2nd, July 2018

When cannabis is legalised for recreational use in the UK – oh, come on, it will be (think of the money) – you can expect not only legislation to tax it and lots of regulation to control its use but also zones where puffing can take place with State approval. There will be places like the proposed Coachella Valley Green Dragon in sunny California, where pot heads can hang out with other dope fiends in a social setting. A club for tokers if every bit as naff as it sounds. It’s not liberty to smoke a joint in a State-approved lounge. Marijuana smokers are being herded and managed.

The laws in California are mad:

It’s illegal to consume cannabis in public, a restriction included in the 2016 ballot measure that legalized recreational marijuana in California. That measure, Proposition 64, also gave landlords the right to regulate marijuana use on private property.

You can buy it but you might not be able to smoke it. If you rent a property and the landlord says ‘no smoking’, hard luck.

So, while a small number of hotels are permitting consumption and a few marijuana-themed festivals are held throughout the state, those two provisions can severely limit legal cannabis use for certain groups, including tourists and many renters.

It’s not about freedom. It’s about control. Special lounges. Special festivals. Marijuana smokers are special needs. And it’s even worse for visitors. Tourists who fancy a puff can check into a  “bud and breakfast” resort, and suffer living amongst weed bores. Or they can toke in the hotel room and risk a fine.

So to the cannabis lounge, then, is gaining favour. There everything will be hunky-dory. But there are more rules; alcohol and tobacco must not be consumed in the same venue; you can’t open a cannabis lounge within 600 feet of a school; and all consumption of weed must be out of public view.

In Seattle, it’s much the same:

If you are a renter with a landlord that doesn’t allow smoking pot on the premises, a tourist at a hotel, or a homeless person living on the street or in a shelter, you have no legal place to exercise your right under state law to smoke pot.

A statewide indoor smoking ban prevents any kind of smoking inside buildings. A separate state law makes it illegal to smoke weed anywhere in public.

So where do you go?

If you have walked around Seattle recently, you have already smelled the answer: You go smoke on the sidewalk. Even though it’s not technically allowed, smoking weed in public in Seattle is punishable by a measly $27 fine, and cops are instructed to try not to give those tickets out.

Smell all the freedom, eh. Last February, Denver opened a weed club:

The city of Denver granted its first license on Monday to a business that will allow marijuana use on its premises. The Coffee Joint plans to charge patrons a $5 entry fee and permit them to consume their own cannabis in edible or vapor form.

How off your face do you need to pay to pay $5 to eat the cannabis sweet in your pocket? Weed might be legal, but that’s only because the State now has more control over cannabis than it ever had.

Posted: 2nd, July 2018 | In: News Comment | TrackBack | Permalink