The following is our exclusive weekly feature in which we ask our readers a news topical question and then give you a week to answer it on our various channels, compiling a diverse range of answers and opinions to present to you, our valued readers. Here are the results from our last question…
Recently, we asked you the following:
Should smoking cannabis be allowed in licensed cannabis shops in Pattaya?
Some context around this question:
Recent guidelines from the Thai Ministry of Public Health have now essentially banned smoking cannabis in all businesses, including cannabis shops and cafes. While some shops are currently being creative and have set up separate smoking rooms that are not technically in the venue, which is a grey area but technically currently legal, other venues that don’t have the space have protested the new rules.
According to business owners, banning smoking in shops only encourages customers, especially tourists, to smoke in public on beaches, at parks, at hotels that may bother other patrons, and more. They claim that if smoking is allowed at licensed cannabis shops that firmly check customer IDs and focus only on cannabis and not on other products then customers will not smoke in other areas, bothering those who don’t smoke.
Cannabis has been a hot-button issue in Thailand since it was decriminalized in June, with some politicians even wanting to ban the plant entirely again. Thailand banned smoking in shops to diminish recreational smoking, according to the Thai Ministry of Public Health, but many claim this move will backfire as people look for other places to smoke.
TPN notes that smoking in shops is allowed if under the jurisdiction and authority of a licensed medical practitioner, medical doctor, or traditional medical practitioner.
Here is what you, our readers, had to say as our editors selected some of the most diverse responses to highlight different points of view. Obviously, we can’t post everyone’s opinion here so we chose a variety of the most varied opinions. The views and statements below are the reader’s own and may not reflect those of TPN media. There have been minor edits for spelling and grammar only:
LePub Pattaya: You know my answer will be no. But I will explain why. Thailand is surrounded by so many countries that ban cannabis. Many tourists from these countries will stop coming if it is openly smoked, even in a shop. The smell gets out into the street every time.
Gav-It ain’t cool. Zone it off like in the Netherlands. We know what the rules say but we also know how “implementation” works over here. It’s a free for all and is in the face of those who’d prefer to ignore it
Demigur-Don’t care much as long as it’s absolutely banned in bars, restaurants, and even preferably in public. I hate the smell and I want nothing of it.
Marco-Why not…I don’t smoke but I don’t care
Arnold G-Yes, and they should be forced to smoke it there and not in public.
Zelda P-Of course it should be allowed – after all, they allow drinking beer and wine and spirits everywhere as well, and alcohol is a much more dangerous drug than ganja.
David M-Honestly, I think it’s ok. But I think the exact opposite will happen if it’s allowed. People will think they can smoke it anywhere.