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Pot-smoking tourists not welcome in Thailand, says health minister

43 Comments
By Chayut Setboonsarng

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43 Comments
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Last year, the pandemic slashed foreign arrivals to just 428,000, compared with a record of nearly 40 million in 2019.

Anti-drug laws are made to protect the health of its citizens!!

-18 ( +9 / -27 )

It's a medicine! That means it's healthy for you. :)

Anti-drug laws are made to protect the health of its citizens!!

3 ( +15 / -12 )

Sped a month of pay to travel for a few days and then waste the time in a stupor. It doesn't sound like the best use of time or money.

0 ( +16 / -16 )

I wish Japan would let us use it for medical purposes or grow a few plants in our house for recreational use. We have all been brainwashed into thinking this plant is terrible for society.

25 ( +36 / -11 )

The social impact of legalizing pot in the few US states and countries that have done so are positive. It always amazes me how politicians state there needs to be more research done. It’s been researched for over 60 years and all the negative effects are sensationalized or made up. Don’t expect to see Japan changing any laws about pot in the foreseeable future.

20 ( +28 / -8 )

I'm a reformed supporter of legalising pot. Not interested in using recreationally myself, but would consider it if I needed it for pain relief due to illness. And it's not like the stuff makes people violent.

As an aside, wasn't one of the original reasons for banning it related to hemp fibre being a cheap, versatile competitor to artificial fibres like nylon, following some heavy lobbying from the chemical industry?

6 ( +13 / -7 )

Same problem in the Amsterdam cafes.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

The only difference between a medicine and a poison is dosage.

0 ( +9 / -9 )

Should have the same laws here in Japan. It would be wonderful!

7 ( +15 / -8 )

As an aside, wasn't one of the original reasons for banning it related to hemp fibre being a cheap, versatile competitor to artificial fibres like nylon, following some heavy lobbying from the chemical industry?

That idea has been disputed. One reason was that nylon was mainly a replacement for silk and not hemp. Another possible reason was related to the paper and timber industries. Hemp was considered a cheap substitute for wood pulp. The legal history seems complicated.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Legal_history_of_cannabis_in_the_United_States

5 ( +6 / -1 )

I too am a late to the party advocate of decriminalization.

I just don't see how it is that much different from my favorite (well, used to be favorite) bottle of Scotch.

12 ( +15 / -3 )

Thanks albaleo

2 ( +2 / -0 )

No pot heads just the regular sex tourists are welcome in the "land of fake smiles"

0 ( +13 / -13 )

Seems a bit counterproductive, given that the more, um, relaxed tourist market was one of the factors that gave Thailand its start as an international travel destination.

Btw, anyone got a light?

12 ( +13 / -1 )

Me thinks the genie is already out of the bottle Anutin.....

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The next village to my birth village, in the Japan Alps is Miasa (美麻村, Miasa-mura, lit. "beautiful hemp village")

http://www.japanhemp.org/en/miasahouse.htm

They grew marijuana for making hemp fiber. Miasa has a long tradition of producing hemp, which has been grown there since the Yayoi period, 2000 years ago.

The area also produced silk worms.

14 ( +15 / -1 )

We have always enjoyed our vacations to Thailand but we don't use drugs. Like the smaller isles best.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

One reason was that nylon was mainly a replacement for silk and not hemp. 

If I’m not mistaken, nylon became more prevalent in WW2 to make parachutes, which were typically made of silk. Silk that was ironically, mostly imported from Japan.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

For a country to ban pot but still allow cigarettes doesn’t make sense. I don’t use pot personally but have come to realize it’s a far better choice than tobacco.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

If I’m not mistaken, nylon became more prevalent in WW2 to make parachutes,

And also as gifts of stockings from US servicemen to young British women. :-)

3 ( +5 / -2 )

For years so many people have been denied the benefits of medical marijuana, time after times they were told they were drug addicts who are trying to legalize a drug. Now everyone wants to jump on the bandwagon.

I am hoping that when used in a respectable manner this drug will benefit all those who rely on it.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

They only legalized it to cut down on meth use.

All backpackers smoke dope, surely they knew what would happen. I once accidentally ate the “happy vegetarian pizza” in Thai, (I don’t do drugs ever), but I had a nice time and chilled out on the beach without drinking alcohol or mango juice.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

No pot heads just the regular sex tourists are welcome

I was thinking this too but I’m on double-secret probation so I’m trying to be good...

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Medical cannabis is very good for those in constant pain and need. Recreational cannabis needs more care with the more potent varieties available today.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

but I had a nice time and chilled out on the beach without drinking alcohol or mango juice.

First time I ever heard "mango juice" being used to chill out! Must have been some pretty potent stuff!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Be aware on arrival from flights connecting Thailand to Japan.

Any excessive traces of cannabis on clothing could land you in a world of woe, Japan has a policy of zero tolerance to any recreational drug culture.

Unless you can compose a ditty as globally poplar as Paul McCartney.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

In a hundred years, people will be wondering what the hell we were smoking to think that banning marijuana was a good idea.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Politicians really hate weed.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Thailand's health minister on Wednesday discouraged tourists from visiting the country only to smoke weed, just two months after new laws were passed that have largely decriminalized the drug.

Hey health minister---I'm going to stay in a 12,000baht per night hotel. I will fly to Koh Samui and back to Bangkok. I will get a dental implant while there, which will mean a second visit in about 6 months. But will toke up relentlessly the whole time.

That cool?

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Hey health minister---I'm going to stay in a 12,000baht per night hotel. 

Why don't you stay in a nice one?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

For those desperate to get their fix in Japan, smoke a bowl of the ubiquitous spice "shichimi", which is found on the table at 90% of restaurants.

One of its 7 ingredients, one is pot seeds.

And for a bonus, its got poppy seeds too.

(though the chili and sansho are sure to make your lungs burn...)

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Thigh Land

0 ( +2 / -2 )

One of its 7 ingredients, one is pot seeds.

Which if you smoke them might give you a head rush from all the coughing, but will never get you high.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Adults using marijuana recreationally just like alcohol does less harm than alcohol. Alcohol is addictive for many people. Marijuana only becomes physically addictive with massive usage, not casual use like having 3 joints/week.

Traveling just to be drunk/high isn't my idea of good value, but I'd certainly have 1 evening with friends enjoying altered, happy, thoughts, if that were in the plans. It would be like going to the pub after a long day of visiting the sights or shopping in a huge bazaar. Relax, smoke a little, watch a movie, before bed with your better half or a new friend, if you aren't committed to someone.

The global war on drugs was a mistake. Can't we all agree on that by now?

4 ( +6 / -2 )

@theFu,

I smoked almost daily for about 30 years and never killed anyone or robbed a store to support my evil habit.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

I smoked almost daily for about 30 years and never killed anyone or robbed a store to support my evil habit.

Are you suggesting cannabis smokers do the above? If so, it's pretty delusional.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

In a hundred years, people will be wondering what the hell we were smoking to think that banning marijuana was a good idea.

People in Canada are already wondering this. They are collecting massive tax revenues, and plenty of tourist revenue as well.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

No pot heads just the regular sex tourists are welcome in the "land of fake smiles"

I agree. I found Thailand to be overrated compared to other Southeast Asian countries.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Smoking cannabis outside will find the tourist heavily fined-a good thing too.

Using on private ground is fine.

It is possible to buy cannabis almost anywhere there now and in many forms.

There are many ways to enjoy the relaxing effects and one way is to make a tea infusion for a relaxing sleep before turning in.

I regularly do so whilst there.

Unfortunately, Japan is far behind the curve where possession of cannabis can mean gaol time yet becoming catatonic on the street from alcohol and needing medical support does not.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Do they know how stupid they sound? What the heck do they expect? No matter where you go in the world, if you have a substance that is legal and a bunch of tourists would enjoy consuming it, the locals will come out in droves trying to sell it. Thailand's law states: "Possession, cultivation, distribution, consumption, and sales of basically all cannabis plant parts are legal." It is freaking legal. Heck... when I go to Thailand, I go there to drink quite a bit myself, I guess the Health Minister probably doesn't want drinkers too.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Politicians really hate weed...

Natch, scaring a naive and ignorant public with tales of "reefer madness" has, until recently, been a guaranteed grift of wimpy pols or hypocrites for garnering votes.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The global war on drugs was a mistake. Can't we all agree on that by now?

Depends totally on the "drug"

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Marijuana only becomes physically addictive with massive usage...

Good point about alcohol and its negative attributes but actually, pot is only mentally addictive, not physically. So even better.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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