We’re talking about Mary Jane in Aruba

First, nonpsychoactive marijuana extract, or cannabidiol, CBD: One of my young friends spoke to me at length about his passionate plan to create an on-island PR infrastructure so that when legislation for medical marijuana is suggested, it will fall on fertile ears, and be approved.

He did not speak about recreational use; his interest was holistic, as medicine for anything from seizures to bedsores, though he grew up on the island and I am sure that at one point or the other, in his early years, he had a love-affair with puff-pass, a phase most people abandon as they mature. About 10% of any population, 15% in indigenous populations, gets hooked and transitions to other, heavier mood altering substances. But we’re not talking about addiction today.

My young friend quoted to me that 28 states in the USA, plus the District of Columbia, have legalized marijuana in some form, and three more states are joining soon, having made tax and licensing provisions, and/or decriminalize it. Between legalizing recreational use, and medical use, the world is busily making this adult intoxicant available, and a number of my older friends recently reported that they prefer it over booze and/or pills, when they unwind after work.

On a personal note, I never had a love affair with pot, because of the dreaded binge-eating that comes along with it. My last contact-high was in an Amsterdam café, I laughed my head off, but I don’t remember what was so funny!

And when my sister, a cancer patient, was running out of time, she was given cannabis oil, designed to alleviate some of her unbearable suffering, I believe she had difficulties using it, because of the pot-head stigma attached to it. Which was sad, but we get it, marijuana has been bad-mouthed for years.

In any case, CNN’s Sanjay Gupta documentaries about Weed convinced him, and all his viewers, including me, that we should legalize Medical Marijuana, period.

As for Aruba? I understand it is available hush, hush, from private labels, and home industries. Some growers do their own thing, and distribute secret recipes. A medical professional I spoke to swears by its effectiveness in wound-care, especially in elderly demographics.


And how about recreational use??

We went to San Nicholas yesterday to visit Cosecha, the new art gallery on main street and talked over lunch at O’Neil’s Caribbean Kitchen. Marijuana came up, immediately, and we hatched the following plan: How about instead of dilapidated red-light district bars, tired hookers and abandoned buildings, designate an area for recreational marijuana use, open a few licensed coffee shops, just like the Bulldog in Amsterdam. Borrow the Bulldog’s blueprint. The area will become an instant magnet for tourists, and we will finally manage to take weed off the beaches. Regulate marijuana use, tax it, make laws, set fees and possession limits, the money will be rolling in. And I have just the perfect location for you, the city blocks between Helfrick- Jan Steen- and Rembrandtstraat. Needless to say voracious appetites follow weed, so restaurants will be doing well! And don’t forget to check with the neighbors how they feel about my plan!

Art Galleries and Museums won’t cut it for San Nicholas, a few coffee shops will!

Just a Footnote: Colorado collected more than $135 million in marijuana taxes and fees in 2015 — more than $35 million of which was earmarked for school construction projects.


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December 01, 2016
Rona Coster