Tolerance in the Netherlands
In all aspects, the Netherlands has always been a very tolerant country. Nevertheless, there is a remarkable diminution going on in the Dutch liberty. For example, after the murder on politician Pim Fortuyn, who had a critical opinion on the Islamization of the Netherlands, ethnical tolerance became less. Also, the government wants to make more restrictions to the drugs policy. Now broadcasted on the TV is an advertising about a internet campaign to regain the high level of tolerance back in the Netherlands. And being tolerant is a good thing, because it will broaden your horizon when it comes to understanding other cultures and their habits and traditions. Compared to other countries, the Dutch law is still very tolerant on several policies. The Dutch people even have their own word for it, which is ‘gedogen’. There is not a real translation for this word, but it comes close to: limitation in consequence of acquiescence. In this chapter, we talk about some things that make the Netherlands such a tolerant country and the history of those topics. Drug tolerance
What Holland does differently concerning drugs
Dutch government has decided to use the ‘gedogenbeleid’ ( tolerance policy), because according to them, it is more useful to focus on keeping the situation under control, instead of attaching all kinds of laws that often cause opposite results. So under controlled circumstances, the use of drugs is not prohibited. A recent change in the policy is the entrance of a weed card that only allows Dutch natives to buy marihuana in the shops. This law is only in its early stage and it may be possible that is has no future, because some politicians are afraid that it will increase the criminality on the streets. While many other countries are against this policy and think that it will cause more harm to the public health, some other countries like France and Germany are inspired by the Dutch drug policy and want to introduce it in their own country as well. History of the Dutch drug policy
It all started with the introduction of the opium law in the nineteenth century. The government regulated the import, distribution and preparation of opium to reduce criminality and people’s diseases. In 1974, the opium law was renewed and now distinguishes soft and hard drugs from each other. Soft drugs are for example Hasj and Marihuana. Heroin, LSD, cocaine, speed and XTC are considered hard drugs. From now on, the use of soft drugs is tolerated in the Netherlands, but not the selling of it. Only until 1995, the process for making the drugs is brought under a strict authorization system. One year later, the mayor of each city could decide for himself whether he allows coffee shops to sell drugs or not. These days, you notice that a lot of mayors are closing of all the coffee shops in the cities and that they ask the government to intensify the cannabis regulation. Somehow, the society of today is becoming more and more anti-drugs.
Three stadia of Trompeus on Dutch drug policy
Explicit product: A guy walks in a coffee shop and orders a joint. Norms and values: drugs are not legal, but ‘gedogen’
Assumption about existence: the Dutch government is liberal about drugs, because they think it will prevent or control criminality on the streets. Gay tolerance
What Holland does differently concerning homosexuality
According to studies, the Dutch population is much more keen on gay people and their marriages than the population of other countries. For example, a study called “Attitudes towards nonmarital sex in 24 countries” by E D Wilmer, J Treas, and R Newcomb, published in Journal of Sex Research 1998, indicates that where in the Netherlands 65% of the people think that homosexual sex is “not wrong at all”, 70% of the people in the US said it was “always wrong”. That’s probably why the gay people in the Netherlands are not afraid to be openly gay. The Netherlands has a famous gay scene with many gay...
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