The world’s first ecstasy shop is set to open in Amsterdam on Monday, as Dutch political group The Young Democrats–also known as D66–aim to incite discussion about the drug.
Although it has since been revealed that the pills handed out will be placebos, the message the group wishes to get across is still gaining plenty of attention. Despite having some of the most liberal drug laws in the world, ecstasy–also known by its chemical name MDMA–is still classified as a “hard drug” in The Netherlands. However, The Young Democrats–the youth wing of the Dutch Liberal Democrat party–believe that regulation rather than prohibition is key to reducing the harm caused by illegal substances.
The group highlights the fact that the illegal drug trade causes problems with overdosing and purity, factors which have contributed to a number of high-profile MDMA related deaths. D66 hopes to be able to collect 40,000 signatures for a petition, the minimum number needed to bring a discussion on decriminalization to the Dutch parliament.
The shop, called MDMJA–“ja” being the Dutch word for “yes”–will be open on Monday, May 18 for one day only in Amsterdam’s city centre. For more information, head over to MDMJA’s official website.