Pope Francis rejects legalization for “so-called recreational drugs”

posted at 2:31 pm on June 21, 2014 by Ed Morrissey

Allahpundit gave this a perfect, NY Post-esque headline for the top section yesterday: Pope a nope on dope. Yesterday, Pope Francis inveighed against the momentum to legalize the recreational use of marijuana and other narcotics, predicting that such efforts would fail in the promises of lower crime and better responsibility of use. Society should organize against the ills of drug use, and would if they formed themselves to alleviate the conditions that drive people to addiction, the Pope advised:

The Vatican’s press office released the transcript of the Pontiff’s remarks:

“Let me state this in the clearest terms possible”, he continued: “the problem of drug use is not solved with drugs! Drug addiction is an evil, and with evil there can be no yielding or compromise. To think that harm can be reduced by permitting drug addicts to use narcotics in no way resolves the problem. Attempts, however limited, to legalise so-called ‘recreational drugs’, are not only highly questionable from a legislative standpoint, but they fail to produce the desired effects. Substitute drugs are not an adequate therapy but rather a veiled means of surrendering to the phenomenon. Here I would reaffirm what I have stated on another occasion: No to every type of drug use. It is as simple as that. No to any kind of drug use. But to say this ‘no’, one has to say ‘yes’ to life, ‘yes’ to love, ‘yes’ to others, ‘yes’ to education, ‘yes’ to greater job opportunities. If we say ‘yes’ to all these things, there will be no room for illicit drugs, for alcohol abuse, for other forms of addiction”.

“The Church, faithful to Jesus’ command to go out to all those places where people suffer, thirst, hunger and are imprisoned, does not abandon those who have fallen into the trap of drug addiction, but goes out to meet them with creative love. She takes them by the hand, thanks to the efforts of countless workers and volunteers, and helps them to rediscover their dignity and to revive those inner strengths, those personal talents, which drug use had buried but can never obliterate, since every man and woman is created in the image and likeness of God”.

“The example of all those young people who are striving to overcome drug dependency and to rebuild their lives can serve as a powerful incentive for all of us to look with confidence to the future”, Francis concluded, encouraging the members of the Conference to carry on their work with constantly renewed hope.

This occasioned a few jokes as well as amusing headlines. Washington Post humorist Alexandra Petri offered up a couple of puns, while noting somewhat more seriously that Pope Francis isn’t just going to be “the Cool New Pope”:

But even the Cool New Pope has his limits. And one of those limits is the legalization of marijuana. …

But the message is clear. Hail Mary. Hold the Jane.

How can the Pope frown on marijuana? After all, St. Stephen became a martyr after getting stoned.

On this topic, though, Francis has a significant amount of personal experience. The Associated Press notes that as Cardinal Bergoglio, the Pope dedicated a lot of time to pastoral care for addicts as the impulse toward legalization crescendoed:

Francis has described drug addiction as evil and met addicts on several occasions. When he was archbishop of Buenos Aires, he devoted much of his pastoral care to addicts.

Last month Argentina’s neighbor Uruguay cleared the way for legal sales of marijuana cigarettes in pharmacies. Recreational use of marijuana has been legalized in the U.S. states of Colorado and Washington, while Oregon may vote on the issue this year.

With those successes, the marijuana legalization movement is gaining traction from the Americas to Europe and North Africa, where officials are eager to pursue policies that focus on promoting public health rather than battling drug traffickers.

Beyond personal experience, Pope Francis is on sound theological ground as well. Anything that significantly interferes with human reason would tend to separate us from God, at least in principle. Reason is a unique gift from God to humanity to use for both its own benefit and to discern God’s presence so that we may serve Him. The purpose of law in Catholic teaching is to allow for both security and freedom, but also to form society to protect the basic social structure and promote the common good, both of which are damaged by drug abuse.

The catechism also makes that clear in the few passages that deal with law, society, and social order. “The political community has a duty to honor the family” (pp 2211), which includes “the right to private property [and] the right to free enterprise,” but also “the protection of security and health, especially with respect to dangers like drugs, pornography, alcoholism, etc[.]” Catholic teaching distinguishes between medicine and “drugs” in the sense used by Francis. In paragraph 2290, the Church warns against “every kind of excess: the abuse of food, alcohol, tobacco, or medicine.” In 2291, though, we read that “The use of drugs inflicts very grave damage on human health and life,” separating the use of legitimate medicine for legitimate purpose and the recreational use of drugs into two distinct categories. On that basis, Francis warns that society has to form itself through law to prevent or at least discourage that grave damage to both individuals and families, and therefore society at large.

There is a legitimate counterargument to this as well, which is that the ills produced by prohibition outstrip the ills prevented by it. That has its own counterargument, though, which is that the type of prohibitive laws and the way they get enforced might produce the bad effects. Instead of full legalization (which, like it or not, sends a moral signal of acceptance), the moderate option of decriminalization might be a better option.

Chris Christie offered that third way as an alternative this week at the Faith And Freedom Coalition conference in Washington DC:

Christie’s appearance at the Faith and Freedom Coalition gathering exposed him to an audience of evangelical voters that has been slow to embrace the blue state governor. Christie has been noticeably absent from similar conservative gatherings in the past and rarely talks about the divisive social issues these voters prioritize.

Christie stayed away from issues like gay marriage, instead focusing on his belief that all life “is precious and must be protected.”

That includes those suffering from drug addiction. Christie, who has publicly talked about losing a friend to drugs, said society needs to show compassion to those who have committed non-violent crimes because of the disease.

“When we say we are pro life, we need to be pro life for the entire life. We need to stand up for the hurt and the wounded,” he said.

That would focus on rehabilitation rather than imprisonment for users and tougher measures for traffickers, while finding ways to keep the former from suffering the ill effects of criminal records on later job prospects. The US was moving in that direction over the last twenty years or so before the momentum caught fire for full legalization of marijuana.

At any rate, Francis’ remarks are not terribly surprising from any Catholic leader. What’s more interesting is the reaction to them, and the presumption that Francis wants to be seen as The Cool New Pope. He is the new Pope, but he’s still the leader of the Catholic Church and a faithful instructor of its teachings. The cool factor is not in Francis’ control (or his ambition), never was, and no one knows that better than Francis himself.

Update: Francis also made headlines today by declaring that participation in organized crime results in excommunication from God. The headline from AFP muddies up the distinction a bit:

Pope excommunicates mafia, urges expulsion from clan heartland

Pope Francis launched a scathing attack on organised crime during a trip to the heartland of a feared syndicate on Sunday, declaring all mafia members “excommunicated” from the Catholic Church.

The mafia “is the adoration of evil and contempt for common good. This evil must be beaten, expelled,” he told worshippers near the hometown of a toddler killed in a clan war earlier this year.

“Those who in their lives follow this path of evil, as mafiosi do, are not in communion with God. They are excommunicated,” he told the congregation. …

The 77-year-old pontiff was speaking at the end of a trip to the territory controlled by the powerful ‘Ndrangheta mafia, where he comforted relatives of “Coco” Campolongo, a three-year-old who was shot dead in January in an apparent mob hit over money.

“It must never again happen that a child suffers in this way,” the pope said as he met Coco’s father and grandmothers, according to a Vatican spokesman.

The Church will occasionally issue an order of excommunication against a particular individual, usually after a lengthy dispute and lots of attempts to resolve whatever issues are driving the impasse. In this case, though, the Pope is describing a latae sententiae excommunication: “by the commission of the offense.” (This is mentioned specifically as a canonical penalty for “formal cooperation in abortion” in paragraph 2272 of the Catechism.) Francis’ declaration today doesn’t expel anyone from anything, but is rather a warning to those who participate in organized crime that they excommunicate themselves with their participation. In either type of excommunication, though, there is always room for sincere confession, repentance, and reform, and a return to the Church. To underscore that point, Pope Francis delivered this message after visiting prisoners, some of whom were former mafiosi.

It’s not really accurate to report that the “Pope excommunicates the mafia,” although they’re not going to be any happier with his remarks because of that. As AFP explains, mafia leaders in Italy make a pretense of being good Catholics for PR and intimidation among the locals, and the Church has in recent decades become more and more aggressive in rebutting those claims. And because of that, priests have been murdered in the region Francis visited, and he stopped to pray at the place where one was beaten to death for refusing to submit to extortion. Francis didn’t speak from the cheap seats today, and it remains to be seen what the mafiosi in that area might do in retribution.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Excommunication for organized crime should extend to politicians like Pelosi.

Flange on June 21, 2014 at 2:34 PM

Who gives a crap what that Socialist thinks about anything?

Wouldn’t it be great if the world could copy the governing and economic policy of . . . Argentina.

Skipity on June 21, 2014 at 2:35 PM

The Pope, like obama, has his priorities straight.

obama is focused on where the mil. gays’ partners get buried now.

Schadenfreude on June 21, 2014 at 2:36 PM

Should have added the link.

Schadenfreude on June 21, 2014 at 2:36 PM

The pope is ill and has canceled a good chunk of this summer’s schedule. He has but one lung, for just one item.

He also has a socialist brain, for another.

Schadenfreude on June 21, 2014 at 2:37 PM

What will the choomed slave of HA do now?

On the one hand he loves the pope, for his socialism/marxism, on the other, the same pope is against choom.

Schadenfreude on June 21, 2014 at 2:40 PM

Should have excommunicated Nancy Pelosi…

sandee on June 21, 2014 at 2:41 PM

Doesn’t the guy drink wine?

DarkCurrent on June 21, 2014 at 2:48 PM

I love this guy!

Who gives a crap what that Socialist thinks about anything?

Wouldn’t it be great if the world could copy the governing and economic policy of . . . Argentina.

Skipity on June 21, 2014 at 2:35 PM

If you’d read what he says, not what the Lefties want you to think he said, you’d know he’s not a…

Why bother?

It’s like talking to a Lefty.

formwiz on June 21, 2014 at 2:51 PM

Hard to effectively argue with someone who takes on the mafia and counsels against encouraging drug abuse: but no doubt many will.

KW64 on June 21, 2014 at 2:51 PM

Papa’s right about legalizing marijuana you know …

Mike OMalley on June 21, 2014 at 2:53 PM

predicting that such efforts would fail in the promises of lower crime and better responsibility of use.

Already proven wrong.

But, this Pope is wrong about a lot of things.

Moesart on June 21, 2014 at 2:57 PM

Anything that significantly interferes with human reason would tend to separate us from God, at least in principle

Am I the only one who caught the irony in this statement?

I would argue the belief in talking serpents and virgin births “significantly interferes with human reason”. No matter how high I’ve ever gotten, I’ve never been so high to believe that as truth.

mazer9 on June 21, 2014 at 2:57 PM

So that’s it, the pope has pontificated!

But it’s important to distinguish between legalization and decriminalization of “recreational” drugs. For those that don’t want legalization, I think we should at minimum have decriminalization, where people can still be apprehended for drug use and there is no legal sales of drugs. Look at the videos or look at the results for the Google on Portugal which decriminalized ALL drugs in 2001, with consequent dramatic reductions in use, and especially in addiction, and in harm caused by drugs (overdoses, disease).

It’s worth noting, also, that the problem with drugs is addiction and the associated damages. Arguably, “recreational” use of even the supposed hardest drugs is often done with little or no damage. There is actually only a small percent of users that become the much talked about dope addict. Like alcohol, only a small percent of drinkers become problem drinkers. And yes, alcohol causes much more damage than any of the other drugs. Period. Why not treat recreational drug use as… that’s somebody’s choice. We can advise against it, but we can say that’s a matter of choice, not the govt’s dictate. And why not treat addiction as not a judicial and law enforcement matter but as a medical problem. And like in Portugal we can dramatically cut expenditures on the police state inducing drug war while at the same dramatically reducing drug use.

anotherJoe on June 21, 2014 at 2:59 PM

Now this:

Grammar teachers may need to amend their lesson plans after the Vancouver school board approved Monday a policy change that welcomes a brand-new string of pronouns into Vancouver public schools: “xe, xem, and xyr.”

The pronouns are touted as alternatives to he/she, him/her, and his/hers, and come as last-minute amendments to the board’s new policy aimed at better accommodating transgender students in schools.

http://www.vancouversun.com/life/Vancouver+school+board+approves+policy+addressing+transgender/9945194/story.html

davidk on June 21, 2014 at 3:03 PM

And, let’s not lump in hard drugs like needle dope with pot either.

No such thing as a recreational heroin user.

Moesart on June 21, 2014 at 3:04 PM

I don’t care what people who believe in imaginary beings think!

nonpartisan on June 21, 2014 at 3:04 PM

I would argue the belief in talking serpents and virgin births “significantly interferes with human reason”. No matter how high I’ve ever gotten, I’ve never been so high to believe that as truth.

mazer9 on June 21, 2014 at 2:57 PM

I assume you are referring to the Bible where one talking snake and one virgin birth are referenced?

And don’t forget the talking donkey.

You think these things are beyond the realm of possibilities?

You must be really smart to know all things.

davidk on June 21, 2014 at 3:09 PM

I don’t care what people who believe in imaginary beings think!

nonpartisan on June 21, 2014 at 3:04 PM

Yet here you are.

But I agree with you: I don’t much care what people who believe in imaginary beings think.

davidk on June 21, 2014 at 3:11 PM

I don’t care what people who believe in imaginary beings think!

nonpartisan on June 21, 2014 at 3:04 PM

Yet here you are.

But I agree with you: I don’t much care what people who believe in imaginary beings think.

davidk on June 21, 2014 at 3:11 PM

Yet here you are.

unclesmrgol on June 21, 2014 at 3:24 PM

Beyond personal experience, Pope Francis is on sound theological ground as well. Anything that significantly interferes with human reason would tend to separate us from God, at least in principle.

By that reasoning some might make the case that the Bible should be criminialized.

Perceptron on June 21, 2014 at 3:25 PM

Doesn’t the guy drink wine?

DarkCurrent on June 21, 2014 at 2:48 PM

The wine is always mixed with water, and has a liturgical meaning.

unclesmrgol on June 21, 2014 at 3:30 PM

By that reasoning some might make the case that the Bible should be criminialized.

Perceptron on June 21, 2014 at 3:25 PM

Why?

unclesmrgol on June 21, 2014 at 3:31 PM

nonpartisan on June 21, 2014 at 3:04 PM

You believe in Obama.

Cindy Munford on June 21, 2014 at 3:34 PM

unclesmrgol on June 21, 2014 at 3:24 PM

Wouldn’t that indicate that davidk doesn’t believe God is imaginary?

Cindy Munford on June 21, 2014 at 3:35 PM

You think these things are beyond the realm of possibilities?

Of course not. Talking serpents and virgins giving birth seem highly likely as long as faith is the basis for the belief. With faith any ridiculous claim seems feasible.

mazer9 on June 21, 2014 at 3:36 PM

Wouldn’t that indicate that davidk doesn’t believe God is imaginary?

Cindy Munford on June 21, 2014 at 3:35 PM

Ah, understood.

unclesmrgol on June 21, 2014 at 3:38 PM

That would focus on rehabilitation rather than imprisonment for users

So it’d be the Betty Ford clinic, except as a matter of public policy. Rather than engage in punitive action, we’d be there to hold hands and have them tell us how much they suffered as a child.

The appropriate policy is prohibition.

Stoic Patriot on June 21, 2014 at 3:46 PM

I don’t care what people who believe in imaginary beings think!

nonpartisan on June 21, 2014 at 3:04 PM

Same here – I don’t believe a single word of what obama says/thinks.

Schadenfreude on June 21, 2014 at 3:49 PM

In other news, Old Man With Large Hat Is Still Old Man (With Large Hat)

Jedditelol on June 21, 2014 at 3:50 PM

Jedditelol on June 21, 2014 at 3:50 PM

Except for that vast knowledge and experience that you don’t have?

Cindy Munford on June 21, 2014 at 3:52 PM

Slightly OT, but it’s worth recalling that the Mafia was inspired by Muslims when Muslims controlled Sicily from rom 827 to 902 AD. It’s extortion practices were modeled after the Islamic directive to force non-Muslims to pay protection money (jizya) or be killed. Has this Pope ever addressed this component of Islam? Has Ed?

WhatSlushfund on June 21, 2014 at 3:58 PM

Except for that vast knowledge and experience that you don’t have?

Cindy Munford on June 21, 2014 at 3:52 PM

When it comes to marijuana, how do you know?

(You don’t)

Jedditelol on June 21, 2014 at 3:59 PM

Jedditelol on June 21, 2014 at 3:59 PM

I don’t think you have to have indulged to see history and impact on society.

Cindy Munford on June 21, 2014 at 4:02 PM

nonpartisan on June 21, 2014 at 3:04 PM

“It’s a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living GOD”.

Feel free to think what you will … you’ve been warned.

ORrighty on June 21, 2014 at 4:29 PM

Geez, has anyone noticed how the Pope looks somewhat like that repulsive IRS Commisioner Koskinen? Anyway, I made this statement earlier:

Like in Portugal we can dramatically cut expenditures on the police state inducing drug war while at the same dramatically reducing drug use.

Now that’s the crazy glaring truth.

If the Portugal evidence is true, it is 100% illogical and irrational to continue the brutal drug war. It’s insane. Now, some have tried to muddy the waters by providing a bogus link saying that the Portugal evidence isn’t real. Again, google it yourself: “Portugal drug decriminalization”, and do that search in youtube as well, and here’s a good summary of the dramatic reductions in drug use that resulted from Portugal decriminalizing ALL drugs: http://www.businessinsider.com/portugal-drug-policy-decriminalization-works-2012-7

We’ve heard people say “drugs are bad, but the cure (a police state) is worse than the disease.” Yet the drug war, based on the Portugal evidence, isn’t even a cure, it makes things worse, it compounds the drug use problem.

Let’s use acne as an analogy in this conversation:
Younger conservative: You shouldn’t pick at acne because it only makes things worse [translate: you shouldn't wage the drug war because it just increases drug use!].
Authoritarian Old Guard Republican: No, acne is bad! You need to pick at it to get rid of it!
Younger conservative: No, picking at the acne doesn’t actually get rid of it, it just makes it worse.
Authoritarian Old Guard Republican: You are a lazy immoral acne lover. I said that acne is bad, we need to pick at it. Do you believe acne is good? Nutcase!

anotherJoe on June 21, 2014 at 4:41 PM

I don’t care what people who believe in imaginary beings think!

nonpartisan on June 21, 2014 at 3:04 PM

But he believes the viability of Socialism.

Talking serpents and virgins giving birth seem highly likely as long as faith is the basis for the belief. With faith any ridiculous claim seems feasible.

mazer9 on June 21, 2014 at 3:36 PM

What was it Choomie’s masthead said in ’08?

Oh, yeah, “I’m asking you to believe”.

PS Virgins have been known to give birth.

And serpents talk to women all the time.

“Of course, I’ll respect you”

“I’ll pull out in time”

formwiz on June 21, 2014 at 4:43 PM

I officially excommunicate the pope.

Diluculo on June 21, 2014 at 4:47 PM

I must remember that the Pope’s pronouncements, save Ex Cathedra, are not binding dogma even on Catholics, and I’m not one.

After all, a previous Pope vigorously denounced the Peace of WestPhalia which ended the thirty years war.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peace_of_Westphalia#Results

Apparently Catholics chose to ignore his pronouncements, and Europe has had peace from that particular brand of religious war for hundreds of years.

I think this is a similar situation. Like it or not, the war on drugs is a cure worse than the disease , and if it is a sin to separate yourself from God by damaging your mind it is not a sin the government has any business punishing.

You’d think we’d have learned that lesson from Prohibition. Evidently not.

Respectfully,

Brian P.

pendell2 on June 21, 2014 at 4:52 PM

Slightly OT, but it’s worth recalling that the Mafia was inspired by Muslims when Muslims controlled Sicily from rom 827 to 902 AD. It’s extortion practices were modeled after the Islamic directive to force non-Muslims to pay protection money (jizya) or be killed. Has this Pope ever addressed this component of Islam? Has Ed?

WhatSlushfund on June 21, 2014 at 3:58 PM

I’m sure it would be very new to both. It wouldn’t be right to go poking into Muslim history without respect and a Muslim guide.

BL@KBIRD on June 21, 2014 at 5:06 PM

Beyond personal experience, Pope Francis is on sound theological ground as well. Anything that significantly interferes with human reason would tend to separate us from God, at least in principle.

Communion wine maintains its full alcohol content and ability to interfere with human reason.

the Church warns against “every kind of excess: the abuse of food, alcohol, tobacco, or medicine.”

You can try and lump it in with food, etc., but this is where the logic falls apart. If alcohol is only dangerous if done in “excess” (undefined), cannot the same be said of pot? Conversely, if alcohol interferes with human reason, should it be illegal?

Again… trying to have it both ways.

mankai on June 21, 2014 at 5:15 PM

I don’t care what people who believe in imaginary beings think!

nonpartisan on June 21, 2014 at 3:04 PM

We don’t believe in you.

JugEarsButtHurt on June 21, 2014 at 5:15 PM

predicting that such efforts would fail in the promises of lower crime and better responsibility of use.

Already proven wrong.

But, this Pope is wrong about a lot of things.

Moesart on June 21, 2014 at 2:57 PM

Drug related crime has not been reduced as predicted in those states where marijuana use has been legalized. Illegal marijuana sales have not stopped as predicted. Eased accesses has increased marijuana use among school children. We were assured this would not be the case. Legalization has undermined anti-drug programs directed at school children. Illicit interstate shipment of marijuana has increase 4x the prelegalization rates from states were pot has been legalized. We were assured this would not happen. One can go on however, so far marijuana tax revenues fall short of predictions and just wait to the astronomical rehab and social welfare costs are passed on to the taxpayer.

No few small government conservatives got sucker in by George Soros one this campaign too!.

Mike OMalley on June 21, 2014 at 5:35 PM

Communion wine maintains its full alcohol content and ability to interfere with human reason.

mankai on June 21, 2014 at 5:15 PM

That’s right. Ministers and priests distribute 45 proof communication wine by the flask. Sometimes they’ll will dress those flask up in brown paper bags for a high mass! Nothing communicates solemnity like a brown paper bag.

Mike OMalley on June 21, 2014 at 5:42 PM

The wine is always mixed with water, and has a liturgical meaning.
unclesmrgol on June 21, 2014 at 3:30 PM

Then how does one get drunk? Any alcoholic drink has water content. I wish Christians would stop hedging and fudging “wine” as juice or wine flavored water. Wine is wine. Jesus drank it, the bible never forbade it and only condemns the insobriety of drinking to excess – “given to wine”.

As leader of the church it’s not the pope’s place to proscribe legality of things but certainly can proscribe the legality if sin in action. No more, no less than what Jesus or the Apostles preached. Leave the law making to government.

AH_C on June 21, 2014 at 5:44 PM

Again… trying to have it both ways.

mankai on June 21, 2014 at 5:15 PM

There is only ONE way, whether or not you are a believer, and that way is the way of FREE WILL. If you are a believer, God gave man free will. If you are not a believer, man was born with and has a right by birth to free will, and anyone that violates that free will deserves damnation, death, or both.

The pope could care less about free will, being a socialist and all, so I don’t give a fig about the pope.

Diluculo on June 21, 2014 at 5:47 PM

So sad – just when the Lefties thought there was a cool Pope – there he goes tsk, tsking people.

katiejane on June 21, 2014 at 6:08 PM

Chris Christie offered that third way…

Christie’s proposals are lame. “Tougher penalities for traffickers.” How is that ending the war on drugs as Christie says he wants to do? It’s fighting the war on sellers that is the main and most brutal part of the war on drugs. Tougher penalties haven’t worked in the past, and you can go all the way to the death penalty, and it still isn’t going to work, as there are countless others waiting and willing to risk illegality to enter the lucrative drug trade and replace any imprisoned dealers.

——– ———— ————- ——— ——

Speaking of Christie, I heard he just endorsed the super rino Tennesse Senator Lamar Alexander (primary: August 7th). That figures. They both are pro-amnesty (for Rubio’s bill), and both of them agree fully with the leftists on climate climate and the expensive idiotic “clean energy” and the war on coal. We need to help Joe Carr defeat Lamar Alexander.

Carr said that “without a meaningful change in leadership, Obamacare will continue to impose on all of us, the Obama-Alexander climate change regulations will drive businesses away, and amnesty will become law.”

Hear Laura Ingraham’s radio discussion with Joe Carr.

http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2014/06/15/Joe-Carr-Lamar-Alexander-Allowing-Illegal-Immigrants-to-Assault-U-S-Sovereignty

anotherJoe on June 21, 2014 at 6:35 PM

Pelosi and Kerry need to be Excommunicated.

ConstantineXI on June 21, 2014 at 6:50 PM

I stand with the Pope.

weedisgood on May 7, 2014 at 8:44 PM

Good for you.

slickwillie2001 on June 21, 2014 at 7:29 PM

He excommunicated the mafia, does that mean the Catholic church has finally caught up to the baby killing democrats.

crosshugger on June 21, 2014 at 9:11 PM

Mike OMalley on June 21, 2014 at 5:42 PM

I see you understand logic about as well as the pope.

The point is that alcohol has the effect of interfering with human reason. Therefore, if that is the theological reasoning for opposing the use of marihuana, it must also be the theological reason for opposing the use of alcohol. If it is the reason for calling for the criminalization of one, then he must call for criminalization of both.

I was an altar boy and acolyte. I saw my share of priests who had their human reason interfered with by alcohol… sometimes in my home.

mankai on June 21, 2014 at 10:16 PM

Prohibition Pope

Religion messes with your reasoning too.

lexhamfox on June 21, 2014 at 10:30 PM

Wow.. So the Catholic Church actually decided to excommunicate people who deserve to be excommunicated rather than fixating on Jane Catholic, who divorced her abusive husband and remarried. And not only does the Mafia present themselves as good Catholics in Italy, many also consider themselves good Catholics. The crime family in the area that Francis visited today is very superstitious and has lots of rituals for initiation modeled on Catholic folk religion. The Italian police have had trouble infiltrating this crime family more than the Sicilian Mafia because of that. The Catholic Church may actually be able to help the police here by formally excommunicating known Mafia heads, something that they haven’t done. This sentence is generally passed by the local bishops and I could see Galatino, who is Francis’ hand selected Secretary General of the CEI, or the other social justice types from southern Italy beginning to formally excommunicate Mafia dons. As I mentioned above, this hasn’t been done before, which really shows the hypocrisy of the Church; generally the Church is more concerned about excommunicating “real sinners” like remarried divorcees and groups supporting womenpriests.

And yes, Francis wasn’t in the cheap seats and he had bodyguards with him. However, the preferred open air jeep (good for baby kissing) was used and there is video of Francis randomly stopping his motorcade and popping out to greet a severely disabled child so he is basically taunting the Mafia on this one. The Mafia’s superstitions and belief that they are good Catholics are likely preventing them from putting a hit on him; it is one thing to bump off a few priests, but a completely different thing to bump off Papa. One wonders how long that will last; of course, Pope Francis is an elderly man who pointed out he has absolutely nothing to lose in this scenario.

Illinidiva on June 21, 2014 at 11:15 PM

The wine is always mixed with water, and has a liturgical meaning.
unclesmrgol on June 21, 2014 at 3:30 PM

Then how does one get drunk? Any alcoholic drink has water content. I wish Christians would stop hedging and fudging “wine” as juice or wine flavored water. Wine is wine. Jesus drank it, the bible never forbade it and only condemns the insobriety of drinking to excess – “given to wine”.

As leader of the church it’s not the pope’s place to proscribe legality of things but certainly can proscribe the legality if sin in action. No more, no less than what Jesus or the Apostles preached. Leave the law making to government.

AH_C on June 21, 2014 at 5:44 PM

The wine is always mixed with water and is distributed to Catholic communicants in very small amounts. Amounts so small one wonders why some here need to make a straw-man of the Eucharist? It would also be helpful for the unchurched readers to be clearly informed that substituting grape juice for wine is an exclusively denominational Protestant practice.

Communion wine has ancient liturgical meaning. It also has profound anthropological meaning reflecting an understanding of human nature that in my experience few if any Libertarians attain.

Religion messes with your reasoning too.

lexhamfox on June 21, 2014 at 10:30 PM

Post-Modernism messes with one’s reasoning. Aquinas fully integrated reasoning into Catholic Faith the better part of a millennium ago.

Mike OMalley on June 22, 2014 at 8:11 AM

I think we should at minimum have decriminalization, where people can still be apprehended for drug use…

Um… am I missing something here? How do you decriminalize something but still apprehend people for using it? To me, decriminalization means you can still fine someone for an illegal substance or what have you, but not throw them in jail.

TMOverbeck on June 22, 2014 at 11:15 AM

Enjoy your wine your popeness.

iwasbornwithit on June 22, 2014 at 12:42 PM

Oh I mean your human flesh and blood…because that sounds like reason.

iwasbornwithit on June 22, 2014 at 1:00 PM

Enjoy your wine your popeness.

iwasbornwithit on June 22, 2014 at 12:42 PM

Oh I mean your human flesh and blood…because that sounds like reason.

iwasbornwithit on June 22, 2014 at 1:00 PM

His Holiness Pope Francis questions the wisdom of legalizing marijuana and the potheads ramp up the rhetoric of anti-Catholic bigotry.

The Dalai Lama … does not support recreational marijuana use. According to Tibetan Buddhist doctrine, the Dalai Lama is ‘the rebirth in a line of tulkus who are considered to be manifestations of the bodhisattva of compassion, Avalokiteśvara.’

The Tibetan spiritual leader, speaking at an event hosted by former Mexican president Vicente Fox, said that “the exception” for smoking marijuana would be if it has pharmaceutical virtues.

“But otherwise if it’s just an issue of somebody (using the drug to have) a crazy mind, that’s not good,” he said after being asked his position on legalization at the outdoor event at the ex-president’s Fox Center in the central state of Guanajuato. – According to France 24.

http://www.theweedblog.com/the-dalai-lama-supports-medical-marijuana-but-not-legalization/

Odd isn’t it how potheads do not similarly mock and vilify his Holiness the Dalai Lama for opposing legalization of marijuana?

Mike OMalley on June 22, 2014 at 1:17 PM

The anti-drug message rolled over me but the excommunication of a “type of person” struck me as odd. Aren’t you supposed to name the excommunicated individual? Without that, I am not sure it means anything.

virgo on June 22, 2014 at 1:21 PM

Odd isn’t it how potheads do not similarly mock and vilify his Holiness the Dalai Lama for opposing legalization of marijuana?

Mike OMalley on June 22, 2014 at 1:17 PM

That may be because you live in the West where the Dalai Lama has much less influence than the Pope. Perhaps also because potheads tend to be high.

DarkCurrent on June 22, 2014 at 3:05 PM

Enjoy your wine your popeness.
iwasbornwithit on June 22, 2014 at 12:42 PM
Oh I mean your human flesh and blood…because that sounds like reason.
iwasbornwithit on June 22, 2014 at 1:00 PM
His Holiness Pope Francis questions the wisdom of legalizing marijuana and the potheads ramp up the rhetoric of anti-Catholic bigotry.
The Dalai Lama … does not support recreational marijuana use. According to Tibetan Buddhist doctrine, the Dalai Lama is ‘the rebirth in a line of tulkus who are considered to be manifestations of the bodhisattva of compassion, Avalokiteśvara.’
The Tibetan spiritual leader, speaking at an event hosted by former Mexican president Vicente Fox, said that “the exception” for smoking marijuana would be if it has pharmaceutical virtues.
“But otherwise if it’s just an issue of somebody (using the drug to have) a crazy mind, that’s not good,” he said after being asked his position on legalization at the outdoor event at the ex-president’s Fox Center in the central state of Guanajuato. – According to France 24.
http://www.theweedblog.com/the-dalai-lama-supports-medical-marijuana-but-not-legalization/
Odd isn’t it how potheads do not similarly mock and vilify his Holiness the Dalai Lama for opposing legalization of marijuana?

I am not a “pothead” nor do I drink alcohol and I am certainly not anti-Catholic. I couldn’t care less about what the Dalai Lama thinks either. Pot is far less dangerous than alcohol by any metric and is actually addictive. If the pope wants to address recreational drug use, perhaps he should look a little closer to home before he “pontificates”.

iwasbornwithit on June 22, 2014 at 3:12 PM

Odd isn’t it how potheads do not similarly mock and vilify his Holiness the Dalai Lama for opposing legalization of marijuana?

Mike OMalley on June 22, 2014 at 1:17 PM

You mean the bald robe-wearing guy?

mazer9 on June 22, 2014 at 5:46 PM

Pot is far less dangerous than alcohol by any metric and is actually addictive. If the pope wants to address recreational drug use, perhaps he should look a little closer to home before he “pontificates”.

iwasbornwithit on June 22, 2014 at 3:12 PM

I was taken by this statement and amazed since I can find no such medical support. Pot is just as bad for you as alcohol, with some really interesting mental health considerations that we probably don’t know real well. Alcohol if abused, certainly can do damage to your liver, and if you remain drunk frequently we all realize the issues. But those issues are no less prevelant with pot. You can unsafely operate a motor vehicle just like alcohol, you can have violent reactions just like alcohol, there can be lung issues if you are a heavy user.

One huge difference, recreational pot users will be unemployed more often because employers who screen for it will find them easier than alcoholics because it stays in your system longer.

They call it dope for a reason. Alcohol in moderate use – assuming you do not have addiction issues – actually is somewhat healthy for you – as moderate drinkers tend to have lower mortality rates than teetotalers. Pot has some pain killing qualities and some help for chemo patients – though more often given in tablet form.

Zomcon JEM on June 23, 2014 at 10:10 AM

Pot is far less dangerous than alcohol by any metric and is actually addictive. …

iwasbornwithit on June 22, 2014 at 3:12 PM

I was taken by this statement and amazed since I can find no such medical support…

Zomcon JEM on June 23, 2014 at 10:10 AM

Good Call Zomcom JEM, because I’ve seen peer reviewed studies indicating the iwasbornwithit has inverted reality. Pot is more dangerous than alcohol by any metric and is a dangerous gateway to more addictive and destructive drugs. Alcohol is naturally metabolized out of the human body at a steady rate so that moderate drinking does little damage. Not so with marijuana, which does not metabolize. Instead it steadily accumulates in human brain cells. Heck in pre-modern time wine and beer were health foods because they were often safer to drink than water, which was often contaminated. Marijuana has numerous dangerous side-effects and is several times more carcinogenic than tobacco. I have it from researchers at the FDA that marijuana could never get through the FDA’s drug approval processes because its side-effects are so dangerous. So medical marijuana is naught but a disingenuous public relations device to promote a general legalization.

BTW,Zomcom JEM the abusive mockery of Pope Francis is of a device used by potheads to disqualify and dismiss informed arguments against their drug abuse. One would do well notice how similarly advocates of legalized drugs and Alinskyan’s such as Pres. Obama abusively treat those with whom they disagree.

Mike OMalley on June 25, 2014 at 2:51 PM