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Pope Francis Condemns Legalization of Marijuana



By NICOLE WINFIELD

VATICAN CITY (AP) -- Pope Francis condemned the legalization of recreational drugs as a flawed and failed experiment as he lent his voice Friday to a debate that is raging from the United States to Uruguay.

Francis told delegates attending a Rome drug enforcement conference that even limited steps to legalize recreational drugs "are not only highly questionable from a legislative standpoint, but they fail to produce the desired effects."

Likewise, Francis said, providing addicts with drugs offered only "a veiled means of surrendering to the phenomenon."

"Let me state this in the clearest terms possible," he said. "The problem of drug use is not solved with drugs!"

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.

But Francis emphasized Friday that the problems underlying drug use must be addressed, including social inequality and lack of opportunities for the young.

To reject illegal drugs, he said, "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."

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shelbyaf June 20 2014 at 9:04 AM

isn't alcohol a recreational drug?? They drink it at every mass.

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35 replies
britishsteel June 20 2014 at 8:51 AM

So is pedophillia Francis, you do nothing about that though do you ? Nothing medicinal about pedophellia its strictly recreational.

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24 replies
esaustew June 20 2014 at 8:50 AM

So if God put marijuana on the planet and saw that it was good (all plants bearing seed), but the Pope overrides His decision, is the Pope playing God, or did God simply lack the insight of the Pope?

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27 replies
doronone June 20 2014 at 9:05 AM

This from a bunch of drunks who love children. Also don't believe in birth control so they can have another generation of children to play with.

Flag Reply +90 rate up
11 replies
deadllbolt June 20 2014 at 8:54 AM

Yes, but according to you homosexuality is an evil too. But molesting altar boys is okay. So there goes that argument.

Flag Reply +72 rate up
5 replies
randmhunley June 20 2014 at 9:05 AM

so i guess
touching kids is ok as long as your not smokin a joint while you do it
people in iraq are dying because of someone's god
and forcing god down peoples throat will not help anyone
keep your beliefs and your god to yourself
just because you may think your right
dont make it so
ALL I SEE IS
the catholic church preaches hate for everything and anything they cant control

Flag Reply +63 rate up
10 replies
Cassy June 20 2014 at 9:04 AM

Oh No! Don't smoke weed!! It's ok though to molest little boys and girls....

Flag Reply +61 rate up
5 replies
JTTW June 20 2014 at 9:29 AM

CHEERS ! Lets all get drunk on drinking wine... then drive!!!!!!!!,
Pope with respect I say . You bleed the same as I . Man made churches... Having gone to catholic schools,, I find the church to full of hipocrisy.

Flag Reply +55 rate up
7 replies
to my world June 20 2014 at 9:03 AM

stick to religion pope. when you can control your priests who have raped countless young men then you can condem . heck I bet lots a boys went on to use haed drugs after being molested by your minions. shame on you.

Flag Reply +46 rate up
4 replies
pllove49 June 20 2014 at 9:06 AM

But never a word about wine /alcohol and addiction and evil etc etc? That darn pot can be grown in a pot like an herb...just imagine if grown at home like a natural herb and untreated and respected like home brew or wine...it'd stop the major selling and dealing and killing...

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2 replies
lregan066 pllove49 June 20 2014 at 9:23 AM

I like the comment by a Colorado marijuana buyer. He said that he is glad that the money that he spent on marijuana is going to be taxed for school construction in Denver, rather than for a new jet for a Mexican cocaine smuggler.

Flag Reply +57 rate up
5 replies
Bob pllove49 June 20 2014 at 12:51 PM

To be fair, he did say "alcohol abuse". So why is alcohol legal? It is a drug. Pot can have medicinal uses, but I can't think of one medicinal use for drinking alcohol.

Flag Reply +13 rate up
6 replies
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