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“God put it on this planet for a reason”

Tuesday, Feb 5, 2019

* Background is here if you need it. From Illinois Public Radio

As Illinois explores the possibility of legalizing cannabis for recreational use, the state’s six Catholic bishops say they’re urging lawmakers to say “no.” […]

Advocates for legalization argue, hundreds of thousands of people already use cannabis and a state-run program will make the products safer and shrink the black market. They also propose using some of the tax dollars for education campaigns to let the public, and especially youth, aware of the potential dangers of the drug.

But [Bob Gilligan, the executive director of the Catholic Conference of Illinois] asked, if this is the case, then why legalize?

“If the legislature has to use revenue to support programs to urge people not to use marijuana, or if they use it, how to get off it, it begs the question as to why are we doing this at all.”

So, he doesn’t want to fund programs to help people avoid drug abuse? I don’t get it.

* Pritzker response

Pritzker’s press secretary, Jordan Abudayyeh, said in an email statement that the governor remains committed to legalization.

“Governor Pritzker supports legalizing and taxing the recreational use of marijuana and is confident we are ready to do this in a safe and economically beneficial way in Illinois,” Abudayyeh said. “He is committed to working with leaders in the General Assembly, listening to experts and community leaders, and drawing lessons and best practices from other states to move this forward.”

* By far the best comeback is in Robert McCoppin’s Tribune story

Robert Gilligan, executive director of the Catholic Conference, noted that cannabis impairs memory, coordination and judgment, and that the state will be profiting off an addictive substance.

The bishops only occasionally take stands on public issues, such as against abortion and the death penalty. In this case, Gilligan will be speaking out against legalization at upcoming public hearings in Springfield. […]

Dan Linn, executive director of the Illinois chapter of the pro-cannabis group NORML, and general manager of Maribis medical marijuana dispensaries in Chicago and Springfield, said marijuana has proved safer than alcohol, and that prohibition simply doesn’t work. By overseeing legal marijuana sales, he said, the state will have a much greater ability to regulate it.

“Cannabis is a natural substance,” he said. “God put it on this planet for a reason. I don’t know why the bishops are concerned about undermining God’s credibility.”

Good point.

* Related…

* Lawmakers address hot topics at town hall: “I’m going to vote no on recreational marijuana and it doesn’t matter what the legislation looks like,” Bryant said.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

74 Comments »
  1. - Steve Rogers - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:27 am:

    What island does Gilligan live on?


  2. - Twirling Towards Freedom - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:27 am:

    I’m not opposed to legalization, but I hate “it’s natural” or “God put it on this planet for a reason” arguments. God put many natural poisons on this planet. That doesn’t make them any less dangerous.


  3. - Perrid - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:30 am:

    “So, he doesn’t want to fund programs to help people avoid drug abuse? I don’t get it.”

    His argument is we are enabling (creating or adding to) the problem we are trying to solve. He’s also not completely wrong, it’s just that making it illegal has also not solved the problem. Also I imagine the money is going to more than just pot treatment, which is what he seems to think.


  4. - Perrid - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:31 am:

    Also, hemlock and nightshade are natural too. I wouldn’t recommend ingesting or smoking them though.


  5. - Pundent - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:32 am:

    To embrace Bob Gilligan’s conclusions would also mean that the sale and consumption of alcohol should not be legal. Of course that would make it a lot more difficult to get through Sunday mass.


  6. - A guy - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:33 am:

    It doesn’t strike me that the Bishops are treating this like the Alamo. They’re making a statement. Their guy will testify. It’s not coming across as scorched Earth to me; but getting on the record on a social issue. Bob G. is taking direction from his leadership.

    It doesn’t strike me as “hoops on fire” or a hurdle too high at this juncture.


  7. - Saluki - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:34 am:

    Cute response from Mr. Linn. Too bad it isn’t a valid or rational response. God put Water Hemlock on the planet for a reason, perhaps we can legalize it for use as a garnish.


  8. - Anon - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:42 am:

    “If the legislature has to use revenue to support programs to urge people not to use alcohol, or if they use it, how to get off it, it begs the question as to why are we doing this at all.”

    I propose we crack down on minors drinking wine in church. In fact, we should start the process of banning alcohol from churches to protect people from the dangers of alcohol.


  9. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:42 am:

    ===Water Hemlock===

    Are they putting people in jail for possessing it? No? OK.


  10. - Ok - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:42 am:

    Prohibition never really bothered the Catholic Church, they still got their wine.


  11. - Bobby T - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:44 am:

    How is cannabis a “natural poison”?

    Fake news.

    I bet Jesus would smoke it if he knew he wouldn’t get cuffed, sentenced, and thrown in the pokey.


  12. - Ok - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:45 am:

    That’s a joke, of course, because the Catholic Church opposed prohibition nearly universally.

    It was Cardinal O’Connell who wrote:
    “Compulsory prohibition, in general is flatly opposed to Holy Scripture and Catholic Tradition.”


  13. - Moby - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:47 am:

    Until someone makes the case that cannabis is more destructive to society than alcohol, they should be treated the same IMO. So, either make them both legal or illegal. Pick one.


  14. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:51 am:

    ===They’re making a statement. Their guy will testify.===

    I think Bob Gilligan is a thinly veiled Conservative political operative. I think he persuaded the Bishops to take this unfortunate political stance. I think the Bishops are being used to advance a political agenda that they might otherwise not wish to be involved with. I think the Bishops should listen to other voices from time to time. Gilligan has his own agenda and I don’t think it is shared by all or even most of the Bishops.


  15. - low level - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:52 am:

    Mr Gilligan:

    In Scripture, we are told we “should sell everything and follow Him”.

    A tall order, to be sure.

    Any reading of Scripture shows Him advocating for the poor and those oppressed.

    Maybe more public stands on those issues? (Minimum wage, workers rights, funding for social service agencies, etc)

    Maybe its just me but Id think that might be a better use of your time. Sometimes I honestly dont know what Bible you are reading…


  16. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:57 am:

    Yesterday’s bishops’ letter linking opioid deaths to legal marijuana was absurd. People get hooked on opioids when they fill their doc’s prescription for Oxy, not from marijuana, legal or otherwise.

    Gilligan’s “reasoning” today on the “dangers” of legal marijuana requires that the Catholic Conference endorse prohibitions on truly potentially deadly legal substances such as alcohol and tobacco. Follows like night and day.

    Given the obvious illogic of the conference’s statements on legal marijuana to date, I’m beginning to think that this is a bit, a way to change the subject from from other issues that they’re been dealing with recently in the news.


  17. - Merica - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:59 am:

    I’ve read the Bible, the New Testament, four times. Here is the Executive Summary: “greed and money are evil.”

    You don’t hear these Catholic “leaders” talking about the dangers of greed, or how slave labor is used to make the sneakers we wear, or how corporations are taking advantage of the individual and destroying unions, or how corporations are destroying the environment.

    But they’ll take a position on pot, but not alcohol, and not pharmaceutical opioids. This type of hypocrisy is why people are fleeing the church. There is no moral leadership.


  18. - Arsenal - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 9:59 am:

    ==It doesn’t strike me that the Bishops are treating this like the Alamo.==

    I think that’s fair, and that people are disproportionately dunking on them because…well, they’re easy to dunk on.

    (We really need a similar hockey metaphor, given that we’re dealing with Paprocki.)


  19. - Jocko - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:02 am:

    It sounds like the bishops are glossing over the bachelor party that preceded the ‘Marriage at Cana’. /s


  20. - Pundent - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:02 am:

    = Too bad it isn’t a valid or rational response.=

    The same could be said about the Bishop’s resistance which is probably the reason why Linn responded in kind.


  21. - SOIL M - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:03 am:

    In 20 or so years pot shops will be like liquor stores. Illinois can either be ahead of the curve with surrounding states, or behind it again. For once let’s be out in front and get this legalised and start to see the benefits as soon as possible.

    To Rep. Bryant and Windhorst, please recognise the economic development that will be seen in your districts if Illinois is ahead of surrounding states in having this available.


  22. - Johnnie F. - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:05 am:

    God gave me free will to pick my own poison. In the end he’ll be my judge. Alcohol, cigarettes, and pot all need to be regulated in the same manner. From my personal experiences, I would have gladly traded my alcoholic parent for a potoholic version.


  23. - JP Altgeld - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:07 am:

    “God put it on this planet for a reason.”

    That’s also true of Anthony Peraica, I suppose. Not world’s most compelling argument.


  24. - A guy - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:08 am:

    47, I don’t think he’s “thinly veiled” at all. By nature the church has some very conservative (and in some cases very liberal) underpinnings. As a member of the Catholic flock, I do hear people discussing this issue. The response is all over the spectrum, as it is with a lot of social issues. In some cases the flock is looking for some guidance, but most have a position of their own. And it varies. Med Mar is widely accepted as much as I can tell…it prolongs life and helps with suffering; very consistent with the teaching.

    Alcohol, in moderation, has always been fine there, well beyond the symbolism of the wine at mass. Heck, we invented fundraising with booze and bingo.

    On Rec Mar, they’re going to be conservative, probably behind the flock a little. They’ll catch up. I’m on the record on this one. I’m in favor, but I don’t think it’s without some peril; most free-will issues are.

    While for this (revenue being the least important factor for me), I’m happy to listen to the thoughtful discussion and debate about it. I think it’s inevitable, but it doesn’t need to be careless or reckless. Let’s hear it all and be better prepared.

    I don’t think the Bishops are anywhere close to “all in” on this one. They have a position. They state it, they defend it, they live with the legislation that comes out of it. On the “morality” scale, this one is small potatoes.


  25. - Cubs in '16 - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:08 am:

    ===(We really need a similar hockey metaphor, given that we’re dealing with Paprocki.)===

    We’re cross-checking them into the boards?


  26. - Century Club - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:09 am:

    == “God put it on this planet for a reason. I don’t know why the bishops are concerned about undermining God’s credibility.”==

    God put lima beans and Cicadas on this planet, too, so let’s not pretend they’re all winners.


  27. - Cubs in '16 - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:15 am:

    God didn’t intend for all plants to be ingested. It’s up to us to figure out the practical application of each individually. Comparing cannabis to hemlock and nightshade is apples to oranges.


  28. - TheInvisibleMan - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:15 am:

    The problem here is not that they have an opinion. The problem here is that they are using their position to directly recommend actions to the state legislature.

    The catholic church, like it or not, is a Theocracy. It has no business interacting with a democratically elected legislative body.

    Make whatever rules in your church you see fit. That’s where your actions need to end.


  29. - Vote Quimby - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:17 am:

    Rep. Terry Bryant (R-Murphysboro) issued a follow-up: “I have taken a hard stance against pot. It doesn’t matter that opiods and meth have devastated my district and surrounding areas. I don’t see how pot will help us keep our guns to protect us from meth and opiod dealers.” /s


  30. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:19 am:

    I can attest to and confirm what the bishop said, as the Grandson of Man.

    It’s not moral to keep prohibition after it failed so badly and harmed so many, particularly minorities.


  31. - A guy - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:21 am:

    ==It has no business interacting with a democratically elected legislative body.==

    A body made up of and legislating for many if not most of the population (All religions, not just mine)

    You might want to look up that definition of democracy again. No church should dictate, but interacting is required.


  32. - Earnest - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:22 am:

    >The bishops only occasionally take stands on public issues, such as against abortion and the death penalty.

    Now cannabis legalization and somewhat recently the rights of gay couples to adopt. Take away the religious connotations of their organization and it would be difficult to differentiate them from other conservative Republicans.


  33. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:22 am:

    –Heck, we invented fundraising with booze and bingo.–

    Indeed. I’ve gone to boozy casino night funders at local Catholic churches. Not just bingo, but table games. The Old St. Pat’s block party funder is one of drunkiest street fests in Chicago every year.

    And all that reveals the utter illogic or hypocrisy of the conference’s position on legal marijuana.


  34. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:23 am:

    ==It has no business interacting with a democratically elected legislative body.==

    Anyone else out there you believe don’t have rights to voice opinions? The Catholic Church can voice whatever opinion they want. I think they are as wrong as wrong can be but that doesn’t mean I want them silenced.


  35. - Johnnie F. - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:24 am:

    What a different world it would be if Eve would have selected cannabis over that apple.


  36. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:28 am:

    I would hope Mr. Gilligan would be consistent and also speak out against the sale of alcohol at Knights of Columbus halls, parish picnics, and other venues and events associated with the Catholic Church. I won’t hold my breath.


  37. - TheInvisibleMan - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:29 am:

    Again, voicing their opinion is perfectly fine.

    Making legislative recommendations is crossing the line.


  38. - wondering - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:31 am:

    The Bishops feel that their opinions should influence law. Speaking of law, I wonder how they would respond to enshrinement of Sharia Law. After all, if they want to open that door others will be obliged to rush through it. Seems only fair.


  39. - Pundent - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:35 am:

    =I think they are as wrong as wrong can be but that doesn’t mean I want them silenced.=

    I’m fine with them having the same voice as the rest of us. I’d also like to see them pay taxes like the rest of us as well.


  40. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:40 am:

    ===They have a position. They state it, they defend it, they live with the legislation that comes out of it.===

    What is their position on minimum wage then? Lol.

    I/m also a Catholic. I don’t think my fellow parishioners are looking to the Church for guidance on recreational marijuana and I don’t believe using it is considered a sin by the Church.

    Gilligan helped create the coalition that opposed all abortions, civil marriage and other things that I think the Catholic Church has a well known position on. Unfortunately, he trades on the Church’s good name for things further afield, like this. And as a Catholic, while I understand when our Bishops stand with evangelicals and others to oppose abortion, I find it amusing and sad that the Bishops stand alone, without most evangelicals and so-called Pro-Lifers when the issue turns to poverty or immigration.

    Gilligan allows the Bishops to get played politically like suckers. This is simply another example of that.


  41. - A Jack - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:40 am:

    Hemlock has been used in medicines and to counter-act strychnine poisoning.

    Also perfectly legal is rye. Indeed you can buy rye bread in any store. Yet the ergot of rye fungus can be synthesized into LSD. Rye ergot poisoning is one of the theories behind the Salem witch hysteria. LSD is much more mind altering than Marijuana. However, the Bishops have failed to come out against rye bread.


  42. - Anon - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:50 am:

    Regardless of why God put cannabis on this earth, for the past ~81 years, out of millennia, the authorities have been allowed to use it as a lever to hunt and imprison people, ruin lives, break up families, and seize and sell property to further support their enterprise. All the while creating a lucrative black market. The results of prohibition are worse than the results of simply using cannabis and the majority of people see that now. Dragged-out unwinding of prohibition and Reefer Madness fear mongering has run its course. If you’re dragging your feet (paging Dick Durban) the majority may call you out on it.


  43. - Annonin' - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 10:52 am:

    Lot of Looney Tunes talking here
    First can we ask Gilligan and the bishops to defer comment until they bring in their Certificates of Completion from the “How to dial 9-1-1 seminar they had in Mundelein a few weeks ago.90.
    Next it sounds like Rep. Bryant working on her exit interview early by connecting legal pot with her need for guns.


  44. - Juvenal - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 11:01 am:

    I think everyone might be missing the point here.

    This is not about separation of state, alcohol v marijuana, or whether Brother Cadfael would have employed marijuana if he’d had it at his disposal. There is no 1st amendment violation here, there’s some religious basis for treating alcohol and marijuana differently and Cadfael surely would have prescribed marijuana if he could have gotten his hands on it.

    This is an effort by the Catholic Church to cut a deal on preserving their college scholarship tax credit program in exchange for muting their opposition to marijuana legalization. Or, perhaps more likely: a threat to ramp up their opposition to marijuana legalization if Pritzker does not drop his opposition to the scholarship program. Should be interesting to watch.


  45. - Perplexed - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 11:06 am:

    Good response from Dan Linn. These Bishops are all out of touch. They ought to be more concerned with pedophilia, the lack of vocations, abortion/infanticide, and poor mass attendance; if I were in Rome and saw this, I’d be calling them Home for a chat.


  46. - Some Anonymous Dude (S.A.D.) - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 11:07 am:

    Ask him if he’s familiar with Genesis 1:29.


  47. - Cheryl44 - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 11:30 am:

    I think we need to start taxing churches.


  48. - Spiritual Agnostic - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 11:52 am:

    Would you really want your neighborhood church supporting smoking pot? Common sense says you’d want your church to be a place you feel confident has a culture that directs your child away from drugs. Any other statement from the church other than this would be reckless.


  49. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 11:58 am:

    ===a culture that directs your child away from drugs===

    Oh please. The law directs your child away from drugs. If you’re counting on your church to protect your children from drugs, you don’t have a prayer.


  50. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 12:01 pm:

    ===Would you really want your neighborhood church supporting smoking pot?===

    I wouldn’t want my church supporting illegal, violent drug cartels.


  51. - Ali Nagib - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 12:04 pm:

    “Would you really want your neighborhood church supporting smoking pot?”

    For the sake of both of my little girls and children everywhere: Yes, I absolutely would. Our current policy is reckless. Supporting a change is sensible no matter who you are.


  52. - Huh? - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 12:06 pm:

    “God put it on this planet for a reason.”

    The atheist in me wants to say “prove it.”

    What a shallow argument.


  53. - A guy - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 12:13 pm:

    ==What is their position on minimum wage then? Lol.==

    Actually this one goes back to the Wonderful Pope John.

    Meeting with a Vatican gardener who looked very sad, Pope John asked why. The gardener explained that his wife was due with his 6th child and they were already very short on finances. He looked with joy on a new life, but had trepidation on how he’d manage to feed another mouth.

    Pope John asked the Manager of the grounds what the wages were of all the personnel working there. Once he was given those numbers, his response was:
    “If we are going to have (gardeners), we are obligated to offer them a living wage”.

    The church is for a living wage. The Archdiocese and many other dioceses require using Union Labor for their building and maintenance projects (maybe not employees doing routine maintenance, but larger scale maintenance, of which there’s a fair amount).

    The church has always emphasized fair labor pay and practice in my lifetime.


  54. - 47th Ward - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 12:20 pm:

    ===The church has always emphasized fair labor pay and practice in my lifetime.===

    OK, fair enough. Thanks for the response. Can you point me to any official position taken by the Catholic Conference of Illinois on this issue? Does Gilligan write the statements on the Bishops’ support for increasing the minimum wage? If so, I must have missed it.

    I know the Church is for a living wage. But that’s a little different than taking a formal position on specific legislation. If they’ve done so here, I’ll stand corrected. But in the meantime, I stand by my assertion that Gilligan is using his role to play politics. There is no other possible reason for the Church to weigh in on this when it’s been silent on so many other areas and issues legislated in Illinois.

    Why this and not those?


  55. - efudd - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 12:20 pm:

    “Nothing so needs reforming like other people’s habits.”-Mark Twain
    While I have little use for any organized religions, the Catholic church weighing in on this?
    They got them the size of coconuts.


  56. - Pundent - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 12:41 pm:

    =Common sense says you’d want your church to be a place you feel confident has a culture that directs your child away from drugs.=

    Common sense also says that you wouldn’t want your church serving under aged kids wine.


  57. - Groucho - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 1:00 pm:

    It is amazing how much people really hate Catholics.


  58. - low level - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 1:15 pm:

    ==It is amazing how much people really hate Catholics==

    Does that include the people like myself and 47th Ward who are the very thing (grade school and high school taught, all appropriate and relevant sacraments) who disagree?

    You are mistaking disagreement w the Bishops on a policy stand w “hatred”. Your drive by comment is noted.


  59. - @misterjayem - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 1:53 pm:

    Say what you will about the Bible, it makes Christ’s priorities very clear. They’re presented as an unambiguous directive from the Son of God in the form of the black & white, cut-n-dry dichotomy found in Matthew 25:31-46.

    Christ wants us to feed the hungry, give the thirsty something to drink, to care for strangers, to clothe those who need clothes, and to visit the sick or imprisoned.

    Those who see see someone hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and help?

    They go to eternal life.

    Those who see someone hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and do not help?

    They will go away to eternal punishment.

    That’s it.

    Christ’s instructions couldn’t be simpler, and the stakes couldn’t be higher.

    If I were running a church based on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ, I’d focus on those pressing issues before concerning myself with the plants that other adults smoked or ate.

    – MrJM


  60. - A guy - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 1:57 pm:

    ==But in the meantime, I stand by my assertion that Gilligan is using his role to play politics. ==
    And I agreed with you. I just didn’t agree that it was “thinly veiled”. I don’t think it’s veiled at all. lol

    I’m less aware of what rules and positions come out of the Illinois Conference of Bishops than the Archdiocese rules and positions…which are likely more realistic for where we live and more to your liking I would think.


  61. - A guy - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 1:59 pm:

    ==The Old St. Pat’s block party funder is one of drunkiest street fests in Chicago every year.
    And all that reveals the utter illogic or hypocrisy of the conference’s position on legal marijuana.==

    Just wait til it’s legal Sling. You’ll get to coin and use the word “Stoniest” to describe that very same party. lol


  62. - efudd - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 2:05 pm:

    Groucho-yeah, that’s it. You nailed it.
    With that insight I hope the government has snatched you up for one of their intel agencies.


  63. - A guy - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 3:04 pm:

    ==The Bishops feel that their opinions should influence law. Speaking of law, I wonder how they would respond to enshrinement of Sharia Law.==

    They’re not proposing Canon Law. Quit arguing like a goof. How do you think Sharia Law would consider weed? Right.


  64. - Illinois Resident - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 4:04 pm:

    Merica - Excellent point.


  65. - Groucho - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 4:12 pm:

    Whether you agree or not, the Bishops laid out their rationale as to why they oppose legalization. Some of the people on this blog decided that they would be dismissive and condescending about the church’s opinion rather than explaining their own opinion or explaining why they are opposed to the church’s view. This is not the first time I have seen this type of response to positions taken by the church. Comments like “It (Catholic Church) has no business interacting with a democratically elected legislative body” are in my opinion absolutely rooted in hatred. When Jessie Jackson and Rainbow PUSH put forth their opinions, I don’t hear calls to silence their opinions. For the record, while I don’t smoke pot, I am in favor of legalizing it and have been so for at least 30 years.


  66. - Groucho - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 4:30 pm:

    ===Would you really want your neighborhood church supporting smoking pot?===

    ===I wouldn’t want my church supporting illegal, violent drug cartels.===

    So if you are not for legalization of pot you are obviously in support of drug cartels.


  67. - Illinois Resident - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 4:49 pm:

    Lot’s of great comments. Finally we are winning this war after so many years of fighting an uphill battle. Our society will be better with less incarceration, labeled and safe products , safer ways to purchase, and police officers can focus on real crimes and not low hanging fruit like cannabis possession.


  68. - Illinois Resident - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 4:58 pm:

    Groucho - The 66% of us in this state have every right to challenge the views of the catholic church on this topic. They could have stayed out of it and focused on other more important issues but they didn’t. Furthermore, we all pay taxes and they get a free ride but would like to still dictate policy that is destructive to all of us.


  69. - Illinois Resident - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 5:00 pm:

    -So if you are not for legalization of pot you are obviously in support of drug cartels.-

    Yes. That is how black markets work when there is demand for a product that is illegal.


  70. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 5:58 pm:

    –How do you think Sharia Law would consider weed?–

    That it be illegal and subject to punishment, despite all reason.

    Like the bishops.


  71. - M - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 6:11 pm:

    Is anyone basing their opinions on facts about legalizing Marijuana? We should talk to the states that have already legalized Marijuana, and find out what issues they have had after they legalized Marijuana, and make sure we don’t have the same issues..


  72. - low level - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 6:27 pm:

    Groucho- well that argument is at least rational, unlike claiming that opposing a postion equals hate of Catholics.

    (Might add it doesnt sound like you are familar much w the Catholic Church. If you were, you’d know there is wide ranging viewpoints on many issues among Catholics themselves who dont always agree w Bishops)


  73. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Feb 5, 19 @ 8:42 pm:

    –This is an effort by the Catholic Church to cut a deal on preserving their college scholarship tax credit program in exchange for muting their opposition to marijuana legalization. Or, perhaps more likely: a threat to ramp up their opposition to marijuana legalization if Pritzker does not drop his opposition to the scholarship program.–

    That can’t be true. In their letter yesterday, the bishops said marijuana legalization would “add to the problem” of deaths and orphaned children from opioid overdoses.

    If you truly believe that legal marijuana will lead to deaths and orphaned children, how could you possibly horsetrade over some tax credits?

    Choosing money over lost lives and orphans? No one could be that immoral.

    https://capitolfax.com/2019/02/04/catholic-bishops-say-no-to-cannabis-legalization/


  74. - Da Big Bad Wolf - Wednesday, Feb 6, 19 @ 8:52 am:

    ==Comments like “It (Catholic Church) has no business interacting with a democratically elected legislative body” are in my opinion absolutely rooted in hatred.==

    Nope.

    Individuals who are members of the Catholic Church are entitled to voice their opinions and vote. An organization that is tax exempt like the Catholic Church shouldn’t lobby or influence political sides. That’s not hate. That is basic fairness.


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