LifeWay Research: Most pastors oppose marijuana use, legalization

"Mainline pastors (43 percent) are also more likely to believe marijuana should be legalized for any purpose than evangelical pastors (10 percent). Denominationally, Methodist (37 percent) and Presbyterian Reformed (35 percent) pastors are more likely to back legalization than Restorationist movement pastors [Christian/Church of Christ] (21 percent), Lutherans (15 percent), Pentecostals (10 percent) and Baptists (7 percent)." - LifeWay

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dgszweda's picture

I am fine with legalization, as long as their is a prescription and rules setup for it.  I am not in favor of recreational legalization.

Don Johnson's picture

dgszweda wrote:

I am fine with legalization, as long as their is a prescription and rules setup for it.  I am not in favor of recreational legalization.

that's how it started in Canada. Now we have full blown legalization. And stinky neighbourhoods.

Maranatha!
Don Johnson
Jer 33.3

G. N. Barkman's picture

Hmmm.   The Slippery Slope "fallacy" isn't always a fallacy after all.

G. N. Barkman

Larry's picture

Moderator

For those opposed to medicinal marijuana, how would you distinguish that from opioids like oxycodone (Oxycontin, Percocet), hydrocodone (Vicodin), morphine, fentanyl, etc. 

Bert Perry's picture

Larry, good question.  I'm actually for medical marijuana, and would be open to more legalization if we get a commitment to more good studies on the side effects.  The differences I know are:

1.  Opioids are physically addictive, marijuana is not--it's habit forming, but not physically addictive.

2.  Opioids will kill you in a hurry with an overdose, marijuana will not.

3.  The evidence for the painkilling effects of opioids is unambiguous; for marijuana, it is not.

That noted, it's not a gimme, as there are some troubling indications of links to psychosis and other mental illness with marijuana.  We need to go from anecdotal data to statistical, from correlation to causation, and that will require some very real investigations.

No doubt that dope reeks, might be linkable to lung cancer and other maladies, and the like.  You've also got the question of where impairment starts--and along those lines, I saw something out of Washington where a police officer watched a young lady get to about 4x their legal limit and still drive....well enough that he wouldn't pull her over.  

Notice as well that these questions are exactly what we ought to be asking as believers.  Is the person who has X amount of dope intoxicated in a way that would violate Biblical injunctions or not?  For medical cases, do we give an exception in the way Proverbs gives an allowance for those who are perishing to use a lot of wine?  I think we would, no, in the same way we would do so for painkillers for cancer patients.

One thing we need to get past, I think, is that sometimes we seem to confuse whether a substance is legal with whether a substance can be permissible, and in doing so neglect the reality that we're routinely using things that are far more dangerous to us.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

dgszweda's picture

I don't see it as a slippery slope.  This is no different from any other drug.  Medical Marijuana should be adopted into the official pharmacopoeia and defined as a drug that is regulated by the FDA as any other drug.  I believe that there are health benefits to marijuana.  They should be investigated and researched in peer reviewed journals.  And if they are to be prescribed for a specific condition, than they are submitted to the FDA for approval.  They would require a prescription from a licensed doctor for use.  Really no different than something like oxy.  We haven't legalized opioids for recreational use.

Don Johnson's picture

dgszweda wrote:

 We haven't legalized opioids for recreational use.

totally different culture. The pattern is set, and the objective is known. 
 

here in Canada the pot shops stayed open during Covid . Essential service, you know.

Maranatha!
Don Johnson
Jer 33.3

Bert Perry's picture

Yes, there is a slippery slope fallacy--connecting a string of bad possible consequences without any real binding thread of logic--and there is a slippery slope verity, where the consequences of an act will lead to related consequences.  In the case of marijuana, I've suspected/known that the real desire of the legalizers was not for medical uses, or to use marijuana for fiber and fuel, but rather because they really wanted to smoke dope without fearing the police.

So yes, legalizing dope for medical purposes was fully intended to legalize it for personal, recreational use, and there's clearly a subset of advocates, especially in sectors of libertarianism, who would use the precedent to legalize everything.  The demand will be made.

The question, though, is whether we have the data to demonstrate (e.g.Larry's question above) how different marijuana is, or is not, from other drugs, and why it ought to be important for them to be controlled.  My take is that legalization can, if we do it right, result in obtaining that data.  Big if, yes.

 

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

josh p's picture

I'm for unregulated legalization. That being said, I believe recreational use is sin.