Pope Francis told participants at an international drug enforcement conference he is opposed to legalizing marijuana and other drugs for recreational use.
“The scourge of drug use continues to spread inexorably, fed by a deplorable commerce which transcends national and continental borders,” he said on Friday. “Attempts, however limited, to legalize so-called ‘recreational drugs,’ are not only highly questionable from a legislative standpoint, but they fail to produce desired effects.”
This is not the first time Pope Francis has spoken out against drug legalization, Newsweek reports. Speaking in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, last year, he said, “A reduction in the spread and influence of drug addiction will not be achieved by a liberalization of drug use. Rather, it is necessary to confront the problems underlying the use of these drugs, by promoting greater justice, educating young people in the values that build up life in society, accompanying those in difficulty and giving them hope for the future.”
He has visited with people struggling with drug addiction both as Pope and when he was Archbishop of Buenos Aires, the article notes.