facebook twitter RSS
HOT TOPICS: Alcoholism  Addiction  AA  Cocaine  Heroin

Pope Francis Criticizes Drug "Liberalization"

The Pope states that more liberal drug policy won't solve Latin America's problems.

Image: 

Pope Francis met with recovering addicts in
Rio Photo via

By Victoria Kim

07/26/13

| Share

While in Brazil this week for the Roman Catholic World Youth Day festival, Pope Francis condemned Latin American drug cartels for exploiting addicts, but argued that more liberal drug laws are not the solution. At the inauguration of a new drug treatment wing at the St. Francis of Assisi Hospital in Rio de Janeiro, the former Archbishop of Buenos Aires visited recovering addicts and listened to their stories. He then made a speech in which he decried Latin America's trend toward "softer" drug policy. In recent years, leaders from Uruguay, Colombia, Bolivia, and Ecuador have voiced their support for drug law reform in an effort to curb crime and violence. But according to the pope—who has a history of demonstrating compassion towards drug addicts—drug law "liberalization" is not the answer: "A reduction in the spread and influence of drug addiction will not be achieved by a liberalization of drug use, as is currently being proposed in various parts of Latin America."

The Argentinean-born pontiff condemned the "scourge of drug trafficking" claiming it "favors violence and sows the seeds of suffering and death" perpetuated by drug cartels, whom he called "dealers of death" who exploit addicts for power and money. But he doesn't believe the answer lies in legalizing drugs or reducing penalties for those caught using or dealing. Instead, he proposed targeting the underlying causes. "It is necessary to tackle the problems which are at the root of drug abuse," he said, "promoting more justice, educating the youth with the values that live in society, standing by those who face hardship and giving them hope for the future."

Rehabilitation Directories

Most Popular
The Rehab Review
Cliffside Malibu
 
 
 
 

The “beach-house-relaxed” Cliffside Malibu claims to provide an oasis for recovering addicts and alcoholics. And that’s just what you'll get—if you’ve got the cash.

Morningside Recovery
 
 
 
 

For a “rehab near the beach” experience that isn’t quite as costly as similar SoCal competitors, head to this Newport Beach treatment facility.

AToN Center
 
 
 
 

Whether you’re interested in the 12 Steps, SMART Recovery, or holistic treatments, this luxurious, appealing and commendable 4.5 star (our system doesn't yet show the 1/2 star) San Diego rehab has a program for you. 

Reflections
 
 
 
 

This exclusive Northern California rehab is all about client choice—as well as golf outings, Buddhist field trips and keeping up with the office.

Capo By The Sea
 
 
 
 

Capo By The Sea offers an executive rehab program complete with medical detox and a focus on dual-diagnosis issues, as well as an outpatient option in an environment that exudes the kind of beach house optimism one would expect from an Orange County recovery outfit.

Journey Malibu
 
 
 
 

Want many of the luxury amenities A-listers have come to expect—including an enormous backyard with a pool and patio, an herb garden, a volleyball net and a spectacular vista of the Santa Monica mountains—with a recovery program to match?

The Ultimate Guide to Rehab
 
 
 
 
 

What you need to know when choosing an addiction treatment center.

the fix tv