The LDS Church’s First Presidency is asking the faith’s members in four western states to oppose bills that would legalize doctor-assisted suicide and recreational marijuana use.
Church President Thomas S. Monson and his counselors sent a letter Wednesday to Mormons in Colorado, where Proposition 106 would legalize physician-assisted suicide.
“We urge church members to let their voices be heard in opposition to measures that would legalize physician-assisted suicide,” said the letter signed by President Monson, President Henry B. Eyring and President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, who make up the First Presidency of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
They sent a similar letter Wednesday to Mormons in Arizona, California and Nevada about marijuana legislation.
“We urge church members to let their voices be heard in opposition to the legalization of recreational marijuana use,” the letter said.
I don’t think the Church could have been more clear: the Brethren oppose the legalization of marijuana, and they want members to make it clear that they oppose the legalization of marijuana. Taken in conjunction with the Church’s opposition to medical marijuana in Utah, it seems clear to me at least that our leaders do not want latter-day Saints to support marijuana legalization in any form. (Note to readers: there may be some nuances that I am not aware of: if you disagree with my description of the Church’s position, please let me know in the comments).
I am a libertarian-leaning person, and I voted for marijuana legalization in Colorado. To be clear on my position: I don’t think anybody should use any drug, including cannabis, recreationally. I think recreational marijuana is bad for you. My support of legalization in Colorado is primarily on practical grounds: many juries will not convict people for MJ possession or for growing MJ because of overwhelming support for marijuana legalization in Colorado. So, cops used to spend months tracking down violators, and prosecutors used to spend months putting together a case, but then juries would let people go because they thought marijuana should be legal. It was getting to the point where prosecutors could not even empanel a jury. So, from a purely practical standpoint, it didn’t make sense (in my mind) for police and prosecutors to spend time on such a losing cause.
So, how should I respond to the Church’s growing opposition to MJ legalization?