The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Pope says nope to dope — that is, legalized marijuana

<br/> “Let he who is without sin cast out the first stoner,” as they say. (Photo: Gregorio Borgia / Associated Press)

For months, Pope Francis has been cultivating wild, miraculous amounts of goodwill wherever he goes, taking over the Papal Twitter account, advocating social justice, embracing the sick, and generally doing yeoman work in the continuing process of bringing the church into — if not the 21st century, which might be too abrupt for such an ancient institution, at least a nearer part of the 20th century. Befriending children, paying visits, placing phone calls — he has earned the good publicity that makes us worship the water he walks on.

But even the Cool New Pope has his limits.

And one of those limits is the legalization of marijuana.

The Associated Press reports:

“Francis told members of a drug-enforcement conference meeting in Rome on Friday that even limited attempts to legalize recreational drugs ‘are not only highly questionable from a legislative standpoint, but they fail to produce the desired effects.’”

And he’s weighed in against this before.

“That’s what I call papal bull,” someone is probably murmuring right now, assuming that someone has an unclear notion of what a Papal Bull is.

But the message is clear. Hail Mary. Hold the Jane.

How can the Pope frown on marijuana? After all, St. Stephen became a martyr after getting stoned.

Regardless: No smoke emerging from the Vatican any time soon.