Fr Alexander Lucie-Smith
Fr Alexander Lucie-Smith, a Priest and Catholic theologian is arguing against the Holy Father's public position on drugs calling for an end to the 'war' against them.
Before I move forward to counter Fr Alexander Lucie-Smith's argument as I defend the Pope's stance, let us ask a question. Where does the Devil stand on this issue? I think once we have ascertained Beelzebub's position on the matter we may be further ahead in deciding whether we should go down the road of legalisation and regulation or retain the current state of affairs.
I would imagine that Satan wants to see the West legalise drugs. Here is why. He has achieved much through 'decriminalisation' and 'legalisation' and even 'regulation' in this country alone on several social evils. If we take ourselves back to the 1950s, when 'class A drugs' was a phrase unheard of and the cities were not awash with such powerful 'recreational' narcotics, Western societies did not have to confront this issue on such a wide scale. We cannot, however, see this issue in isolation because, suddenly, in the overflow of the excesses of the 1960s, nearly every social evil and taboo has been overturned. We can see Satan's hand in the gradual overturning of Christian laws in the common good of society masking itself as kindness, tolerance and even 'love'. The more dechristianised we have become as a society, the more tolerant has society and Government become to social evils.
Is this not the argument employed by the social reformers who sanctioned pornography? People are going to use pornography anyway, so let's not worry about it and just let this industry flourish. Is this not the argument employed concerning abortion? Women are dying in 'unsafe' abortion clinics ran by bad abortionists, so let's regulate it, legalise it and ensure unborn babies are killed in regulated abortion clinics ran by 'good' abortionists. There was once a 'war' against abortion in this country, with abortionists inhabiting prisons in the United Kingdom, yet now abortionists are free to roam around destroying the unborn. A paedophile group is now campaigning for the same 'rights' as homosexuals. People are going to fiddle with children anyway, so let's just provide them with children?
There were once Christian laws in the country concerning sodomy. These were never there, presumably, to punish homosexuals but to protect society from a prevailing culture that would damage both the institution of the family and marriage. Abortion laws were not there to punish women but to protect society and children. Here we are today, abortion more rampant than ever it was and the definition of marriage destroyed by a Prime Minister and sanctioned by a Christian Monarch. Despite the anger caused when a Pope, Bishop, Priest or layman says this, this is what society held as true only fifty years ago. I use these points only to illustrate that the more that Government and society has 'given in' to the temptation to liberalise laws there for the protection of society in the common good, the worse things have become for all - even if 'individuals' within that society see these developments as improvements in their personal liberty and freedom.
The fact of the matter is that it is true to say that bad men are making lots of money off the back of drug addicts. Why do these men become good if they make money off drug addicts in a regulated manner? If Mr Big is a criminal under existing laws, then why does the head of GlaxoSmithKline become virtuous when he simply does what Mr Big was doing illegally? And exactly how seriously taken is the so called 'war on drugs' anyway? How are tonnes of bags of heroin and cocaine getting into the country? These are imports from a black market that involves millions, billions of pounds every year. Are you telling me that our customs people are so inept that they can do nothing - nothing - to stop this trade?
Drugs, too, are not just something dabbled in by the poor, but the rich as well. Even our political elite themselves entertain themselves with them at times. Some lawyers do copious amounts of cocaine and we know that the media is awash with it. The fact is that drugs like these destroy lives. I do not see how if you 'regulate' and 'legalise' them, they will stop destroying the lives of individuals. Neither do I see the link Fr Alexander makes between legalisation, regulation and moral regeneration coming in its aftermath. Why can't moral regeneration come first? Isn't the duty of the State to ensure that laws reflect a moral society working in the common good of all, especially the protection of the family and children?
Believe me, I can really see the immense appeal of Fr Alexander Lucie-Smith's arguments. Unfortunately, however, they reflect the power of the Devil's suggestions that using the apparatus of the State to endorse social evils will remove social evils or somehow enable society to manage them. Time and time again, this has been proved to be a lie from the Father of lies. Why the employment of this argument would make drugs a different story is beyond me. Sadly, the legalisation of all drugs might work in utopia, but there and only there. The result of legalising drugs would create that State driven dystopia - the road upon which we are already well down.
Regardless, I expect the legalisation of all drugs to take place whatever the Church says about it, because it is the desire of the most powerful men on Earth that it should happen, for their profit and society's misfortune. George Soros's Open Society Foundation funded a recent report condemning the drug war as a failure. Mr Soros is a keen advocate of a liberal drug policy because he is a social liberal and a serious player in the creation of a dystopic new world order ran by a liberal but tyrannical super-elite along the lines of Brave New World. I know quite a few addicts of class A drugs. None would wish their plight on anyone. I fail to see how legalisation of these drugs would enable people to leave their lives of drugs, while Government and society endorses that very lifestyle through legalisation and regulation and I fail to see in Fr Alexander Lucie-Smith's argument, the Augustinian vision of 'The City of God' - a city awash with the finest wines and meats, but also heroin and cocaine?
Remember that ultimately those ensnared in the kinds of drugs that cause addicts to steal or that cause dealers to kill do have moral choice and that they tried to make a very rich Amy Winehouse go to rehab but, for a time at least, she said 'no, no, no.'
These people I try with almost no success, to draw back into the Church, to offer compassion, but they are often so damaged and so scarred as individuals and so embroiled in this lifestyle that it overtakes their daily existence in their search for drugs that can numb their inner pain, their broken hearts. I have great sympathy with them, but the wounds are so deep, their pain so great, their existence so much on the peripheries of society that has abandoned them, that I doubt they will ever come back to the Church to be communicants and receive Jesus Who alone can heal such afflictions. Much of what happens to these unfortunates is unjust - their treatment at the hands of authorities for what is an addiction - but there needs to be stigma and there should be taboo around drugs if only for the protection of children who will face these same temptations as young adults. Pray for them, and pray for me that I may be truly Christlike towards those who I know who struggle daily with class A drugs. Catholic theologians, Government ministers, social reformers, the policy think-tankers - all these may know many things, but how many crack and heroin addicts do they actually know?
Catechism of the Catholic Church (675)
'Before Christ’s second coming the Church must pass through a final trial that will shake the faith of many believers. The persecution that accompanies her pilgrimage on earth will unveil the “mystery of iniquity” in the form of a religious deception offering men an apparent solution to their problems at the price of apostasy from the truth. The supreme religious deception is that of the Antichrist, a pseudo-messianism by which man glorifies himself in place of God and of his Messiah come in the flesh.' ~ Catechism of the Catholic Church (675)