In hopes that God will swoop down from the heavens during the upcoming November election and damn an initiative aimed at tearing down the walls of marijuana prohibition in the state of Massachusetts, the Boston Archdiocese has contributed a whopping $850,000 to the state’s anti-marijuana campaign in hopes of crucifying legalization.
According to the Boston Globe, the Roman Catholic Archdiocese is now one of the leading contributors in the fight to prevent the Bay State from passing an initiative that will make marijuana legal in a manner similar to Colorado. The church’s contributions now represent around 50 percent of the donations to thwart the state’s legalization efforts in 2016.
“It reflects the fact that the archdiocese holds the matter among its highest priorities,” said Terrence Donilon, a spokesperson for the archdiocese, when asked by the Globe about the donation. “It’s a recognition that, if passed, the law would have significantly detrimental impacts on our parishes, our ministries.”
Interestingly, during a meeting last week with more than 40 interfaith leaders, Cardinal Sean P. O’Malley said the archdiocese would donate a small amount of money to the Campaign for a Safe and Healthy Massachusetts in an effort to help them combat all of this legalization business. But then he later came out and said the church would give a substantial amount of money to the group “because [Question 4] directly impacts the people we’re trying to help.”
All of the funds are expected to be spent on a last minute advertising campaign intended to stop the voters from siding with the initiative – a proposal that would allow adults 21 and over to buy retail marijuana the same way they do beer.
Supporters of Question 4 believe the Catholic Church has failed to consider exactly what prohibition does to harm the communities it serves.
“The archdiocese has come up with a position that, frankly, we think is based on unfounded assumptions and junk science,” Jim Borghesani, a spokesman for YES on 4 told the Globe. “What I think the archdiocese is missing is the terrible harm that (marijuana) prohibition has done to people of color, to people who have chosen a substance that is less dangerous than alcohol and have had their lives ruined because they’ve been arrested.”
There is now only a week left before the voters hit the polls to decide whether Massachusetts should create a full legal marijuana market. Unfortunately, the latest Suffolk University/ Boston Globe poll indicates it could be a tight race, with only 49 percent saying they will support Question 4 at the ballot box, while another 42 percent say they will oppose.
The latest national survey shows support for marijuana legalization in the United States at an all time high 60 percent.