Luke Bretherton calls for true moral reflection on recreational drug use

BrethertonWriting for the Christian Century, KIE Senior Fellow and Religions and Public Life program leader Luke Bretherton argues for a new approach to moral discussions of drug use. When drugs like marijuana become legalized, how does one make the religious argument against its use?

Many Christians assume that smoking or ingesting marijuana is necessarily and in all instances immoral, but at the same time they seem prepared to bow to its inevitable legalization, while muttering about how such a turn of events is one more sign of growing secularization. The counterconclusion I draw from the above analysis is that certain kinds of drug use in certain kinds of contexts may well be morally licit—but that this licit use depends on a set of cultural possibilities unavailable, at least on a large scale, within our consumerist cultural environment.