High Times in Murray Hill

Many of us residents of Murray Hill were startled to learn the other day about the imminent arrival of a new store on Fifth Avenue and 38th Street, across from Lord & Taylor: a medical marijuana dispensary.

There are of course other dispensaries in place around town; I happen to know a pharmacist who was hired to run one of them. Pursuant to New York State law, only non-smokable forms of marijuana will be sold–and only to purchasers bearing a prescription.

That said, this is definitely an event in the “who would have imagined?” category.

As far as I know, the Episcopal Church doesn’t have guidelines about the consumption of marijuana for medical or recreational purposes. We do have rules about alcohol; our parish, for example, doesn’t advertise serving drinks, and we always have non-alcoholic alternatives prominently displayed when we do. (As it happens, as part of our outreach, Incarnation hosts one AA group and four Narcotics Anonymous groups each week.)

I don’t have particularly strong feelings about the subject. I know people with chronic pain who are helped by the drug; yet I am leery of providing the temptation to drive under the influence.

In any case, it’s a new world! —J. Douglas Ousley

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