Muslims and Marijuana
Their interaction goes back a long way, and it's been raised anew in Turkey:
The issue of substance abuse, intoxicants and Islam rose to the Turkish media's attention recently when police carried out a raid on the home of private citizen Nazif Kamil Orde in Istanbul for the benefit of current-affairs documentary program Arena. They smashed their way into the home of the man newspapers have nicknamed "the junkie teacher" - Esrarc Hoca - a self-styled imam who interspersed his lessons on Islamic philosophy with some strong tokes on a lit joint and encouraged the young followers sitting around his living room to do likewise. He extolled the virtues of cannabis and said no one could make him stop - smoking was his duty to God.
The headlines screamed "A joint in one hand, the Koran in the other", and more than 32,000 people have watched the video clip of him being arrested broadcast via the Web on Hurriyet Video. Esrarc Hoca's behavior has largely been interpreted as the actions of a drug pusher trying to drum up business, and he has made himself somewhat of a joke to serious media pundits with such over-the-top statements as "My child will learn to roll joints and smoke at the age of six," "How can you outlaw weed? God orders us to smoke it," and "Friends, you can't take away the gun on a Muslim's belt, the horse beneath him or the joint in his hand."
Take it away, Eric Cartman.