The Instigator
lindsay
Pro (for)
Winning
59 Points
The Contender
mrmatt505
Con (against)
Losing
49 Points

A true "Conservative Republican" Would Favor the Legalization and/or Decriminalization of Marijuana

Do you like this debate?NoYes+1
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Vote Here
Pro Tied Con
Who did you agree with before the debate?
Who did you agree with after the debate?
Who had better conduct?
Who had better spelling and grammar?
Who made more convincing arguments?
Who used the most reliable sources?
Reasons for your voting decision
1,000 Characters Remaining
The voting period for this debate does not end.
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/10/2007 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 3,640 times Debate No: 206
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (19)
Votes (32)

 

lindsay

Pro

Let me begin by saying I am NOT debating whether or not marijuana should be legalized. That can be a whole other debate, if need-be. What I AM stating is that right now, a typical Republican would say "Marijuana should not, and most likely never will be made legal."

This defeats the principles of conservativism.

Conservatives desire as little government control as possible. This is why they are for gun-rights, against raising taxes, against national health care, etc.

Why, then, should the government dictate what you are (tobacco) and are not (marijuana) allowed to smoke in the privacy of your own home?

ALSO Republicans/Conservatives typically do not favor raising taxes, but DO appreciate taxes on things like cigarettes. IF marijuana is LEGALIZED, there would be ENORMOUS revenue. CNN did a study and determined that if made legal, California would have $105.4 million, New York would have $65.5 million, and Florida would have $48.2 million projected revenue. These are only the top-3. See this website for each state's individual projected revenue:

http://money.cnn.com...

In other words, the profits made off of marijuana could go toward education, health care, "the war" (I personally oppose, but my argument is that a Republican/Conservative would support, and this money would be useful if staying in the war is desired), and other areas where money is needed, as we are in such a deficit right now.

ALSO, keep in mind that people smoke marijuana whether it is legal or not. As of right now, there is a horrible black market and people are getting killed, and violence occurs based on "drug deals gone bad" but if there were a store, just as there are liquor stores, it would eliminate at least the marijuana drug scene on the streets.

The National Academy of Sciences performed research and concluded that, "In sum, there is little evidence that decriminalization of marijuana use necessarily leads to a substantial increase in marijuana use." - National Academy of Sciences, Institute of Medicine (IOM). 1999. Therefore, it is only a theory in people's minds that if it is legal, use wil increase.

The "Gateway Drug" Theory is SCIENTIFICALLY disproven as well when you look at the Netherlands. Harder drugs, like cocaine and heroin, had signifcantly LESS use after the decriminalization of marijuana. In other words, the "gateway" theory that some Conservatives might buy into is once again, proven wrong. In fact, it could be argued that alcohol is the gateway drug. For every 104 Americans that have tried marijuana, only 1 uses cocaine, and LESS than that (statistically) use heroin. However, of people who smoke marijuana, 61.3% started off using alcohol as the "drug of choice," 19.4% used tobacco first as "drug of choice," and 19.4% (same percentage as tobacco) tried marijuana prior to drinking or smoking. In other words, a TRUE Conservative who is not brain-washed by disproven theories, knows that marijuana is not a gateway drug.

Finally, the National Insitute of Health (NIH) stands by the fact that marijuana has less harmful short-term AND long-term effects than both alcohol and cigarettes. This is a point that I think both Democrats and Republicans can agree on.

In conclusion, my argument, once again, is NOT that marijuana SHOULD BE LEGAL. It is that I feel as though "conservatives" are not standing by their party's views when they laugh at the notion of the decriminalization of marijuana.

Whoever decides to contend in this debate, please do not turn this into whether or not pot SHOULD be legal. That is not my intent. I will not participate in a debate that goes that direction. This debate is over conservative principles. I am looking for someone who considers themself as a "TRUE CONSERVATIVE" and DOES NOT want marijuana to be legalized. I am curious as to how they can stand by conservative principles and still have this notion. Thanks, and happy debating!!!
mrmatt505

Con

Being republican does not incline one to be absolute conservative about everything and history can disprove your argument. Look back to when America had first became a nation. We were not democrats, republicans, and independent, rather we were federalist, democratic-republicans, and other. In all sense of the word republican it means one in favor of a republic not whether or not a republican has certain ideals of conservatism or liberalism. This debate holds so little value because you are placing a stigma on ALL republicans and also a stigma on ALL political parties. It is just ludicrous to absolutely associate republicans with being conservative, but furthermore, even being conservative doesn't mean that you must be in favor of legalizing marijuana or that it is in your best interest. That would be a narrow minded approach at tackling political issues in the world because you would have a definite set of rules that you would follow when making your ideas. By taking this ideology to a bigger picture, we would not need the Judiciary branch of the United States because then we wouldn't have to take ideas into review of whether they are good or not.

Next, I have a problem with the wording of the topic because it forces an absolutist idea into the form of a moderate idea because what Lindsay is stating is that ALL republicans would thus have to be in favor of legalizing marijuana whether it would be moral or a right thing to do. She takes away all human characteristics from being human by stating that we will all think in an inflexible mode of comprehending and understanding and that we can never use reason. Her ideology in and of itself makes one think of human beings as being robots which we are not!
Debate Round No. 1
lindsay

Pro

Mr. Matt,
You bring up a great point. I consider myself a liberal, but do not agree with every liberal point of view. I'm not saying that a true conservative SHOULD favor the decriminalization of pot, rather they WOULD. And I guess I should be more specific, as there are so many different types of conservatives...more libertarian, more socially conservative, etc. I just want to emphasize that my objective is not imposing any moral belief. It's just a matter of consistency. I think some people also claim "Republican" but truly have more "Libertarian" or even sometimes "Liberal" views, but then again, this goes both ways, and I know a lot of "Liberals" are actually more "Conservative" than they even know.

I also am probably slightly biased because I live in the Bible Belt, and so many of my peers claim to be "Very Conservative..." based on their upbringing. However, they don't really know what "conservative" in government-terms means. I suppose it's similar to the on-going debate of how it is ironic that Democrats typically support a woman's right to choose (ending the life of a fetus) yet would spare the life of a murderer by opposing the death penalty.

The purpose of the debate is not so much to argue, because there isn't much TO argue about...more so of an eye-opener for those who so quickly claim "conservative" but don't understand all that it entails.
mrmatt505

Con

Thank you Lindsay.

I still am not fond of the idea that we attempt to classify certain groups as having certain beliefs because we all have our own individual beliefs that must be taken into consideration. A "true" conservative needn't think anything that his party believes, but rather is more easily persuaded to err towards republican ideals. There really isn't too much to debate and I implore everyone to cross-apply all of my arguments from my first set of arguments seeing as how they have all been conceded.

- Matt
Debate Round No. 2
lindsay

Pro

Thanks, Matt. It's been fun. I don't really need or wish to say anything else, but apparently I have to take up 100 character spaces. That's better. Hahahaha- Take care-
mrmatt505

Con

Thank you Lindsay. It has been fun and I guess I need 100 characters also. Merry Christmas to all! Happy holidays!
- Matt
Debate Round No. 3
19 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by thereal_yeti 7 years ago
thereal_yeti
you didn't dive into state rights far enough..

Many republicans like John McCain advocate STATE RIGHTS STATE RIGHTS STATE RIGHTS..

But as soon as even L marijuana is mentioned, they back pedal..

Republicans shout "we should not let bureaucrats run our medical care!" But when the issue of medical marijuana comes up, they repeatedly say it should not be legalized because the FDA does not approve of it, which is a agency FILLED with bureaucrats.

Do you wan't state rights or don't you? Do you hate bureaucrats controlling our medical care, or do you believe they should have control over our medical decisions?
Posted by Daxitarian 9 years ago
Daxitarian
I think the cover of the June 2004 issue of National Review settles this question.
Posted by willact723 9 years ago
willact723
I respect both y'all opinions, but this is a clear Pro victory. The con can't say that they don't agree with the topic wording as a defense.

All a Con needs to do is take the points of the Pro and disprove them, then the Pro has no case! Time and time again I see the con answering questions they weren't asked and ignoring other ones. If you do that, you lose. I've been competitively debating for 9 years. Not to sound like a jerk, but things to consider if you're serious about debating! Thanks!
Posted by jurist24 9 years ago
jurist24
Your comment about Ron Paul is well taken. However, even Bush 43 ran as a modern American conservative (henceforth, a MAC... ugh), and trumped smaller government, less world policing, etc. Bush 41 ran on the same platform as a MAC (as opposed to a PC). Reagan CERTAINLY ran both elections as a MAC, and actually acted on some of those principles. Throughout Reagan's tenure in office, he favored doing away with the Dept. of Education.

Today's Republican candidates often invoke the word "conservative" with Reagan's name. That they do this supports the notion that the MAC favors smaller government.

Furthermore, you noted in a previous post that there exists a difference between MACs and neo-conservatives. It is fair to say that the Republican office-holders are largely of the latter class, particularly the majority of the major Republican presidential candidates.

My ultimate point to you is this: you cannot win debates by challenging the manner in which a person uses a word; doing so is semantical, and takes away from your argument.
Posted by clsmooth 9 years ago
clsmooth
Well, I did not debate Lindsay. I only analyzed her points in the comments section here. And I do not accept that the "conservative movement" in modern America is for less government. I accept that it is sometimes part of their rhetoric, but more often than not, their rhetoric is for more government -- more militarism, police-statism, trade regulation, immigration control, anti-abortion, pro-Drug War, and more inflation to make it all possible.

The fact that "small government" is NOT part of the modern conservative movement is made obvious by Ron Paul, whose support for REAL scale-backs in the size of government draw derision and even laughter from the leaders of the "conservative movement." Contrast this with the big-government Republican leaders like Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, and Rudy Giuliani. They are all for more government than, say, Bill Clinton, or even Bill Richardson.

If conservatism did stand for small government, in America, then it did so for only brief periods of time.
Posted by jurist24 9 years ago
jurist24
I'm not taking issue with the notion that you have an agenda with Lindsay. I think the two of you had a fair, reasonable debate. My issue is simple: that you are relying upon different interpretations of the word "conservative" to bolster your argument. Doing so is resorting to semantics.

The modern American conservative agenda, the one (presumably) referenced by Lindsay, favors smaller government. I am confident that you are aware of this. Of course, the issue would be different if the two of you were debating the use of the word "conservative" in its varying contexts throughout history. Such was not the case, though. By differentiating classical conservatives and neo-conservatives from "conservative" as Lindsay used it, demonstrates that you, too, realize the difference.

You, however, are right in your assertion that conservatives such as Edmund Burke favored larger governmental control. Burke once penned during the Enlightenment that he could not believe France would do away with such a great government. That issue is not contested, though.

The most critical factor in succeeding in a debate is focusing squarely on the issue and arguing it; not using collateral information such as this.
Posted by clsmooth 9 years ago
clsmooth
What about George W. Bush? He and other self-claimed conservatives of the modern era have expanded government more than any other administration in the history of the nation.

This isn't semantical differences. When and where were conservatives opposed to big government? During brief periods in the 20th century, in America, when they weren't in power.

You people are acting as if I have an agenda against Lindsay. Lindsay and I agree on more than we disagree. I am for legalization of marijuana and all drugs. I have no bone to pick. I'm judging arguments on their merit, not on my beliefs. If she says "conservatives are for small government," then I say "here are self-proclaimed conservatives who are NOT for small government -- either the classical conservatives or the modern neocons."
Posted by jurist24 9 years ago
jurist24
Quote by clsmooth:

"Besides, as I've substantiated with facts, "conservatives" are not for small government. They weren't originally, and they aren't now."

Trying to redeem a poor argument with semantics will always lose. Yes, classical conservatives favored big government. The "conservative" referenced by the author in the above debate was, clearly, the modern American conservative. I am confident that you are aware of the meaning that was used. That you resorted to word-play argument is disappointing.
Posted by clsmooth 9 years ago
clsmooth
Wow, that was rough.

I don't think I was in any way undignified or insulting.

Your points are contradictory and untrue. Sorry.

You say conservatives are for less government, lower taxes, and against national healthcare; and then you turn around and say that marijuana would be a great source of money (for more government), through taxation, and could fund healthcare. Those are contradictory points.

Besides, as I've substantiated with facts, "conservatives" are not for small government. They weren't originally, and they aren't now.

Someone who believes in freedom and minarchy would support legalizing marijuana so that marijuana would be treated just as strawberries are. We don't need another tax. We need freedom.

Oh, and by the way, here is where you indicate that marijuana "profits" (which should belong to the sellers of the good, not the government) could be used to fund healthcare, strongly implying that this would be a reason that conservatives should support legalization, and thereby saying that conservatives support national healthcare:

"In other words, the profits made off of marijuana could go toward education, health care, 'the war' (I personally oppose, but my argument is that a Republican/Conservative would support, and this money would be useful if staying in the war is desired), and other areas where money is needed, as we are in such a deficit right now."
Posted by lindsay 9 years ago
lindsay
clsmooth,

I can tell you're new in the world of debates, at least on this website...what do you mean by "why would 'conservatives' want to fund health care if they're against national health care?" I never said that conservatives want to fund health care. That actually has nothing to do with my side of the debate. Further in your comment, you actually proved MY point more than anything.

Tobacco Taxes are currently supported by Conservatives.....why wouldn't, then, Marijuana Taxes be supported by the same consensus? Sure, the private economy is great, but with marijuana, the private economy consists of DRUG DEALERS. With individually owned and operated marijuana stores (comparable to a liquor store), the marijuana tax would go to government, and the profits would perpetuate the private economy.

You're so terribly mistaken, I pity you for attempting to come across as intelligent and in all actuality making a complete fool of yourself. It's pathetic that MrMatt505 (my opponent) had more dignity and class in the middle of the debate than you (a bystander) did. Better luck next time, clsmooth.
32 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by mrmatt505 8 years ago
mrmatt505
lindsaymrmatt505Tied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Vote Placed by Myles 8 years ago
Myles
lindsaymrmatt505Tied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:70 
Vote Placed by lindsay 8 years ago
lindsay
lindsaymrmatt505Tied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:70 
Vote Placed by dairygirl4u2c 9 years ago
dairygirl4u2c
lindsaymrmatt505Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by Kozakism 9 years ago
Kozakism
lindsaymrmatt505Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by libertyforall 9 years ago
libertyforall
lindsaymrmatt505Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by dixielover 9 years ago
dixielover
lindsaymrmatt505Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by JoeDSileo 9 years ago
JoeDSileo
lindsaymrmatt505Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by Daxitarian 9 years ago
Daxitarian
lindsaymrmatt505Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by jemual 9 years ago
jemual
lindsaymrmatt505Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03