The Instigator
Harboggles
Pro (for)
Losing
12 Points
The Contender
Aietius
Con (against)
Winning
24 Points

All drugs should be legalized.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/9/2008 Category: Society
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,181 times Debate No: 3573
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (6)
Votes (11)

 

Harboggles

Pro

I already did this debate, but I love doing it and hearing new perspectives...and I did it yesterday and got, nothing short of an illiterate moron who quoted propoganda, so I am instilling new standards,

1.Quote research
2.Don't use propoganda

Drugs should be legal, there is no moral or logical reason to make them illegal.

1.They can be taxed, more income that people would be happy to pay.
2.Many of them are harmless in the short term.
3.We've wasted more money on the war on drugs than we would have simply TREATING addicts and ignoring casual users.
4.Most of these drugs are only psychologically addictive (Weed, Shrooms, etc) and are no more dangerous than chocolate.
5.There is actually little conclusive evidence supporting many of the claims made by anti-drug persons. My own father claimed marijuana causes testicular cancer (when most research has actually shown is cures cancer, or prevents it)
6.By taking the illegality away we would destroy the underground drug markets, all of the drug related deaths around the world would CEASE to exist because drug cartels no longer have power since clean industrial production would be created.

I'm not saying let's give needles to every 12 year old. I'm saying educate them about the REAL risks. Educate them on the long term affects. Make it impartial.

When americans turn 18 they can...

vote.
join the army.
drive a car.
own a gun.
drink (at 21)
buy cigarettes (which are worse than most drugs most doctors would agree)
use a prostitute. (where legal)
buy explosives
buy fire works
and do all other kinds of things...

many of these things are MORE dangerous than most drugs and can kill you quicker!

yet we don't trust ourselves with some recreational drugs.

I invite anyone to disprove me. But when it comes down to it, what people do with their bodies is NO ONE's BUSINESS. I'm not defending meth heads, but I'm following along the principle of

"I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it." -Evelyn Beatrice Hall

Replace "say" with put drugs inside your body.
Aietius

Con

Firstly, I'd like to thank Harboggles for starting such an interesting topic. There are many arguments for both sides, let's hope we have an interesting and engaging debate.

I'll begin with a bit of topic analysis:

The resolution is as follows "All drugs should be legalized." This means we're not only debating the legalization of Marijuana or Shrooms, but also the legalization of hard drugs that cause real psychological, physiological, and neurological damage, like Heroin and Crack Cocaine. Let's go through his arguments, point by point.

"1. They can be taxed, more income that people would be happy to pay."
What makes you think that there wouldn't be a black market for drugs, even if they were legalized? There is a very lucrative black market for guns, it wouldn't be any different for drugs. Furthermore, what you're in essence saying is that it is good for the government to make money off of depraved and deranged addicts who will do anything for another fix.

"2. Many of them are harmless in the short term."
Sure, but we're debating ALL drugs, not SOME drugs or MANY drugs. Heroin is devastating from the first time it is injected or inhaled, same goes for Cocaine, Crack, and LSD. Furthermore, if the drugs are laced with other substances we can't even guarantee that an inhalation of a relatively harmless drug like Marijuana will be "harmless."

"3. We've wasted more money on the war on drugs than we would have simply TREATING addicts and ignoring casual users."
I agree with you, but this is not an argument for legalization. It is an argument that advocates for a new approach to drug crime legislation, an approach that would focus on rehabilation over retribution.

"4. Most of these drugs are only psychologically addictive (Weed, Shrooms, etc) and are no more dangerous than chocolate."
Psychological addictions can be just as devastating as physical ones, first of all, and patterns of abuse can occur very easily. Secondly, while "most" might only be psychologically addictive, many others are physically addictive, and these ones are the worst ones. In a debate over the legalization of all drugs, there is no way that this is an argument for Pro.

"5. There is actually little conclusive evidence supporting many of the claims made by anti-drug persons. My own father claimed marijuana causes testicular cancer (when most research has actually shown is cures cancer, or prevents it)"
What? Do you have any evidence that the claims made by anti-drug advocates are false? Do you have any evidence that shows that "most research has actually shown that [marijuana] cures cancer, or prevents it"? This is a ludicrous argument, baseless at best.

"6. By taking the illegality away we would destroy the underground drug markets, all of the drug related deaths around the world would CEASE to exist because drug cartels no longer have power since clean industrial production would be created."
This is false, as I demonstrated earlier when I cited the black market centered around arms smuggling. Even if drugs were legalized there would still be an underground market for them, perhaps for cheaper prices or for a way to get around government restriction. In fact, if we gave more power to "clean industrial production" you can guarantee the drugs might get even more dangerous, packed with nicotine like cigarettes are. Marijuana would become physically addictive!

As can be seen, each argument my opponent gives can be neatly rebutted with an obvious and clear counter-argument.

My opponent goes on to say that since we can do things like buy cigarettes and vote at 18, we should be able to get addicted to heroin and ruin our lives at 18, too. Obviously his position endorses irresponsibility and societal unrest. For these reasons I urge a Con vote.
Debate Round No. 1
Harboggles

Pro

Your arguments are common so I already have some statements to make.

1. Black market, this idea is so obscenely wrong. The reason there exists a black market today is because the drugs are illegal right now. If you remove the market (by legalizing) then capitalism will take over, industrial production will begin and soon drugs will be available for legal purchase. Further, because it is industrial, it will fall under the wing of the FDA who will then consequently monitor the quality of drugs produced to make sure they are not cut with any bad drugs (this is a common problem with many drugs). Regulating the quality makes it safer. Besides, NO ONE wants to use drug dealers. Most would rather drive to 7/11 and buy something rather than wait around for their dealer to be ready. The black market would undoubtedly DIE.

2.Marijuana, LSD, Shrooms, Crack, Heroin, etc. None of these are dangerous in the short term (unless you overdose, which is an education of drugs issue not a legalization issue). Addicts sprout up, and over time if they are treated as patients (instead of as criminals and locked up) then they can return to normal life relatively easy (it's hard to do that with a felony on your record). But either way, danger is irrelevant, people KNOW what they are putting in their body and it's no one's business. Should we make cars illegal because they are dangerous? Probably, in the interest of safety, but we wont.

3.So why not take the money we spent on fighting the war on drugs, and instead of punishing people treat them as paitents and re-release them to society! At the same time, we should ignore casual users (except while being negligent IE. offering drugs to minors, DUI, etc.)

4.I have a short dialogue to prove that EVERYONE is addicted to something. Sex, alcohol, the internet, caffeine, chocolate, sports, etc.
Me:"What is your favorite hobby?"
You:"My favorite hobby is xyz"
Me:"How often do you do it?"
You: "Every day at least once!"
Me: "Well you should stop."
You: "Why?"
Me:"It doesn't matter, you're clearly addicted to it! Therefore it is bad!"

Enjoying doing something vs. being addicted to it are completely different. Granted there is a MINUSCULE percentage of drug users who do it for psychological reasons. But don't punish the rest of us, and don't ask us to give up a hobby that we like because you wouldn't give up yours either!

5.Certainly, studies! Yay! (Ps. evaluate the source of the study, not the website it's quoted on)
http://cannabisculture.com...
http://www.medicalmarijuanablog.com...
http://www.salem-news.com...
http://www.webmd.com...
http://www.foxnews.com...
http://www.counterpunch.org...
http://www.newscientist.com...

I can quote dozens more, but the general consensus (among the impartial science and medical community) is that Marijuana is AT THE LEAST not UNHEALTHY.

Now, Inhaling carbon is ALWAYS bad for you no matter what, but bongs and vaporizers remove a massive percentage of the tar and ash inside of marijuana and make it safer than it already is.

6.There would be no black market (unless someone is REALLY dedicated to NOT paying taxes on them) because the quality, availability, and price would be fair and not involve going to some dodgy part of town to get drugs, you could go down the street. The only government restrictions should be on taxation of drugs, which is completely within the power of state and federal government.

Recently, here at WWU we had the former Seattle Police chief come and speak to us, Norm Stamper, he served on the SDPD for 26 years and is now a strong proponent of legalization because it's been such a huge waste of money, time, people, and lives. He's more qualified than any of us, how can you argue that?
Aietius

Con

Thank you Harboggles for your prompt response, I'll try my best to rebut your arguments clearly and coherently. We'll go in numerical order.

1. Harboggles claims that a Black Market does not exist for items that are legalized, and as such there would be no black market for drugs if they were legalized. However, this argument falls short in two ways: 1) he ignores my example of gun trafficking despite the legality of firearms that I presented in round 1, and 2) his argument that we could tax drug sales which is a positive thing essentially means that we are happily benefitting and making money off of depraved addicts, desperate for a fix. How is this a good thing?

2. Harboggles argues that all drugs, including Crack and Heroin, are not dangerous in the short term. This is absurd. While I agree that a hit of Marijuana might not entail an immediate degradation of personal standards and well-being, I think that hard drugs like heroin are extremely harmful, even if taken only once. In fact, heroin is so dangerous because that first time is the initial high, and every fix after is an effort to return to the high of the first time. Not only that, but drugs like heroin and Crack create real, physical addictions. It's not about a psychological habit, it's about a body being hijacked by a drug and responding with real and dangerous withdrawal symptoms. As such, I argue that hard drugs are DEFINITELY harmful in the short term, and since the resolution concerns the legalization of all drugs as a whole, we are forced to negate.

3. My opponent argues that the war on drugs as it has been executed today has been a waste of money, and that the money should go instead to rehabilitation of addicts. He also argues that drug legislation should be less harsh on casual users. Let me just put it out there that I agree 100% with these statements. I think that drug legislation as of now has been laughably inept, and that more money should go into helping those with real addictions as opposed to locking up people who like to smoke a joint now and then. This being said, none of his 3rd point is an argument for the legalization of drugs. It is a criticism of drug legislation, criticism that I agree with, but it's not a reason that we should legalize all drugs.

4. Harboggles brings up the argument that habitual use of a certain substance is not necessarily an addiction. He claims that only a small amount of drug users are psychologically motivated to abuse substances, and that the rest should not be punished for that. First of all, it's not true that only a small amount of drug users do so for psychological reasons (what does that even mean, anyway?). Hard drugs, like heroin, crack, cocaine, and Chrystal Meth are all psychologically and physically addictive. This means that it's not habitual use, it's not a hobby, it's a lifestyle, a depressing, depraved, and painful lifestyle. Harboggles is trying to compare the use of cocaine and heroin to a normal hobby, like chess or soccer. This is obviously a false comparison.

5. Harboggles provides links to various sites that seem to offer some kind of evidence that, in fact, marijuana can have beneficial effects on human health. Let me just say that it's funny that he does this, because at the start of his round 1 argument he says:

"1.Quote research
2.Don't use propoganda"

Not only did Harboggles not quote the research, he provided links to sites like cannabisculture.com or medicalmarijuanablog.com or foxnews.com. Granted, a few of the links are reputable sources, like WebMD, and in that article the positive aspects of marijuana are explored. This is fine. Marijuana being a wonder-drug does not mean that we should legalize crack cocaine and heroin. Sure, maybe we should legalize weed. That is not the resolution that we are debating.

6. Harboggles restates his argument that black markets would not exist for drugs " because the quality, availability, and price would be fair." Um, how does he know this based on the scope of our debate? First of all, that's an awful lot of speculation. Second of all, he ignores my example of gun trafficking despite its legality. Again.

My opponent closes his argument with some anecdotal evidence: he introduces us to Norm Stamper, a veteran of the Seattle Police Department. Great, but does he really think this constitutes an argument? I could present a million-and-one anti-drug advocates, all police chiefs and attorney generals and judges, who oppose the legalization. Would this be a valid argument? Of course not. Don't be fooled by Harboggle's misguided rhetoric.

For all these reasons, I urge you to vote con.
Debate Round No. 2
Harboggles

Pro

1.Why does a black market exist for hand guns? Because they aren't completely legal, they are restricted with permits in regards to type (automatics for example) and the quantity owned. For example, most civilians cannot attain a sniper rifle capable of blowing a hole in a tank from 2 miles away. That makes sense, most don't need that capability. Now, imagine if it was perfectly legal to sell that sniper rifle...the black market would not need to exist. The REASON that the black market exists is because there is underground demand. By bringing the demand aboveground vendors are safe and in the daylight where cops are around and people can get them. Now, there will always be people who 1. want a gun that is "off the grid" those are what we call Career criminals, murderers, thiefs, etc. Or, those who want a gun tax free, that market will ALWAYS exist. Drugs are underground because ANY form of possession is illegal under the federal government. If they were legalized people would buy from their local tobacconist and get doses of controlled purities. Yes there would be people growing marijuana/poppies/coca plants at home that would be "under the table" in regards to taxation but perfectly legal.

2.The amount of money we make from Cigarettes is staggering, it's huge. It's public info on the government. Tobacco is a big product in this country, know whats the biggest? Marijuana, thats right, according to the DEA... Marijuana is Americas biggest domestic product. The addicts that you claim we would abusing are 1.Not all drug users are addicts, personally I've tried a lot of drugs, I'm in college studying economics I don't need a daily fix of anything. But you argue the physical dependence of something like heroin, sure, It's addicting. But the amount you take can be regulated with a doctor instructing you and can be brought to a manageable level as most addicts manage to do (according to the speaker I listened to that I mentioned before)

Further, "While I agree that a hit of Marijuana might not entail an immediate degradation of personal standards and well-being, I think that hard drugs like heroin are extremely harmful, even if taken only once. In fact, heroin is so dangerous because that first time is the initial high, and every fix after is an effort to return to the high of the first time. Not only that, but drugs like heroin and Crack create real, physical addictions. It's not about a psychological habit, it's about a body being hijacked by a drug and responding with real and dangerous withdrawal symptoms."

Are you a doctor? No. So don't propose anything further the section "personal standards and well-being" is COMPLETELY subjective. This is a lifestyle you disagree with, that's hardly a basis for a decision.

Even further...is it your business? The government should butt out of what I put in my body, I know the risks and the government should educate children about the risks so they know the real stats instead of "their buddies" telling them.

If we follow your chain of reason then we should make illegal most things in our society, caffeine, aspartame, cars, alcohol, cigarettes, etc. You argue if something is dangerous then it should be illegal, so make up your mind. I'm sure you use one of the things I just listed...

3. We have two choices, waste billions of your tax dollars or make drugs legal and finance a way for your children to have free college education!

4.Why do you play soccer? Because you like it. Why do I take shrooms and smoke weed? Because I like it. It's my personal decision to not take anything harder, why should anyone decide what I can and can't do with my body. You must be opposed to my getting piercings, giving blood, etc. They ARE NOT in a separate category, they are completely recreational. If a casual user passes into a stage of chronic addiction then send him to an addiction clinic, or let him die, that is his personal decision.

My point with that dialogue argument is that NO ONE would give up something they like unless they had a gun pointed to their head.

I've tried some addicting drugs, I didn't even have a twinge of a desire to try them again the next day. Because of the illegal status of drugs, the only users of drugs you hear about are addicts and dealers, you hear nothing of the casual users who 1. don't get addicted 2. get caught. Never of the others, and anyway it's NO ONE'S BUSINESS WHAT I PUT IN MY BODY!

5.Evaluate the sources of the studies that those websites quote. It's extremely ignorant of you to dismiss them so quickly.

The point is that the government is lying to us with their ads and trying to turn us off to drugs through propaganda.

I didn't send you to propaganda data. I sent you to propaganda websites that quote REAL Studies. Read through the articles and find the original source, I believe the fox news one was from quite a prestigious institute. OH! The Journal of the National cancer institute..... THAT'S REALLY UNCREDITED!!

6. I will reiterate, guns are not completely legal. They are illegal to own without permits, and they are illegal to posses certain genres of guns. Alcohol is "legal" why do people like to drink ever clear and absinthe? Because the government regulates it. If something is COMPLETELY LEGAL with NO restrictions then the black market will dissappear because there will be no need for it to exist.

Norm Stamper DOES constitute an argument, as one of the police officers dealing with drugs and the chief of police of one of the drug capitals of the world I think he would have the authority to rule yes or no on the legalization debate.

I'm sure you could present 1 million and 1. But 1 million and 1 people proposing xyz are not right because of numbers. 1 million and 1 people can be wrong. 1 expert vs. 1 million and 1 people who don't like drugs.

Also, Norm is a part of LEAP a national organization, I recommend reading up.

Bottom line, the government has no role telling me what I can and cannot do with my own person (up until I endanger someone by DUI or something) this doctrine is otherwise known as natural liberty. If I do not infringe upon the rights of others then my rights shall not be infringed against.

Ladies and gentlemen, in the interest of saving our government money, releasing good americans from prison who should never of been sent there, and being able to enjoy my free time, I strongly encourage you all to vote pro.
Aietius

Con

Aietius forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by orville 8 years ago
orville
a job well done, again tius.. the topic raised by PRO is very interesting and daring as well.. i agree that at a certain level, marijuana cures.. but, nevertheless, it`s addictive and this adiction leads to devastation of the boy and most of all the self-esteem of the user.. and am not referring only to marijuana, but as what tuis stated,"ALL DRUGS." drugs are actually legal, by the way.. i think what`s missing was the proper name of the topic.. it should`ve been "ILLEGAL DRUGS" or "DRUGS BEING ABUSED." the democracy of any individuals are vast and easly abused.. what do i mean by this? if a person uses "ILLEGAL DRUGS", immediately that liberty is used.. but for someone to foolishly decide on using `em is just stool.. i give this round to tius.. astonishing!^_^
Posted by Aietius 8 years ago
Aietius
Didn't mean to run out of time >.< I always meant to respond but I always just forgot or was too tired or something.
Posted by Tainted 8 years ago
Tainted
Looks like you did it again and got told again, Horboggles...

G'job, Aietius. It seems our friend, Horboggles, was the one giving bad sources and "propoganda" ;)
Posted by Harboggles 8 years ago
Harboggles
But guns aren't legal. They are HIGHLY regulated.

That's the responsibility of the parent.

1. The parent should not of left them around
2.He shouldn't of left his small child near the shrooms.

That's negligence. Cases like that have only happened 1/million. I've read "of" them but they are extremely rare and they come from cases where the parents abilities come into question.

But all of you forget....

It is not, should not ever be the decision of the federal government what goes into our bodies. I am not arguing that drugs are healthy, but it's up to every person to decide...
Posted by Olhando 8 years ago
Olhando
I agree with Aietius here, Harboggles is going down a slippery slope.

As far as current studies go, we are still unsure what exactly we are even looking at. And there are cases of overdose, and by allowing public access to a potentially deadly substance the government may as well charge itself with assisted suicide. OK so guns are potentially deadly, but their use is amended to our rights for 'protection', and thats not the argument.

What were to happen if we legalized shrooms and LSD and a small child (who at a young age puts everything in their mouth) eats a few LSD tabs or mushroom caps, and the mother or father can't stop him because they are passed out.

It would be ignorant to argue that all Americans are responsible enough for psychoactive drugs.
Posted by Aietius 8 years ago
Aietius
I don't have time to make a formal argument atm, but I'm just going to point out real quickly that perhaps it would be in your best interest to read what I write if you want to rebut it =D

You say that black markets wouldn't exist for a legalized product, and then seem to be forgetting my example of the underground gun market.
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