The Instigator
neokansas
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
SargonOfAkkad
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

Big pharmaceutical companies don't want cannabis legalized.

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Post Voting Period
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/30/2015 Category: Politics
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 985 times Debate No: 69188
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (1)
Votes (0)

 

neokansas

Pro

Big pharmaceutical companies don't want cannabis legalized and are the reason that many federal and state legislators are against it as well. These legislators have received millions in kickbacks / campaign contributions from big pharma lobbyists and are committed to keeping it illegal. They resist even rescheduling it as a substance with medicinal value. Yet the evidence is there that cannabis is a miracle drug for many with ailments that get no relief from pharmaceuticals.
SargonOfAkkad

Con

Ave

I accept.

Vale
Debate Round No. 1
neokansas

Pro

neokansas forfeited this round.
SargonOfAkkad

Con

Ave

Pro has not offered any arguments for the resolution. Therefore, the burden of proof has not been met, and a Con vote is justified.

Vale
Debate Round No. 2
neokansas

Pro

neokansas forfeited this round.
SargonOfAkkad

Con

Ave

Pro has not offered any arguments for the resolution. Therefore, the burden of proof has not been met, and a Con vote is justified.

Vale
Debate Round No. 3
neokansas

Pro

neokansas forfeited this round.
SargonOfAkkad

Con

SargonOfAkkad forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
neokansas

Pro

Sorry about that. I was never notified that my challenge was accepted. Hmmm? Anyway...here goes.

This is a hard topic to prove, obviously because of the subject matter, the covering of evidence and the politically damaging potential of the subject matter, so I will offer "corroborating evidence" and ask that folks use their minds and think critically before forming their own opinions.

Here's a list of congressional leaders who are top recipients of campaign contributions from large pharmaceutical companies, none of which support legalization. (1)

The Community Anti-Drug Coalition of America (a.k.a "CADCA") is largely funded by Purdue Pharmaceuticals (2) the makers of Oxycontin and other opiate based drugs that kill 1,000 a year in Kentucky alone. Yet CADCA is one of the loudest opponents of cannabis legalization (3). But even though CADCA claims to be against all drug abuse, they don't advocate publicly against the real drug abuse killers, opiate-based pharmaceuticals. Consequently, there's no documented evidence that ANY deaths have occurred from marijuana without any other drugs present, mental / physical health history an issue.

The fact that cannabis is still a federally-scheduled drug as one with NO POTENTIAL to help ailments, yet the federal government themselves own the patent for cannabis and submitted it as such with the following language, Patent #6,630,507:
"Cannabinoids have been found to have antioxidant properties, unrelated to NMDA receptor antagonism. This new found property makes cannabinoids useful in the treatment and prophylaxis of wide variety of oxidation associated diseases, such as ischemic, age-related, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases. The cannabinoids are found to have particular application as neuroprotectants, for example in limiting neurological damage following ischemic insults, such as stroke and trauma, or in the treatment of neurodegenerative diseases, such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease and HIV dementia. Nonpsychoactive cannabinoids, such as cannabidoil, are particularly advantageous to use because they avoid toxicity that is encountered with psychoactive cannabinoids at high doses useful in the method of the present invention. A particular disclosed class of cannabinoids useful as neuroprotective antioxidants is formula (I) wherein the R group is independently selected from the group consisting of H, CH.sub.3, and COCH.sub.3. ##STR1##" (4).

This patent implicates many within our own federal government in the 1930's that outlawed cannabis (previously legal and widely prescribed medicine) because of political pressure from pharmaceutical companies who could not profit from a plant that could be grown and did not require synthesis and manufacturing. Since, many prominent doctors and scientists are coming out and stating it's potential (5).

As long as cannabis is scheduled as a drug with no medical value, it is difficult to conduct research that proves its benefits. Yet there are thousands of years of anecdotal evidence and many families getting relief from seizures and moving to Colorado in order to avoid persecution and prosecution (6). Yet, if cannabis was legal for centuries, and many are getting relief from many disorders and ailments including cancer (7), than why hasn't it been researched thoroughly?

The only logical conclusion is that by legalizing cannabis, pharmaceutical companies would potentially lose billions and billions of dollars of revenue.

1. http://www.opensecrets.org...

2. http://www.cadca.org...

3. http://www.cadca.org...

4. http://patft.uspto.gov...

5. http://thehill.com...
http://www.cnn.com...

6. http://en.wikipedia.org...

7. http://www.sciencedirect.com...
SargonOfAkkad

Con

Ave

Pro's argument is predicated on an unjustified assumption. Pro tells us that members of Congress receive funding from pharmaceutical companies, and implicitly assumes that this funding must be given out so that the legalization of marijuana can be prevented. However, there are numerous reasons that one could think of, besides opposition to marijuana, for why a pharmaceutical company would lobby members of Congress. Aside from thousands of other examples of pharmaceutical companies lobying on non-marijuana related legislation, one could point to lobbying in support of the Medicare Prescription Drug Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003.

Pro believes that we should conclude that this lobbying is done for the purpose of keeping marijuana illegal due to his assertion that those who are lobbied by the industry oppose it. Pro claims that all of the top recepients of money from pharmaceutical industries oppose the legalization of marijuana, but this claim is false. Harry Reid, who is the top recepient of funds from pharmaceutical companies according to Pro's source, has publicly spoken out in favor of medical marijuana. The second, Senator Ed Markey, is generally anti-marijuana, but voted in favor of the Hinchey-Rohrabacher amendment that would make it illegal for the federal government from arresting medical marijuana patients in states with medical marijuana. I could perform a similar analysis for many more people, but I do not wish to drag out the point. We can clearly see that the pharmaceutical companies give money to politicians that advance medical marijuana, refuting Pro's contention that they are doing so in order to stop marijuana from being legalized. The fact that the pharmaceutical industry gives money to those who support medical marijuana also ties into my assertion that lobbying from the pharmaceutical industry goes beyond marijuana, for if the companies are not paying these senators to oppose marijuana, then they must be paying them for a different interest.

The reasons why pharmaceutical companies do not speak out against opiods, despite the fact that many people overdose on them, is for the simple reason that pharmaceutical industries do not prescribe medications, dispense them, or enforce laws requiring one to take their medications as prescribed. When taking at therapeutic doses, opiods do not kill healthy human beings. If somebody overdoses on an opiod, then they are not taking therapeutic doses, making it a matter for law enforcement to handle rather than an industry responsible for the manufacturing of prescription drugs. Pharmaceutical companies are no more responsible for overdoses than Ford is for car accidents.

Pro over-emphasizes the fact that cannabis is still a Schedule I drug. Despite this status, states continue to pass medical marijuana laws, and the federal government has stopped enforcing marijuana laws. Therefore, it is absurd to suggest that one would try to fight medical marijuana by keeping it a Schedule 1 drug, since this status has clearly done nothing to stop medical marijuana from becoming a reality. A law that is not enforced is really no law at all, so considering that the federal government no longer enforces marijuana laws, the official status of cannabis becomes a moot point. This effectively demolishes Pro's contention that pharmaceutical companies have a practical interest in keeping cannabis a Schedule I drug.

The crux of Pro's thesis is that pharmaceutical companies want to stop cannabis from being legalized because they will lose money. Pro seems to be forgetting what the point of these companies even is. Pharmaceutical companies make money by manufacturing drugs that have medicinal value. If cannabis has medicinal value, then pharmaceutical companies only stand to gain from these potential sales. Indeed, many pharmaceutical companies have started to benefit from medical cannabis. For example, the pharmaceutical company Unimed, which claims revenue of twelve billion Euros per year, manufactures cannabis-based drugs such as Dronabinol. While I understand that this is a European company, they have American counterparts, and the salient point is that a pharmaceutical company can benefit from legalized cannabis.

Pro's argument makes many illogical assumptions about the motives and interests of pharmaceutical companies, and indeed, at some places, fails to grasp their purpose in the first place. At many points, he makes erroneous assertions, telling us that the top twenty recepients of money from pharmaceutical companies do not support marijuana legalization, even though many of them do. Furthermore, Pro forfeited all of his rounds except for one, only giving me one round to refute his thesis. For these reasons, a Con vote is the most justified.

Vale















Debate Round No. 5
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Toxifrost 2 years ago
Toxifrost
Citations for any of this or is this just another "Its a conspiracy maaaaannn" debate?
No votes have been placed for this debate.