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Drugs should regulated and distributed by governments, not gangs.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/3/2013 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 588 times Debate No: 37316
Debate Rounds (3)
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Drug enforcement officials often cite drug-related violence as a reason that drugs must be eliminated from our society, but it is actually the system of drug prohibition that causes much of the violence. Just as alcohol prohibition allowed organized crime to flourish in the 1920s, drug prohibition empowers a dangerous underground market that breeds violent crime throughout the United States and the world. The illegality of drugs has inflated the price, and thus the profit, of drugs substantially. With it, the competition for drug markets has intensified, often through violence. If we want to solve our nation"s drug problems, we need to focus less on obtaining convictions and more on preventing addictions. We should be treating people with addictions, not handcuffing them.The United States is home to less than 5 percent of the world"s population but nearly 25 percent of its prisoners, in part because of the overly harsh consequences of a drug conviction. Many of the 2.3 million people behind bars (and 5 million under criminal justice supervision) in this country are being punished for a drug offense. If every American who has ever possessed illicit drugs were punished for it, nearly half of the U.S. population would have drug violations on their records.


I'd like to thank my opponent for the opportunity to debate such a challenging argument. I will be fighting against the motion to distribute and regular drugs by the government rather than by gangs.

Drug Use and Violence
My first argument would be stating that there actually is a connection between drug use and violence. A study done in 2008 showed that 40% of arrested people at the test site were under the influence of marijuana (1). Among state prisoners who were abusing drugs, 53% had at least three prior sentences to probation or incarceration, compared to 32% of other inmates. Drug dependent or abusing state prisoners (48%) were also more likely than other inmates (37%) to have been on probation or parole supervision at the time of their arrest (1).

Black Market Drugs
You also make mention of criminal violence in the underground drug market. Official estimates put the number of people killed in drug-related violence since late 2006 at about 60,000 people. Victims include drug gang members, security forces, and innocent bystanders (2). However, according to a UN report, 200,000 people die per year from abuse of heroin, cocaine, and other drugs (3). These statistics make it clear that drug prevention is a much larger issue than the violence caused by the distribution of illegal drugs itself.

Drug Convictions
We can also come to the agreement that conviting drug users rather than helping them is not the best solution, however it has been made clear by the ONDCP that they are making great investments in anti-drug media, support programs, and promoting the placement of drug abusers in rehabilitation rather than incarcerating them (1). While we can both agree that the amount of people in prison because of drug convictions is absurd, I would like to state that legalizing drugs even as minor as marijuana which placed 11,406 teens in the ER in 2010 (4) is not the solution.

The common argument that it should be legal as long as it doesn't harm other people is ludicrous. If you legalize something that permits people the easy access to harm themselves, you will undoubtedly end up with a physically and mentally weaker society.

Debate Round No. 1


The drug war is responsible for hundreds of billions of wasted tax dollars and misallocated government spending, as well as devastating human costs that far outweigh the damage caused by drugs alone. The United States" unrivaled incarceration rate is a constant financial drain, causing an immeasurable loss in workforce productivity, and puts a strain on scant legal and law enforcement resources. While the federal government spends billions trying to reduce the demand for illegal drugs through prohibition, treatment consistently proves to be a more effective, cheaper and more humane way to lower the demand for illegal drugs. The war on drugs has also driven the drug trade underground, creating a violent illicit market that is responsible for far too many lost lives and broken communities. Organized crime, gangs and drug cartels have the most to gain financially from prohibition, and these profits can easily be funneled into arms smuggling, violence and corruption. The devastation wrought by Mexican cartels in particular has made it far too costly to continue with a failed prohibition strategy.

Prohibition is also to blame for an enormous opportunity cost. Despite the tax revenue and economic opportunities that a regulated marijuana market could generate, our laws still prevent the legal sale of the nation"s largest cash crop. Combined with the savings from ending prohibition enforcement, marijuana taxation could generate revenue for federal and state governments.


I'd like to inform the audience and my opponent that it has come to my attention that my opponent is plagiarizing articles from for both round debates. It would also come to my attention that his plagiarized argument lacks sources and contradicts my arguments without actually rebuting any of my key debates.

I would like to void round 2, and if my opponent can make his own debate for round 3 rebuting my arguments or creating his own, I'd greatly appreciate it.
Debate Round No. 2


mhop0923 forfeited this round.


My opponent has forfeited. ggnore
Debate Round No. 3
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