The Instigator
Sam_Lowry
Pro (for)
Winning
85 Points
The Contender
lilmatt0514
Con (against)
Losing
7 Points

Heroin should be made legal

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/27/2010 Category: Politics
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 5,326 times Debate No: 11903
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (8)
Votes (14)

 

Sam_Lowry

Pro

Heroin, also known as diacetylmorphine , should be made legal and subject to standards of purity similar to most commercial food products and pharmaceuticals.

In debates of legalizing drugs such as marijuana, both advocates and opponents refer to Heroin as the "hardest of drugs". It is often assumed without saying that virtually all would agree that Heroin is one of the most dangerous illicit drugs, and one only the staunchest opponents of prohibition would even consider legalizing. This commonly held position is flawed in that Heroin is not exceptionally dangerous compared to many more popular drugs, both licit and illicit, and should be legalized regardless of the legal statuses of other drugs.

One of the most commonly cited and misunderstood side effect of Heroin is the infamous overdose. The overwhelming majority of alleged overdoses can be accredited to impurities within the Heroin itself and the mixing of Heroin and other drugs. Heroin has a very high LD-50 compared to to the therapeutic dose needed to induce euphoria. One would in fact need to administer six to nine times their "normal" dose in order to induce a true overdose. Even if this factor were to be utterly ignored, Heroin overdose is remarkably easy to treat. A simple injection of nalorphine is usually adequate in preventing death via overdose. When comparing the risks of Heroin overdose to the risks of overdose by other drugs such as Alcohol and Cocaine, it is clear that overdose "problem" associated with Heroin is not particularly sinister, unavoidable, or even inherently deadly. Legalizing Heroin and subjugating it to regulation and a standard of purity would eliminate the deaths caused by impure Heroin and serve to reduce other health risks.

http://www.drugpolicy.org...
http://www.ukcia.org...

Some commonly cited problems associated with Heroin are the allegedly inherent health risks, such as HIV, Hepatitis, vein damage, lung infections, liver damage, oral decay and other maladies. However, virtually every major side effect can be attributed to either impurity, improper administration, or environmental factors. Legalization would have a huge impact on combating the problems associated with not only with Heroin itself, but also on reducing the environmental factors associated with Heroin use. If legalized and regulated to a medical standard of purity, Heroin would not only be pure and biologically safe, but would be remarkably cheap as well. Heroin prices are inflated by the black market at levels approaching 1000%, which is one of the primary causes of destitution among addicts. Many addicts are forced to stoop to theft and other crime in order to fund their habit. However, Heroin use does not necessarily entail criminal behavior. In fact, In a Liverpool Heroin clinic, an experimental prescription based system found people who were getting steady supplies of clean Heroin were 93% less likely to commit property crimes.

http://www.ukcia.org...
http://findarticles.com...
http://www.boogieonline.com...

Furthermore, as the prices of the drug go down and the purity goes up, drug users tend to be less inclined to subject themselves to intravenous administration. This can be demonstrated by the Heroin epidemic among United States troops during the Vietnam War. When soldier had access to cheap and pure Heroin, over 90% smoked, snorted, or administered it orally. After military crackdowns on Heroin usage and possession, injection became commonplace in an attempt to maximize efficiency and reduce costs. In this sense, cheap and pure Heroin would greatly reduce the problems associated with IV administration in that fewer people would subjugate themselves to IV administration.

http://www.druglibrary.org...

The major and very real risk involved with Heroin is its addictive quality. It is on the same level of addictiveness as cigarettes and other tobacco products, although being comparatively harmless both to individuals and society compared to said products. Several studies have shown that fast food and junk foods can have addictive effects that rival that of Heroin, and yet pure Heroin is likely a more benign substance than most junk foods.

http://en.wikipedia.org...
http://www.nydailynews.com...

This is not meant as a general argument against all prohibition, or an argument in favor of legalizing all drugs. However, prohibiting Heroin is clearly unnecessary, and legalization bears very little risk to society or individual health. Unbeknown to even hardcore drug legalization advocates, Heroin is not the "hard, dangerous drug" both sides tend to acknowledge it as being. Rather, it is one of the more benign drugs, and utterly incomparable to drugs such as Cocaine, Methamphetamine, Tobacco, or even alcohol in the category of physical and psychological harm.
lilmatt0514

Con

That Would Never Happen It Kills People All The Time !!! the only reason you would be for the legalization of herion is if you do it!
Debate Round No. 1
Sam_Lowry

Pro

My opponent has argued that the only reason that I wish for Heroin to be legal is that I must be a user. First and foremost, even if I was a Heroin user, this is within itself not a valid point, as advocating for legislative change that benefits oneself is neither immoral nor inherently based on bad logic. One would hardly consider this a valid form of argument against a taxpayer who lobbies to lower taxes.

My opponent also makes the argument that Heroin kills people all the time. I acknowledge this point as semi-valid, as I have explained in my previous argument. Street Heroin does in fact cause many people to die, in the same sense that bathtub brewed alcohol caused many unnecessary deaths during prohibition. The distinction I make between Heroin and alcohol is that Heroin addiction does not inherently lead to physical or mental harm. Legalization would cause a dramatic decline in Heroin related deaths, as people will participate in a less risky form of use while using a safer form of the drug, while also discouraging the tendency of polydrug use often employed in order to augment the effect of week and impure Heroin.

I will happily respond to any further argument m opponent wishes to present.
lilmatt0514

Con

there are no good outcomes with the use of heroin thats just plan logic and everyone knows it illegal because it kills people ! Do Not Legalize it ever!
Debate Round No. 2
Sam_Lowry

Pro

My opponent claims that nothing good can come from Heroin use. This statement is false, as Heroin (and most every drug within the opiate family) has been used medicinally for as long as we have known of their existence. Opiates have been used to treat illnesses ranging from basic maladies such diarrhea to even treating or replacing more dangerous addictions such as alcoholism. Opiates are also well documented in their ability to suppress coughing and other destructive illnesses.

"there are reasons, in the physical effects of addiction and alcoholic intoxication, to believe that . . . narcotic addiction would be less disruptive than alcoholism."
--Dr. O'Donnell, a Kentucky physician discussing opiate addiction.

"More than any other unstable group," Dr. Kolb wrote, "drunkards are likely to be benefited in their social relations by becoming addicts. When they give up alcohol and start using opium [i.e. morphine or other opiates], they are able to secure the effect for which they are striving without becoming drunk or violent."
--Dr. Lawrence Kolb, Assistant Surgeon General of the United States Public Health Service.

"Maimed and shattered survivors from a hundred battlefields, diseased and disabled soldiers released from hostile prisons, anguished and hopeless wives and mothers, made so by the slaughter of those who were dearest to them, have found, many of them, temporary relief from their sufferings in opium."
--Dr. Horatio Day, describing the usage of opiates as tranquilizers among civil war veterans.

"Last century the pain that led to addiction was often physical; today it is mainly psychic. Most of today's addicted persons have discovered, in other words, that opiates relieve their anxieties, tensions, feelings of inadequacy, and other emotional conditions they cannot bring themselves to cope with in a normal way."
--United States Public Health Service, 1963.

http://www.nytimes.com...
http://druglibrary.org...

I would also like to point out that despite the fact that the illegality of Heroin is maintained due to it's perceived effects (emphasis on perceived), it was not made illegal solely due to it's alleged health effects. Opiate prohibition has strong roots within the racist Anti-Chinese movement.

"If the Chinaman cannot get along without his 'dope,' we can get along without him."
--The Committee on the Acquirement of the Drug Habit of the American Pharmaceutical Association

http://www.drugpolicy.org...
lilmatt0514

Con

heroin is bad it killed my father and many other people it makes an addiction that is not able to become overcame its so bad dont ever do heroin
Debate Round No. 3
8 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Posted by SoSilly 6 years ago
SoSilly
The con is so funny in the debate, albeit the fact about it killing people being sad. Pro isn't arguing that we let it kill more people though. He's arguing that we make it less lethal.
Posted by yayawhatever 7 years ago
yayawhatever
Legalization of all drugs would put criminals out of business. In Seattle about 6 months ago, some dealer(s) in a lower income area were dispensing tainted heroin that killed 3 people to my knowledge.
Posted by bloodsnhall 7 years ago
bloodsnhall
My Father was a Vet that first tried herion in Nam and it eventually took him over at 47 with that said if it was legal back then my father could have been in the care of a doctor and may have been able to get better help from his family and medical physicain instead of having to turn to the streets for an addiction that was obtained fighting for his life in another country. He never was treated for his addiction while still using and enlisted in the service for years. I also have to state that society pushed these men into the streets by the bleeding hearts screaming that they were baby killers only furthering the pschological trama they had to deal with or have til this day. My father would have been 63 this saterday. Semper FI

Con I understand and feel for you, but turning people away from a seriously addictive drug will only make them look elsewhere. I couldnt imagine if they made tabacoo illegal. What some people would do to get it? I really believe that if someone has smoked for 20 yrs and has never stolen in there life would be forced to steal and would be put in jail by the same goverment that influenced their addictions. I think we should legalize it for those who are already addicted in hopes that they can be treated for their addiction and some how overcome it and to also get them off the streets and away from our youth.

I am thinking about how states are legalizing weed and how the goverment is going to put you in jail for being addicted to it, it makes no sense to me.

Con is right when he says dont do herion it is definitly not good for you.
Posted by BeautifulDisaster 7 years ago
BeautifulDisaster
With each round, I kept wanting and expecting con to say something...I don't know... great? But then in R3, when I read what con wrote, I just wanted to give him a hug! So sad, but con should have spoke up sooner about his dad and maybe tried to give his personal experiences of what he saw when his dad was on heroin or SOMETHING!!! I was told from a friend, who is really into this site and really good at it, that it's not about emotions it's about logic; con could've done so much more with this debate. And although my personal opinion is with con on this one, I can't reward him for some of the things that matter in this debate. It's a shame.
Posted by LiquidNazgul 7 years ago
LiquidNazgul
You know, I hate heroin and drugs in general with a passion, but I think the Con should have been much more mature and...er...intelligent.
Posted by infam0us 7 years ago
infam0us
ngl... swim has done it a couple times and i don't see what's so bad about it.
Posted by JacobPearson 7 years ago
JacobPearson
It's ridiculous so many voted for that ludicrous opposition argument. All of it was shoddily written and based on the principle that we do not own our bodies and therefore it should be illegal to do as we wish to them.
Posted by feverish 7 years ago
feverish
Wow matt, what a waste of a potentially interesting debate.
14 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by dummy 6 years ago
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