If and when marijuana is legalized, should there be an age limit?
Hello, good luck, and now time for the debate!
The resolution states: If and when marijuana is legalized, should there be an age limit. Because there were no rules stated in the first speech given by my opponent, I will debate this topic using a LD format and only discussing morality, rather than practically. Even though I am arguing there should be no age limit, I will leave the decisions for babies and toddlers up to the parents because from the ages of roughly 0-9, children cannot grasp the concept of marijuana and the outcomes that come from using it.
1) Allowing youth to use marijuana maximises objective autonomy. Autonomy is the ability to make choices for yourself. The results of your life should come from your decisions, not the decisions of others. If you can cognitively conceive what a “high” is and the consequences of it, then you should be allowed to experience it. According to a study (1) there is no correlation between intelligence level and marijuana. The fear is generated from worser drugs masquerading and using marijuana as a shield while they are far worse. There is also no correlation between marijuana usage and crimes (2). In fact, marijuana usage may lower crimes and in result, homicide rates.
2) Marijuana has medical benefits, and because their are no correlations between effectiveness of marijuana by age, therefore there should not be an age limit for this. Lets look at a 14 year old named Oliver Miller. Before the legalisation of medical marijuana in his state of New York Oliver had 100’s of seizures per day. The only treatment was cannabis oil. By imposing an age limit you are denying the right to a life saving medical treatment. You are denying the right to live. What a coincidence, by denying the right of autonomy (autonomy to use marijuana), you are denying the right of life. Another child named Joey Perez was diagnosed with autism at birth. He shrunk to about 46 pounds until he stabled using medical marijuana to help with his symptoms. If you vote pro, you are allowing a 46 pound child to die. If you vote pro, you are allowing a child to die of 100’s of seizures a day.
3) Now on a brighter and less fear-mongering note, Marijuana is natural. Thats the simple point I will make here. Marijuana is a plant found in nature. Shouldn’t humans have the right to what is in their backyard?
In my next round I will rebut. This is merely my constructive speech
For this rebuttal I will first go over my opponents claims/case and then go over the attacks he has made on my case.
1) He supports medical marijuana for children. The resolution states: If and when marijuana is legalised, should there be an age limit? My opponent is arguing that all people below a certain age should not be allowed to use marijuana because the resolution does not specify certain types of people. He stated - “I agree completely with its help with the youth that deal with daily seizures or any kind of unfortunate disability that is a big part of their lives but that can be resolved by simply prescribing them with this (soon to be) medication.” Therefore when my opponent cedes the claim about medical marijuana he/she in turn loses the debate on topicality.
2) My opponent proposes a straw man fallacy by saying that youth would be using marijuana at “uncontrolled proportions”. I never made the claim that there shouldn't be laws on portion size because this debate is only about the legal age to use marijuana. My opponent stated that people that use marijuana will be “too fogged in the head”. You provide no quantitative evidence on the effects of marijuana so this point can be considered null and void. You even said, “not much research has been published for me to actually show the accuracy of what I am saying…” Furthermore what is the difference of effects between youth and adults? If marijuana effects everyone equally, why should their be an age limit?
3) My opponent disagreed about personal autonomy and then advocates for less autonomy by saying, “as adults I feel we should take responsibility on who uses marijuana.” Less autonomy creates a less free willed society.
1) He disagreed with my first claim that Marijuana would maximise objective autonomy. Yet the reasons he disagreed were nothing related to my point. Because my opponent did not attack autonomy, my point that marijuana still maximises objective autonomy stands.
3) He never attacked my third point so it stands.
You talk about autonomy ( the ability to make choices for yourself) in the first round of this debate but children from the age of 0-9 are exceptions because that is left for their parents to decide. Having said that, you claim a child born with autism shrunk 46 pounds but became stable after the use of medical marijuana. of course any kid is destined to be prescribed a certain medication for their birth defect, that's if they have one. that being with the permission of their parents. children under the age of 18 have no say in what they want or what they get to do, that's just how social moralities have grown to be. So as dependent children they don't exactly have the full ability of autonomy.
The mention of how crimes would be lower and the decrease of homicide rates is not even necessary to be stated, no one said it would be a cause from the use of this drug. We are talking about age limits that would restrict kids from the use of marijuana because there is consequences to the use of this substance at such a young age that does affect their growth, specifically, their brain. There are studies that show marijuana interferes attention, motivation, memory and learning abilities. Students who use regularly tend to get lower grades and are likely to drop out of school than those who don't use marijuana. Statistics show that 78% of 2.4 million people that started using marijuana were aged 12 to 20, that depicts quite a disappointing view of our near future for our youth. Too many teens will be jobless and who knows, there just might be an increase in crime rates sense they can't reach their needs.
As for the difference between adults and children's effects from marijuana, our brains regions are far more vulnerable to any toxins. Some regions of our frontal cortex isn't finished wiring themselves for service until the early twenties for females and late twenties for males. The frontal lobe of our brain contains dopamine and the dopamine system is associated with reward, attention, short-term memory tasks, planning, and motivation. So in turn, marijuana has very important effects on our brains at a young age so its important we put an age limit on the use of marijuana.
Yugandda forfeited this round.
GustavoD.B forfeited this round.
Yugandda forfeited this round.