The Instigator
ConservativeAmerican
Con (against)
Winning
9 Points
The Contender
teddy2013
Pro (for)
Losing
6 Points

Legality of Marijuana in the US

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
ConservativeAmerican
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/17/2013 Category: Society
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 4,302 times Debate No: 30346
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (4)
Votes (4)

 

ConservativeAmerican

Con

I will simply use this as a round of acceptance for both sides.

A have a few base rules, you may add your own, but not take away from mine, since I am the instigator.

- Opium can be compared to Marijuana (to an extent)
- Neither opponent may use Ad Hominem to argue (PA to somehow legitimize your point)
- No using unfair/unbalanced sources (Wiki allowed, forums not allowed)

I politely ask voters to keep bias out of their decision and give a reasonable verbal explanation as to why they voted for someone, anyone who can not meet this criteria will not technically be counted in the official results.

Best of luck to my opponent!
teddy2013

Pro

Adam, I accept your challenge. I accept your rules as well. Back to you for opening arguments. Good luck.
Debate Round No. 1
ConservativeAmerican

Con

I thank my opponent for accepting the argument request and wish him the best of luck in this debate

I will be arguing a few topics to start, here they are:

1. Cannabis is bad for diplomacy, here is why:

Since you are libertarian, I would assume that you want to minimize the gov't and gov't spending as much as possible. Legalizing Cannabis will actually INCREASE the scope of gov't. The gov't will have two choices diplomatically when they legalize cannabis (If you come up with an alternative option, you may tell me what it is).

A. Don't enforce the exportation of it to other countries that have it banned (Terrible for diplomacy, allowing your country to bring illegal substances in to another country is always bad for diplomacy)

B. INCREASE border enforcement (Costs more $$$), and crack down on all illegal Cannabis&Narcotics exports.

Both of these will have extremely negative effects on our country, or any other country.

2. China and Opium

I will not go on an extended argument for this, I will copy and paste my original argument on an old DDO post I made:

"Is taking the situation in China where the British introduced opium to the Chinese a good historical example of why we shouldn't have marijuana? Marijuana is a little less potent than opium, but both boil down to virtually the same thing. My argument can cite various sources of why opium/marijuana substance is dangerous.

http://en.wikipedia.org......
http://answers.yahoo.com......
http://isedphistory.wordpress.com......
http://faculty.quinnipiac.edu......

My sources fairly explain why Opium destroyed China's economy, society and resulted in multiple devastating wars."

Read my sources and they will cite the various failures of the lax opium policy in China, some are not applicable to modern society, some are.

3. Functioning and non-functioning Drug Users

Some people justify the usage of Marijuana and Cannabis by claiming that there are functioning and non-functioning drug users. The sources I have found claim that this is highly untrue. They also say that Cannabis and Marijuana may not be lethal, but they kill brain cells much faster than alcohol, and Cannabis acts as a gateway drugs to other lethal, more harmful drugs.

4. Your rights only extend out to the point that they don't affect others

As stated in the constitution, your rights can not get in the way of other people's rights. Marijuana, due to it's addictive qualities (my sources cite that Marijuana is, indeed addictive), can cause people who can not afford the substance they are addicted to, to do things they are not proud of. These things could include stealing from family members, or other people, abusing or hurting others due to their anger at withdrawal, and more.

5. The taxation argument

While my opponent may not agree with this, it does not take logic or even proof to back this simplistic, but true statement. People who sell Marijuana & Cannabis already have no regard to the law, why would they when it comes to allowing their weed to be taxed? The arguments I have stated above should outweigh the little bit of revenue we would gain from the minority who would tax their weed. People might still buy from the people who don't tax their substance because it will be cheaper, since they won't have to put their prices up from product taxation. You could crack down on those who don't tax their substance physically, but this would once again be detrimental to your libertarian argument, because it would cost money to enforce the taxation of marijuana!

My extra links are here:

http://www.expatica.com...
http://www.ibtimes.com...

Best of luck Teddy!
teddy2013

Pro

“Junk is not like alcohol or weed, a means to increased enjoyment of life. Junk is not a kick. It is a way of life.”
William S. Burroughs, “Naked Lunch”









Adam,
Thank you for your opening arguments. My purpose behind arguing for the legalization of marijuana, is not because I advocate its use, I do not, but rather because, we need, as a Country, to have our scarce resources focused on the real problems of addiction, particularly opiate addictions, which are an epidemic in every part of this Country, from the inner cities, to the most affluent suburbs.

Adam you have outlined several arguments, and many seem to share the same theme that marijuana and opiates are interchangeable. I profoundly disagree I have known pot smokers and I have known heroin addicts, and to compare marijuana users to heroin addicts, is like comparing an ant to a giraffe, the differences are immense, and consequences beyond compare.

Sadly, I have experienced these differences in my life. I have a close friend, Josh, who has been addicted to heroin for several years. Josh has been in and out of rehab, but every time his demons come back. Josh has much to live for, he is smart and personable he has had jobs, a home, a car, and other possessions. Beyond that, Josh has a Mom and a sister who he loves, and a 5 year old daughter who he adores., but given the choice between everything he has in life and heroin; heroin always wins.

I have severed ties with him, with the tough love message to Josh that I am part of everything else, if he chooses life over heroin.

I pray that I will get a call from Josh, from a recovery program, but I fear the call will come from the Coroner.


Sadly, Josh’s story is not unique. Below I have quoted others who have described in graphic detail, the horrors of addiction. As a Nation, rather then spending resources on marijuana enforcement, treating addiction is where we must devote our money, time, and energy.



“When you're using drugs, you're driven by this mystical black energy, a force inside you that just won't quit. And the weaker you get, the more you feed into that energy, and the more it fucks with you. When your spirit becomes dark and your lifestyle becomes dark, your existence is susceptible to infiltration by dark spirits. I've seen it so many times with addicts. You can see that they're controlled by dark energy, the way they look, their appearance, their voice, their behavior, it's not them.”

― Anthony Kiedis, Scar Tissue



“No construction stiff working overtime takes more stress and straining than we did just to stay high.“
- Gus Van Sant, “Drugstore Cowboy”


I caught you knockin'
at my cellar door
I love you, baby,
can I have some more
Ooh, ooh, the damage done.

I hit the city and
I lost my band
I watched the needle
take another man
Gone, gone, the damage done.

I sing the song
because I love the man
I know that some
of you don't understand
Milk-blood
to keep from running out.

I've seen the needle
and the damage done
A little part of it in everyone
But every junkie's
like a settin' sun.

- Neil Young, "Needle And The Damage Done"


“The junk merchant doesn’t sell his product to the consumer, he sells the consumer to the product. He does not improve and simplify his merchandise. He degrades and simplifies the client.”
-William S. Burroughs, “Naked Lunch”

Debate Round No. 2
ConservativeAmerican

Con

I am very sorry for your friend and I hope he can change for the better, but that hardly changes the fact that you did not address talking points 1, 3, 4, and 5.

I graciously and politely extend those talking points to the next round in hopes that you will address them this time.

To address your talking point, which is moving, but not very valid because it is an argument from personal experience, I would like to say that I am very aware that Cannabis and Marijuana are not even in the ballpark of Opiates, but as my sources cited, they are a gateway drug that usually leads to the usage of opiates and other much more dangerous drug. If we banned Marijuana federally and stressed more positive life choices among our youth, think about all the people that wouldn't be on opiates because they never got in to the gateway drug known as Cannabis/Marijuana! I agree that we (the US) are notoriously known for wasting our resources on symptom's of a problem and not the source, but I believe that Marijuana is one of the significant sources of our ever increasing problems with opiates.

Thank you for reading, I am excited to see your reply and hope you address my extended arguments this time.

-Adam
teddy2013

Pro

Adam,
Thank you for your arguments as well as your concern for my friend, I greatly appreciate it.

I will answer your talking points in this round. In the next round, I will expand on my contention that our resources are better spent in treating the demand for drugs such as opiates, instead of trying to control the supply of marijuana.

My purpose in round two was to make one significant point, and that was to argue passionately the differences between pot smokers and heroin users. In your first round you stated in talking point one "Marijuana is a little less potent than opium," If I could achieve only one point in round two it was to dispute the notion that the two drugs occupy the same universe. I am happy that you replied "I would like to say that I am very aware that Cannabis and Marijuana are not even in the ballpark of Opiates".

I do wish to make one additional point on debating, you stated in the last round, "your talking point, which is moving, but not very valid because it is an argument from personal experience,". Adam, I would argue that a individuals personal experience, when genuine and compelling are far better then any debater quoting yet another source like Wikipedia, or any other source. Obviously, a good debate can involve both, but do not discount personal experiences in debates, otherwise debates simply become exercises in "my source is better then your source".

While, I have previously addressed your overall theme that "Marijuana is a little less potent than opium," . Let me address some specifics of your particular talking points.

1. Cannabis is bad for diplomacy, here is why:
Since you are libertarian, I would assume that you want to minimize the gov't and gov't spending as much as possible. Legalizing Cannabis will actually INCREASE the scope of gov't. The gov't will have two choices diplomatically when they legalize cannabis (If you come up with an alternative option, you may tell me what it is).

A. Don't enforce the exportation of it to other countries that have it banned (Terrible for diplomacy, allowing your country to bring illegal substances in to another country is always bad for diplomacy)

B. INCREASE border enforcement (Costs more $$$), and crack down on all illegal Cannabis&Narcotics exports.

Both of these will have extremely negative effects on our country, or any other country.

Adam, it appears you are arguing apples and oranges. First, this debate is about marijuana only, so with respect, your references to narcotics are not applicable to this debate. Secondly, if we legalize marijuana for use in the United States, and appropriately outlaw exportation to Countries that ban it, there is not a bit of difference with how it is today. Currently, it is illegal to export marijuana, if it legalized for use in the States but exports are outlawed, then as far as exports go, nothing has changed. In any event, the U.S. is primarily an importer of marijuana, legalizing it to be grown in the States, eliminates the market for illegal importation, this frees up border agents to focus on larger issues, such as opiates.


2. China and Opium

I will not go on an extended argument for this, I will copy and paste my original argument on an old DDO post I made:

"Is taking the situation in China where the British introduced opium to the Chinese a good historical example of why we shouldn't have marijuana? Marijuana is a little less potent than opium, but both boil down to virtually the same thing. My argument can cite various sources of why opium/marijuana substance is dangerous.

My sources fairly explain why Opium destroyed China's economy, society and resulted in multiple devastating wars."

I quote my friend Adam, "Opium destroyed China's economy, society and resulted in multiple devastating wars.". Well put, it was opium, not Chinese people smoking a joint everyday at 4:20.


3. Functioning and non-functioning Drug Users

Some people justify the usage of Marijuana and Cannabis by claiming that there are functioning and non-functioning drug users. The sources I have found claim that this is highly untrue. They also say that Cannabis and Marijuana may not be lethal, but they kill brain cells much faster than alcohol, and Cannabis acts as a gateway drugs to other lethal, more harmful drugs.

I am not advocating the health benefits of recreational marijuana use. There are of course legitimate health benefits, from medical use, such as with increasing appetites of cancer patients. You stated above, "They also say that Cannabis and Marijuana may not be lethal." My main argument remains that we should focus on the drugs that are lethal.

4. Your rights only extend out to the point that they don't affect others

As stated in the constitution, your rights can not get in the way of other people's rights. Marijuana, due to it's addictive qualities (my sources cite that Marijuana is, indeed addictive), can cause people who can not afford the substance they are addicted to, to do things they are not proud of. These things could include stealing from family members, or other people, abusing or hurting others due to their anger at withdrawal, and more.

Adam, if someone steals, that is illegal, if they physically hurt someone, that is illegal. To criminalize marijuana because it may lead to bad behavior, is like banning cars because someone may cause a wreck.

5. The taxation argument

While my opponent may not agree with this, it does not take logic or even proof to back this simplistic, but true statement. People who sell Marijuana & Cannabis already have no regard to the law, why would they when it comes to allowing their weed to be taxed? The arguments I have stated above should outweigh the little bit of revenue we would gain from the minority who would tax their weed. People might still buy from the people who don't tax their substance because it will be cheaper, since they won't have to put their prices up from product taxation. You could crack down on those who don't tax their substance physically, but this would once again be detrimental to your libertarian argument, because it would cost money to enforce the taxation of marijuana!

Adam, when illegal we get no tax revenue from the selling of marijuana. New dispensaries will pay licensing fees and be among the most regulated industries in the Country. Back to you Adam.
Debate Round No. 3
ConservativeAmerican

Con

I graciously welcome my opponent to the fourth round and thank him for replying to my talking points. Let's start:

"Adam, I would argue that a individuals personal experience, when genuine and compelling are far better then any debater quoting yet another source like Wikipedia, or any other source. Obviously, a good debate can involve both, but do not discount personal experiences in debates, otherwise debates simply become exercises in "my source is better then your source".

I respectfully disagree, an argument from personal expereince is a great bonus to add, but letting it occupy virtually a whole round is wasteful and detrimental to your argument. I would have let you done this, but I felt it was important to point out to less informed voters who may not have known that an argument from personal expereince, while moving and adds humanity to the argument, really isn't a solid, well-backed up talking point. I am not discrediting your experiences, but isn't it just as valid, going off of your logic, if I used the fact that my father was a veteran to validate my distaste for the military? (This is not true, just an example)

1. Cannabis/Marijuana is bad for diplomacy: Refuting your reply:

So it doesn't look like I am using filler space to make my argument look longer, I will only quote you when needed, now is not one of those times. My reference to narcotics was brief, so I cede the validity of it and issue you an apology. At any rate, you did not directly reply to my talking point. I am assuming that you want tighter enforcement in general so that we don't allow these illegal exportation's to slip through. There is one problem with this though, this costs tax payer money, and increases the scope of the government. This is detrimental to your argument, since you seem to be and PM'd to me that you are arguing the legalization of marijuana from a libertarian perspective. I once again direct you to the link I posted above that states the Marijuana&Cannabis (although illegal for average citizens to grow without a permit, and illegal for anyone to export) are the 3rd most significant export in the Netherlands, where both of those drugs are legalized. Remember that the Netherlands has a relatively small population to manage, nothing compared to our population of 314,000,000. If they can't manage their borders with the small population they have, how can we manage our borders with a population over twenty times that of theirs? It will cost a lot of money that we don't have at the moment, so if you are arguing this from the libertarian perspective, as I assume you are, your own argument is detrimental to your cause.

2. Refuting your reply to China and Opium: The reason that both are nearly equally as dangerous to society is both are still very addictive, Opiates are more addictive, but letting any drug have control over you is already in itself bad. I also refute your reply to what you said about people being able to go home and smoke a joint after work with #3, my point on functioning and non-functioning drug users.

3. Refuting your reply to Functioning and Non-Functioning Drug Users:

I also have no problem with medical marijuana usage, except that the prescriptions can be written by doctors who got their education from a degree mill and get their paychecks from writing prescriptions to druggies. Also, you distort my quote, the full duration of my point about Marijuana and Cannabis not being lethal is that they are more often than not gateway drugs that lead to the usage of opiates and other lethal narcotics.

4. Refuting your reply to Your rights only extend out to the point that they don't affect others:

Isn't one of the main arguments behind not allowing the usage of opiates that they cause violent behavior that harms others? I also argue with this respected study that Marijuana and Cannabis both can cause violent behavior.

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

5. Refuting Your Arguments to The Taxation Argument:

You once again indirectly reply to my argument. You take your own Utopian version of how the industry will run and try to apply it to reality. They said medical marijuana would be relatively regulated, simply refer back to my statement about that above to see what I think about that load of bull. As I said, don't you think non taxed marijuana and opiates will still sell relatively will, since people will want to buy the cheaper substance that isn't increased in price due to taxes? If marijuana is taxed as high as cigarette's and other tobacco products currently are, then un taxed marijuana should still sell pretty well, since Marijuana is a cheaper drug, but still expensive and therefore high taxes will result in either no usage of the drug or the sale of the un taxed, illegal version.

I once again wish for the best of luck to my opponent and look forward to his next argument!
teddy2013

Pro


Adam, thank you again, for this spirited debate.

I stand by my answers in round three, and I stand by my use of round two, to focus on your theme that "Marijuana is a little less potent than opium". That concept is so central to our differing views, that it deserved devoting an entire round to its refutation.

I do take exception to your arguments stated in the previous round, as it relates to the Netherlands. There drug policy is widely misunderstood. I have listed below a few bullet points of their policy, as well as an official link to Holland's website.

"- The Netherlands is famous for its tolerant drugs policy. But a lot of people don’t realize that drugs are in fact illegal in the Netherlands. Understanding the Dutch drug policy can spare you a lot of trouble.

- All drugs are forbidden in the Netherlands. It is illegal to produce, possess, sell, import and export drugs.

- The drug policy in the Netherlands aims: to reduce the demand for drugs, the supply of drugs and the risks to drug users, their immediate surroundings and society.

- The Dutch recognize that it is impossible to prevent people from using drugs altogether. Coffee shops are therefore allowed to sell small amounts of soft drugs. This pragmatic approach means that authorities can actually focus on the big criminals who profit from drugs and who supply hard drugs.

- Facts
- The Dutch policy on drugs has been reasonably successful compared to the policies pursued in other countries, especially when it comes to prevention and care. The number of users of various types of drugs is no greater than in other countries, while the figure for drug-related deaths, at 2.4 per million inhabitants, is the lowest in Europe. "

http://www.holland.com...

As to your argument "Some people justify the usage of Marijuana and Cannabis by claiming that there are functioning and non-functioning drug users. The sources I have found claim that this is highly untrue."

I have a two word answer for you, Snoop Dogg. This observation comes courtesy of our very own Garret.


"I would love him to quote where ANY of his sources claim there is NO SUCH THING as a functioning marijuana user. Besides, we all know Snoop Dogg (or is it Snoop Lion?), the famous pothead who told Reddit he smokes 81 blunts a day! Considering he has sold 30 million albums worldwide, coaches a youth football league and high school football team, and is the chairman of a Priority Records, it would be silly to call him 'non-functioning." GarretKadeDupree, debate.org.


My argument
As a Nation, rather then spending resources on marijuana enforcement, treating addiction is where we must devote our money, time, and energy. The Global Commission on Drug Policies, details the tremendous benefits in drug treatment. A small portion is quoted below.

"If a substantial proportion of drug users can be attracted and retained in an effective form of
drug treatment for long enough for the treatment to work, demand for drugs in that
community decreases."

"The finding of a population effect of drug treatment is unusual. Drug treatment is usually
poorly funded and therefore does not have sufficient capacity to accommodate the majority
of drug users, even if many drug users sought help."

"During alcohol prohibition in the USA (1920-1933), treatment for alcoholism became scarce
(Levine, Reinarman, 2010). It should come as no surprise therefore that the quality and
quantity of treatment for illicit drug use today is strongly influenced by the prevailing punitive
and hostile attitudes to drugs and drug users that follows from global drug prohibition. In
general, the more punitive the approach to drug use and drug users, the worse the available
drug treatment is.
One of the few studies comparing directly the cost effectiveness of drug law enforcement
with drug treatment was carried out for cocaine in the USA (Rydell CP, Everingham 1994).
For a $US 1.00 investment, the social benefit was estimated to be: 15 cents for coca plant
eradication in South America; 32 cents for interdiction of refined cocaine between South
America and the USA; 52 cents for US domestic law enforcement (customs, police); and
$US 7.48 for treatment of cocaine users. Nevertheless, cost-ineffective drug law
enforcement was allocated an estimated 93% of US government resources allocated to the
threat of cocaine while drug treatment received only 7% despite being far more cost
effective. Another RAND study estimated that the reduction in cocaine use in the USA for a
$US 1 million investment was 13 kg for mandatory minimum sentences, 26 kg for
conventional sentences and 100 kg for drug treatment of cocaine users (Caulkins, Rydell,
Schwabe, Chiesa 1997). It should be noted that the methadone and buprenorphine
treatment for heroin users is much more effective and cost effective for heroin users than
current (non-pharmacological treatments) for cocaine users. Therefore if a comparison were
to be made of the cost effectiveness of drug law enforcement for heroin with drug treatment
of heroin users, the disparity estimated by this RAND study is likely to be even greater than
that found for cocaine.
Alcohol consumption in communities is very unequally distributed: the heaviest drinking
10% consume 50% of the alcohol drunk by the community while the heaviest drinking 20%
consume 70% of the alcohol. It is much harder to study the distribution of drugs like heroin,
cocaine and amphetamine but it is likely to be similar to that found for alcohol. A UK study
estimated that the 10% heaviest consumers of heroin and cocaine in the UK accounted for
30% of the drug-related crime in the country (Strategy Unit Drugs Project, 2003). This
suggests that the ability of drug treatment to attract, retain and benefit the heaviest
consumers of drugs (such as heroin, cocaine and amphetamine) in a community is likely to
result in significant reductions in crime and may also reduce the recruitment of novice drug
users."

"Conclusions:
The dominant global approach to illicit drugs for many decades strongly emphasized drug
law enforcement rhetorically and financially. Consequently, scant emphasis and minimal
funding was allocated to demand reduction (in the form of drug education and drug
treatment). Also, drug education and drug treatment provided in an environment dominated
by drug law enforcement were rarely based on evidence and often emphasized the
unrealistic achievement of abstinence at whatever cost. A more realistic approach began to
emerge after the magnitude of the threat of HIV began to be appreciated in the 1980s.
Increasing emphasis was given to harm reduction though harm reduction was often
(willfully) misunderstood and virtually always grossly under-funded. In time many argued
that harm reduction not only be applied to drugs but also to drug control measures. At the
end of the first decade of the twenty first century, drug use continues to spread around the
world with reports of illicit drug use from an ever increasing number of countries. Global
production continues to increase. The range of different types of drugs continues to expand.
Most importantly, deaths, disease, crime and corruption attributed to drugs and the adverse
consequences of drug use generally continue to grow more serious. Increasingly, there are
calls for drug policy to be re-defined as primarily a health and social problem with drug
education, drug treatment and harm reduction funded to a level where they have a chance
to be effective."

http://www.globalcommissionondrugs.org...



Milton Friedman said it well.

"If even a small fraction of the money we now spend on trying to enforce drug prohibition were devoted to treatment and drug rehabilitation, in an atmosphere of compassion not punishment, the reduction in drug usage and in the harm done to users could be dramatic." -Milton Friedman














Debate Round No. 4
ConservativeAmerican

Con

Hello, Teddy, I would first like to apologize for waiting until the last 3 hours to reply to your argument. Also, I would like to ask that you do not bring up any new subjects in this round, since I will not be able to reply to them. Now, let's wrap this thing up, shall we?

I would like to start by talking about your round 2 arguments a little more. It was not the theme you argued that I had a problem with, it's the way you argued it. You only argued from personal expereince, then you used an appeal to emotion w/ a video+song+personal story. This is all nice for a chat in a bar (no offense), but it is not fair to use in a intellectually based debate. This is my final comment on your round 2 argument, I respect your defense of it and your usage of it, but ultimately do not condone it.

Now let's talk about some of your other arguments:

"- The Netherlands is famous for its tolerant drugs policy. But a lot of people don"t realize that drugs are in fact illegal in the Netherlands. Understanding the Dutch drug policy can spare you a lot of trouble.

As I have stated, this is relatively hilarious because Marijuana/Cannabis is the 3rd most popular export (even though the Netherlands is extremely wealthy due to exports in general), here is more proof of the huge Cannabis industry in the Netherlands.

http://stash.norml.org...

"I have a two word answer for you, Snoop Dogg. This observation comes courtesy of our very own Garret.

"I would love him to quote where ANY of his sources claim there is NO SUCH THING as a functioning marijuana user. Besides, we all know Snoop Dogg (or is it Snoop Lion?), the famous pothead who told Reddit he smokes 81 blunts a day! Considering he has sold 30 million albums worldwide, coaches a youth football league and high school football team, and is the chairman of a Priority Records, it would be silly to call him 'non-functioning." GarretKadeDupree, debate.org. "

Snoop Dogg? Very funny, I don't consider someone who has been arrested 7 times functioning. Also, I don't consider rap artists who get their income by walking in to a studio once a week and rapping (and then acting every once in a while in a commercial for endorsements) a good representative of the average joe.

http://crime.about.com...

Also, I have a blunt, but insightful response to your other argument. If we just crack down and make sure the stuff is either minimally available or not at all, the prices will go way up due to high demand and low supply, then no one will be able to afford it. If no one can afford the stuff, no one will buy it, hence no one will get addicted, and those who are addicted to it currently will be forced to go cold turkey if they can't afford it. I really have little to no sympathy to drug users and would like to point out that my idea works due to this statistic. In the United Arab Emirates, they have extremely strict, zero tolerance drug policies, and if you look at the price of Marijuana there, it is the highest in the world, at $110.00 per gram! Therefore if you minimize the amount of drugs through strict enforcement, the prices go up due to low supply and high demand, and the average person won't be able to afford the drugs to start with. Here are links to back my statements regarding this point.

http://www.havocscope.com...
http://www.emirates.com...

I would like to conclude this round with a summary, then my argument in general. This round I have proven that sometimes strict enforcement can win out over tolerance. I have proven this by showing the high amount of illegal drugs still exported and produced in the Netherlands, and then I showed you an alternative plan to drug tolerance, zero tolerance. I showed you an example of a zero tolerance policy in the UAE (United Arab Emirates), and how it has worked great for them, minimizing the supply of drugs, causing prices to skyrocket and causing the drug to be unavailable to the average person, stopping addiction at the source.

My arguments overall are as follows:

-Enforcement and zero tolerance wins out over drug tolerance.
- Drug tolerance is bad for diplomacy due to exports to countries that ban the drug.
- Marijuana and Cannabis still can cause violent behavior, and therefore the usage of these drugs do effect others.
- Marijuana taxation when legalized will not actually increase revenue all that much, because people will still illegally sell untaxed Marijuana that will go for cheaper prices due to the fact that they won't have to increase their drugs prices because of taxation. (People will buy their illegal drug due to lower prices)

I wish my opponent the best of luck in voting, but still think my argument of enforcement and zero tolerance wins out over his argument of tolerance, so I ask the voters weigh their decision based solely on the argument and not their personal bias.

This has been a great argument, and I look forward to your final reply.

Thank you

-Adam
teddy2013

Pro

Adam, no need to apologize, you are entitled to the full allotted time.

Adam, it was around this time in our first debate that I realized how strongly you feel about your positions, I respect that. I think you and I have demonstrated how two people can disagree, but do so in a respectful way. We have both shown manners that would make any Mother proud, and have each devoted great time and effort into our arguments. I sincerely hope, many people will read , and vote on this debate. Win, lose, or tie we both deserve that.

Our debate has taken us from the inner cities, to the affluent suburbs of America, To China, to the Netherlands, and finally to the United Arab Emirates. We have even debated the role of personal experience, as part of a debating (more on this later).

Through it all, my argument in this debate began and remains " As a Nation, rather then spending resources on marijuana enforcement, treating addiction is where we must devote our money, time, and energy."

Adam, you have contended that we must continue the war on trying to control the supply of marijuana. The path you recommend is what we have tried for the past 40 years, it has not worked, it is time to change the battlefield of this war, from marijuana supply, to combating opiates, and other lethal drugs. I have listed some additional sources below, that my bolster my arguments from round four, and below that, I have responded to your new argument that we should be more like the UAE.


"War on drugs a trillion-dollar failure
By Richard Branson, Special to CNN"

"Have U.S. drug laws reduced drug use? No. The U.S. is the No. 1 nation in the world in illegal drug use. As with Prohibition, banning alcohol didn't stop people drinking -- it just stopped people obeying the law.

News: Marijuana advocates hope to rise from 'prohibition'

About 40,000 people were in U.S. jails and prisons for drug crimes in 1980, compared with more than 500,000 today. Excessively long prison sentences and locking up people for small drug offenses contribute greatly to this ballooning of the prison population. It also represents racial discrimination and targeting disguised as drug policy. People of color are no more likely to use or sell illegal drugs than white people -- yet from 1980 to 2007, blacks were arrested for drug law violations at rates 2.8 to 5.5 times higher than white arrest rates.

Prohibition failed when the American people spoke up and demanded its repeal. Today, the American people are showing their dissatisfaction with the war on drugs by voting for change, often in the face of federal law.

Colorado and Washington recently became the first U.S. states to legalize recreational use of marijuana. Eighteen states and the District of Columbia allow the medical use of marijuana, and 74% of Americans support alternatives to locking people up for marijuana possession.

How would our society, our communities and daily lives improve if we took the money we use running a police and prison state and put it into education and health? Treating drugs as a health issue could save billions, improve public health and help us better control violence and crime in our communities. Hundreds of thousands of people have died from overdoses and drug-related diseases, including HIV and hepatitis C, because they didn't have access to cost-effective, life-saving solutions.

A Pew study says it costs the U.S. an average of $30,000 a year to incarcerate an inmate, but the nation spends only an average $11,665 per public school student. The future of our nations and our children should be our priority. We should be helping people addicted to drugs break their habits rather than putting users in prison.

When it comes to drugs, we should focus on the goals we agree on: protecting our kids, protecting public safety and preventing and treating drug abuse and addiction. To help unlock barriers to drug reform, last June, I joined the Global Commission on Drug Policy, which is bringing global leadership to drug reform to make fact-based research public and draw attention to successful alternative approaches.

Opinion: Mr. President, fix our broken drug policy

It is time we broke the taboo and opened up the debate about the war on drugs. We need alternatives that focus on education,

If you ignore a serious problem, refuse to debate it and hope it will go away all by itself, you are very naive. The war on drugs has failed. It's time to confront the issue head on."

http://www.cnn.com...


"Economic Scene
Numbers Tell of Failure in Drug War By EDUARDO PORTER Published: July 3, 2012
"

http://www.nytimes.com...


Adam, you suggest we should be more like the AU on marijuana enforcement, below is an example of their laws. Adam is this really what you want in America?

"AU: Death Sentence Handed Down To Briton Convicted On Drug Charges"

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates -- A Briton has been sentenced to death in the United Arab Emirates, the British Embassy confirmed Tuesday, after he and another man were convicted on drug-related charges.

The unnamed British man and a Syrian citizen were found guilty of trying to sell 20 grams (about 3/4 of an ounce) of marijuana to an undercover officer, local newspapers reported."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com...

I am confident I have demonstrated that our resources should be focused on treating drug addiction, and not in enforcing laws against marijuana use. I have used many sources in this debate, and have quoted many individuals who have experienced drug addiction. I have shown that the current laws against marijuana are a misuse of dollars and resources, desperately needed elsewhere. I ask for your con vote for change.

Finally, Adam,we debated debating itself. We both agree that debates do need to have facts and sources, and many good debates contain only facts and sources. However, debating is not just about facts and sources, it is also about personal experience, passion, and persuasion. Debates with only facts and sources can be good, but I believe the debates that combine facts and sources, with passion, poetry and persuasion, can be great. This is why I have a devotion to debating, and why many on DDO, are devoted to art of debating.

Having defended the place of personal experience in debating, I will conclude this debate with how I began it, with a deeply personal appeal.

A few years back, I went to a support group, for friends of drug addicts. I sat in a room, while my friend Josh was in the adjacent room, participating in a group session with others struggling with addiction. In my room I heard story after story, all too familiar to me, of heroin addicts pawning every last possession to buy heroin, of not caring how they looked, if they ate, or who they hurt. I heard stories of young men wearing long sleeve shirts in the summer to hide needle marks, of endless lies, stories of kids whose lives were wasted and lost.

At the end of the session , a woman, about forty-five, stood to speak. She cried as she detailed her teenage daughters problem with marijuana. She feared her grade point average would drop. I do not mean to minimize the Mom"s concern, but as I sat there I thought to myself "if I only had this to worry about".

Marijuana is an issue to be dealt with by families, schools, and churches. Heroin needs all these plus a national war to fight the demand, and to treat the addiction.

The Mom in the room, feared her daughter would not get into College, that"s a shame.

I fear Josh, will not live to see his daughters sixth birthday, that"s a tragedy.
Debate Round No. 5
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by ChaosAgape 4 years ago
ChaosAgape
I think that both arguments are excellent. Oh and CON i think you were overlooking a few things. Cigaretts and alcohol are the main gateway user drugs. I know alcohol is more of a gateway drug than mary jane. (I dont use, by the way) Anyways marijuana, will not be legalized for a long looooonnnnnnggggggg time. The federal government sees it as illegal and it will never become legal until federal stands down fromthat decision. Sure though if you get enough states to make some happen then it automatically superceeds federal law and becomes actual law, but one thing that everyone is forgetting. The states that are legalizing marijuana, are ONLY doing so for MEDICINAL PURPOSES NOT RECREATIONAL USE. When states start legalizing for recreational use (which they cant do because it is against federal law) then there will be a chance. But that will never happen until the federal government doesnt see marijuana as a high priority threat.
Posted by teddy2013 4 years ago
teddy2013
Garret,
Thanks for voting on the debate. I appreciate your comments on my closing. I think you are right that I use too may commas, I have wondered if I overuse them. I will watch that in the future,,,,,,lol,,,,
Posted by ConservativeAmerican 4 years ago
ConservativeAmerican
I would like to remind our voters to not include their personal bias in the voting, and to give a reasonable verbal explanation as to why they voted for the person they did.
Posted by ConservativeAmerican 4 years ago
ConservativeAmerican
I would like to fix my grammar on my round 3 argument

"much more dangerous drug. " I meant to say drugs, as in plural.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by tmar19652 4 years ago
tmar19652
ConservativeAmericanteddy2013Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: The arguments were a draw, but con had more sources and better grammar so I will grant them points.
Vote Placed by 1Historygenius 4 years ago
1Historygenius
ConservativeAmericanteddy2013Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: I truly felt arguments were even. Con had more sources, so he gets points there. Pro's constant use of commas annoyed me where they did not need to be.
Vote Placed by GarretKadeDupre 4 years ago
GarretKadeDupre
ConservativeAmericanteddy2013Tied
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Total points awarded:33 
Reasons for voting decision: Both sides were polite. Con won grammar because of Pro's over-use of commas. Pro was far more convincing; not only did he appeal to reason, he did a fantastic job appealing to emotion. His pedantry deserves more points than this site allows me to credit him! His closing statements gave me goosebumps. Con cited a .edu sorce.
Vote Placed by Deadlykris 4 years ago
Deadlykris
ConservativeAmericanteddy2013Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con failed to explain why banning a harmful substance is the correct course of action. Pro rightly pointed out several weak reasons for not banning marijuana. So the arguments vote goes to Pro, but barely. I've elected not to consider other vote points at this time.