The Instigator
vaughnchung
Pro (for)
Winning
5 Points
The Contender
MasterKage
Con (against)
Losing
4 Points

Marijuana Should Be Legalized

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
vaughnchung
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/16/2011 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,459 times Debate No: 19912
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
Votes (4)

 

vaughnchung

Pro

I will be arguing that Marijuana should be legalized and that the "War On Drugs" is an absolute failure.

The first round will be for acceptance, in the second round I will present the argument and the rest of the rounds will be for rebuttals.
MasterKage

Con

First round is for acceptance.

Good luck Pro.
Debate Round No. 1
vaughnchung

Pro

Thank you, and good luck to you as well.

Marijuana has always been under controversy because it has been demonized greatly by not only social conservatives, but corporations, drug cartels, and the alcohol/tobacco industry to keep it as illegal as possible. Here are my pro arguments:

The "War On Drugs" was and is an economic failure:

In 2010 alone, the US has spent over 15 billion dollars on the war on drugs. Instead of legalization, regulation, and taxing it, we send drug users to jail for practicing their individual liberty to use Marijuana medically. The media perpetuates how evil Marijuana is and how it will kill, but there has never been any linked evidence in history that Marijuana caused any kinds of cancer related deaths. Legalizing drugs, however, would inject at least 77 billion dollars a year into the economy if taxed and regulated. Over half of US prisons have people arrested for non violent crimes, and it costs at least 30,000 dollars per "felon" instead of decriminalizing drugs and spending 15,000 dollars for health care treatment. The policy is very dangerous to the American people as it allows loopholes for police officers to invade the privacy of people without any warrants based on unwarranted evidence. Based on this evidence alone, any drug illegalization is generally unconstitutional especially if the government wants to step in and protect you from yourself.

Corruption In Politics:

The Mexican president has been very open about keep marijuana illegal in the United States because it is a great source of profit for the drug cartels as they influence US/Mexican politics and drug affairs. Why? Because guns are illegal in Mexico and Marijuana is illegal in the United States, they use this untaxed income to terrorize the Mexican people and increase border war activity. The source of income that the cartels use is also to influence US politicians to keep this natural plant illegal from us and profitable for them, further promoting a drug-congressional-complex.

Back in 1937, Marijuana was number one for fiber and textile use. Because of increasing pressure from the lumber and oil companies that heavily gave campaign "donations" to these companies, there was an anti-marijuana movement to demonize the plant and would then lead to a taxation of the plant. Hemp was a threat to the industry because of it's clean burning fuel and strong fibers for clothing, which resulted in the competition fueling the movement to ban the plant of it's "danger". Today, Hemp is still a threat to those industries. Because of the crony capitalism of the last 70 years, it is still illegal today.

Adding to this, the FDA opposes it only because of it's difficulty to commercially regulate it and profit enough. It's important to ask how many legal drugs today can kill someone, but a natural herb that grows from the ground is kept in hostility?

Health Uses:

Cannabis is used for cancer patients as a solution for a danger-free painkiller and for Anemic patients in recovery to help them eat. The carcinogen amounts are much less than Tobacco, and is nowhere near a threatening and costly as Alcohol (38 billion dollars a year). I advocate the plant for medical and even recreational use, but I am against the glamorization of drugs in general.

Unconstitutional:

Alcohol is costly and dangerous to human health, and yet, it is illegal. But during the 1920s, it was prohibited. This caused the Mickey Cohen's and Al Capone's to appear and create an insurmountable amount of wealth that resulted in billions of dollars of uncollected taxes. Later on, you would see that the amendment was repealed and alcohol was regulated once again. What happened? They put these criminals out of business because the government competed. Tobacco on the flip side, has been proved to kill over 450,000 people a year and actually contains physically addictive chemicals (namely nicotine) and yet, it is legal to the American people. My point is when the government picks and chooses what is safe and not safe for your body, you have given up your own liberty for them to justify their behavior. I advocate personal behaviorism for all drug users/non-drug users, instead of creating a "pick and choose" system and deciding for the American people.

To conclude so far, I believe when you believe in the illegalization of Marijuana you also promote a perpetual, wasteland "War On Drugs", crony capitalism, and the existence of drug barons/cartels to exist. It is more safe to teach better personal behavior rather than teach blatant lies and risk danger to the American people.
MasterKage

Con

I thank my opponent for his response.

Since my opponent did not provide definitions I now will.

Marijuana is defined as the dried leaves and flowering tops of the pistillate hemp plant that yield THC and are smoked in cigarettes for their intoxicating effect.

I will now present my arguments.

Contention 1: Marijuana is addictive.

Addictive potential [1]

Long-term marijuana abuse has the potential to lead to addiction.

On an estimate nine percent of marijuana users become addicted to marijuana; this percentage increases drastically among those who start a young age and among daily users.

The percentage of young marijuana users increases to seventeen percent; daily marijuana users increase the percentage to twenty-five to fifty percent.

According to the 2009 Monitoring the Future [2] results, 42% of high schools seniors have tried marijuana, while 20.6% of them reported that that have used marijuana in the last month.

8th Grade

10th Grade

12th Grade

Lifetime

15.7%

32.3%

42.0%

Past Year

11.8

26.7

32.8

Past Month

6.5

15.9

20.6

Daily

1.0

2.8

5.2

-Marijuana addiction treatment rates have significantly increased in recent years.

The CASA ( National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse) at Columbia University found that clinical diagnoses rates for marijuana abuse and/or dependence for minors has increased by a 492.1 percent just between 1992 (when marijuana usage was at its lowest point) and 2006.

Also, there was a 53.7 percent decrease in rates of clinical diagnoses for all other substances combined ( including alcohol, illicit, controlled prescriptions and over-the-counter drugs and inhalants.

Sources

[1] http://www.nida.nih.gov...

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

Contention 2: Marijuana has a significant amount of negative impacts on the brain.

Marijuana intoxication can cause distorted perceptions, impaired coordination, difficulty with thinking and problem solving, and problems with learning and memory. Research has shown that, in chronic users, marijuana's adverse impact on learning and memory can last a large amount of time ( days or weeks). As a result, someone who smoke marijuana every day may be functioning at a suboptimal intellectual level the majority of the time.

Brain imaging studies in chronic users show ( repeatedly) some consistent alterations, but their connection to impaired cognitive functioning is from clear.

This uncertainty may stem from confounding factors such as other drug use, residual drug effects, or withdrawal symptoms in long-term chronic users.

Sources

[1] http://drugabuse.gov...

I will now refute each of my opponents arguments.

Your first point was “The “War on Drugs” was and is an economic failure.

The media perpetuates how evil Marijuana is and how it will kill,

but there has never been any linked evidence in history that

Marijuana caused any kinds of cancer related deaths.

On the contrary, it has been proven marijuana causes cancer.

[1] http://www.opposingviews.com...

[2] http://www.aim.org...

[3] http://www.livescience.com...

[4] http://www.foxnews.com...

Legalizing drugs, however, would inject at least 77 billion dollars a year

into the economy if taxed and regulated. Over half of US prisons have

people arrested for non violent crimes, and it costs at least 30,000 dollars

per "felon" instead of decriminalizing drugs and spending 15,000 dollars

for health care treatment. The policy is very dangerous to the American

people as it allows loopholes for police officers to invade the privacy of

people without any warrants based on unwarranted evidence.

Your main focus in this paragraph was drugs in general, while the resolution was specially marijuana.

Based on this evidence alone, any drug illegalization is generally

unconstitutional especially if the government wants to step in and

protect you from yourself

Once again, this focused on drugs overall.

Even if you substituted drugs to marijuana, I fail to see how economic factors make opposition of marijuana unconstitutional.

Your second point was Corruption in politics.

I don't understand how the first paragraph of this point is relevant to the resolution.

Your sub point was marijuana for a fiber and textile usage.

It's such a danger for the textile factories because it's almost impossible to determine whether the employees are using it for its intended use or using it for recreational activity.

Adding to this, the FDA opposes it only because of it's difficulty to

commercially regulate it and profit enough. It's important to ask how

many legal drugs today can kill someone, but a natural herb that

grows from the ground is kept in hostility?

The fact that is held in such a hostile regard is for the numerous negative health effects.

Health uses

Actually alcohol and tobacco are more dangerous than marijuana

Two recent studies have been published showing that alcohol -- a legal substance (though not legal for teens in the U.S.) -- is considered more dangerous than marijuana, which is illegal in many countries.

[1] http://www.kindclinics.com...

[2] http://www.physorg.com...

Unconstitutional

I have shown how alcohol and tobacco is more harmful than marijuana.

Debate Round No. 2
vaughnchung

Pro

Thank you for your response, as I will now rebuttal.

"Contention 1: Marijuana is addictive."

First of all, my opponent as failed to reveal to me if Marijuana is physically addictive or physiologically addictive. In response to his posted links, it reveals to Americans on how the "War On Drugs" has really failed to limit the use of cannabis, especially amongst the youth.

Reverting back to your statement, many studies show that in order for any addiction of cannabis to take place there has to be a very large consumption of THC. In Medical Marijuana, especially if regulated, the THC content can be manipulated to a point where it is irrelevant of any form of dependence.

http://www.erowid.org...

The addiction contention is furthermore perpetuated and led by the mainstream media (especially no-conservative) as it is the "gateway drug". However, 32% of Tobacco users are guaranteed to be addicted to it because of the nicotine. Yet, no one asks why it is the "gateway drug" instead of Marijuana?

http://www.psychologytoday.com...

I ask the question since my opponent so graciously posted the links for us -- if 42% of marijuana users have had access to marijuana (untaxed and black market priced), is it not wise to shut down the drug dealing/cartels/distributors by regulating and taxing it like we have with cigarettes?

"Contention 2: Marijuana has a significant amount of negative impacts on the brain"

There is no doubt that with a certain dosage of THC, there is significant psychological impact on your brain. However, if you base your argument on why it should be illegal because of this, then your contention is a fallacy and thus, flawed. Skeletal/muscle relaxants, alcohol, inflammatory drugs, anti-depressants, are all legal drugs but cause significant damages to the body and the brain if not used responsibly, which should apply to marijuana as well.

"I will now refute each of my opponents arguments.

Your first point was "The "War on Drugs" was and is an economic failure.

The media perpetuates how evil Marijuana is and how it will kill,

but there has never been any linked evidence in history that

Marijuana caused any kinds of cancer related deaths.

On the contrary, it has been proven marijuana causes cancer."

My opponent never directly challenged my contention and threw a red herring into the rebuttal, as the "links to cancer" was only a small part of my argument. It is misconstrued thinking that cannibas directly causes cancer based on my side of the research. If we were basing on why things should be illegal because of cancer or carcinogens, than aspartame and preservatives found in our "tv dinners" should all be illegalized. Cannabis has far less carcinogens than most drugs on the legal market today.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov...

Smoking Marijuana would ensure a trip to the hospital, because when you smoke even a pile of pine-cones, you already are risking your throat to bronchitis. I want to beg the question though: have you ever heard of a person overdosing on marijuana? I will let you simmer into that thought process and also mentioned, that marijuana if consumed alternatively via vaporizer or pill form eliminates most of the cancer related risks.

http://www.askmen.com...

"Based on this evidence alone, any drug illegalization is generally

unconstitutional especially if the government wants to step in and

protect you from yourself
Once again, this focused on drugs overall.

Even if you substituted drugs to marijuana, I fail to see how economic factors make opposition of marijuana unconstitutional."

The opposition of marijuana is unconstitutional because I stress that it is lobbied by corporations to politicians in response to how competitive it would be in the industry. The government can negate certain liberties like theft and murder because it affects another person's civil liberties. However, it is unconstitutional to negate your right to consume whatever it is in your body and police your actions.

"Your second point was Corruption in politics.

I don't understand how the first paragraph of this point is relevant to the resolution."

My point was relevant because it is dangerous for lawmakers to be influenced by puppet politicians paid by the drug cartels. Wouldn't you agree that the prohibition of alcohol caused Al Capone to rise into power because he had the means to pay off judges and politicians to keep alcohol illegal?

"Your sub point was marijuana for a fiber and textile usage."

It's such a danger for the textile factories because it's almost impossible to determine whether the employees are using it for its intended use or using it for recreational activity."

False. The law enforcement in Canada and most European countries recognize that the THC content in industrial hemp is so low, that you would have to smoke a bushel to be intoxicated by it. Furthermore, industrial hemp actually hinders the potency of Marijuana surprisingly! If businesses cannot police what their employees are doing with the hemp, then they don't have the credentials to run a business. Either way, the workers cannot get intoxicated by it unless they want to smoke the whole factory. In rebuttal, why does law enforcement never constantly interfere with alcohol and tobacco production? It is a straw man in itself to assume employees will smoke legal hemp they cannot get high of in a factory, but you don't give fair treatment to farther more dangerous drugs that are prescription like Ritalin or Methadone.

"Adding to this, the FDA opposes it only because of it's difficulty to

commercially regulate it and profit enough. It's important to ask how

many legal drugs today can kill someone, but a natural herb that

grows from the ground is kept in hostility?"

"The fact that is held in such a hostile regard is for the numerous negative health effects.

Health uses

Actually alcohol and tobacco are more dangerous than marijuana

Two recent studies have been published showing that alcohol -- a legal substance (though not legal for teens in the U.S.) -- is considered more dangerous than marijuana, which is illegal in many countries.

[1] http://www.kindclinics.com......

[2] http://www.physorg.com......

Unconstitutional

I have shown how alcohol and tobacco is more harmful than marijuana."

My opponent's rebuttal is irrelevant and only fuels my argument.

"The fact that is held in such a hostile regard is for the numerous negative health effects."

"I have shown how alcohol and tobacco is more harmful than marijuana."

Two of these points obviously conflict with each other. If the FDA you say, does not condone it's use because of it's "numerous negative effects" YET you have "shown how alcohol and tobacco is more harmful than marijuana", it shows me even more the political bias, unconstitutional favoritism, and regressive these impractical drug laws really are.
MasterKage

Con

I will now refute my opponent's arguments and address each of his refutations against my arguments.


The addiction contention is furthermore perpetuated and led by the mainstream media (especially no-conservative) as it is the "gateway drug". However, 32% of Tobacco users are guaranteed to be addicted to it because of the nicotine. Yet, no one asks why it is the "gateway drug" instead of Marijuana?

Actually addiction of marijuana and marijuana being a gateway drug is very valid and is not led by the media.

Addiction of marijuana

[1] http://www.cadca.org...


[2] http://www.nida.nih.gov...



There is no doubt that with a certain dosage of THC, there is significant psychological impact on your brain. However, if you base your argument on why it should be illegal because of this, then your contention is a fallacy and thus, flawed. Skeletal/muscle relaxants, alcohol, inflammatory drugs, anti-depressants, are all legal drugs but cause significant damages to the body and the brain if not used responsibly, which should apply to marijuana as well.



I'm unsure as to why you threw this off as a fallacy.




A fallacy is usually an improper argumentation in reasoning

resulting in a misconception or presumption.

This does not go into the definition of a fallacy.

Let's compare each of the drugs you stated.

1) Muscle relaxants are very powerful drugs which may produce negative effects that include heart failure and paralysis. [1]

This would require an overdose.

2) I have already showed how alcohol is more dangerous than marijuana.

3) The two main adverse drug reactions (ADRs) associated with NSAIDs relate to gastrointestinal (GI) effects and renal effects of the agents. [2]

4) MAO inhibitors can produce a potentially lethal hypertensive reaction if taken with foods that contain excessively high levels of tyramine, such as mature cheese, cured meats or yeast extracts [3]

While marijuana has a much higher list of medical effects (both short term and long term) [4]

Short term

-rapid heart rate

-increased blood pressure

-increased rate of breathing

-red eyes

-dry mouth

-increased appetite, or "the munchies"

-slowed reaction time

-distorted sense of time

-paranoia

-magical or "random" thinking

-short-term memory loss

-anxiety and depression

Sources

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...

[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...

[3] http://en.wikipedia.org...

[4] http://www.webmd.com...

I will now address my opponents refutation against my refutations of his arguments.

Refutation A: His " War on Drugs" economic argument.

It was not a red herring.

The majority of that contention was dealing with drugs in general while the resolution is specifiably marijuana, so the only relevant portion was,

Instead of legalization, regulation, and taxing it, we send drug users to jail for practicing their individual liberty to use Marijuana medically. The media perpetuates how evil Marijuana is and how it will kill, but there has never been any linked evidence in history that Marijuana caused any kinds of cancer related deaths.

I already successfully refuted this, since you made no refutation and called it off as a red herring this contention has been refuted and is incorrect.

I want to beg the question though: have you ever heard of a person overdosing on marijuana? I will let you simmer into that thought process and also mentioned, that marijuana if consumed alternatively via vaporizer or pill form eliminates most of the cancer related risks.

Actually yes I have.

Like any other drugs it's possible to overdose when the user has taken too much marijuana.

[1]http://www.allaboutcounseling.com...

The fact that marijuana is illegal is not unconstitutional, you did not give any sources even hinting at this.

Invalid.

My point was relevant because it is dangerous for lawmakers to be influenced by puppet politicians paid by the drug cartels. Wouldn't you agree that the prohibition of alcohol caused Al Capone to rise into power because he had the means to pay off judges and politicians to keep alcohol illegal?

I hardly see how this is relevant, the focus is marijuana not alcohol.


Your attempting to show how alcohol and tobacco is more deadly than marijuana.

Besides, alcohol and tobacco is irrelevant to the resolution.


Lastly, my opponent attempts to show how my two statements are irrelevant.

"The fact that is held in such a hostile regard is for the numerous negative health effects."

"I have shown how alcohol and tobacco is more harmful than marijuana."

Two of these points obviously conflict with each other.

Actually they are not.

Yes marijuana has numerous health effects, but alcohol and tobacco are more harmful than marijuana.

I have refuted each of my opponents point, thus I urge a Con vote.


Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by wiploc 4 years ago
wiploc
Testing the EM tag to see if it will compile here:

<em>This would be quoted material.</em>
Posted by PartamRuhem 4 years ago
PartamRuhem
SOURCES: Ok, you guys have to get sources straight. You CAN'T just post a link after a paragraph and think that it justifies whatever facts you had mentioned. It doesn't work like that. If you guys would have submitted these arguments to any teacher, you would have failed horribly.

Ok. So. After the fact or statistic or interesting quote or WHATEVER, you put a [1]. Then, at the bottom, you should have a title for sources, then list the sources. 1 corresponds to [1], 2 to [2], and so on.

Take this for example.

Football players are, on average, 250 lbs [1]. They are also usually involved with violence [2].

Sources:
1. blahblah.com
2. totalbs.com

Ok. SO I voted the way I did because Pro in his R2 didn't have ANY sources, all just claims. Also, Con more effectively used them, though both of you need work with citation.
Posted by wiploc 4 years ago
wiploc
This was hard to read. I kept reading the same paragraphs over and over, without knowing whether they were being quoted, or who said them originally. I couldn't stay straight on whether I was reading Pro or Con.

There's no reason to be difficult. You do yourselves a great favor if you learn to set off quotations in a visually distinctive style. Here's a foolproof way. It's not the easiest way, but you don't have to know anything about this website to use it. I'll repeat this paragraph as a quotation.

: There's no reason to be difficult. You do yourselves a great favor if you learn
: to set off quotations in a visually distinctive style. Here's a foolproof way. It's
: not the easiest way, but you don't have to know anything about this website to
: use it. I'll repeat this paragraph as a quotation.

All you have to do is add line-breaks, and then copy/paste colon space at the start of each line.

This lets you do nested quotes where appropriate:

: : : Pro said X.
: : Con responded to X.
: Pro responds to that.
And now Con adds this new material.

An easier way is just to click on Rich Text, and then boldface the material you are quoting. That stands out very nicely.

Sometimes I just use tripple-equal demarkation:

===
This would be quoted material.
===endquote===

Sometimes I use the language of a website that I understand better:

[quote]
This would be quoted material.
[/quote]

Those tags don't compile, but---so long as you keep them next to the quoted material, but on separate lines---they make the quotations visually distinctive. They allow nested quotes too.

[quote][quote]
Pro said X.
[/quote][/quote]
[quote]
Con responded Y.
[/quote]
Now Pro says Z.

My favorite way is to compose in Word, then click on Rich Text, and then select Paste From Word. Duck soup!
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by 16kadams 4 years ago
16kadams
vaughnchungMasterKageTied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: pro had better arguments and refuted better. sources go to pro, and so does grammar (not spelling but grammar) Sorry to say, I have modified this, arguments even.
Vote Placed by Chrysippus 4 years ago
Chrysippus
vaughnchungMasterKageTied
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Reasons for voting decision: This debate was fairly pointless. Both sides brought up good points in the beginning, but they were pooly argued through the rest of the debate - and the formatting was so horrible (especially the quotes) that it became very difficult to decipher who was saying what.
Vote Placed by 1Historygenius 4 years ago
1Historygenius
vaughnchungMasterKageTied
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Total points awarded:12 
Reasons for voting decision: To tell you the truth I agree with PartamRuhem. It was also very close, but in then these are the points I give.
Vote Placed by PartamRuhem 4 years ago
PartamRuhem
vaughnchungMasterKageTied
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Total points awarded:12 
Reasons for voting decision: The arguments were all over the place and extremely disorganized. As a judge, it's hard for me to keep up with what your exact points are and what your exact refutations are. I didn't find that either side held an advantage in arguments. SOURCES: See comments. Spelling and grammar goes to Pro, for Con made more mistakes.