The Instigator
Pro (for)
19 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
3 Points

Medical Marijuana is, on balance, an effective medicine

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/4/2013 Category: Health
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 5,051 times Debate No: 29859
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (64)
Votes (4)





Medical marijuana: marijuana used for medical purposes
Effective: successful in producing a desired result

I don't think clarification is needed. First round acceptance, (and for pro): definitions, and rules. I await a fun, and appropriate, debate.


You will most likely find this somewhat disappointing, but if a Doctor's give you a prescription for marijuana, then you should go to the drugstore and get the pharmacological active pure THC ingredient. The negative aspects of actually smoking the crude dried plant (seeds, flowers, stems, etc.) are harmful to the body and outweigh the benefit of smoking the crude plant.

I have no problem with the government or any state passing legislation that allows drug companies to manufacture the pure THC ingredient under FDA guidelines and regulation. As far as allowing people to grow marijuana and sell it as medical marijuana, no way!

"Damaging effects in man caused by prolonged exposure to marijuana smoking have been reported in two recent International Symposia; they include emphysema-like symptoms, cancer of the lung, mouth and tongue, prolonged impairment of memory and of psychomotor performance resulting in train or car accidents, a six-fold increase in the incidence of schizophrenia, leukemia in children born from marijuana smoking mothers and damage to the growing fetus.

However, if smoked marijuana had unique therapeutic properties, these forgoing undesired effects could be overlooked. Prominent cancer specialists such as Dr. R. J. Gralla of Sloane-Kettering Memorial Cancer Center, Dr. D. S. Ettinger of Johns Hopkins Medical School, Dr. George Hyman of Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and Dr. John Laszlo, Vice President for Research of the American Cancer Society have concluded that the crude drug marijuana taken by inhalation has only limited effectiveness in the treatment of vomiting caused by cancer chemotherapy and documented negative effects on pulmonary, cardiovascular and immunity systems. The American Cancer Society stated in 1989 that the results of clinical investigations were insufficient to warrant the decontrol of marijuana smoking for medical use. the American Medical Association and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) expressed a similar opinion."

"The medical marijuana hoax"
"I also believe that a panel of Doctors should decide what limited medical reasons would be allowed where the pharmacological active pure THC ingredient would be allowed. Right now there are too many reasons that a doctor could use to prescribe the drug. For example, the legislative wording in Massachusetts and vague, subjective, and vulnerable to serious abuse, e.g., used for physical and emotional aliments from menstrual cramps to server shyness."

I think the sole reason for allowing its use would be patients undergoing chemo that can"t handle the chemo. And, there are many more drugs to fix that. I have a close friend that has gone through chemo 3 times now, without smoking one joint to help him through.

So, yes I have no problem with the government or any state passing legislation that allows drug companies to manufacture the pure THC ingredient under FDA guidelines and regulation. As far as allowing people to grow marijuana and sell it as medical marijuana, no way!
Debate Round No. 1


I thank my opponent’s response. However, I would like to note he has failed to oblige by the first round acceptance rule. The evidence for my case will be mainly in my rebuttals; if not solely done there.

The effectiveness of marijuana—a hoax?

My opponent makes a two pronged attack: first, medical marijuana has few, if any, benefits; and second marijuana’s smoke aspect makes the drugs costs outweigh the (in his argument) small benefits. I will refute these accordingly.

a) Marijuana has few benefits – status: false

This argument is simply false. There is mounting evidence to the contrary, that medical marijuana has a plethora of benefits. Even though the NIDA and other organizations have attempted to block medical marijuana research, it still seems to get published. A 2010 study by the University of California, using methodology that meets the standards of the FDA, has found marijuana should be a first line treatment for those with neuropathy illness. What is also interesting is a plethora of other studies replicate these findings, and the AMA (which my opponent noted in 1987 opposed medical marijuana) is actively considering removing it as a Schedule 1 controlled substance and may possibly change their opinion on the issue. Yes, that’s how much evidence has occurred since 1987 proving my opponents assumption quite weak [1].

Further, research by German scholars has obtained similar results as the University of California study. Since 2005, 37 studies with strong methodologies (that usually exceeds FDA standards) have strongly supported the medical marijuana benefit theory [2]. 37 studies showing success is actually much more than most of our drugs; indeed, most FDA approved drugs have far fewer studies and trials supporting their benefits. It seems as though the failure to accept these studies is likely ideological. Further, other studies from Californian professors have been set up by the University of California Medicinal Cannabis Research center overwhelmingly support the conclusion that medical marijuana has large benefits. Starting out asking whether or not marijuana is helpful, their research now is more on the side of how large are these benefits. Although they welcome dissenting opinion, the research strongly indicates marijuana is a strong pain killer, cancer fighter, and is capable of healing many diseases we never would have expected when the Center was created. The Center noted in a brief presented in front of the California legislature, they presented multiple studies, but one that jumped out to me was marijuana’s effectiveness as a pain killer: 46% of the respondents in the study reported marijuana to reduce their pain by 30%. There is also growing evidence that marijuana helps cure cancer and other diseases [3].

Let’s look into history as well. Ancient China is known for using medical marijuana in its medical practices, and many other ancient countries (India, and the Middle East) were also known for using hemp for medical purposes. Recent studies claim medical marijuana relieves pain, this should be of no surprise; Chinese doctors reported their patients to have painless surgery when using cannabis medicines. Also on a side note: the Iliad references cannabis usage. There is undeniable proof that marijuana is a pain killer, and a cure or many diseases, based on historical texts [4].

My opponent cites a colleague who is healing cancer without marijuana. And that’s great, but irrelevant. I am not saying you need medical marijuana to heal cancer, for example: I would not use it because I am asthmatic. There are many other reasons. But marijuana can speed the process. It’s like saying Advil is not helpful because I got rid of a headache without it. Well, yes, you did, but that does not mean Advil would have been helpful in the process. Needing a substance (or the ability to use it for certain parts of the population) is irrelevant to its effectiveness.

b) The smoke outweighs the benefits – status: false

The smoke is obviously not good for you, but its harms are likely exaggerated. The only harm that the Institute of Medicine 1999 report could identify was the loss of psychomotor performance, which means the patients should merely avoid motor equipment [5]. Further, animal studies find the amount of THC needed to be a fatal dose is almost impossible to consume, making the chance for overdose unlikely. It has also been noted when taking the prescribed dosages of marijuana; the chance of getting lung cancer is actually slightly lower because marijuana kills cancerous cells, which includes lung cancer cells. Most diseases marijuana supposedly causes (though it is unproven) have more evidence that it cures them, not exacerbates the problem [6]. Indeed, the marijuana – cancer link is deteriorating in the science, and evidence is starting to show marijuana has no linkage to cancer [7]. And I reiterate: with no evidence that marijuana causes cancer, and evidence showing it cures it, there is little reason to think my opponent’s argument is correct.


My opponent offers a thesis that marijuana has few benefits and the smoking aspect does more harm than good. Although smoking likely has some health hazards (especially for asthmatics and pregnant women), the hazards aren’t large enough to disqualify marijuana as a medicine. Other pain killers harm other organs, so even if it is proven marijuana smoke is deadly in the long run it does not mean marijuana as a medicine is bad. If we were to say “marijuana hurts people, ban it” then almost every prescription medication would need to be banned. Those medicines benefits outweigh their harms; I have proven the same applies to medical marijuana. Due to the fact robust research proves my side [1][2][3][5][6], I urge a vote for pro.





5. Janet E. Joy, Stanley J. Watson, Jr., and John A Benson, Jr., "Marijuana and Medicine: Assessing the Science Base," Division of Neuroscience and Behavioral Research, Institute of Medicine (Washington, DC: National Academy Press, 1999).





I have looked at your arguments, and they appear centered around making marijuana legal, which will somehow stop drug trafficking, which is nonsense. And, even if somehow the US miraculously makes marijuana legal in all 50 states and D.C. (which will never happen), that does not mean we will have a drastic reduction in the money spent fighting drugs and related crimes, which you claim are trillions of dollars (it is actually significantly less than that per year - under $30 billion per year). We will still have to spend billions annually to stop all the illegally activities done by Mexican Drug Cartels including the sale of other drugs and tons of Mexican marijuana, which will still be distributed in the US.

And, your belief that marijuana really isn't that bad of a drug or that addictive or that harmful is hardly supported by any reliable current medical research. Marijuana has a high potential for abuse; its use for medical purposes is under serious rebuke; and, there are no acceptable safety standards, even under medical supervision, for marijuana, which is why it is classified as a Schedule I substance. It may not be as addictive as heroin or cocaine, but it is still addictive and more readily available to children, which makes it a much more dangerous addictive drug that needs stricter controls - prohibition, not legalization for any reason!

And, prohibition along with other programs worked in China to stop opium addiction in 1956; so prohibition can work if done properly, like in China.

1.Your comment that marijuana comprises nearly 60% of all cartel profits is at least 2 to 4 times greater than the actual percentage according to a study done by the Rand Drug Policy Research Center; their study indicates that the actual percentage is from 15% to 26%.

"Some experts on organized crime in Latin America, like Edgardo Buscaglia, say that cartels earn just half their income from drugs."

You forgot to mention that Mexican Drug Cartels make billions from sex trafficking, extortion, stolen goods (even crude oil), kidnapping, etc.

After booze probation ended in on December 5, 1933, did the Mafia end? Of course not! But, you think that if the sale of marijuana is somehow miraculously legalized in all 50 states, the Mexican and American gang cartels will just slowly fade away?

Much of the Trillions (actually a few billion per year) you claim are spent by the US and state government fighting Drug Cartels is spent fighting organized crime in the USA " the Mafia and street gangs.

2.There are better ways of regulating the substance for the benefit of society.

Really, what are they? Do you really think that licensing vendors in Washington State and Colorado or even all 50 states is going to stop the Mexican Cartels or local street distributors from going legitimate and getting licenses or intimating legal vendors buying from them? Do you actually think they will stop trying to sell drugs? Do you actually think that American marijuana connoisseurs will stop buying high quality Mexican dope?

How exactly are the growing and selling of American marijuana going to be controlled at the wholesale and retail levels?

Then there is the issue of the limited amount of marijuana that one can have in one"s possession at one time, which is 1 ounce in Washington and Colorado (1 ounce and 6 plants). Won't local, State, and Federal law enforcement agencies still have to monitor that and arrest people for violations? And, there will still be tons (pun intended) of violations. As I stated in another blog, most of the people in prison for drugs are not the casual marijuana users - they are violent drug dealing, or drug addicted criminals (who started stealing and doing other crimes to feed their addictions).

How will the government control that? Will it work like prescription drugs? You can't get a refill on most prescriptions until the quantity, usually 30-90 pills runs outs. This is especially true of prescriptions that are considered a narcotic, which are usually limited to 30 pills at once, even sleep-aid drugs like Temazepam. You try to refill it before 25 days or earlier and the pharmacist will tell you that it is too early and you have to wait. So, the pharmacist would have to tell the marijuana user that they bought 1 ounce ten days ago or whatever time period is legally allowed and it is too early to buy another ounce, you will have to wait. Do you really think most pot smokers will accept those type controls?

So will all the vendors in Colorado and Washington have to be set-up like pharmacies with a vast computerized system to track marijuana sales? Or, better yet, only pharmacies can distribute marijuana. This would save money because the drug tracking system is already in place. And, if it is considered medical marijuana then the insurance coverage could be verified and the pot would be free or with small co-pay. That is a great idea; but, I bet you don't like that, or do you? But again, how many marijuana users will want to be tracked in a computerized system? You are going to say now, they don't need to be, right?

Actually, what has happened in Portugal and the Netherlands is that many drug users still buy their marijuana and other illegal drugs illegally from drug dealers because they can buy in larger amounts.

Then there is the issue of the strength and price of the marijuana. Will the weed sold by the licensed vendors be strong enough and cheap enough? If not, many users will still buy from the local drug dealers. There would be a price war between legal American marijuana vendors and illegal dealers.

Even if the marijuana is strong and cheap enough, probably most folks will not want their marijuana use tracked by the government, and they will buy the marijuana illegally from the Mexican drug cartel dealers in the US.

So, your alternative system fails every time.

Tougher criminal sanctions and more drug education are needed, e.g., life in jail for all drug dealers - even first offenders, mandatory drug classes starting in 1st grade, mandatory neighborhood study groups about the evils of marijuana, which is how China solved it opium problem by 1956. Allowing marijuana to be grown legally in the US is not the answer.

And, you make this point that marijuana use reached its peak in 1979. Yes, I saw that study by Norml; but, so what?

Dec. 19, 2012 -- A new survey shows marijuana use by teens remains high, and officials say it will probably increase as a result of Washington and Colorado decriminalizing the drug last month.

"Based on what we know ... we are predicting that it"s going to go up," says Nora Volkow, MD, director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse. "Just the fact that there are some states that have made it legal ... will send a message" to teens throughout the country.

"Already, the proportion of teens who consider marijuana to be harmful is the lowest it"s been in decades, according to the 2012 "Monitoring the Future" survey of eighth, 10th, and 12th graders. The annual survey of teen drug use is conducted by researchers at the University of Michigan."

The Federal Prohibition on Marijuana needs to remain and more education is needed starting in 1st grade to explain the evils of smoking pot, doing any illegal drugs, and Alcohol abuse. This needs to be a required class, in all grades - 1 through 12. Our children should be taught that "Clean and Sober" is the best way to live life.
Debate Round No. 2


1. Drug legalization: a red herring

My opponent makes many claims on a different topic: drug legalization. Although he raises many valid points, I would like to point out this is a merely a red herring. We are debating the effectiveness of medical marijuana, not the benefits/costs of drug legalization. My opponent claims I have instigated the discussion on drug legalization, claiming I talked about cartels. This is false; I never mentioned the cartels or drug legalization once, nor is it mentioned in the resolution, introduction, or rules. So, this point is a red herring that has no bearing on the debate.

It is also interesting to consider this is not even a debate about the legality of medical marijuana! We are merely arguing the costs and benefits of medical marijuana use. Whether or not it is actually legal is irrelevant to the resolution as well.

My opponent seems to have only skimmed my argument and looked at my sources. I cited NORML, a pro-marijuana organization, that makes the claim my opponent has refuted. Here is the problem: the article I cited didn’t mention drug prohibition. Therefore, my opponent is merely using this to refute a different claim (not mentioned or relevant to the debate) to push his views through this median. I truly think these points he has made are not constrictive to the effectiveness of marijuana as a medicine.

2. Health effects of marijuana

My opponent has cited studies claiming the amount of teenagers that think marijuana is harmless has increased. Now, let’s make this clear: I do not think marijuana is harmless! Indeed, any rational person would agree that is has health effects. What I do think, however, are the claims arguing marijuana is a horribly harmful drug is untrue. Medical marijuana, when used for patients with cancer (and many other diseases or discomforts) has far more benefits than downfalls. As for (extensive) recreational use, I would generally recommend against it.

Now, the amounts [most] recreational and medical users use marijuana isn’t harmful. Smoking one joint per day actually does not harm lungs, and it may increase lung function. Studies have been published showing long term marijuana use leads to more respiratory problems, but more recent studies have shown there is likely no such link. Also, the vast preponderance of evidence supports the effectiveness of medical marijuana [1]. Some studies even say marijuana may improve lung function. A study with a sample of 5115 young adults were tracked for 20 years. This is the largest, one of the longest and most robust study on the issue. The results find moderate marijuana usage (which is all you would usually need for medical purposes) has, at worst, no effect on your lungs, and probably increases lung function [2]. Other studies find marijuana may slow down an aging brain [3].

It seems as though my opponents claim that no credible research supports my thesis is totally wrong.

On addiction, all drugs can cause addiction. Medical marijuana has about a 9% addiction rate according to a very comprehensive 1999 study by the Institute of Medicine, cited last round. Pshychotherapudic drugs have much higher addiction rates, ranging from 13 – 18% for teenagers, 13% for those 18-25, and 12-13% for those 16 and older [4]. With this data in mind, the fact these other medicines are considered effective but have higher addiction rates then marijuana merely shows the governmental, political, and ideological bias in the issue. The benefits for these drugs is much higher than the costs, marijuana has a plethora more studies confirming its effectiveness compared to these drugs as well as more studies proving it is less harmful than thought, not more (these drugs have more studies showing the “it’s worse than we thought” mentality, whereas the best research now confirms marijuana is better than thought).


A much shorter round then last, but the majority of my opponents statements were irrelevant. As voters, and those evaluating the evidence can see, marijuana’s bad side is largely exaggerated, and its benefits (NOTE: benefits for medical use, NOT ABUSIVE RECREATIONAL USE) trump its downsides. I urge a pro vote.







Folks like me believe that much stricter controls and enforcement are needed. We believe that prohibition is the only answer. China, through prohibition, eliminated it opium addiction problem in 1956. And, China does not allow marijuana for recreational or medical reasons, because they know all illegal drugs are bad for their country. Of course, they also used training programs to educate everyone as to the evils of the drug and put the addicted in hospitals for treatment, and then gave them jobs. But, those who would not stop were thrown in jail for long periods, and if that did not work, they were executed, which should be what happens in the USA. But, the death penalty would be reserved for only the hardened drug dealers and those who robbed and murdered others to get more drugs. The rest can rot in jail or be cured of their marijuana addiction in jail.

You will have a very hard time convincing the Bible-Belt States that marijuana should be legalized for medical purposes; and the Congress members from those states will not vote for its legalization at the Federal level despite having a former drug addicted President.

Anyway, if you want to believe you won this debate that is fine with me. In my debate over legalizing where I took the con position, I lost. But, 4 out 5 of the voters were both Pro Legalization and Pro Medical Marijuana. So, if 80% of the people that read these blogs at this site who vote are Pro Legalization of Marijuana, any person taking the Con position will lose.

I am not sure that debating at this site proves anything. I will say that the majority of people in America are against legalizing marijuana for recreation and medicinal purposes based on the number of states that have passed legislation. Only 18 and DC have passed Medical Marijuana and two recreational (Washington and Colorado) out of 50 states and DC or 51. 21 our 50 states and DC is 21/51 or 41% - so based on legalization results " I won! And, if you throw in the 5 US territories where marijuana is illegal, then you have 21/55 or only 38% - so I won again! Marijuana is illegal in Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam, and the Mariana Islands. Based on legislative results, I have won this debate hands down.

Let's look at countries where marijuana is illegal: Albania, Austria, Bolivia, Belarus, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Chile, China, Colombia, Comoros, Cuba, Cyprus, Denmark, Dominica, Egypt, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Latvia, Lebanon, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malaysia, Malta, Montenegro, Nepal, New Zealand, North Korea, Norway, Pakistan, Paraguay, Philippines, Poland, Puerto Rico, Romania, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Syria, Taiwan, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, Ukraine, Venezuela, and Vietnam. I had to add South Korea, where it is illegal.

I did an analysis of the 82 countries noted above and classified into Legal and Illegal, which includes a few that allow it specifically for medical purposes, and I did not include the USA or Australia, where it is mostly illegal. My analysis revealed that 61 countries (61/82) or 74% prohibit marijuana for any reason. So, I have won the argument based on countries. You lose!

So the people running these countries were smart enough to know that Marijuana should never be legalized for any reason, including for medical purposes.

What do they know that you apparently don't get?

I do expect the voting at this site to be in your favor, because most if not all the voters will be Pro POT for both recreational and medical purposes.

But, in the World View, and based on the how many states has legalized it for medical purposes in the USA, I am a clear winner in this debate.

I just wish you would take the time to read all the authoritative medical studies done on the addictive harmful effects of marijuana, and how it has no valid reason to be used medically.

It is not clear to me how you could still hold your ill-informed and ridiculous position that it should be legalized for medical purposes.

"BIOLOGY & MEDICINE - 'Medical' Marijuana Is A Dangerous Fraud"

Here are other articles that totally prove my point - you need to read and face those facts that present the truth, not the junk that you are using as proof!

Debate Round No. 3


1. Drug legalization

Again, these issues are irrelevant. We are not debating drug legalization, we’re not even debating the legalization of medical marijuana, and we are arguing whether or not medical marijuana is an effective medicine. Although the points he makes about opium are highly debatable, the points are indeed irrelevant. Looking at the resolution, the red herring of this argument is obvious. It should have no bearing on the voters.

2. Majorities

I don’t know where my opponent is going with this. He writes the point as if it’s a rebuttal, when I have never even mentioned a pol l or country laws. Regardless, he seems to have not looked into the new polls on legalization. Last time I checked, 51% of Americans supported pro-marijuana policies (the number was higher for medical purposes) and only 44% opposed it. Regardless, this point is also irrelevant. What the majority thinks is irrelevant to something’s effectiveness. Also, it is subject to the argumentum ad populum fallacy. This point, too, should be disregarded.

3. Biased votes

Regardless of any bias, you deserve to lose this debate because you have not posted one relevant argument except “marijuana is bad”, you have not even contested (other than a few personal stories) my effectiveness argument! Even a drug czar would admit you are losing this debate – or, at least, in this situation. Also, only about 50% of the members support drug legalization (amongst the active members, the amount it likely slightly higher, maybe 55 or 60%.) My opponent also assumes every person who is “pro drug” will vote against him. Many voters on this site are reasonable and can give objective votes on debates. And, this too is irrelevant to the argument. Even if there is voter bias, how does this prove medical marijuana is bad?

4. It’s bad for you

I have not doubted this. Marijuana is not a harmless drug, but it’s not very harmful either. Yes, marijuana often leads to throat problems and, for some parts of the population, lung problems. As I have argued throughout the debate, using credible sources, the amount of damage marijuana causes is highly over stated by government agencies. Marijuana has unproven links to cancer and often helps treat the diseases it supposedly causes, so it may have a net-zero when used medically (recreational use likely will have no such counterbalancing effect – marijuana usage recreationally is unhealthy). The vast amount of new research supports medical marijuana.

My opponent cites one study done by the government. First, it claims there is no proof smoked

marijuana is of any benefit, especially for cancer. This claim is empirically untrue. As I stated in round one, there have been more clinical trials proving medical marijuana as a safe medicine than almose every FDA approved drug, but the issue is so politicized the FDA has been forced to ignore these findings. I also wouldn’t be surprised if the NIDA has blocked research (which some organizations trying to research the issue have claimed). The 1999 Institute of medicine report noted many benefits of marijuana, but still claimed it was not a “modern” medicine. In their 2000 report, they were able to put more light on even newer research. This report noted, “Considerable clinical evidence indicates that marijuana could yield a variety of useful medicines, especially for nausea, vomiting, and appetite stimulation. THC, in the form of Marinol (dronabinol), has already been used for more than a decade to treat these symptoms in cancer patients and for several years in AIDS patients as well. But other cannabinoids, or combinations of cannabinoids, may prove to be more effective than THC alone. If so, any pharmaceuticals that result from such discoveries could benefit people with AIDS as well as those living with cancer.”[1]

With so many studies, and prestigious medical associations providing robust research on the topic, I am appalled by the government cherry picking the evidence, ignoring these reports, and they claiming there is no evidence. Sadly, they are the ones with no evidence. Marinol, which my opponent talked about, is much less effective than marijuana, as my quote stated. It takes hours to work, due to its oral route as a pill, and is much weaker than marijuana. Marijuana, being smoked, is more potent (but more potent =/= worse) and is much more effective. Extra strength Tylenol is more potent, but more effective, so is my opponent points this out he might as well ban most medicines with high dosages.

The vast preponderance of evidence supports my position; I don’t see how my opponents op-eds somehow refute strong research. The IOM 2000 report notes every report published three years before theirs by medical organizations shows evidence is strongly on the side of marijuana’s effectiveness. Again, my opponent has provided no strong counter evidence to my claims. He, therefore, has lost the effectiveness point and the debate.

My opponent cites one good source on the issue of medical marijuana, a two page pdf with no blatant bias or dishonesty, but it seems to have ignored the 2000 IOM report. The 1999 report essentially said marijuana is bad, it’s a good medicine, but marinol is probably better. The 2000 report looked into the evidence published after the IOM report. Although asking for more research, they state marijuana is bad (though how bad it actually is remains uncertain), marijuana is a good medicine, marijuana is better than marinol and other medications [1]. My opponent’s reference is a little outdated…


I think this debate for anyone is obvious. My opponent has engaged in mainly red herrings, and has given little evidence that marijuana is an ineffective medicine (and the evidence he has given is either weak or has been refuted). I strongly urge a pro vote.




My opponent believes that I am not addressing his argument that marijuana is an effective medicine. I believe marijuana is an addictive drug and the claims that sometimes it is effective in reducing pain, nausea and vomiting are overstated and outweighed by its negative side effects (e.g., addictive property, cannabis-associated respiratory diseases, reduced cognitive processes, synaptic plasticity that weakens neuronal connections, increased use by teens who will believe it is OK to use even if not sick, etc.); whereas other drugs approved by the DEA and the FDA are much more effective and non-addictive, which is why there are approved as an effective medicine and pot is not. I also believe that a majority of the people who claim they need pot for medical reasons just want to get stoned legally!

"Crunching the numbers; why I say almost all medical marijuana patients are faking it."

Posted on November 15, 2012

My opponent also believes that legislative results are not relevant, a Red Herring, an Argumentum ad populum. But, he is overlooking the fact that legislators make their decisions based on their review of all the available medical evidence supporting the use of marijuana for medicinal purposes. They decide whether that positive medical evidence is sufficient to outweigh all the negative aspects of marijuana, e.g., a six-fold increase in the incidence of schizophrenia, leukemia in children born from marijuana smoking mothers and damage to the growing fetus; addictive property, cannabis-associated respiratory disease, reduced cognitive processes, etc.

My opponent"s claim that drug legalization results are irrelevant is a deductive fallacy. The only way medical marijuana can be used in any state or country legally is when the legislators agree with the alleged medical curative powers of that drug. Since most states (59%) and countries (74%) do not agree that marijuana has sufficient medicinal positive effects that outweigh the negative effects, they make it illegal, a pure and simple fact. Therefore, to say legalization is irrelevant is Reductio ad absurdum.

He calls my use of drug legalization a "Red Herring." He obviously has no clue as to how to use that term correctly. The expression is mainly used to assert that the argument provided by an individual is not relevant to the issue being discussed. Again, the legislators review all available evidence as to the curative powers of a drug and its side-effects and decide whether that drug should be made legal, if they do not agree that drug is made illegal or not approved. So, it is totally relevant and is not a red herring.

My opponent then calls my proof an Argumentum ad populum, which it is not. Now, if I had said that pot is bad because my 10 doctor friends said so or "that smoking is a healthy pastime, since millions do it, or that Angelina Jolie is the best-looking woman in the world because she is regularly voted as such", then I would be making an argumentum ad populum.

However, the popular vote in the polls he cites is definitely Argumentum ad populum.

Depending on how the polling question is phrased and the segments (e.g. young, old, pot users versus non-pot users) of the population polled, the results can vary. For example, if you phrase the question "Medical marijuana is very affective at stopping people going through chemotherapy from feeling nauseous and vomiting; do you think doctors should be allowed to prescribe it to help these poor sick suffering folks?" Many will say yes.

But if you phrase the question, "Marijuana is a very addictive drug that is mind altering and has negative side-effects, but, it does help some cancer victims, as do many other safer drugs with minimal negative side-effects, do you think marijuana should be prescribe or the safer non-addictive drugs?" You will get very different results.

Then my opponent states that regardless of any bias, I deserve to lose this debate because I have not posted one relevant argument except "marijuana is bad."

What! Is my opponent not reading the con medical marijuana studies done by doctors and scientists that I have presented? Or, does he just not fully understand all the authoritative medical support I have presented because he is a teenager - 16 years-old, or does he just reject those con studies because they do not agree with his preconceived biased notions? Or, is my opponent just one of many teenagers that are not mature enough to understand and is already convinced because of all the argumenta ad populum that are tossed out by pathetic groups like Norml.

Then my opponent brings up Marinol and claims it is less effective. Really, there are hundreds of studies and comments on this by hundreds of doctors. As usually, some are pro and some are con; but, most are pro other drugs and con medical marijuana.

But, the most conclusive proof and the only one that counts in America is the research done by the US DEA - Drug Enforcement Administration and the FDA - Food and Drug Administration.

"Unlike smoked marijuana -- which contains more than 400 different chemicals, including most of the hazardous chemicals found in tobacco smoke -- Marinol has been studied and approved by the medical community and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the nation's watchdog over unsafe and harmful food and drug products."
Secondly, the harmful chemicals and carcinogens that are byproducts of smoking create entirely new health problems. There are four-times the levels of tar in a marijuana cigarette, for example, than in a tobacco cigarette."

Conclusion: I have presented a plethora of facts and references to studies done by doctors and scientists to nullify my opponent's weak argument that marijuana has a positive medical use. Marijuana is a very dangerous addictive drug that needs to be banned in America. There are no positive medical uses of marijuana that outweigh all its negative aspects, especially when there are much more effective and safer drugs that have been approved by the DEA and FDA, e.g., Marinol.

And, the only red herrings and argumenta ad populum being thrown around are the unsupported statements and articles cited as proof by my pot smoking teenage opponent who hasn't attained the maturity necessary to even debate this subject.

Stating that my opponent is too immature to debate this subject is not an ad holmium attack, just a fact; he is too young and immature being 16 years-of-age.

The founding fathers of America were smart enough when drafting the US Constitution to include the minimum ages to hold offices in the House of Representatives (25), Senate (30) and President (35). They knew that only mature adults could be trusted to run the county, not teenagers or kids. They knew that important legislative decisions should not be left to teenagers.

Because of our founding fathers' insightfulness, important decisions about our laws are made by mature adults, not teenagers. Maturity is critical to ensuring that correct decisions are made for America, especially when it concerns deciding if very addictive drugs with many adverse side-effects, like marijuana should be made legal for medicinal purposes.

Unfortunately, too many states are caving into the popular sentiments of mainly pot-heads and pot-head organizations that are spreading lies about marijuana being a safe drug, instead of listening
Debate Round No. 4
64 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by bigdave 2 years ago

Let us review your comments " At least I am adult enough" Followed by "FU you litlle chicken turd" . Then you said "I do not talk to punks." followed by "Goodbye". Then"Freud would have an issue with your lack of maturity in not accepting comments or messages per your profile."

Quid Proximus Blennus
Posted by GWL-CPA 2 years ago
Freud would have an issue with your lack of maturity in not accepting comments or messages per your profile.
Posted by GWL-CPA 2 years ago
Posted by bigdave 2 years ago

Do you realize that your Latin phrase is an admission that you are weak minded. Perhaps Freud would have an observation on that issue.

And your comment "and, I do not talk to punks"

Posted by GWL-CPA 2 years ago
You don't take comments because you are not an adult.

You send me comments to an old debate to chat with me, because you know I will get an email.

Grow up and open up your comments and IMs. Other wise, just go away, you are just another punk at this site, IMHO'; and, I do not talk to punks.
Posted by GWL-CPA 2 years ago
Like you actually know Latin.

Veni, vidi, vici, impos animi
Posted by bigdave 2 years ago

My comment " do not take comments on my profile because of people such as yourself. A review of your comments elsewhere brings into question your definition of why you feel you act in a manner befitting an adult."

Your comment "FU you litlle chicken turd"

quod erat demonstrandum!
Posted by bigdave 2 years ago
I do not take comments on my profile because of people such as yourself. A review of your comments elsewhere brings into question your definition of why you feel you act in a manner befitting an adult.
Posted by GWL-CPA 2 years ago
And, I did not get destroyed in this debate.

Confirmation Bias cannot be beaten. Debating at this site is pointless.

Until, the debates are judged by a panel of professionals, winning debates here proves nothing.

Three of the voters were either pro drug legalization or pro medical marijuana.

Do I need to explain to you what confirmation bias is?
Posted by GWL-CPA 2 years ago
Bigdave, I see you don't take comments, because why?

You had to post a comment here. Too Funny!

Send me a PM if you have an issue. At least I am adult enough to accept PMs.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by Deadlykris 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:33 
Reasons for voting decision: When it comes right down to it, there was one key point that went uncontested: that a THC pill is safer than smoking the plant. Smoke inhalation is bad for you, all else being equal. The THC pill provides the drug without the harmful effects of inhaling smoke. Pro rightly pointed out that the legalization argument was a red herring; however, in a legalization debate I would lean towards pro. This is not a legalization debate and as Pro has rejected the THC pill as falling under his definition of "Medical marijuana", I have to award arguments to Con. All other awarded points go to Pro for reasons brought up by previous voters. No points awarded for S&G and that looks like it makes my vote a tie.
Vote Placed by Skepsikyma 3 years ago
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Conduct for R1. Sources due to the fact that many of Con's sources were blogs, and one even contained a disclaimer that the author was regarded as a fanatic and that many of his statements are suspect. Generally that should put up a red flag when one is searching for reliable sources. As for arguments, Con was nigh incoherent. As Pro observed, he employed the red herring fallacy with an almost religious fervor. The ad hominems towards the end were just embarrassing to read; the 'teenage stoner' seems to possess a degree of maturity and poise which is glaringly absent from his adult opponent. I applaud Pro for his patience while undertaking this rather Sisyphean task.
Vote Placed by Wnope 3 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: GWL simply went off the wall and started arguing for an entirely irrelevant subject. It was such an embarassing act that I am now ashamed to say I ever gave him benefit of the doubt.
Vote Placed by Raisor 3 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Conduct because Con violated that R1 was acceptance only. RFD in comments.