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The Contender
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Medical Marijuana

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/23/2011 Category: Politics
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,000 times Debate No: 18947
Debate Rounds (4)
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Votes (1)




I hope to help 16kadams in his/her attempt to start a career in politics. I have seen him/her participate in several debates. I saw one debate on this topic in which the person who posted it only allowed a 10 minute period to post arguments so that rounds were automatically forfeited.

I hope he/she accepts this invitation and I look forward to the debate.

Round 1 is acceptance. I will be arguing that medical marijuana should be allowed, so the burden of proof will be on me to show why it should be allowed.
My opponent will be asked either to point out why I have failed to prove my point or to prove me wrong.

I look forward to a response and a fun debate.


I accept.

Just a heads I'm not a good debater :P
Debate Round No. 1


Often, I see the DEA using propaganda to sway public opinion. The DEA has business trying to inform people about their work- they are the drug enforcement agency- the executives that arrest people for using marijuana for any reason, including medical reasons. Their propaganda flies in the face of modern science and the conclusions of the general scientific community. Marijuana has an incredibly small toxicity, as evidenced by the number of deaths from marijuana overdose per year, which is zero (1).
The DEA uses faulty reasoning when it says that marijuana is addictive (2). It cites 15 year old studies to find that marijuana is addictive while ignoring the plethora of studies that find the opposite (3).

It is common knowledge that marijuana increases the appetite of the user in a phenomenon known as the "munchies". Marijuana also has a positive effect on nausea. Both of these are huge problems with patients after a round of chemotherapy radiation.

The counter to this is that other drugs also work on nausea and they work better. This is the equivalent of saying we should criminalize Advil because Tylenol works better. It also ignores the fact that a person may as well do marijuana. Who does the congress think it is? Where does it get off telling people what they cannot have even if it doesn't have medical benefits. If it has even an ounce of medical benefit, why not allow people to do it?
If my doctor thinks that meth is a good way to cure something, why does the government get to say that that's an illegal treatment? Doctors know more about drugs than congressmen. Doctors should be able to prescribe literally anything, the least of which is marijuana.

The bottom line is that marijuana is not addictive and not toxic. It can help patients getting through a sickness, so it should be allowed.

I look forward to my opponent's response.

(1) number 6.


You have made a good argument but it has it's faults too.

You say that patients that have gone through chemotherapy need marijuana. This is false. My father, who is a physician says that there are prescription medicine that people should use other then marijuana, because they have less side effects that harm you.

One of these side effects is it effects the immune system.
Donald P. Tashkin, MD, in his 2001 article "Effects of Smoked Marijuana on the Lung and Its Immune Defenses: Implications for Medicinal Use in HIV-Infected Patients, published in the Journal of Cannabis Therapeutics, stated:

"Frequent marijuana use can cause airway injury, lung inflammation and impaired pulmonary defense against infection. The major potential pulmonary consequences of habitual marijuana use of particular relevance to patients with AIDS is superimposed pulmonary infection, which could be life threatening in the seriously immonocompromised patient."
There are more studies to prove the point.

You also say that it has medical benefits and is non toxic.There are 400 chemicals in marijuana. most of them are toxic in a medicine perspective. Compared to other drugs your right, marijuana isn't very addicting, but it still is addictive, well not compared to crack. Long term marijuana use is addictive. About 9% of people get a dependency when using marijuana. It also makes a withdrawal syndrome ,similar to nicotine, making it harder to quit. It also makes people more aggressive.

Also, the FDA sys their are now studies that have significant proof that medical marijuana has benefits. FDA spokesperson Susan Bro said the agency issued its statement in response to inquiries from the public and Congress.

"For the FDA, there has not been enough clinical data demonstrating that either the drug is effective or safe in treating chronic, painful conditions," Bro said.

My Dad (who is a doctor)
Debate Round No. 2


My opponent has misrepresented my point. I did not argue that patients who have gone through chemotherapy need marijuana. I argued that marijuana has a potential benefit, so it should not be criminalized.

"My father, who is a physician says that there are prescription medicine that people should use other then marijuana, because they have less side effects that harm you."
I rebutted this in my example equating it to criminalizing Advil because Tylenol works better.

It is true that marijuana has some harmful side effects. That is not in question. Lots of drugs have terrible side effects. It is up to the physician and the patient to decide whether the side effects are worth it to treat the ailment. It is not for the state to criminalize.

There are loads of chemicals in cookies too, whether or not they are badly toxic is the question. Marijuana is not very toxic. This is the fallacy that the whole is nothing more that the sum of its parts. It is a composition fallacy. Just because marijuana has something which may be deemed terribly toxic doesn't mean that marijuana is itself terribly toxic.
There is also the fact that everything is toxic to consider. Too much water is toxic. Marijuana's toxicity is so low that no one has ever died of an overdose of marijuana.

The argument that marijuana is addictive follows those same lines. Lasagne is addictive too. The addictiveness of a drug is basically irrelevant. Common pain-killers are far more addictive than marijuana and they are not criminalized.

For clarity's sake, I ask my opponent to please provide a source for "About 9% of people get a dependency when using marijuana. It also makes a withdrawal syndrome ,similar to nicotine, making it harder to quit. It also makes people more aggressive."

I don't know of a study to back me up here, but I have never ever met an aggressive marijuana user. It is pretty common knowledge that they just kind of sit there.

I will now critique the sources of my opponent:
1. the article to which my opponent linked is actually about how the FDA's decision may have been politically motivated, my opponent has linked to an article which supports more my side than his/hers.
2. This website is ridiculously biased. It is run by the government(1) and is propaganda (2). "ONDCP is specifically charged with the responsibility for "taking such actions as necessary to oppose any attempt to legalize the use" of certain controlled substances such as marijuana"


I look forward to my opponent's response.


Well I'm gonna talk about my sources first. You criticize me yet you use Wikipedia. And we l know that that isn't a valid source all of the time, so you shouldn't even say anything about my sources.

Also you criticize the FDA, but are they politically motivated to say that candy is bad for you? You saying this sounds like a conspiracy theory to me, but not literally obviously. Their job is to say what is healthy for you and what is bad for you, if they mess up their in deep %^&* because of lawsuits. So this being said, I don't think they would lie about public safety.

And how is marijuana have medical benefits, it has 400 chemicals in it and has carcinogens. One marijuana cigarette is like 10 normal cigarettes. So why have it as medicine when you have others that will not act like this. If you doctor http://wwwgives you this I think he needs to go back to med school. Sources:

Marijuana is possibly linked to mental sicknesses. One is schizophrenia. So once again how is this medicine if it causes you to go crazy. I see no purpose to marijuana uses, this is the only 'medicine' as you would say that causes this. It also causes cannabis which is short term. Source:

Um your Advil and Tylenol doesn't debunk anything. My dad's view says the side effects are worse then any other prescription drug, not that one is better to the other. You would debunk me if I said something about effectiveness, but I didn't. I talked about harm, not effectiveness.

Question, you say marijuana isn't toxic, only the stuff with it. Well, if it's all in there it's gonna be toxic.That's like saying putting arsenic into coffee and claiming that this coffee isn't toxic. you right, the coffee isn't toxic, but it is bad for you with the stuff in there. So yes your right the leaf isn't toxic, but the cigarette as a whole is toxic.

The pain killers, are they addictive? the answer is yes. But why aren't the illegal? Because they don't cause cancer as easily, don't cause cannabis or schizophrenia, aggressiveness as much, or cause crime. This is why marijuana is illegal, and Advil or Tylenol aren't.

Here's the source for the 9% and the aggressive argument: I read the sources from you given to make sure at least some of it is from there.

You have never met a aggressive marijuana usage. So it's tour word vs. a study. I am not doubting your opinion, but those are the facts. As you know cannabis makes you aggressive, so if they are linked how will you not become aggressive. Obviously I don't mean every Pot user becomes aggressive, but many do. Here is a forum talking about people's personal experience with the drug, and i hope this may clear out this issue:

I really like this debate, and still good luck. I await your response.
Debate Round No. 3


I will rebut the snide wikipedia remarks.
I used wikipedia to show the fact of the matter, not to show any research. Encyclopedias/dictionaries/thesauruses are perfectly cite-worthy when you are using them to show just fact.
I used wikipedia sources as evidence for my claim that your sources are biased. If you like, I could find the same information at pretty much any of the websites.
My point was that the agency you quoted is mandated to oppose legalization at all costs, so it obviously isn't trustworthy.
Also, two wrongs don't make a right. I wasn't criticizing you, I was criticizing your sources.

I didn't criticize the FDA either. The article that YOU quoted was criticizing the FDA, that was my point. Your source was suggesting that the FDA was politically motivated. They aren't politically motivated to say anything about candy because candy isn't a hot button issue. It's unrealistic to think that any bureaucracy wouldn't have at least a little corruption. It isn't a consumer protection agency, it's a food and drug administration, sometimes it acts as a consumer protection agency, but that isn't the primary function.

There are tons of chemicals in everything. I've already said that. "400 chemicals" is just a scare phrase. There are carcinogens, but they will only be able to affect you if you smoke it. You can ingest marijuana via food and via vaporizer. The vaporizer wipes out like 90% of the risk and eating it wipes it all out. There is no more risk from eating marijuana than there is from eating a cookie.

"Why have it as medicine when you have others that will not act like this?"
Like I said, there may be medicines which work better, but that's no reason to ban the ones that don't work as well. Testimonials (which aren't that valid, admittedly) show people who say marijuana worked where other drugs didn't. That's irrelevant though because it works. If it works just 10%, why would you stop someone who wants to do it? It's their choice. Why crack down on cancer-stricken stoners?

If I made a list like has of morphine, do you think it would fare better or worse?
I think morphine will mess you up a heck of a lot worse than marijuana, and morphine is completely medically legal.

I have looked up my opponent's assertion that marijuana can cause schizophrenia. I found that the causal relationship is controversial and is still being studied (1) (2) (3).

Lots of medicine can cause psychosis. X can cause psychosis ergo X is not medicine is not a valid argument. Adrenal failure can cause psychosis, so medications that can cause adrenal failure can cause psychosis. It is logically NOT the only medicine that can cause psychosis.
I don't know what you meant to say, but you said "It also causes cannabis which is short term."

I put harm and effectiveness in the same category. The more it harms you, the less effective it is, so my Tylenol and Advil analogy still stands unless you would say that it can harm you a lot and still remain an effective and legal drug (like chemotherapy- WAY worse than marijuana), but then you have to answer to why marijuana doesn't fit that category.

I never said "only the stuff with it". I said a whole is not just the sum of it's parts. That's a fallacy. You just made it again for the second time. There is no arsenic in marijuana, but if you had a small enough amount of arsenic, then yeah the coffee wouldn't be toxic. Your analogy to coffee doesn't apply at all.

Radiation causes cancer, that's common knowledge, however, radiation is also used to treat cancer. Something can cause cancer and still be legal medically. In fact, it happens all the time. Maybe I'm mistaken about what you mean, because I thought you had made a typo before. What do you mean "It causes cannabis". Cannabis is the scientific term for marijuana. One cannot cause cannabis.

Cannabis does NOT cause crime. Cannabis IS crime. It is the criminalization that causes crime. We are in the same boat today as we were in the 1920's when alcohol was made illegal by the government. The mob was created because of alcohol. Al Capone was an alcohol dealer.
Cannabis is the same story.

On the aggressiveness and addiction, if you read it, you'll notice that it says the aggressiveness/withdrawal peaks at 1 week after they quit. It also doesn't say it causes agression is says it causes "increased agression" which could mean the equivalent of being cranky from staying up too late.
That has got to be one of the shortest withdrawals around.

I was just making a joke about having never seen an aggressive marijuana user, don't get so uppity.
Cannabis doesn't make you aggressive, cannabis WITHDRAWAL makes you aggressive (and possibly only mildly) and you only have withdrawal if you get addicted which means that there's a 91% chance that you will never see the aggressiveness while smoking.
"Obviously I don't mean every pot user becomes aggressive, but many do."
If you define whatever percent of 9% that quits as "many" then sure.

It does appear that several people on this forum think marijuana makes them aggressive. Sources 4-6 will show legal medications which can also cause mood swings.

I thank my opponent for agreeing to this debate. I have enjoyed it. I ask the readers to please vote pro.




You keep saying we needn't ban medicines that are worse. Marijuana isn't a medicine. It's a poison. Dying doesn't sound appealing to me. Most medicines don't kill you, if they do commonly they are called poison. So in my opinion why destroy your brain, cause cannabis, or even schizophrenia when you need to take other medicines. I can promise that the FDA or another government agency would step in if they found that Advil killed you. So even if you think it's medicine, it shouldn't be legal.

Wikipedia is a terrible resource. I read one of their articles and it said Joe Biden was president and that obama was vice. Does that sound correct? It has happened to me many times, another time it said the confederate states of America was still around. Here is an article about this:

Um, it doesn't say it was politically motivated. It says it may or may not. So you need to re-read that because it shows the maybe, not the certain.

Obviously people don't NEED marijuana, but you think it's a good alternative. Which is kinda implied in your first argument. And as I have said it isn't.

Chewing medical marijuana is still bad. Although it is less harmful it can be overdosed easily and give you tremendous pain. Like chewing tobacco, it can give you mouth cancer. Source: Dad (doctor). Either way most medical marijuana is smoked because it works faster.

It does say that it peaks 1 week after. Frequent users are gonna have peaks all the time then. If I smoked now (which I wouldn't) and then tomorrow and the next day etc. then after 1 week I'll be pissy every day. Here's an article about this:

I define 9% as a lot. If 9% of kids died in America at birth, it would be considered high.

Yes, legal drugs do give you mood swings, but none of those you mentioned are used to treat what marijuana 'treats'. Also you get aggression through cannabis, a temporary mental disorder not a simple side effect. And my schizophrenia case still stands tall and strong, you didn't even try to rebut it. (just saying no meanness intended).

Marijuana is also a gateway drug. A gateway drug means it makes you more inclined to use other use i.e. heroin or crack. If this is true I don't want patients to start at bad and end at worse.

It is also against a Hippocratic oath to prescribe marijuana. In the oath it basically says I won't hurt my patients. well If marijuana does all these things, (which studies indicate they do) then every time they prescribe this that means that their hurting a patient.

Oh, and by the way I urge no one to vote for me or him. Vote on your own liking/choice, not our saying so.
Debate Round No. 4
No comments have been posted on this debate.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by imabench 5 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: i am for medical marijuana but con really won this debate because he had some stellar arguments about the dangers of marijuana and the pro couldnt refute this claim. the debate then went a little off topic as sources were challenged but the con's arguments still stood at the end. I gave conduct to con because wikipedia is a decent source for information......Pretty good debate