The Instigator
BeatTheDevil89
Pro (for)
Losing
13 Points
The Contender
critterrice
Con (against)
Winning
22 Points

Soft Drugs and Prostitution should be legalized.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/16/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 5,278 times Debate No: 4427
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (9)
Votes (9)

 

BeatTheDevil89

Pro

This is a very popular topic but I haven't found a debate about it on this website, so I decided to start one.

Definitions: Soft Drugs such as marijuana and the like, cocaine, and heroine. Also add any other drugs that don't do permanant brain damage like Shrooms, LSD, Meth, ect.

Prostitution: consensual sexual acts in exchange for money or other goods.

Value: Fairness
Value Criterion

1) That all laws are fair and just, by protecting society and not limiting the freedoms and rights of society at the same time.

2) All crimes should have a victim or potential victim, otherwise it is not a crime

3) Maximize efficency of our law enforcement.

4) To use tax payer dollars wisely and effeciently, especially in law enforcement scenarios.

In short, the "crimes" mentioned above should not be considered such because they have no victim and they are consensual. Cigarretes can give you cancer, alcholol can give you liver disease, you can even OD on advil for crying out loud. In this debate my burden of proof consists of the following:

1) Society's safety would not be threatened, and in fact is by the laws in place

2) To uphold society's right to choose their actions so long as it doesn't hurt another person (the person taking the drugs or paying the prostitute doesn't count.)

Please forgive the any and many grammatical erros spell check won't work, weird.
critterrice

Con

To begin, I am just going to eliminate this definition of soft drugs.
"Definitions: Soft Drugs such as marijuana and the like, cocaine, and heroine. Also add any other drugs that don't do permanant brain damage like Shrooms, LSD, Meth, ect."
I find your definition of soft drugs limiting. Long term brain damage is not viable as the sole method of classifying a "hard" drug. I do not accept your definition, but that doesn't mean I can't work with it.
Let's instead use a looser definition of permanent brain damage. Let's decide that death is a form of damage. So permanent brain death can be considered permanent brain damage. Heroin kills, here is my source: http://www.druglibrary.org...
Ergo, permanent brain death, ergo, permanent brain damage.
So heroin does not fit your definition of soft drugs.
So, the drug argument is invalid.
You said the person paying the prostitute or taking the drugs does not count. I don't see how that is valid, because suicide is a crime.
But since you didn't say prostitutes don't count. Let's take into consideration the fact that prostitutes are at a higher risk of violence that any other group of women. Period. Here's my reference: http://www.justicewomen.com...
In addition, the prostitutes are at risk of infectous diseases from clients.
In addition, some sexual practices which the prostitute may be paid to engage in could result in injury or death.
So prostitution can not be considered victimless.
I have lots more but I think I will save some for later rounds.
Debate Round No. 1
BeatTheDevil89

Pro

To begin, forget the definition of drugs, its bad, for the sake of simplicity lets just make it all drugs. Second, for some odd reason my spellcheck doesn't always work, that's why I just ask everyone to forgive it. No for the debate.

First of all I would like to ask my opponent to do his homework - did you actually read http://www.druglibrary.org...? It is a link about how the way they measure the overdose results are bogus - so you may add that to one of my source lists. Lets also take a look at what else kills, cigarretes, alcholol, OTC drugs as well as perscription, McDonalds, proper does of everyday household cleaning products, almost anything in excess can kill you. Why are these paticular drugs illegal then.

Mary Jane (This is what I call marijuana and will call it from here on). Well one of the first places it was outlawed was in Utah 1914. A couple years back they outlawed poligamy and most of the mormons moved to Mexico. A couple of years later they came back to Utah and one of the things they broguht with them (along with other Mexican immigrants) was Mary Jane. Well once again, Utah had to try and get rid of the Mormon's and the immigrants so they outlawed Mary Jane.

"Marijuana was outlawed in 30 states by 1930. There were two primary reasons for the laws.

In the southwestern states, marijuana was outlawed because of racial prejudice against the Mexicans who used it. As one Texas legislator said, "All Mexicans are crazy and this stuff (marijuana) is what makes them crazy."

In the other states, it was outlawed because of fears that heroin addiction would lead to the use of marijuana - exactly the opposite of the modern "gateway" myth."

During this time period there was a strong nativist movement (anti-immigrant) so they rejected anything they used or did. Prohibition resulted from this feeling and that gave organized crime its first big boost and made them as powerful as they are. Now gangs and organized crime have used drugs AND prostitution in the same way.

Even today this opression exists. Crack Cocaine is less addictive and less dangerous than pure powder cocaine. Crack is also cheaper and generally used by poorer, inner city minorities. Nose Candy on the other hand is expensive, like really expensive, like 50 grand for a batch the size of a brick and is generally used by the wealtheir whites who can afford it. Most actors and actresses are in rehab for this drug. Crack carries a heavier sentence, 3 guesses why.

So again I refer to my value of fairness - These laws were made to oppress immigrants and minorities, they are still enforced that same way. They should be abolished.

Source: http://www.druglibrary.org...

Just to comment: use of alcohol rose during prohibition, and a poll by Zogby showed 99% of people wouldn't do hard drugs if they were legalized (they call it dope for a reason I guess).

Source: http://stopthedrugwar.org...

Just for some background on how many people actually die from drugs I found this list:

The number of drug deaths in the US in a typical year is as follows:

Tobacco kills about 390,000.
Alcohol kills about 80,000.
Sidestream smoke from tobacco kills about 50,000.
Cocaine kills about 2,200.
Heroin kills about 2,000.
Aspirin kills about 2,000.
Marijuana kills 0. There has never been a recorded death due to marijuana at any time in US history.
All illegal drugs combined kill about 4,500 people per year, or about one percent of the number killed by alcohol and tobacco. Tobacco kills more people each year than all of the people killed by all of the illegal drugs in the last century.
Source: NIDA Research Monographs

Next: Prostitution. Most of my argument above can be used. Increased organized crime, doesn't really defer people, laws made by people who wanted to shove the Bible down other people's throats so they made this law, and legalization can reduce the spread of STD's through monitoring.

The Cost of things: almost 20 BILLION dollars a year, almost 100,000 arrests just this year, and approx. 4000 preventable AIDS cases if clean needle exchange is implemented. Prosititution costs almost one million dollars in enforcement alone in San Fransisco, not to mention incarceration and cost of court.

Sources: http://www.bayswan.org...
http://www.drugsense.org...

Anyway, no "real" sexual acts can kill you, although I heard about this one couple who did something stupid. The wife was tied up to the bed and her husband dressed up like super man and was going to jump from the dresser on top of her and save her in the middle of intercourse, except when he jumped he missed and hit his head on teh ceiling fan or bed post and cracked his head open and fell inconscience. The wife screamed until the next door neighbor called 911 and ran over to see what the commotion was about (he assumed a burglarer). Anyway point is that stuff like that can happen anywhere, paid or not.

Spell Chack stopped working half way through so excuse all the screw ups, thanks.
critterrice

Con

I think it completely nullifies your point to change the rules and definitions as you go.
Just in case others don't agree with me I will now debate based on your new definitions.
Yes I read the drug library article. Now, if you continue past the part about the overdoses you will see that the report goes on to speculate that the cause of the deaths was other ingredients in the heroin. The article states clearly that heroin kills, it just does argues as to HOW heroin kills.
As for your other examples, they are invalid. We could argue that McDonald's should be illegal, but that's another debate.
We could argue about cars, but an overwhelming majority of traffic deaths are cause by DUI, so that is drug related.
Your death rate for marijuana is way off as well,
"In 1999, DAWN (Drug Abuse Warning Network) data reported by medical examiners show that out of 664 marijuana-related deaths, there were 187 deaths where marijuana was the only drug reported."
"Marijuana use is frequently mentioned in hospital emergency room drug overdose visits. The rate for marijuana is about half that for cocaine, about the same as for heroin/morphine, but is twice the rates for common household painkillers aspirin/acetaminophen and for benzodiazepine depressants such as Xanax and Valium.
While marijuana typically had been used with another drug, particularly alcohol and cocaine, in 1999 marijuana use as a single drug did account for 22% of the marijuana emergency room incidents. By way of comparison, single use of cocaine and heroin accounted for 29% and 47% of the cocaine and heroin episodes, respectively."
Microbiologist Tom Klein of the University of South Florida reports, "We've tried working with [marijuana smoke], and it's so toxic, you just get it near the immune system and it [the immune system] dies."
Marijuana users have been shown to have an increase in neurotic and psychopathic behavior.
I have stated the previous arguments since you are now quoting death rates, which I take to mean that you concede that users can be victims.
Drug use DOES put others at risk though:
Women who smoke marijuana produce children who are 11 times as succeptible to leukemia than non-drug users.
Legalization won't help with this. "California decriminalized marijuana in 1976, and, within the first six months, arrests for driving under the influence of drugs rose 46 percent for adults and 71.4 percent for juveniles.[33] Decriminalizing marijuana in Alaska and Oregon in the 1970s resulted in the doubling of use.[34] Patrick Murphy, a court-appointed lawyer for 31,000 abused and neglected children in Chicago, says that more than 80 percent of the cases of physical and sexual abuse of children now involve drugs. There is no evidence that legalizing drugs will reduce these crimes, and there is evidence that suggests it would worsen the problem."
You argue that legalization will save taxpayers money:
"Health costs associated with legalization would be very high. And legalization would have consequences elsewhere. For example, the Drug Enforcement Administration says legalization of drugs will cost society between $140-210 billion a year in lost productivity and job-related accidents. And insurance companies would pass on accident expenses to consumers.[46] The Institute for Health Policy at Brandeis University found that in 1990 dollars the societal cost of substance abuse is in excess of $238 billion, of which $67 billion is for illicit drugs. The report states, "As the number one health problem in the country, substance abuse places a major burden on the nation's health care system and contributes to the high cost of health care. In fact, substance abuse -- the problematic use of alcohol, illicit drugs and tobacco -- places an enormous burden on American society asa whole."
Your statements about the prohibition are also unsupported:
"Prohibition was a solitary effort by this country while the rest of the world was essentially "wet." However, most drugs are illegal throughout much of the world. This makes enforcement much easier. History shows that prohibition curbed alcohol abuse. Alcohol use declined by 30 to 50 percent; deaths from cirrhosis of the liver fell from 29.5 per 100,000 in 1911 to 10.7 in 1929; and admissions to state mental hospitals for alcohol psychosis fell from 10.1 per 100,000 in 1919 to 4.7 in 1928.[53] Mark Moore, Harvard professor of criminal justice, wrote: "The real lesson of prohibition is that society can, indeed, make a dent in the consumption of drugs through laws."
And also:"The DEA found that during prohibition, suicide rates decreased 50 percent. The incidence of alcohol-related arrests also declined 50 percent."
And: "Sweden legalized doctor prescriptions of amphetamines in 1965. During the first year of legalization, the number of intravenous"speed" addicts rose 88.5 percent. A study of men arrested during the legalization period showed a high correlation between intravenous use and a variety of crimes."
So there are plenty of victims.

Now, prostitution:
"Regardless of prostitution's status (legal, illegal or decriminalized) or its physical location (strip club, massage parlor, street, escort/home/hotel), prostitution is extremely dangerous for women. Homicide is a frequent cause of death (Potterat et al., 2004)."
"In strip club prostitution, she was sexually harassed and assaulted."
This was from an ex-prostitute in legal Nevada. She also said:
"Despite the claims to the contrary, legal prostitution does not protect women from the violence, verbal abuse, physical injury or diseases such as HIV that occur in illegal prostitution." and, "My goal is to always protect the rights of women," she said. "We have to ask the women involved and take their answers seriously."
The New York Times had this to say:
"What is not widely understood is how coercive all aspects of the sex trade are. The average age of entry into prostitution is extremely young. The prostitutes are ruthlessly controlled by pimps, club owners and traffickers. In the case of legal prostitution, they are controlled by their own pimps and the brothel owners — pimps who have been legalized by the state.

The women are exploited in every way. Most of the money they receive from johns goes to the pimps, the brothel owners, the escort service managers and so forth. Strippers and lap dancers have to pay for the right to dance in the clubs, and the money they get in tips has to be shared with the club owners, bartenders, bouncers, etc."
So, prostitutes, even legal ones, are the saddest kind of victims. The kind who are brainwashed for so long, that they don't realize there could be anything better.
If you read Ms. Farley's story, take a deep breath first.
Sources:
http://www.psychiatrictimes.com...
http://www.lvrj.com...
http://select.nytimes.com...
http://www.drugwatch.org...
http://www.sarnia.com...
http://www.alcoholalert.com...
http://www.dui.com...
Debate Round No. 2
BeatTheDevil89

Pro

First off my examples about McDonalds are not invalid, the examples I mentioned above are good examples because they are things that can kill, are known to kill when taken in excess or improperly, but people still eat McDonalds and drive recklessly.
A victim is, "One who is harmed or killed by another"

If drug users that OD are victims, then so are people who have heart attacks from eating bad, or people with cancer from smoking, or liver disease from drinking. We don't refer t these people as victims, why do we refer to users of drugs as victims?

Rebuttal:
"In 1999, DAWN data reported by medical examiners show that out of 664 marijuana-related deaths, there were 187 deaths where marijuana was the only drug reported."

If you had read the full report you would see this quote "… total deaths involving only marijuana, 35 were suicides, 53 were accidental/unexpected (not overdose), and 69 fell into the all other category." The report specifically indicates that the term "death" is used in relation to not only direct causes but also contributing causes. So as you can see, marijuana never "directly" caused a death.

Source: http://www.drugwatch.org...

It was later shown in another study that
"Animal tests have revealed that extremely high doses of cannabinoids are needed to have lethal effect. This has led scientists to conclude that the ratio of the amount of cannabinoids necessary to get a person intoxicated relative to the amount necessary to kill them is 1 to 40,000. In other words, to overdose, you would have to consume 40,000 times as much marijuana as you needed to get stoned. In contrast, the ratio for alcohol varies between 1 to 4 and 1 to 10. It is easy to see how upwards of 5000 people die from alcohol overdoses every year and no one EVER dies of marijuana overdoses."

Source: http://www.drugtext.org...

"Marijuana use is frequently mentioned in hospital emergency room drug overdose visits."

Did you know they send you to a hospital emergency room if you are a minor who consumed alcohol, even non-lethal amounts? The same for all people found intoxicated from marijuana, they are sent to the emergency room as a precaution, not because they are dying. Second, you do not specify that these visits are directly a result from the actual "use" of the drug or drugs in question.

"We've tried working with [marijuana smoke], and it's so toxic, you just get it near the immune system and it [the immune system] dies."

"Like the studies claiming to show damage to the reproductive system, this myth is based on studies where animals were given extremely high-in many cases, near-lethal-doses of cannabinoids. These results have never been duplicated in human beings. Interestingly, two studies done in 1978 and one done in 1988 showed that hashish and marijuana may have actually stimulated the immune system in the people studied."

Source: http://www.drugtext.org...

"Marijuana users have been shown to have an increase in neurotic and psychopathic behavior"

"The most celebrated study that claims to show brain damage is the rhesus monkey study of Dr. Robert Heath, done in the late 1970s. This study was reviewed by a distinguished panel of scientists sponsored by the Institute of Medicine and the National Academy of Sciences. Their results were published under the title, Marijuana and Health in 1982. Heath's work was sharply criticized for its insufficient sample size (only four monkeys), its failure to control experimental bias, and the misidentification of normal monkey brain structure as "damaged". Actual studies of human populations of marijuana users have shown no evidence of brain damage. For example, two studies from 1977, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) showed no evidence of brain damage in heavy users of marijuana. That same year, the American Medical Association (AMA) officially came out in favor of decriminalizing marijuana. That's not the sort of thing you'd expect if the AMA thought marijuana damaged the brain."

Source: http://www.drugtext.org...

"Women who smoke marijuana produce children who are 11 times as susceptible to leukemia than non-drug users."
Yeah, during PREGNANCY.
According to you – "California decriminalized marijuana in 1976, and, within the first six months, arrests for driving under the influence of drugs rose 46 percent for adults and 71.4 percent for juveniles.[33] Decriminalizing marijuana in Alaska and Oregon in the 1970s resulted in the doubling of use.[34] Patrick Murphy, a court-appointed lawyer for 31,000 abused and neglected children in Chicago, says that more than 80 percent of the cases of physical and sexual abuse of children now involve drugs. There is no evidence that legalizing drugs will reduce these crimes, and there is evidence that suggests it would worsen the problem."

Well in Amsterdam- usage for legalized drugs was cut in half. The "drug use" in child abuse cases overwhelmingly involve alcohol, not heroine or cocaine and the like.

For DUI
"However, a closer examination of the victims revealed that around 85% of the people intoxicated on marijuana WERE ALSO INTOXICATED ON ALCOHOL. For people only intoxicated on marijuana, the rate was much lower than for alcohol alone. This finding has been supported by other research using completely different methods. For example, an economic analysis of the effects of decriminalization on marijuana usage found that states that had reduced penalties for marijuana possession experienced a rise in marijuana use and a decline in alcohol use with the result that fatal highway accidents decreased. This would suggest that, far from causing "carnage", legal marijuana might actually save lives."

As mentioned before, profit is to be made from legalizing drugs. More money as been spent on the drug war just last year than the figures you give on lost productivity, also hospitalization will decrease because with legalization comes regulation.

If someone is going to get intoxicated, they have a choice about what they would be intoxicated on. Its not like there are people out their who only smoke pot or only drink alcohol and drive. They will take whatever they have access to, legal or illegal.

Crime rate would also decrease from legalization. It is unclear in any data but I can say personally that I work with a lawyer and although I can't give to many specifics, the vast majority of the people that come in for property crime, such as theft or shop lifting, were stealing to pay for drugs. The high cost of drugs would be cut if they became legal because the black market inflates everything.

Sources: http://www.drugtext.org...

You claim that prostitutes are exposed to violence, STDs, and make little money because of pimps.
Legalization again means regulation – there will be no more pimp, pimps profit from the illegality. Places were you can "purchase" the services can require the use of condoms and screen all employees. A safe place in the brothel with security can also minimize risk of violence.
Most of the problems with prostitution are directly related to its illegality, if it is legal then most of these problems will be fixed. Moreover, this is still a victimless crime, you have cited cases when prostitutes are victimized by violence, pimps, and other people not involved (in the bedroom anyway) with the actual prostitution. Most times these people conduct their business safely and few have problems. None of the problems you mentioned above occur at the Moonlite Bunny Ranch in Nevada were prostitution is legal. The girls are safe, the customers are happy, and everybody gets paid. HBO did a special documentary with interviews with the girls, and none of them complained about their job and many say they have "no regrets."

I am almost out of room so I have to cut it short, your turn.
critterrice

Con

Too bad you already conceded your stance.

Resolution: "Soft drugs and prostitution should be legalized"
"Definitions: Soft Drugs such as marijuana and the like, cocaine, and heroine. Also add any other drugs that don't do permanant brain damage like Shrooms, LSD, Meth, ect."
" To begin, forget the definition of drugs, its bad, for the sake of simplicity lets just make it all drugs"
You conceded your original argument. You quit.

You stated "Just to comment: use of alcohol rose during prohibition" I disproved that in R2. You chose not to counter that, because you couldn't.

McDonald's is irrelevent because people don't run over pedestrians while high on cheeseburgers. You did want victims right?
Here's some victims for you: "Domestic violence and the breakdown of families is the worst problem created by drug abuse in Hawaii, according to a survey of participants in more than a dozen community meetings around the islands.
In the months leading up to this week's drug summit in Waikiki, Lt. Gov. James "Duke" Aiona hosted 13 "talk story" sessions on four islands to gather community thoughts on drug abuse and solutions."
Point: To me.

Or do innocent women and children not fit your definition of victims?

Your argument against cars and DUI is also irrelevent, as alcohol is a drug and you said, "for the sake of simplicity lets just make it all drugs.": so drugs contribute to more vehicle deaths than any other factor: "Out of 510 DUI related deaths,108 were passengers, and 42 were pedestrians."
See? More victims.
Point: To me.

Additionally, McDonald's in moderation can provide added proteins to the diet, and even boost the metabolism to run more efficiently when a healthier diet is introduced.
Point: To me.

I see you also ignored my statistics on countries where drugs are legal, like 88% of the crimes being attributed to drug users in drug friendly countries. More non-using victims.
And your beloved Amsterdam is one of the countries where legalized drugs and prostitution were shown to increase the crime rate.
Point: To me.

Your counter here is just ridiculous.
""Women who smoke marijuana produce children who are 11 times as susceptible to leukemia than non-drug users."
Yeah, during PREGNANCY."
And? This somehow eans the cancer ridden infant is not a victim?

Your statement on black market raising costs is completely false. Do a little research on the black market firearm trade and you will see that. Crack, meth, lsd, shrooms, and marijuana, are often manufactured or grown by the dealer. They are tax free. There are no middle men, no shop percentages, no regulatory agencies to be paid. Drugs are cheap. Once the government gets involved we will have to pay taxes, they will only be sold with a permit, which the cost of will have to be passed on to the drug prices. For these reasons, drug related crime would likely increase.

Your argument for regulation of prostitution is irrelevent because Ms.Farley, cited in R2, was a legal prostitute, operating under Nevada state regulations when she experienced her travesties. And legal proostitution in Nevada does NOT test the clients for STD's, only the hookers. Then, the hookers lose their livelihood, and according to Ms. Farley, who would know, they can not function in normal society after the brainwashing they endure.
Point: To me.

If you want any more evidence on victims of drug use, just Google CRACK BABIES. Ever seen one of those? Does that fit your definition of victim?

I rest my case.
Debate Round No. 3
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by Chuckles 8 years ago
Chuckles
horrible "hard" drug definition. good topic though.
Posted by Derek.Gunn 8 years ago
Derek.Gunn
Food technology is pretty sophisticated.
They can control sugar, salt and fat very well.
Don't know if they have control over types of fat, but if they don't, I expect they will soon.
Posted by critterrice 8 years ago
critterrice
I just mean that if they are gradually adding regulation to it, then maybe it will get phased out, or at least become a generally disliked and only semi-legal subculture, like smoking.
I know it isn't as obvious about smoking in places like Vegas, where cigarettes are everywhere, but here they are illegal within 25 feet of any building.
I see that much of the general public is getting turned off to fast food, and now the regulation of ingredients...
Just speculation. I really don't think there is enough data for an accurate prediction yet.
Posted by Derek.Gunn 8 years ago
Derek.Gunn
It would... if fast food has to contain trans-fats.
Posted by critterrice 8 years ago
critterrice
I wonder if the illegalization of trans-fats in many states is a herald of the eventual illegalization of fast food?

Just something to think about.
Posted by Josh 8 years ago
Josh
Soft drugs and prostitution ARE already legalized.
In Holland.
Posted by critterrice 8 years ago
critterrice
I never use spell check. I choose to be held accountable for my own grammar.
Posted by Hypnodoc 8 years ago
Hypnodoc
I am in a debate right now that hits those topics pretty hard. The problem is that your deffinition of soft drugs as drugs that do not do permanent brain damage would eliminate everything you listed. Several studies have linked Marijuana to health problems, Cocaine and heroine are far worse than Marijuana in their effects.
Posted by Protagoras 8 years ago
Protagoras
You were pretty much fine untill you said.

"Please forgive the any and many grammatical ERROS spell check won't work, weird."

Irony.lol.
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