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Should Marijuana be legalized?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/8/2014 Category: Health
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,371 times Debate No: 48676
Debate Rounds (3)
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I believe that marijuana is a destructive substance and should not be legalized.


I'm not a marijuana user myself, but you have to look at the topic with a different stance. Why would you want to put people in jail, all the while letting drug lords get rich. In my opinion, drugs are stupid, and for those who have nothing left to look forward to in life. But, why don't we benefit from those who are addicted, as this is the same as alcohol or cigarettes. High taxation on cheap product minus the cost of smuggling and shipping. We (government) would make so much money, it would be a boost for business, and in limited amounts make the population who are addicted, a little more happy in their already sad and depressed lives (only some). It would boost the economy, break drug rings, stop some violence, and clean up some of the streets. It probably could be at Wal-Mart! And for those who are addicted may suffer, the same they are now, but they're also supplying money for us! Not to go to some cheap Mexican rat-hole, and resulting with our money going to another country, unnecessarily. I would just limit the sale of it to a higher standards, maybe a license so intake can be monitored, and restriction for age. Say around 21-28 so the chances of birth defect are lower. See any faults? Good luck! (This is my first debate)
Debate Round No. 1


Good luck to you too! This is also my first debate. :)
You say that drugs are stupid, for people who don't have anything to look forward to in life. If that is the case, then surely the best option here is not to make it even easier for them to harm themselves when they are at a low point in their lives.
Your next point is that if they are going to be doing this anyway, why shouldn't the we (the government) get paid?
My answer to this is that the money is not worth the damage it will be doing to society. Look at what happened when alcohol was legalized, regulated, and taxed. Alcohol kills 16,000 Americans on the road every year. 15,000 people die of alcohol related diseases every year. We can stop weed from becoming the next killer. Alcohol was supposed to be restricted and monitored too, but if anything it is even more abused now that it is legal than before. Why shouldn't the same thing happen with marijuana?
While most studies on the subject suggest that users who begin smoking pot as adults are pretty much unaffected, there are definite negative consequences of smoking as a teen. In a study by Derek Hermann he states, "This may be due to endocannabinoid-directed reorganization of the brain during puberty. The intake of cannabinoids that comes with pot use may cause irreversible misleading of the brain's growth,"
In addition to the consequences for intelligence, many studies suggest that smoking marijuana raises the risk of schizophrenia, and may have similar effects on the brain. Hermann used MRI to detect cannabis-associated neuron damage in the pre-frontal cortex and found that it was similar to brain changes seen in schizophrenia patients. Other studies further suggest that weed-smoking schizophrenics have greater disease-associated brain changes and perform worse on cognitive tests than their non-smoking counterparts.
Adolescence is the MOST dangerous time to be smoking weed. Adolescents are the number one pot smokers currently in the US. We can all agree that legalizing pot would only cause these numbers to rise, and a situation as drastic as the current teen consumption of alcohol would arise. Do not help these people in the time of life that they most need to be protected from doing themselves harm, to shoot themselves in the foot! By legalizing pot you are A: Hurting all pot smoker"s lungs and brains, no matter what age they are. If they are under 20, you are causing irreparable DAMAGE to their brains and nervous systems. Do the public, the next generation, your future children, grandchildren, whatever, a FAVOR by not saddling the country with brain damage that could have easily been avoided.



I, frankly, love the points you made across your debate.

In a very sadistic point of view, much to a dystopian point-of-view, people who are not deemed "worthy" of being part of civilization will be put to death. I'm not saying I'm for that, but I feel as though I needed to put that out there.

Now for "the low point in their lives" I'd say, it's their fault for picking what people deem the wrong route. Same for my opinions on suicide, if you don't have the courage to live, or even one goal to strive for, you're better off dead. It may be harsh, but it's the truth. Next off, I'd like to point out, this topic is also really ethical, is it really your (in particular) fault if someone dies from an overdoes. It may have been in front of them (say if it gets legalized), but is it not their fault for grabbing for it? Much to the same tense, there is a story from the Bible, called "Adam and Eve", and it talks about how Eve took the forbidden fruit, even though she was advised against it, in turn condemning humanity. In the case of the argument, it would be the individual and his family harmed.

Onto the monetary "issue", it would be the EXACT same way it is now if the government legalized the user of drugs. If children really want it they can buy drugs this instance, but if it is legalized it would be the same as a child buying alcohol or cigarettes. Both are illegal, and can cause issues later in life, but he still does it, and the child (usually) pays for it in some form or fashion, and should it be YOUR fault if he does? Which arouses my statement earlier statement on how it should be taxed instead of our money draining into Mexico. It would be tax dollars that stay with us, instead of going internationally. On addition, the drug trade also uses kids as "mules". I know for a fact without citing sources, that many get killed, just to earn a quick buck. Those (how many of them there are) kids won't have the chance, in the shady world of drug dealing.

Then finally, for the health concerns, drugs are (somewhat) fine when you're older, as you pointed out, but bad for kids. Yes, and I said that there should be MAJOR restrictions, watching a person's intake (Yes, cause some people can't make right decisions for themselves), and requiring a higher age to be able to purchase. Kids are still going to get there hands on it, but it's the same way they get their hands on alcohol or cigarettes, and results in their own decisiveness. I know you're probably going to point out how kids aren't ready to make decisions, but I'll just say it right here: Yes, they can. They should know when something, repeatedly said to them is bad, is actually bad. Most kids follow it now, who have never even taken a wiff of a cigarette puff, and won't till they know it's safe.

Last off, I would like to say I think this is a pretty good argument. Major props to you! Let's see where it goes!
Debate Round No. 2


The first point brought up by my combatant was that if people are going to smoke it anyway, instead of benefiting drug lords, why don"t we let that money help us, instead? We are not responsible for their choices and it"s not helping anyone to finance crime.
My answer to this is that you cannot release a brain damaging hallucinogen for retail to the general public, EVEN IF you put an age limit on it, and expect not to be affected. There will be a cost, a social, mental, and public cost to legalizing marijuana. This cost will take the form of death on roads, broken homes due to addiction, and long term mental hazards.
In the fight against drugs, we are fighting to save lives from unnecessary brain damage, addiction, from one of the many problems that crop up in our lives that are totally and completely AVOIDABLE. Look at alcohol and cigarettes. If these things had been just a little bit harder to get, hundreds of people would have been saved from cancer, drunk drivers, and destructive lifestyles. Almost everyone has lost a family member, a relative, a friend to an alcohol or tobacco related cause, and I think if we had waited to legalize these things, waited till we knew more about what they do, their long term effects, maybe we could have saved them from them. Right now we have another chance. A chance to save others from the next destructive substance: Marijuana.

As a final note, thanks for debating! These are the citations for my entire argument.



You say that if we release it, it will cause said repercussions, but is it not already widely available? If I really wanted to go buy an ounce of pot, I could go to many parts of my suburban community, and buy it. Heck! I could have it delivered to my door, the same way I buy my pizza (sarcasm)! To add to that, 40% of Americans smoke marijuana, and according to my (credited) sourced below, no one has died from an overdose of marijuana, even when 40% of Americans admit use of the substance. Marijuana is only addictive for 10% of users, compared to the 30% of cigarette smokers are dependent.

Maya Angelou, Martha Stewart, Morgan Freeman, Ted Turner, Michael Bloomberg to name a few are very successful (in life), and smoke marijuana. In the long term, marijuana does much less damage than say, alcohol or cigarettes.

Upon that, you say we could have saved hundreds of lives, if we made attaining alcohol and cigarettes, more difficult. I do believe that, but at that time in history, we weren't as advanced as we are now. Back then, it was "cool" and according to doctors "healthy" to use those substances, so some people were mislead, others just made the wrong decision.

My case isn't too strong, as I'm not really "dedicated" to legalizing marijuana, as I've never tried it. But, you can't stop people from making their own decisions. They should be smart enough to make their own decisions, with the all the negativity surrounding the use of it, why not let them have the choice? It's their life, their decisions, and their own demise. That's my opinion on all hazardous substances, including marijuana, alcohol, cigarettes, etc. And, just because you try to make it harder to attain, makes them want it even more.

Sources: (*Recommended read*; compares substances)
Debate Round No. 3
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