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yes no
Debate Score:7
Total Votes:9
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 yes (5)

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DeanN(201) pic

Should marijuana be legal?


Side Score: 7


Side Score: 0
1 point

Of course not! Nothing will help our quality of life like enriching murderous drug cartels who create a refugee exodus across our borders. Let's illegalize maple syrup to destabilize Canada while we're at it.

Side: yes
1 point

I will re-post my first argument on this website edited a bit for typos I forgot to fix before.

I will argue first from a practical position, then philosophical, then historical.

Marijuana is not dangerous. There has never been a death recorded due to marijuana. The LD50 or amount that it would take to kill half the population is incredibly high. In fact researchers can only guess what the LD50 is because they've never been able to kill a large mammal with it. Contrast this to the established LD50s of Tylenol (150mg/kg), water (9mL/kg), and caffeine (192 mg/kg). Right now the hypothetical LD50 is 40,000 times the cannabis contained in one marijuana cigarette. This means you would need to consume 1,500 pounds of marijuana in 15 minutes, which is impossible. You can reasonably say it is so high, it is impossible to die from overdosing on marijuana. Also marijuana does not make you stupid. The reason people think this, is that there was a study done on monkeys where they let them breathe only marijuana smoke and they died from hypoxia or lack of oxygen. When you die from a lack of oxygen, your brain cells die. The severe errors in the study, however, were released much later than the results so there is now a stigma that marijuana use makes you stupid. They have found that smoking marijuana does not cause cancer like cigarette smoke. A UCLA study found no link. The gateway drug theory is actually perpetuated by the prohibition of marijuana. Because marijuana users must get pot from drug dealers, they are exposed to harder, dangerous drugs. If marijuana was able to be sold in stores, this would not happen. Legalizing marijuana would not lead to an increase in use by children. According to many studies, it is vastly easier for teenagers to get marijuana than it is for them them to get alcohol. This is because alcohol must be purchased through legal channels where vendors check for IDs. However, because of the black market for marijuana drug dealers do not care how old someone is when they sell them pot. The legalization of marijuana will be very good for the economy. We spend billions of dollars each year to keep people in prison because they like to get high and relax. Additionally marijuana is a huge cash crop the government could make a lot of money off from taxation. It is the number one cash crop in California for example. ~60% of the money of Mexican drug cartels is earned by selling marijuana in the US. Severely compromising their funding would reduce crime in the United States as well as Mexico, which would help improve Mexico's living conditions and curb illegal immigration into the United States.

The government should not have a right to prohibit you from doing something to yourself that does not harm anyone else. It is not illegal to go home and drink a gallon of paint thinner, but I guarantee that it's much better for both you and society that you smoke marijuana instead of drinking paint thinner. Here's a more reasonable example: Should the government make it illegal to consume significantly more calories than you expend? This is much more harmful than marijuana, and obesity related illnesses are one of the leading causes of death. The bottom line is that this type of reasoning that the government needs to be able to protect you from yourself is dangerously close to fascism. Where do you draw the line? Do we monitor people's jobs and make it illegal to not work hard to make sure people are productive and that they get promoted? Do we make it illegal to be late for job interviews because that is bad for you? Do we make it illegal to sleep in beds instead of on the floor because people have died this way? The answer is no. Adults are free to make their own decisions that only affect themselves. We should not live in a nanny-state where our well being is maintained by the justice system.

Many people assume that because marijuana is illegal serious research and thinking went into the decision to ban it. This simply isn't true. The first marijuana laws in the United States forced people to grow marijuana during colonial times. Marijuana became illegal for a few reasons. One was due to extreme anti-Latino and anti-black sentiment. People were fear mongered into believing that minorities were a danger to white society especially due to marijuana. The "reefer madness" campaign created undue hysteria. Yellow journalism and personal career advancement also played a role. In fact President Nixon commissioned a report on marijuana which concluded that marijuana should not be illegal.

The next logical question is why is marijuana still illegal. Again there are a few reasons. What kept it illegal during the middle and late 1900s was again a fear mongering campaign linking marijuana use and communism. By this point in history there is so much social stigma against marijuana, that if you ask someone against legalization why it should be illegal, they will most likely cite things that simply aren't true. Additionally the alcohol and tobacco industries are absolutely huge. Companies in those industries make so much money that they can spend vast amounts lobbying congress to keep marijuana illegal. They don't want competition. Why would you drink or smoke tobacco which are incredibly dangerous and addictive when you can smoke marijuana which is harmless and not addictive? Many people underestimate the effect that a large lobby can have on national and state policy. The alcohol and tobacco companies also perpetuate the social stigma against marijuana by funding anti-drug and anti-marijuana advertisements and programs. The goal of these programs is not to make you not do drugs, its to stop you from doing drugs that they don't sell you. Also marijuana for medicinal purposes is a huge threat to the pharmaceutical industry. The pharmaceutical industry is the biggest industry in the United States. Just like the tobacco and alcohol companies, pharmaceutical companies spend millions of dollars lobbying congress. Marijuana has been hailed by some doctors as the single best drug for maintaining health. It combats an astonishing number of diseases and conditions, and has no side effects. Compare that to the multitude of side effects from prescription drugs. It has become a cliche how at the end of television commercials for prescription drugs they rattle off a long list of some pretty serious side effects. Thousands of people die from adverse reactions to prescription drugs.

As I hope you can see, the prohibition of marijuana is completely wrong on many levels. Making marijuana legal will keep it away from kids, keep people away from dangerous hard drugs, and allow adults to make their own choices when it comes to their own lives.

Side: yes
1 point

Ok so I totally agree that pot should be legal. It would be a GIANT help to the economical downfall that the us seems to have gotten in to. No one ever got hurt from smoking a little pot. You would have to smoke your weight in order for it to even be considered lethal. And another thing, kids smoking pot, and don't get me wrong here; but honestly I'd rather have my kid go out and toke on a doobie then go out and take a hit off a crack pipe or something like that. Anybody who is against the legalization of marijuana is just simply afraid of change. Change is something that we need. I mean let's really think about this for a many people have died due to "Legal Prescription Drugs". Thousands upon thousands, and it's easier for most kids to get the pills, I mean shit over the counter cold medicines can kill you faster than marijuana ever could.If you don't think that pot should be legal then get your head out of your ass and think about it for a minute. Teenagers all over the world are always going to get into doing something stupid, they're kids;when you were a kid I'm sure some of you tried worse then just marijuana. What does pot do? Make you a little hungry, tired, and you giggle a little to much. So what it's better than waking up one morning and taking a pill and just randomly dieing now isn't it? Yes I do believe so. Legalize Marijuana.420

Side: yes
1 point

I agree with you about pretty much all of that.

Only thing, I don't think that people who don't want it legalised are necessarily afraid of change, though some of them will be. A lot of it is just to do with the drug stigma. We're taught from a very young age about all the negative aspects of drug abuse, to the point that just the word 'drugs' brings up negative connatation among people who have probably not actually tried them or read anything indepth and objective about it. This (intentional or unintentional) ignorance is a problem.

In Britain the Head of the government's Science Department was fired for stating that both Cannabis and Ecstasy is less harmful to individuals than Alcohol and Tabacco products. Since then, four of his colleagues have resigned from their posts in protest of it. The government is essentially picking and choosing which bit of scientific evidence they want in order to support their own agenda, which is, in my opinion, a massive injustice to people who, despite what newspapers report, never want to do ANYTHING after a joint other than sit on the sofa with a mate watching an episode of Monkey Dust and laughing too much. I've never seen anyone get angry or aggressive when high. And the only thing they'd ever want to murder is a cheeseburger. Happy 420 :)

Side: yes

States can make plenty of revenue from the sale of legalized marijuana.

Side: yes
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