Should Marijuana & Other Drugs be Legal or Illegal

Discussion in 'Every Day Debating' started by Turambar, Mar 22, 2004.

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Should marijuana be legal?

  1. It should be legal

    46 vote(s)
    59.7%
  2. It shouldn't be legal

    26 vote(s)
    33.8%
  3. Undecided

    5 vote(s)
    6.5%
  1. curunir's bane

    curunir's bane Kwisatch Haderach

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    Also, look at prohibition laws back in the 20's. People viewed alchohol as some abomination, and it was completely outlawed. But we don't see it as that today, do we? No we don't think of it like that today. It is something that is social activity and can be done in a controlled manner. Now think to yourself how pot is viewed today . . .

    Just something to ponder.
     
  2. stoogie

    stoogie New Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    The biggest paradox would have to be if alcohol was kept illegal, would it be as big of a problem as it seems to be now? Same goes with pot, if it is legalized, will we see a growing trend of violence/whatever?
     
  3. Radagast

    Radagast Art House Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    Every answer to this question is opinionated. We will never know the definite outcome. Perhaps there would of been a larger problem had it been kept illegal. Who can say?

    I doubt it. Again, I don't know where exactly the violence opinion is coming from. For most people, smoking a bowl is relaxing, carefree. Kind of like when one gets a massage, it takes your mind away from stress, and that is the reason why I think so many people enjoy it.

    Personally, I hope it becomes legal in Canada someday soon. I ofc would not smoke it (or any other cigarette), for several reasons unrelated to my opinion (I have severe asthma :( ). I think it could work if the government regulates it. Some suggestions that I think might work would be:
    1) Only available through a government source (thus government grows and sells).
    2) Age limit. (Probably 18/19 like drinking).
    3) Government perhaps keeps a record of those who do acquire cannabis.
    4) Maybe a limit on how many grams one can carry at all times. (Not totally sure on this one.)
    5) Same rules as drunk driving. No driving high.

    Those are just some general laws that I could see helping regulate pot.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2004
  4. Justice

    Justice New Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    And smoking pot is not like eating broccoli either.

    I'm not as firmly against drug use as most, but to say that you need to do drugs in order to have a valid opinion against them is a bit of a weird opinion. Do i sympathize with those who use them for illness? Yes. But many people for legalizing marijuana usually just want government to butt out of everything. Technical term: anarchy. I actually would love to mandate a section of the US to be anarchist and check back with them in 5 years and see how they're doing.

    and although acid is the reason my friend is a mental idiot, it started on pot. Eventually he met new people who introduced him to narcotics. He never would have met these people if he wasn't introduced to them by the guys he smoked pot with.

    Tobacco really doesn't cause any problems except for the health of the user, and that takes upwards of 40 years most of the time. Alcohol does cause problems. Prohibition in the 20's and 30's led way to organized crime rising. However now that it is legal, and readily available, it seems to be causing even more problems, instead of gangsters we have wife beaters and drunk drivers. Same could happen with marijuana if it became legal, therefore becoming more widespread.
     
  5. Skyanide

    Skyanide The Big Meanie Staff Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    Justice, I don't want you to think that I mean that you can't have an opinion, I just want to point out that it would be just as hard to describe to someone what it is like to be drunk to someone that has never ever drank. The effects of marijuana are not really the same as alcohol. And most other drugs.

    Also keep in mind that in a lot of ways that marijuana use in movies and television are exaggerated for the sake of (usually) comedy.

    As for prohibition, that didn't ever stop people from drinking. It just made it more expensive and you had to be covert. I grew up in a town just outside of Windsor, Ontario, across the border from Detroit. Families here made immense sums of money smuggling alcohol to the US. Do you think that it's a coincidence that Hiram Walkers (Canadian Club) is based out of Windsor? Some of those families are still the richest in the area. The Detroit River is littered with Model T's that didn't quite make it across the winter ice with their shipment.

    And there have always drunk drivers. Just that in the 20's and 30's the average family didn't have one let alone two cars in their driveways.
     
  6. Turambar

    Turambar Harebrained Staff Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    Firstly, everybody above 18 is alowed to buy and own 5 grammes, for personal use. Selling weed privately is illegal; this has to be done from authorised sellers called "coffeeshops" (yes, you can buy coffee there, but that's not the main product.) Children under the age of 18 are prohibited to enter the coffeeshops. They are alowed to hold a stock (of about 250 gram, though not sure), though where they buy in their turn stays a mystery (private dealing is illegal, remember...). Of cause it is illegal to drive under influence of weed, just as it is for some prescription drugs. Furthermore, homegrowing is legal, up to 5 plants per person and for personal use.

    Summary:

    - No weed under 18
    - 5 grammes and 5 plants for personal use
    - Sold from authorised coffeeshops (mature audience)
    - No dealing "on the street"
    - No driving under influence
    - So far, no gouvernmental control on import/cultivation
     
  7. Jessehk

    Jessehk The introverted

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    Amsterdam (SP?)( that is where you live right?) sounds like an alternate, future, reality in Canada. I can see it working.
     
  8. Turambar

    Turambar Harebrained Staff Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    Hey Jess, The Netherlands is so much more than just Amsterdam, but it is the capital of both The Neterlands and (weed) legalisation. And it does work, especially in Amsterdam, where this policy is caried out in its fullest and is nothing more than just part of every day life. No I don't live in Amsterdam myself, but I like to hang out there, from time to time...
     
  9. Skyanide

    Skyanide The Big Meanie Staff Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    The biggest obstacle to the legalization of marijuana in Canada isn't from opposition to it from our own citizens, but from the United States, who is or biggest trading partner.

    While the US likes to tell itself that it is progressive, in fact it is still quite behind the times in a lot of ways.

    And before anybody (American) gets excited, I have American citizenship ( I was born in Nebraska ), but I've been all over and I'm speaking from experience. I don't mean any offense.
     
  10. Sindarking01

    Sindarking01 Lord Of the Grey Elves

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    None taken here Sky. I live in TX and We get a rep here for being a bunch of redneck yokels, which in some part is right on the mark. I believe regulation is totally needed because just like in the days of prohibition, the guys making gin in the bathtubs of shacks in the woods, & now the dudes are growing the shit in closets and mixing with PCP. I would love to live in the netherlads I have seen how they do it there and it works.
     
  11. Turambar

    Turambar Harebrained Staff Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    Indeed, it is hard to get past the US; they are the last superpower and the term "you are either with us or agains us" certainly goes for the US War on Drugs. It takes a lot of guts and determination to be independant of the US in drugs policies. As far as I know, the only thing the US did to stop Dutch gouvernment was some serious talk, but Canada could just be one step too close to home base for the US.
     
  12. Elvenblademaster

    Elvenblademaster New Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    Man you people will debate anything.....

    This is all I have to say,
    I have no strong definet feelings on this subject. I can argue either side. On one side, I know that it, and other illegeal substances are bad, and the Gov thinks they should protect us. Then on the other side this is a free country and if people want to kill themselves with poisin its their choice. But, look what happened in America when they outlawed alchohol, biggest crime wave of the century. And now with all the drugs that are illegal, we have many, many, many murders from the drug dealers and people who are on drugs. If the Gov was to legalize all dangerous drugs, tell people exactly what they do, where the can smoke, and how to smoke, and make them just as easy to get as asprin, then they could tax the crap out of them, take away the bad guys buisness,(becuase people won't do something illegally that they can do legally) and then
    let people decide for themselves. But some argue that then we will have many more people on drugs. I disagree. But I really don't have enough information on this topic to make a definet argument one way or the other, I just know enough to be able present both sides of the argument.
    I also don't really care one way or the other. But marajuana itself, is not as dangerous like speed or crack,(sure it'll casue the worst lung cancer you can bet...) when on the latter two you have the possibility of hurting others around you because it like super-charges you and makes you violent. Where marajuana calms you, and makes you anti-violent, (hence the hippies and "peace man") Plus it is also a pain releiver, I think marajuana could be legalized as an experiment to see how it does, whether the legalazation makes more addicts, or whether it reduces the number of dealers, whence reducing the amount of crime. But I am not here to debate, just present an opinion...
     
  13. Skyanide

    Skyanide The Big Meanie Staff Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    ^^Well holy smokes EBM, finally something that we are not diametrically opposed on.

    Maybe there's hope yet, lol. :D

    Sky
     
  14. Elvenblademaster

    Elvenblademaster New Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    HAHA ya maybe sky....
     
  15. kartaron

    kartaron Hunter / Gatherer

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    1) Its interesting that Cali is makin tobacco illegal but hash legal. The laws are based on the fact that marijuana stimulates the brain in a way that distorts the emotional balance and alters the subconscious reward systems. This is a stronger but similar effect than tobacco or caffeine. It is a lesser effect than opiates or adrenaline. The casual (non medicinal) use of these drugs violates a moral ethic. Because of widespread historical failures to keep that ethic intact (the 1920's and 1960's) Laws have been creatd in order to artificially support society from degenerating. Our culture can support a certain percentage of rampant drug use without creating extensive problems such as health symptoms or unemployment but there is a maximum acceptable limit. By using laws properly incintives can be created to limit addiction and overuse for people that might otherwise be tempted. Personally, I dont agree with freedom restricting laws but when social penalties are not high enough they are useful. That is why I have no disagreement with their existance.

    2) Side issues such as "pain treatment" are simply redirection. There are so many pain killers at use in america that pot is not necessary. Especially at a time when addictive pain killers are receiving notariety in other forms (morphine and T3).

    3) Jail time for pot is virtually non existant but even if it were properly prosecuted, its not like anyone who uses is in the dark about what they are doing. If you violate, take the punishment.
     
  16. Skyanide

    Skyanide The Big Meanie Staff Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    Whose moral ethic?
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2004
  17. kartaron

    kartaron Hunter / Gatherer

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    A natural ethic that determines how much a moral person can allow another person to commit self-abuse without interfering.

    To clarify what I've said earlier, we should use these laws to be a clear stigma on those who would choose what I consider to be a destructive path. Destructive is a harsh description for pot specifically, but the line has to be drawn somewhere. I do think that there should be a clear distinction between users and dealers. Users have made a choice concerning themselves. Dealers make a profit on the users and have a motive to increase their margins.
     
  18. Skyanide

    Skyanide The Big Meanie Staff Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    "A natural ethic"? What is that? There is nothing "natural" about ethics, ethics are the rules and compromises that a person accepts to be part of society. They are often in contradiction to natural law -- survival of the fittest, instincts for self-preservation, etc.

    And who is to decide who is moral and who is not? I believe I am a moral person; I work hard, I don't cheat on my wife, I don't beat my kids, I pay my taxes, I help others, I hold the door open for strangers and help old ladies cross the street. Yet I think that the casual use of pot is acceptable so long as you are not doing anything that can pose a danger (such as driving). Personally, I don't feel that smoking pot is any worse than drinking or smoking. And very few people have issues with someone who casually drinks.

    The government have been dealers for years. Do you have any idea how much alcohol and tobacco money pays for nearly everything that the government provides for you, from education to welfare?
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2004
  19. Mububban

    Mububban Administrator Staff Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    I am constantly baffled how so many people can't see the similarities between 2 very similiar items, and blindly regurgitate what government pamphlets and TV ad campaigns say without really thinking about it for themselves. The same people who decry the evils of marijuana are quite happy to knock off a bottle of wine with dinner or pop outside for a quick smoke. What's the difference in passing a joint around in your own home?
    Simply because one is endorsed by the government and one isn't doesn't make them fundamentally different. It's just words.
    Alcohol and tobacco - potentially harmful and/or addictive substances, that the government makes untold millions/billions of dollars from every year.
    Illicit drugs (including marijuana) - potentially harmful and/or addictive substances, that the government SPENDS untold millions/billions of dollars fighting every year.

    Apart from one being governmentally sanctioned and socially approved and the other not, they share many of the same characteristics upon the body and mind.

    Smoking is becoming increasingly socially repugnant, yet alcohol consumption is actively endorsed. Try telling someone you don't drink when you go to a party or nightclub. They look at you like you've grown a second head. Alcohol has become that much of a social norm that to NOT drink makes you look weird.

    As has been said, prohibition didn't stop people wanting alcohol. They saw nothing wrong with its consumption, they couldn't get it legally, so they got it illegally. Didn't Al Capone make a mint from running booze? Organised crime will always find a way to profit from illicit substances, simply because there is a demand for it.
    Are we noticing any similarities with marijuana? Many people see nothing wrong with its consumption, they can't get it legally, so they get it illegally. Criminals make a bundle, and governments spend a bundle trying to fight an unwinnable war.

    As to how much marijuana is ruining so many lives, a very quick Google search produced these (which are by no means the only info in the universe, simply what I found first):
    Alcohol - http://www.who.int/mediacentre/releases/2003/pr6/en/
    Smoking - http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/press/releases/press09122003.html
    Comparison - http://bbsnews.net/drug-deaths.html

    I believe that one use of pot is with chemotherapy patients and the such who have major nausea and can't eat. Smoking pot effectively gives you the munchies and supresses nausea, so you can eat, which helps you to maintain weight and strength while undergoing a very harsh treatment. As for other uses, I can't comment.

    Justice, no offense, but it sounds more like your friend lacked strength of character to say no, rather than blaming marijuana for his mental destruction.
    I tried pot when I was 15. It was okay. Made me hungry but it smelt like crap. It seemed like a waste of my time and money though, so I stopped. A few of my friends went on to try other drugs, but I didn't. I just said "No thanks," and that was that.
    Did marijuana "lead" them to using these other, harder drugs? No. It was just one step in a big long list of stuff they tried, starting with the easily accessible and government approved tobacco and alcohol. They wanted to try everything, they did, and then they stopped. Because while my friends and I may have had experimental tendencies, we didn't have addictive personalities. We weren't trying to escape from our teen angst, we just wanted to find out what all the fuss was about. As it turned out, not much.

    If it were made legal, but subject to stringent laws relating to production and distribution (just like alcohol & tobacco), I doubt crime would rise. In fact, unless it were ridiculously overpriced, it would take away the market from organised crime and drug dealers and put that money straight into government coffers where it can be used to do good (just like with alcohol & tobacco).

    Please do NOT think for a moment that I think pot or anything else is good for your health. Nor do I actively condone its use. Make it as legal as you want, I ain't touching it again. I like my lungs and I don't want cancer. There are definitely health concerns and side effects to consider (just like alcohol & tobacco). And the same laws should apply for being high in public or while driving or operating machinery etc.
    However, decriminalising and regulating marijuana use to me seems fairly harmless and no different to tobacco (its kissing cousin), and not at all akin to making murder or rape legal, so please nobody stoop to such ridiculous analogies.
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2004
  20. Skyanide

    Skyanide The Big Meanie Staff Member

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    Re: Marihuana: Legal/Illegal

    That about sums it up for me 100%.

    Well said Mub.
     
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