By: Xaveria Terry
Benicia High is known for their controversial and, for the most part, politically “woke” students. Most of these students like to debate, as the majority of the teenage population does since we all think we’re right all the time –but that’s a topic for another day. Today we dive into what happens when you put a bunch of factually correct teenagers, who are opposed to one another’s sides, in one room together: also known as Benicia High’s debate week.
The usual run down for these are that students sign up with a partner to debate a topic one day out of the week, and debate in front of their peers at lunch. The students are to take one side–either the pros or the cons–and they must defend it regardless to their personal opinions on the matter.
One of the days in particular that caught quite a few students’ attention was the topic, All drugs should be legalized. Students rounded up at lunch and sat in L2/L3 to hear the debate.
The pro side argued that people should be able to do what they want and drugs aren’t to blame for date rape, it’s the perpetrator’s fault. They compared it to authoritarian parents vs. lenient parents, drawing a conclusion that lenient parents have better behaved kids and the same would work with legalizing all drugs. Their argument was they should regulate drugs and decriminalize it moving forward. It was also compared to the American prohibition and how the public acted in rebellion instead of obeying the law which increased crime rates. They ended their argument with the quote: “We must regulate drugs to form a better tomorrow”.
Whereas the con side argued that date rape drugs will be available and currently legal drugs are the most detrimental. They also argued how no country has tested it out and legalized all drugs, and we shouldn’t be the first. Their side argued that they were arguing two different things, where legalization and decriminalization weren’t on the same page. They ended their argument with the quote: “Easier accessibility means more usage”.
The pro side ultimately won, but both sides provides excellent pieces of evidence to support their positions. The pro side tended to include more statistics and better overall development in their argument, though the con side did have some good points and it was a close one.
Debate week is a fun time for students where they are able to express their concerns and argue just for the sake of arguing, which doesn’t always have to be a bad thing. It is encouraged to try debate week the next time it comes around as all you can do is set yourself up for more fun.