How to Win a Marijuana Debate on Television

1. Argue that marijuana should be legal. Being right will give you an immediate advantage. This argument won't guarantee success by itself, but you can't win without it. There has never been a documented instance of someone looking intelligent while arguing that marijuana should be against the law.

2. Try not to say anything completely insane. It's clear that Calvina Fay has come unhinged when she claims that, "about 60% of everybody out there using drugs is involved in abusing children." Such statements will cause viewers to associate your position with derangement. Similar lapses can be observed at other points in the debate when Calvina is speaking.

3. Be the last person to talk. Notice how Rob Kampia concludes the debate with a series of correct statements. Speaking last will help prevent viewers from becoming confused by your opponent's ideas. If the moderator offers your opponent the final word, draw attention away from their comments by transitioning between the following series of facial expressions: surprise → skepticism → amusement.

Permission to Reprint: This article is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license.
Looking for the easiest way to join the anti-drug war movement? You've found it!

Calvina Fay

I often wonder how this woman continues to be brought in as an "expert", when she heads an organization that had its chain of drug rehabs shut down for systematic abuse of kids.

But, the more I hear her talk, the more I realize that letting her spew her bizarre babblings is the best way to expose the insanity of DFAF. These people are their own worst enemies.

I don't know how Rob is always able to stay so cool when confronting people like her.

Hmm. I thought it was a poor performance by Rob

I'm usually much more impressed with R.K.'s interviews. I found this one pretty weak. In particular, it bothered me when he said "so I really don't like how she...". It sounded very personal and emotional: not the cool, collected R.K. I'm familiar with.

Honestly, and I don't mean this in a critical way, I had the impression a couple of times he might have taken a toke before the interview, and got a little more stoned than he would have liked. Just small stuff: his speech was at a different rate, he acted like his mouth was dry, not as sharp as I'm accustomed to with the guy. Of course, it's equally possible he'd been late for the interview and had to rush up several flights of stairs, or he just has a stressful day, or whatever. Just the fact that he gave that impression makes me think well, ideally you'd try to come across as the opposite of that.

No disrespect at R.K. This was probably better than I would do, just not as good as his usual visits.

In his defence, some of the stuff that woman was saying was so out-there, I can imagine it was hard to decide how to respond. I found it interesting how very pro-legalization biased the moderator was. That's really changing.

Re: Hmm

Glen, I guarantee you Rob did not smoke before the interview. That's not something he would do.

As for the "so I really don't like how she..." line, it jumped out at me too, but I kind of liked it. Granted, this is about changing undecided minds, not pleasing me, but it had a ring of unscripted straightforwardness that I found refreshing. Hopefully, it made him sound human (as well as correct) to the viewer.

Regardless, I was just having fun with this and not so much trying to suggest that it was superior to other similar debate performances. The story itself inherently favors us and will continue to. This is a battle of attrition and we gain ground almost any time we show up to fight.

R. Gonzales

After making my comment I popped over to the website. There's a post from Rob about the interview, where he mentions that he met R. Gonzales in the green room before the meeting and had an interesting conversation with him.

I can imagine going from a surprisingly productive conversation with the former attorney general to the rabid lunatic he had to debate was something of shock, and could account for his unusual demeanour.

we gain ground almost any time we show up to fight"

If that's correct, and I think it is, then it makes sense to have referendums in 2010 in as many states as possible. Referendums mean formal and informal debates and discussion and why should be afraid of any of that? A Nevada cannabis legalization referendum got 44% in 2006, and public opinion has significantly moved in our favor since then, even if it lost in Nevada in 2010 (I don't see why it should), wouldn't it likely be quite close? A close loss is a sign of progress in this 70+ year old fight, which would be a lot better than not showing up. I'm also not convinced that money would be a problem this time around.


You may have proven my generalization wrong without intending to. No, I don't think having as many referendums as possible is a good idea. That's one glaring exception to my statement.

Because statewide ballot measures generate considerable press, losing one can have lasting consequences. This is one area where we must always proceed cautiously. Losses fuel the faulty perception that our issues lack political viability, thus anything we gain in terms of public education must be weighed against the harm a loss inflicts in terms of our future fundraising opportunities and the comfort level politicians have with our issues.

Ballot initiatives should never be attempted unless polling shows a clear probability of success AND sufficient funding exists to ensure that those numbers remains intact throughout a rocky and unpredictable public debate against shrill and desperate opposition.

Another one I would add is

Another one I would add is call BS immediately and very firmly and loudly.

Just picking one common lie out of the hat, if they say "marijuana use leads to higher crime", trying to present it as a fact, do not wait until your next turn to speak as there most likely will be alot more BS coming and you may forget this one. Immediately interrupt the person, speaking louder than they are if they insist on not stopping (while trying not to seem rude), saying something simple such as "thats a lie", "that is completely false" or "nothing could be further from the truth".

Doing so only takes a second and throws doubt into their supposed 'fact'. Even if you don't get your fair share of speaking time, you're at least detracting for the lies spewed by your opponent.

Why does Glen Stark knitpick people in here all the time?

Wtf ? Glen Stark ? Bitch,gripe,knitpick. Why the mean spirit? Hoping you are as willing to critique yourself before the judgment of others. Still ... Love ya man!

Re: Stark


As a blogger, I've had plenty of trouble with knitpicky commenters, but I'll stand up for Glen. We may not always agree entirely, but he knows what he's talking about and he wants to get results. Glen has yet to offend me (but don't take that as a challenge, Glen!)


Fox Business News - Good Job

I thought Alexis Glick did a really good job at remaining objective. Most of the interviews on television stations are heavily biased in favor of prohibition.

The opposition can't say marijuana!

The old lady in the Fox interview never said marijuana, let alone cannabis. She said "DRUGS." She should also call alcohol and tobacco a drug. Then this old woman would be telling the truth.

The fact is: legal marijuana is the TRUTH! The lie is looking stupid; like somebodies cooky little ole Mom that is trying to fool children! Say cannabis old lady or don't say 'drugs' because you are trying to demonize something that can make you look stupid. The future is the rights of the hippie or mind expansionist.

Calvina Fay and all other prohibitionists are mentally ill

and the trauma they inflict causes mass mental illness. Prohibition was repealed years ago meaning the war against drugs does not have the right to exist. period! Prohibition wackos get out of America and off this planet! We are sick of your fraudulent occupation!

Xenical Vente JeaHofe

Cialis Normal Dosage Cephalexin Side Effects Dogs buy generic cialis Clomid Pour Carte Des Hommes Colchicine

Zoloft 100 Without A Prescription JeaHofe

Acheter Dapoxetine Hcl En Ligne Buy Generic Cialis 5mg buy cialis online Levitra Cura La Disfuncion Erectil Cheap Viagra Next Day Delivery Uk 269 Cialis 10 Precio

Zoloft 100 Without A Prescription JeaHofe

Acheter Dapoxetine Hcl En Ligne Buy Generic Cialis 5mg buy cialis online Levitra Cura La Disfuncion Erectil Cheap Viagra Next Day Delivery Uk 269 Cialis 10 Precio

Levitra Generico Italia Online JeaHofe

Keflex Expansion What Is Keflex Meds For Celecoxib 200 Mg Price viagra online Propecia Doses

Levitra Generico Italia Online JeaHofe

Keflex Expansion What Is Keflex Meds For Celecoxib 200 Mg Price viagra online Propecia Doses

Pfizer Viagra Sales JeaHofe

Compra Kamagra Kamagra Oral Jelly No Presc Generic Male Enhancement Pills viagra online Zithromax And Flagyl Comprar Propecia En Brasil

Pfizer Viagra Sales JeaHofe

Compra Kamagra Kamagra Oral Jelly No Presc Generic Male Enhancement Pills viagra online Zithromax And Flagyl Comprar Propecia En Brasil

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <em> <strong> <cite> <code> <ul> <ol> <li> <dl> <dt> <dd> <i> <blockquote> <p> <address> <pre> <h1> <h2> <h3> <h4> <h5> <h6> <br> <b>

More information about formatting options

This question is for testing whether you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Drug War Issues

Criminal JusticeAsset Forfeiture, Collateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Court Rulings, Drug Courts, Due Process, Felony Disenfranchisement, Incarceration, Policing (2011 Drug War Killings, 2012 Drug War Killings, 2013 Drug War Killings, 2014 Drug War Killings, 2015 Drug War Killings, 2016 Drug War Killings, 2017 Drug War Killings, Arrests, Eradication, Informants, Interdiction, Lowest Priority Policies, Police Corruption, Police Raids, Profiling, Search and Seizure, SWAT/Paramilitarization, Task Forces, Undercover Work), Probation or Parole, Prosecution, Reentry/Rehabilitation, Sentencing (Alternatives to Incarceration, Clemency and Pardon, Crack/Powder Cocaine Disparity, Death Penalty, Decriminalization, Defelonization, Drug Free Zones, Mandatory Minimums, Rockefeller Drug Laws, Sentencing Guidelines)CultureArt, Celebrities, Counter-Culture, Music, Poetry/Literature, Television, TheaterDrug UseParaphernalia, ViolenceIntersecting IssuesCollateral Sanctions (College Aid, Drug Taxes, Housing, Welfare), Violence, Border, Budgets/Taxes/Economics, Business, Civil Rights, Driving, Economics, Education (College Aid), Employment, Environment, Families, Free Speech, Gun Policy, Human Rights, Immigration, Militarization, Money Laundering, Pregnancy, Privacy (Search and Seizure, Drug Testing), Race, Religion, Science, Sports, Women's IssuesMarijuana PolicyGateway Theory, Hemp, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Marijuana Industry, Medical MarijuanaMedicineMedical Marijuana, Science of Drugs, Under-treatment of PainPublic HealthAddiction, Addiction Treatment (Science of Drugs), Drug Education, Drug Prevention, Drug-Related AIDS/HIV or Hepatitis C, Harm Reduction (Methadone & Other Opiate Maintenance, Needle Exchange, Overdose Prevention, Pill Testing, Safer Injection Sites)Source and Transit CountriesAndean Drug War, Coca, Hashish, Mexican Drug War, Opium ProductionSpecific DrugsAlcohol, Ayahuasca, Cocaine (Crack Cocaine), Ecstasy, Heroin, Ibogaine, ketamine, Khat, Kratom, Marijuana (Gateway Theory, Marijuana -- Personal Use, Medical Marijuana, Hashish), Methamphetamine, New Synthetic Drugs (Synthetic Cannabinoids, Synthetic Stimulants), Nicotine, Prescription Opiates (Fentanyl, Oxycontin), Psilocybin / Magic Mushrooms, Psychedelics (LSD, Mescaline, Peyote, Salvia Divinorum)YouthGrade School, Post-Secondary School, Raves, Secondary School