Last Wednesday, 27-year-old Ithaca mayor Svante Myrick participated in a debate at Cornell University over the decriminalization of marijuana. Svante argued in favor of legalization and, according to the Cornell Daily Sun, he won.
A story last week in the Daily Sun said over 100 people showed up to watch the debate between Mayor Myrick — a 2009 Cornell graduate — and two current Cornell students, forensics society debaters Srinath Reddy and Enting Lee.
At the end of the debate, the audience voted in support of Myrick’s stance.
The 27-year-old mayor has made no secret of his stance on marijuana. In 2012 he urged New York’s leaders to legalize marijuana for medical use. Marijuana possession is illegal in New York State, but there is legislation pending that would decriminalize medical marijuana.
During the debate Wednesday, Myrick compared marijuana use to alcohol consumption and argued that drunk driving is a larger social problem than driving while high on marijuana.
“The truth is marijuana is bad for you, but it is not that bad for you… We lose zero people from marijuana overdoses” Myrick said, according to the Daily Sun. “We have 18-year-olds who get drunk — they think they’re invincible and drive 80 miles an hour, [and] we have 18-year-olds who get stoned, they get paranoid and drive 15 miles an hour to Taco Bell.”
Myrick’s opponents argued that marijuana is dangerous for health reasons and has the potential to be leveraged as an addictive substance by large corporations.
“Corporations have a profit motive to not only get people addicted, but to keep people addicted,” said Reddy.
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