And of course, we couldn’t have had such a compelling exchange of ideas without the participation of our esteemed debaters: Rick Doblin, Jeffrey Lieberman, Bia Labate, and Kevin Sabet.
Now, onto the results. (Remember, our victor is determined by which team changed the most minds).
Arguing against the motion, Jeffrey Lieberman and Kevin Sabet pulled up their vote tally to 30%, after starting in pre-debate voting at just 11%. Whereas, arguing for the motion, Rick Doblin and Bia Lebate dropped to 62%, after starting in pre-debate voting at 74%.
The winner is... But the real winner here, as we like to say, is debate itself. The ability to bring these premium events to the broader public, where a healthy exchange of ideas and dissenting opinions offer a deeper and more nuanced understanding of the issues that affect our lives, is something we value quite a bit at Intelligence Squared. Just the capacity to change minds in these polarizing times is something extraordinary.
We also learned a lot from you, our audience, this time around. After the debate, many of you participated in a survey related to the topic at hand. Here’s what we learned: 60% have tried psychedelics, 89% think the “War on Drugs” has failed, and 68% heard the most persuasive argument in the debate during the panel discussion.
That’s all for now. See you on the (virtual) stage. Our next Oxford-style debate is on Taiwan, and whether amidst a rising China, it is indeed defensible.
This should be a good one.
Sincerely, John Donvan Host, Intelligence Squared U.S.