The Instigator
Pro (for)
8 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
2 Points

Americans have a right to own semi-auto weapons

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Post Voting Period
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after 2 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/29/2013 Category: People
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 536 times Debate No: 43109
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (0)
Votes (2)




The second amendment was written very clearly

Amendment II

A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed

Shall not be infringed being the key part.


Yes the second amendment does in fact state it "shall not be infringed."

However it also references "a well regulated Militia."

With "well regulated" being the key bit that would include semi-automatic weapons!
Debate Round No. 1


It does not say for use of a militia only it does say "the right of the people" and im not opposed to having some regulations on weapons. Any gun is a lethal weapon that should not just be floating around unaccounted for. Most pro gun rights people are completely opposed to having their weapon registered but it is necessary to have some accountability. Otherwise a weapon used in a murder could belong to anyone and there would be no way to trace it back to the owner. Now as the second amendment states a well regulated militia is necessary in the security of a free state. Militia does not mean the military, a militia is formed by the people themselves comprising any man capable of bearing arms. Those that wrote the document made known that it is the responsibility of the people not the government to ensure freedom. The government was originally created only to protect our rights. In the event of an enemy invasion or if our own government became the enemy the militia was to have equal power. Thus far the government has done everything possible to disband any sort of militia including an attempt at banning assault weapons. If say the government strayed so far from justice that a 2nd revolution were needed how might a militia compete with a tyrannical government that comically out powered them?


"a militia is formed by the people themselves comprising any man capable of bearing arms."

Yes, however as the second amendment had clearly stated about the militia (the men capable of bearing arms) that it had to be well regulated.

"a weapon used in a murder could belong to anyone and there would be no way to trace it back to the owner."

Same thing can happen with a semi-automatic weapon.

Additionally, back when the second amendment was written semi-automatic weapons did not exist, they only had muskets.
The founders never predicted the existence of semi-automatic weapons!
Now as for the point about the peoples revolt against the government, we live in a representative democracy and we (somewhat effectively) elect the officials we want into government that we can trust, we may not live in a direct democracy however as we have an electoral system that can lead to gerrymandering (like in the 2000 presidential election and the 2012 congressional election) where the popular vote goes in one direction while the electoral vote or amount of officials go in the other direction. However that is not even the big reason we have such a horrible government. I think the primary reason our government sucks is because the American people have become so apolitical! While the people who are not apolitical are being lied by the news media this is especially bad on Fox News however there are a few shows on MSNBC that tell the truth but that's it really. My point is in our representative democracy our government represents the people and with stupid people comes a stupid government We have the opportunity however to smarten up, get involved in politics and vote for the right people like Bernie Sanders, Jill Stein and Rush Holt to government but we just don't!
Debate Round No. 2


As I stated before any gun should have traceability and its irrelevant that semi-auto weapons didn't exist because if they had meant muskets that's what they would have said. They also had cannons and swords at the time but they chose the word "arms" referring to weapons of war.
As for apolitical Americans I have to agree. People are far too careless with whats going on in politics thus allowing them to run things however they see fit. Stupid people and government indeed! But we are getting off topic.


It is somewhat relevant that muskets were used instead of M-16's in 1776. Why, because if the founders were [hypothetically] able to look into the future they may agree that gun control a necessity.

Additionally my comments about apolitical Americans is additionally relevant because if we had more intelligent Americans and politically active Americans than we would have a more trustworthy government and thus no need to worry about a militant revolt!
Debate Round No. 3


Well we will never know if they would agree so we have to go by the words they left behind. What we do know is that the militia was meant to have equal power so its safe to say that if they did have the ability to see into the future they would deem it necessary for people to have semi-automatic weapons. The founders made it well known that the people should always keep the government in check but how are we to do that today? What vote? That hasn't exactly done us a lot of good looking at the condition of politics today now has it. The government is clearly power hungry looking to expand its power wherever and however possible so the last thing we need is for them to try and tell us that we cannot be aloud to have power to rival their own. It is unfortunate that things have gotten this far out of control but we have to deal with the world as it is now not how we wish it would be. We need to put the government in check before we need to worry about stripping the people of its ability to defend itself.
Australia and England let their governments strip them of their weapons and since then crime has exploded due to a defenseless civilian population.


First thing I wanna bring up for Round 4 is that I am opposed to destroying pump action rifles and shotguns as the video clearly states however I do believe rifles should be confiscated from people who are not hunters shot guns and semi-autos should be confiscated and brought to the US military.

With that being said I have a few things to say about guns. Aron Alexis had a history of PTSD paranoid schizophrenia and GUN VIOLENCE!!!! A study from around 2001 confirmed that access to guns is the biggest factor to violence.

"What we do know is that the militia was meant to have equal power"

The government owns the entire US military so are you suggesting we have the same weapons as they have (including nuclear weapons?)

"The founders made it well known that the people should always keep the government in check but how are we to do that today? what vote?"

Again as I had said in Round 2 we need to really smarten up!
Debate Round No. 4


The FBI's statistics show that the number of gun murders is steadily decreasing as shown below.

Negative the biggest factor to violence is motive and mental illness as you just said Aron had a history of PTSD and schizophrenia. Holmes had schizophrenia, as did the Sandy Hook shooter. This country needs to properly address mental illness and ensure that it is treated. Might I add that the mother did not lock up the firearm. Blame lays with the mother in the case.

Yes we should have equal power but no one should have nuclear weapons. Not us or any other country! It is highly unlikely that a nuclear weapon would be used in the event of a revolution since it would be firing upon your own country. To use such a weapon would yield no winner in a civil war.

You say "smarten up" but that is rather vague, you do not give any suggestions as to how people might do that.

Back to the topic at hand. Answer a hypothetical: What would you do if three armed men broke into your house and you just turned in your weapons because of some ban that was implemented. How would you protect your family?
Remember when you prohibit something you create an underground market that creates crimes such as alcohol in the 20s and drugs today. We cant stop people from attaining drugs and we cant stop them from getting guns.


"the biggest factor to violence is motive and mental illness"

Yes but you fail to acknowledge access to guns as that is absolutely a risk factor to violence!

"This country needs to properly address mental illness" Most gun advocates who are typically conservative use this as a diversion tactic despite the fact that the Republicans in congress opposed the Pete Domenici act.

"Yes we should have equal power but no one should have nuclear weapons." Then why did you bring up "equal power?"

And I thank you for this good debate!
Debate Round No. 5
No comments have been posted on this debate.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by whiteflame 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: I don't think either side did a very good job substantiating their point, but at least Pro gave arguments that carried through the round. His point about revolution, which I felt wasn't very good to begin with, was not addressed well. His responses to the harms Con discusses about general availability went unaddressed, despite obvious holes. Where's the argument about the harms of taking away peoples' guns and their personal freedoms? What happened to the arguments about how many will defend their right to ownership violently if someone tries to take them away? Con, where are the arguments that our military wields guns, tanks, and aircraft that would nullify our semi-automatic weapons easily? Does it matter at all if other methods could solve for the problems of crazies with guns if they're not being used? What makes banning these guns specifically bad? Pro never offers that up, just stating that they're somehow better.
Vote Placed by amik10 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:32 
Reasons for voting decision: Conduct to con b/c he thanked pro at the end. S&G to Con because pro needs to learn how to use a comma. Arguments to Pro b/c Con got very of topic.