Ban All Individuals Who Have Used Violence to Push a Political Cause, From Standing for Election
Debate Rounds (5)
In response to a comment: could Abraham Lincoln have achieved his goals without violent means? How about Gerry Adams? Would this have had a better impact on their country in the long term if they had not done this? I believe that if they had used legitimate means for obtaining power it would have had a better Impact on their country and reduced violence as the citizens of that country would not think that violence is a legitimate form of getting your message across.
As Con, I will be arguing that not all individuals who have used violence to push a political cause should be banned from standing for election.
I agree with Pro that violence is never the best solution to resolve matters. However unlike Pro, I feel that violence is necessary at times and in certain cases can be the only method that a nation or a political party can get their ideas heard by those that refuse to listen.
It would be foolish to think we live in a utopian society where leaders, nations, states and others can all resolve conflicts and tensions between one another by talking through them. I do not think violence is necesarily good and I think that it would be ideal if we could all resolve matters by discussing them. Though I think that this would make me ignorant of the bitter truth of reality and human nature: There will always be those that take what they want by force and have only their interests and desires in mind.
I feel that it is this genre of person that Con wishes to rid ourselves of as this often ends in oppresive regimes and lack of liberty and freedom, however they fail to take into account that these sort of people do not always stand election to legitamise their rise to power. And so this ban may not be entirely efficient if the goal is to prevent the rise of corrupt and abusive leaders to power.
Secondly, in situations where a party is wrongly being oppressed or abused violence can often be the only means to receive justice, rights and equality. I would ask what Con would suggest as an alternative should someone oppressing you refuse to listen to pleas and use force against you?
Thirdly, Con is in complete disregards as to the intentions of an act. It is very different to compare someone who is fighting to gain their own power and someone who is fighting against injustice and oppression.
How does it result in oppressive regimes though? Please elaborate on this point.
If a party is being oppressed through violence surely this motion would annul it because as the current party are using violence they would subsequently lose their legitimacy? Indeed, it is very different to compare fighting against injustice and fighting to gain power but surely in both case we should be preventing violence in any shape or form and there would subsequently be of benefit to the country?
On to my substantive: that such people should not be allowed to stand for election as they are unfit for power. So far, ALL the examples you have used have been from ancient times/ the Middle Ages and we have now become a much more civilised people. You cannot say violence is inevitable and we should let it happen because through this motion we set to PREVENT this violence so that these individuals will be put off and will be more likely to gain power through legal methods if they want a chance of standing for election. This, I feel outweighs your points because you are just telling us to accept the status quo when I am actually providing a SOLUTION FOR IT.
Thank you ever so much for debating with me! It is turning out to be a very interesting one indeed!
"you say violence is necessary at times but at what times should such a thing be justified? Examples to prove your case would be beneficial"
When is violence necessary? Well, first of all when you're own security or well-being is threatened directly. For example, a man holds a gun to your face and you've tried negotiating with him but he clearly won't listen. Do you use violence to subdue him if you knew you could? Or do you place your life in the hands of the unreasonable and hope for the best? Self-defence is the first and most important reason why people justify violence and who says they're wrong? Who says it's wrong to stand up for what you've earned, for what you cherish and for what you own? Violence shouldn't always be the first response that springs to mind in a difficult situation but it is sometimes what we are reduced to when we can find no other way out.
"How does it result in oppressive regimes though? Please elaborate on this point."
If someone takes power over a nation using force and only holding their desires at heart? Firstly, they have taken away your choice in the matter of who is in charge and by what policies they govern by. Secondly, if they were required to use force to get their position then it generally indicates that there wouldn't have been a lot of cooperation between the masses and the person in question. Thirdly, if they have their interests at heart then it's unlikely the there will be no conflict between the needs and wants of the people and the wants of one person.
Also note that I said 'often', not always.
"If a party is being oppressed through violence surely this motion would annul it because as the current party are using violence they would subsequently lose their legitimacy?"
If a party is being oppressed by violence then what other choice do they have? If a party protests peacefully and in return is beaten down by their opponent, how do they react? Again I would request that you provide a solution for such a situation as you have failed to do so thus far. Should they try talking to those who will not listen? Should they stand by and allow themselves to be run down injustly? The fact that the opposing party is using fire to fight fire does not make their cause any less just than it is if they succesfully managed to peacefully protest. So no, they wouldn't lose their legitimacy if they were fighting for a cause. If they were fighting to stop violence, then they'd be hypocritical and I'd take your side in such a case but if they were fighting for their rights, their homes or their lives, is their cause really any less legitimate depending on what method they use to achieve this goal? Again, why is it in your view that intentions and consequences have no value?
It is very different to compare fighting against injustice and fighting to gain power but surely in both case we should be preventing violence in any shape or form and there would subsequently be of benefit to the country?
And so what happens when one party doesn't want to give up their military power? If a party is in power and has a whole military at it's control, is it going to give that up just because an opposing party asks them nicely? No, so long as one party has this sort of power, the opposing party will not put it aside either. And whilst it would be a wonderful world if we could do such a thing as talk people out of using violence, there are people who will not be parted with power unless it is done forcefully.
"So far, ALL the examples you have used have been from ancient times/ the Middle Ages and we have now become a much more civilised people."
Quote me where I have used one such example, never did I mention the medieval ages nor 'ancient' times. But even so, in the words of Winston Churchill: "The story of the human race is war."
I'm not certain what Pro mean by 'ancient' but since you've written it before medieval, I shall presume you're referring to Ancient Greece and Rome. But all the same, there are thousands of examples after these two periods of time, here are but a few:
a) French Revolution - set off by the oppression from the absolute monarchy. The whole rebellion properly took place after peaceful protesters were attacked under order of the King.
b) World War II - Would you suggest we sit back and watch the nazis take over Europe? Allow him to execute millions of Jews and other people he deemed 'inferior'?
c) Revolutions in Syria, Egypt, Turkey and Libya - A VERY recent example to please Pro. When peacful protesters found themselves staring at the barrels of tanks, what were they reduced to? The Libyan insurgents only won when they were resorted to force and backed by NATO airstrikes.
Also, I contend your theory that we are more 'civilised' than before. Two dates come to mind immediately: 9th of August and 15th of August 1945. Not even 70 years ago the US dropped atomic bombs on these two cities. In what way is this more civilised than 'ancient' times? In what way is the death of thousands of innocent people civilised? Please explain what you mean by more 'civilised' when we're still causing such atrocities.
"You cannot say violence is inevitable."
I never said that. I would ask Pro to please quote me correctly when making an argument against me.
"we set to PREVENT this violence so that these individuals will be put off and will be more likely to gain power through legal methods if they want a chance of standing for election."
Okay, let's run with examples of people who have reached power with peaceful and legal methods. This in no way prevents people, once they are in power, to not use force. Examples:
Adolph Hitler - Need I say more?
Harry Truman - The Japanese must be forever thankful for the improvements he made to their country.
George Washington - His plans for the Iroqoius indians were not particularly friendly
James Polk - Didn't make the mexicans happy.
George Bush - I can't say that the Iraqis were terribly impressed with him.
Tony Blair - Again, the Iraqis drew the short straw with him.
"you are just telling us to accept the status quo when I am actually providing a SOLUTION FOR IT."
No, I am not. I am saying that violence is (1) something in human nature and an instinctive reaction to when you're threatened (2) is a vital political tool to instigate change and reforms that will not be made in any other more 'civilised' way. I am not saying that we should be proud to be the most violent race on our planet, but I am saying that there is a time to pick up arms against injustice. When you are being oppressed forcefully and you cannot negotiate peaceful terms, do you turn the cheek?
Since you have given no examples of your own nor alternate solutions to what happens when negotiation doesn't work. Then I can retaliate in saying that it isn't me but you who's telling us all to accept the status quo and not do anything about it.
In terms of response to your rebuttal, I definitely agree that violence at times is necessary, especially in the non-democratic examples you have mentioned. However, what of an individual who is pushing a political cause simply because they themselves believe it is right when in fact it is not necessarily the best for the country? Surely in that scenario we are providing a solution to prevent scenarios like that. An example like this would be like UKIP (for lack of a better example) or any other extreme party like the Communist party deciding to ransack certain places or propose a fight against the opposing parties. In this case, it would be very much acceptable to ban such individuals for election as it would prevent them from continuing their violence whilst being in power.
Sorry, but I didn't really understand what you meant here: 'If someone takes power over a nation using force and only holding their desires at heart? Firstly, they have taken away your choice in the matter of who is in charge and by what policies they govern by. ' Please could you explain that again? Thank you :)
The solution for if the PARTY IN GOVERNMENT violently oppressing a party running for power would be that it would most definitely be annulled and leave power, so that a new party can be elected and the people who made the decisions would be punished to the full extent of the law. For example, if we look at Egypt. Mursi was accused of using violence against protestors and in that scenario lost his power.
I agree that your more modern examples, HOWEVER, if we actually look at the rulers that the respective individuals were using violence against e.g. Libyans VS Gaddafi, the government/monarchy/dictator in power WAS AN OPPRESSIVE ONE as opposed to a normal leader and so under the model I propose, these leaders would be forced to leave power by some other means and if they refused it would be a case for the UN or Nato to remove them, not the individuals standing for power.
Out of interest, in terms of the examples following your statement: 'Okay, let's run with examples of people who have reached power with peaceful and legal methods...' would you then argue that the current political leaders count as individuals using power to further a political cause, i.e. democracy such as Barack Obama's Afghanistan campaign? This is not so much pertaining to the debate but could you argue that actually this would count as 'violence to further a political cause'?
In response to this: 'Then I can retaliate in saying that it isn't me but you who's telling us all to accept the status quo and not do anything about it.'
I am not defending the status quo and argue that there should be measures to prevent those who use violence from ever gaining political power. For, if you look at the example of Adolf Hitler, due to the fact that he staged the Munich Putsch, he would have NOT been allowed to stand for election under my model. Also, Hitler only resorted to the legal method because his otherwise violent method failed, otherwise he would have probably have preferred power obtained from his earlier method: a military coup. Therefore, I actually AM doing something to improve the status quo and I argue that under my side there are significantly less harms to the citizens of a country as opposed to your model.
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