The Instigator
righty10294
Con (against)
Losing
6 Points
The Contender
Acureforthemondays
Pro (for)
Winning
12 Points

Biohistory, or digging up the body of dead people for science

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/25/2008 Category: Science
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,156 times Debate No: 2184
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
Votes (6)

 

righty10294

Con

Hello, this is a paper I did for science on biohistory. If you don't know what biohistory is, it is a new form a science. Scientist are (want to) dig(ing) up the bodies of famous people to check for dieses DNA etc. I think this is wrong and is against "rest in peace."

I believe that biohistory, or the digging up of dead people, should not be allowed without consent. It is a violation of the Fourth and Fifth Amendments.

Biohistory is a violation of the Fourth Amendment. The Fourth Amendment states, "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." I think that this practice is will go under "unreasonable searches," because what are we gaining from it? There will not be a dramatic effect on what we find, if we find anything. Also, how do we know that the particular person we are examining wants this done to them? This search is unreasonable, because what are we gaining by this?

For the Fifth Amendment it is about the rights to property. It is, "No person shall be held to answer for any capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal ase to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation." The key part is the last sentence, about property. They are taking the body, and examining it in a public company, where anyone could work there. Also, they would make the information they found available to the public.

Now, with the consent. You will be able to examine on the person's body, if 2/3 of their direct decedents say it's okay. If there is no relatives of direct descend, then the body shall not be examined. We don't know if this is what the person wanted. This should be something that people should be asked if they want, like a donor.

There is one exception though, if it evolves a crime. When there's a case if the prosecution or defense has sure evidence that the forensics will have a play in it, than no consent is needed. This is very important, because if the body holds information that one side wants, but the body belongs to the other side, they will not allow it to be examined on.
Acureforthemondays

Pro

First off, you have to understand that biohistory is an issue not only pertaining to dead humans, but plant life as well. Secondly, biohistory isn't only an issue in the United States. Saying it is bad because it is unconstitutional may fly in the U.S but you can't write off biohistory in other countries. You have to think about the people who died in America before the constitution was written, and those who died in other countries. They were never citizens of the United States, so why should American laws determine their fate?

Next I would like to talk about your 2/3 rule. You said that if a person doesn't have any living relatives their body shouldn't be searched. This excludes the majority of the people that biohistorians want to investigate. Denying the biohistorians the right to investigate these people is denying the world of valuable information to can be used for the greater good of the world. Humans have evolved, and keeping the treasures of past evolution locked up because the bones of a human who lived 500 years ago doesn't have any relatives is absurd.

When you talk about the fourth amendment in your argument, you said, "There will not be a dramatic effect on what we find, if we find anything." How can you know that for certain? Biohistory is a very new field of study, and turning your back on it before giving it a chance won't do any good. Already biohistorians have discovered enzymes that replicate DNA, and astrocytes, a glial cell that supports adaptable brain functions. These are only a few of the scientific and historical breakthroughs made by biohistorians.

All in all, humans and plants have evolved tremendously over time. To ignore their evolutionary patters is to ignore the past. We cannot write off and forget about this huge chunk of science and history.
Debate Round No. 1
righty10294

Con

Hello

Thank you for accepting my debate, and good luck.

"it is unconstitutional may fly in the U.S but you can't write off bio history in other countries."

I never wrote off "other countries." I use OUR Constitution for my argument. Also, if the US were to do something on a new issue like this, many countries would follow our lead. Not every country will follow our lead, but we will have an impact on what we do.

"Denying the biohistorians the right to investigate these people is denying the world of valuable information"

HOw do you know that the person will hold "valuable information." Look at our graves now, they have the RIP (rest in peace) sign on them. DOn't you think if we dig them up without anyone's consent, they aren't getting their "rest in peace." Also, what if they didn't want to be tested on? What gives modern man the right to the body of Abe Lincoln who lived 140 years ago?

When I talk about the 4th Amendment, I'm saying that digging these bodies up is a violation of the 4th Amendment. It is a unreasonable search. once again I will say that how do you know that the person "holds information?" If he doesn't, you have just did all these test on a dead body, took a lot of criticism and now what? You will hear everyone say, "told you so."

PLease argue that it isn't against both amendments.
Acureforthemondays

Pro

Biohistory isn't against the fourth amendment because it states "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." Houses, papers and effects are hardly what biohistorians are looking for. Also, since biohistory is a legal practice, they have affirmation, and it is this affirmation that allows them to search bodies. It could also be argued that the biohistorians have probable cause. Biohistorians don't just dig up anybody, the find specimen that are related to their current research program. They provide a hypothesis before digging anybody or anything up.

In regards to the fifth amendment, when it states, "nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation," it is talking about property, such as ones house or land. The amendment does not pertain to a bone shard or a chin hair.

It is also arguable that neither of these two amendments apply at all because the people it pertains to in this matter are dead. The Constitution was written for all American citizens. According to the dictionary, a citizen is:
1: an inhabitant of a city or town; especially : one entitled to the rights and privileges of a freeman. It means you have to live in the country not be dead in it. Also, after death, doctors do not have to keep your medical records private. They publish autopsy results in medical journals all the time, and this is perfectly legal.
Debate Round No. 2
righty10294

Con

righty10294 forfeited this round.
Acureforthemondays

Pro

Well, I'm not really sure what to say. I presented my argument but didn't get a response. Thanks for the debate righty, it was fun.
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by ImAPanicBomb447 9 years ago
ImAPanicBomb447
righty either accept or decline my debate
6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by chevy10294 9 years ago
chevy10294
righty10294AcureforthemondaysTied
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Vote Placed by RepublicanView333 9 years ago
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righty10294AcureforthemondaysTied
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Vote Placed by reagan_views 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by rshortman 9 years ago
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righty10294AcureforthemondaysTied
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Vote Placed by Acureforthemondays 9 years ago
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righty10294AcureforthemondaysTied
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