The Instigator
hmgurny
Pro (for)
Tied
14 Points
The Contender
mm95
Con (against)
Tied
14 Points

Civil disobedience in a democratic society is morally justified

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
It's a Tie!
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/29/2009 Category: Society
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 52,602 times Debate No: 10269
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (3)
Votes (4)

 

hmgurny

Pro

I affirm
Resolved: Civil disobedience in a democratic society is morally justified.
In order to clarify the round I offer the following definitions Civil disobedience Merriam-Webster dictionary: refusal to obey governmental demands or commands especially as a nonviolent and usually collective means of forcing concessions from the government Democracy Merriam-Webster dictionary: government by the people. A government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections.
My value for the round is morality.
The criterion for the round is protecting human rights for thee reasons.
1. Everyone has the same basic human rights in a democratic society. If we don't protect human rights, everyone wont be equal.
2.Without human rights, people are open to oppression from others. If a democracy allows for people to be oppressed then the whole reason for creating a government would be pointless.
3.Human rights are codified in the laws of a society. Further those same laws represent the morals of the society since the majority of a society will want its beliefs to be expressed in the laws. Therefore, by protecting human rights we uphold the ideals of a democratic society
My thesis is civil disobedience is a useful technique for people to lobby for what they want.
Contention 1. Civil disobedience in a democratic society is a way for minorities to be heard. Civil disobedience makes more noise then other forms of protest; so therefore they have a better chance of being heard. Even democracies do not provide a sufficient way to express the peoples feeling, so the people must be civil disobedience. The government would have a better understanding of what the people want if they protest, and good communication between the government and the people would help protect human rights.
Contention 2. Civil disobedience in a democratic society is a more effective form of protest. Daniel Markovits explains:
civil disobedience may be justified when there is a democratic deficit in the processes that have produced the laws against which the disobedience protests. Even if such laws could be legitimate, because they fall within the scope of democratic political authority, the democratic deficits that they suffer deprive them of actual authority. Civil disobedience functions, in such cases, not to limit but rather to enhance democracy. The argument presents an account of democratic politics that highlights the possibility of democratic deficits as a necessary side effect of the basic mechanisms of democratic political authority, which democratic disobedience might correct.
Martin Luther King Jr. and other African American protesters used civil disobedience, and they were effective and became heroes, and the method of civil disobedience proved effective. With civil disobedience, there is more communication between the government and people, and to be a democracy there must be an open avenue to the people. With this open avenue, there is more communication between the government and the people, and more communication between the government and the people helps protect human rights.
Contention 3. Civil disobedience in a democracy gives the people more power. Civil disobedience shows that we are a democracy because the people have the ability to protest the government. The people wouldn't be in control because they wouldn't be allowed to protest the government that is made for, from, and by them. The government will have more control without civil disobedience, therefore making the government not as democratic, and then it would be harder to have more human rights with more control since the people would be prone to oppression from the government.
mm95

Con

I negate resolved civil disobedience in a democratic society is morally justified.
In order to clarify the round I give these definitions:
According to philosophy researcher Fredrik Benz, Civil disobedience is a forceful way of having society do things your way.

Democracy- a system of government that the people elect government officials.

Since the resolution is a question of if Civil Disobedience in a democratic society is morally justified, the value for the round is morality. The value criterion is maximizing loyalty, which helps the government function and the people stay protected.

Justifications:
1.people are given opportunities to choose their leaders so they should listen to what they say to do. The leaders outwardly show their thoughts and plans on topics before elections, and since the majority chose them, the majority of the country agrees with the candidate's views and therefore the people should abide by the set laws. If a view of the candidate is strongly opposed by a majority of the people, people can vote against the law, form petitions, etc.

2. government needs to have the ability to make unpopular decisions when necessary because the main goal of the government is to protect the people.

3.people need to listen to rules that they may not like because the government needs support during extenuating circumstances such as war.

My thesis is that civil disobedience is a threat to the unity of the democracy.

BURDEN: The aff has to prove that in every instance Civil disobedience doesnt lead to a loss of heath -> violence
The neg has to prove one instance in which civil disobedience leads to a loss of health-> violence.

Burden Justification:
Because the value for this round is morality, which is defined as ideals of human conduct (by merriam-webster's dictionary), people's safety is defines whether or not civil disobedience is moral. The statement that CD is nonviolent is false because CD leading to violence still is responsible for people getting hurt, so therefore civil disobedience is not moral and therefore shouldn't be allowed.

Contention 1
Civil disobedience can lead to rioting with the state. Civil disobedience can quickly turn into a Mob and fighting can occur because of racial, money, or social tension. further clashes with law enforcement would harm the relationship between the government and the people which would cause the people to not trust the government. Therefore, the state will begin to fall apart since people do not trust it.

Contention 2
Civil disobedience can hurt the government during wartime. Civil disobedience during this time distracts the government and can lower loyalty towards the government during wartime, where the troops need full support from their country. Further, people will more susceptible to harm since the government would be able to act if it is distracted fighting people at home. This also would discourage soldiers from fighting since they do not have the support of the people they are fighting for. Therefore, Morale may be lowered, and government may be destabilized.

Contention 3
People need to obey all laws that the government pass, even if they don't feel that the laws are fair. The government's primary goal is to keep their people safe. Ex: people didn't like the treatment of prisoners at Guantanamo Bay, but it was either the torturing or another 9/11 attack that couldn't be foreseen. By maximizing the ability of the government to act through the full support of the people then the people will be safer since the government can protect them from more harms. the loyalty of the people gives the government the right to act as it sees best to protect the highest number of people.

MOVING ON TO THE AFFIRMATIVE CASE:
my opponent's definition of Civil Disobedience is saying that CD is always nonviolent. As stated in my burden justification, this is not true because leading to violence still is the fault of Civil disobedience which is why CD goes against morality. Also, my opponent agrees in his definition that CD forces concessions from the governments. The minority forcing the majority to follow its will defeats the purpose of a democracy, because as my opponent states, CD is basically majority over minority. I would like to mention that this doesn't single out a certain group of people because in each case, the minority changes. for example, the minority for gun control may be part of the majority for the abortion issue. Because of this, the minority shouldn't be allowed to force the majority to follow their will. For these reasons i would like to TURN my opponent's definition of CD because it helps me more than it helps my opponent by proving that civil disobedience is immoral.

My opponent's value criterion is human rights. My value criterion of maximizing loyalty is a prerequisite to human rights because if the government is fearing for its own safety and the people are revolting, the government cannot worry about their rights. In fact, the government will have to try to take away rights to get the people under control. Maximizing loyalty doesn't mean don't question the government, it is more along the lines of listening to the laws- something civil disobedience doesn't feel it necessary to do. Therefore, my criterion of maximizing loyalty should be used during this round. Even if you decide to use my opponent's VC, violence works against protecting human rights because of the loss of health. So in any case, i would like to TURN this argument because it works more in my favor.

Rebuttle-Aff. contention 1:
There are other forms of protest which are legal and in which people are safer such as going to courts, marching, boycotting, talking to representatives, etc... When my opponent says the government will have a better understanding of what the PEOPLE feel, the people in general are referred to as the majority. Also, the whole point of voting is to let the government know what every person wants. With CD, there is no point for voting, because the decisions are going to get overruled anyways. My opponent talks about communication between the government and the people. Is violence better than talking or voting?

Rebuttle-Aff. contention 2:
My opponent says civil disobedience is a more effective form of protest, but he fails to state what it is more effective then. He also states that Civil disobedience enhances democracy... by hurting people and not following laws??? He says right before that that the laws have no authority. This statement makes no sense because the laws are the authorities that tell people what lines they cannot cross and to say that they have no authority is provoking anarchy. My opponent uses the example of Martin Luther King Jr. in his case. What he fails to mention is the violence involved. The sit-ins for example created violence. Also, what about Malcolm X? "I want Dr. King to know that I didn't come here to make his job difficult. I really did come thinking I could make it easier. If the white people realize what the alternative is, perhaps they will be more willing to hear Dr. King." This quote my Malcolm X show that he was nto above violence, and he helped make the changes to society that MLK Jr. worked for. For this reason, you cannot tell that MLK Jr. made the changes to the society without Malcolm X, and therefore you don't know that King Jr. using CD was the reason for African-American rights. Also, you don't know how long it would've taken the African-Americans to get their rights without CD. The MLK Jr. example is invalid in this debate.

Rebuttle-Aff. contention 3:
The people (majority) lose fair power because the minorities are undermining the democracy by forcing their wll on others, as shown in my definition of CD. All the laws made go through the people, as my opponent states, so really the government is the people. Therefore, this arguement shouldn't be looked towards as it makes no sense.
Debate Round No. 1
hmgurny

Pro

hmgurny forfeited this round.
mm95

Con

my opponent by not responding to either the aff. or the neg. case has dropped all arguements, which signifies that he agrees with all of my points.

I would like to point out that my opponent didn't respond to my burden, and therefore i should win the round. Also, to make this short and simple, by forfeiting the round, he has not answered to my turns and therefore i win in those categories, and since he didn't respond to my contentions and my attacks on his contentions, he agrees with me there also.

This debate is over and won by me, because now my opponent has lost every argument in the debate, and by dropping them in his 2nd speech, cannot bring them back and therefore is done for the debate.

This is why I win the debate, thank you.
Debate Round No. 2
hmgurny

Pro

My opponent didn't extend his arguements, therefore they can be removed from the round. therefore we BOTH don't have cases so this round is a tie.
To his contention 1 i say
I turn this argument on my opponent. Civil Disobedience will never lead to rioting with the state because on the definition of Civil Disobedience is nonviolent. If violence does happen, then it wouldn't be civil disobedience, and we are arguing here only about civil disobedience. If there is fighting, then you could call it an uprising or revolt, not civil disobedience. The two main examples of civil disobedience, Ghandi and the U.S civil rights movement, weren't violent. This is because the main aim of those movements were non- violent. My opponent also doesn't give an example of a time when civil disobedience leads to rioting, so therefore my opponent has no proof that it could happen. Also, the majorty of the people in a democratic state love their country, so how can what you say will happen, happen if the majority rules as you say it does. This majority will start to trust the government because they would be scared of the minority who state n uprising, which will enhance trust, so it turn this argument on my opponent. Also, my opponent does not give a sufficient warrant. My opponent doesn't give an example of a time when civil disobedience leads to rioting, so therefore my opponent has no proof that it could happen. Also, there is no link to his value criterion.

I could make a lot more arguements to his case, but i dont have the time.

because of all of this i win the round
mm95

Con

mm95 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
hmgurny

Pro

hmgurny forfeited this round.
mm95

Con

mm95 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by cello1 5 months ago
cello1
I feel the aff case didn't tie their final contentions to value at all.
Posted by Beginner 2 years ago
Beginner
ffs
Posted by mm95 7 years ago
mm95
harris, when u dropped it all, u cant just re-argue, threfore this is invalid, cuz u forfeited u cant just come back and write sht. u forfieted the roudn and therefore the debate was over. sure i didnt extend but i did extend my burden by talking about it so u rlly lost so u cheated. :)
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by Mixer 7 years ago
Mixer
hmgurnymm95Tied
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Vote Placed by shoester5169 7 years ago
shoester5169
hmgurnymm95Tied
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Vote Placed by mm95 7 years ago
mm95
hmgurnymm95Tied
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Vote Placed by dogparktom 7 years ago
dogparktom
hmgurnymm95Tied
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