The Instigator
Pro (for)
23 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
4 Points

DDO LD Tournament: Due Process for Terrorists

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Post Voting Period
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after 5 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/4/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 695 times Debate No: 41675
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (1)
Votes (5)





"The U.S. ought to extend to non-citizens accused of terrorism the same constitutional due process rights granted to citizens."

Structure (as per tourney rules):

R1: Acceptance
R2: Aff Case
R2: Neg Case and Neg Rebuttal
R3: Aff Rebuttal
R3: Neg Rebuttal
R4: Aff Rebuttal
R4: Neg Rebuttal

"No new arguments or responses may be offered in R4. New evidence in R4 is permissible, so long as it does not introduce a new argument, response, or claim into the debate."


Tournament rules apply. See here for detailed explanations:


To my opponent, and to Oppai and TOS for helping me organize this and for making this all possible.


so i accept
Debate Round No. 1


I affirm the resolution.


Ought - indicates desirability. For example, if I say "I ought to clean up," I am saying that it would be a good thing--that it would be desirable--for me to clean up.
Extend - to make avalible. For example, a bank extends credit to its customers.
Accused - formally charged with a violation of the law
Due Process - the judicial protections being granted by and derived from the Constitution

Observation One: Rights

According to Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy, "Rights are held as trumps to other practical considerations, which requires seeing them not as themselves simply grounded in the interests of the right-holder, but existing in virtue of more central considerations of the duties we owe each other. The basic lists that have been drawn up of human rights to be respected by any legitimate sovereign are similar, suggesting a common conception of the conditions necessary for societies that accord human beings their full dignity and respect." We can take away from this explanation four things: (1) that a sovereign is not legitimate if it fails to respect human rights, (2) rights stem from duties to each other that we all have, (3) human rights are cross-cultural, and (4) rights are trumps against utilitarian concerns.

I Value Justice, defined by Aristotle as giving each their due.

Since all people are due their human rights, I offer the Criterion of Respcting Human Rights. A comprehensive list of human rights can be found in the UDHR, and in the subsequent, legally binding documents of the ICCPR and ICESCR.

Contention One: The Rights of the Accused

Sub-point A: Constitutional Rights

Prof. Afsheen J. Radsan. After analyzing the Supreme Court Cases of Boumediene and Matthews, he stated that "the Due Process Clause government action worldwide. This is consistent with the...text of the Fifth Amendment, which bars--without any express territorial limitation--the government from depriving any person of rights...without due process of law..." U.S Attorney Loretta Lynch concurs, noting, "in the area of civil liberties...the Constitution does not make distinctions based upon citizenship status, but guarantees certain basic rights to all "persons." This reflects our view that the legal system must treat everyone equally. Certain basic rights, e.g., due process, must be equally applied across the board for the integrity of the legal system as well as for the benefit of the individual...Even when national security is at stake, we must, provide for due process of law..."

Sub-point B: Human Rights

According to Emily Zechenter, a prominent Human Rights Lawyer, human rights "provide important protections for individuals who would otherwise be entirely at the mercy of the state or the group in power. These protections include such basic rights as the right to bodily integrity; the right to be free from torture and...abuse; the right to be free from arbitrary courts, imprisonment, police coercion, etc." She goes on to note that "the modern system of international human rights treaties--which have been ratified by all nations--reflect these notions."

The ICCPR states in Article 2 that any State party to the agreement shall "undertake to respect and to ensure to all individuals within its territory and subject to its jurisdiction the rights recognized in the present Covenant, without distinction of any kind, such as...national or social origin...or other status." In the same Article, the following right is extended: "any person claiming such a remedy shall have his right thereto determined by competent judicial, administrative or legislative authorities, or by any other competent authority provided for by the legal system of the State, and to develop the possibilities of judicial remedy." Finally, in Article 9, the ICCPR grants any arrested or detained persons full due process rights as well, and in Article 14 it states, "All persons shall be equal before the courts." In Article 24, this is further emphasized by the statement, "All persons are equal before the law and are entitled without any discrimination to the equal protection of the law."

The conclusion we can draw from this analysis is that there is a human right to equality before the law, regardless of nationality, and that this fact demands that the same due process rights be extended to non-citizens.

Contention Two: Respecting rights promotes peace and national security

Sub-point A: Detention centers where due process rights are derogated only serve to incite terrorism.

According to Alberto Mora, former U.S. Navy Counsel-General, "the first and second identifiable causes of U.S. combat deaths in Iraq--as judged by their effectiveness in recruiting insurgent fighters into combat--are, respectively the symbols of Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo. Senior officers are convinced that the cause of Abu Ghraib was the legal advice authorizing abusive treatment of detainees that issued from the Department of Justice's Office of Legal Counsel in 2002." Senior U.S. Airforce Terrorism Analyst Alexander Matthews, agrees, stating that, "the No. 1 reason foreign fighters flocked there to fight were the abuses carried out at Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo. Our policy of torture was directly and swiftly recruiting fighters for al-Qaeda in Iraq"at least half of our losses and casualties in that country have come at the hands of foreigners who joined the fray because of our program of detainee abuse. The number of U.S. soldiers who have died because of our torture policy is close to the number of lives lost on 9/11."

Sub-point B: Violating the rights of accused terrorists doesn"t deter terrorism.

According to Dr. Uri Fisher, "the deck is stacked against deterrence playing a significant role in U.S. counterterrorism policy because terrorists are highly motivated and therefore they are willing to risk anything--their lives in the case of suicide-bombers--to accomplish a goal...second, terrorists are difficult to locate. Terrorist networks operate transnationally and therefore make reprisals remains undecided how deterrence can work against an enemy that understands that the ultimate policy goal of the U.S. is not to coexist with groups like al-Qaeda, but to eradicate them."

Sub-point C: Violating the rights of those accused undermines U.S. credibility, increases anti-Americanism, and alienates
our allies. All of these problems hinder our ability to work with our allies to promote safety.

Mora notes that, "allied nations reportedly hesitated to participate in combat operations if there was the possibility that individuals captured during the operation could be abused by the U.S. Allied nations have refused on occasion to train with us in joint detainee capture and handling operations because of concerns about U.S. detainee policies. And senior NATO officers in Afghanistan have been reported to have left the room when issues of detainee treatment have been raised by U.S. officials out of fear that they may become complicit in detainee abuse. International cooperation, including in the military, intelligence, and law enforcements arenas, diminished as foreign officials became concerned that assisting the U.S. in detainee matters could constitute aiding and abetting criminal conduct in their own countries." Prof. David Cole claims that our rights violations have caused us to "forfeit the legitimacy of the struggle against terrorism, and make it less likely that we will obtain the cooperation we need from those countries, contributing to anti-American sentiment, which has never been higher than it is today. That cannot be good for our long-term interests, and it plays right into the hands of the terrorists' recruitment propaganda."

Sub-point D: We not only alienate our allies, but also demographic groups important to national security through rights violations.

According to Kenneth Roth of Human Rights Watch, "detention also discourages citizens from cooperating with counterterrorist investigations, a crucial factor in uncovering terrorist plots. Counterterrorism experts report that information gleaned from interrogating detainees is far less important than information delivered by members of the general public who see something suspicious and report it"Because sympathy for the victims of abusive counterterrorism policies tends to be greatest in the communities that give rise to terrorists, policies such as preventive detention jeopardize this vitally important source of intelligence."

In conclusion, we can see that there are not only moral, but also pragmatic reasons to extend due process to non-citizens accused of terrorism. I would emphasize however, that the rights-based arguments in Contention one are sufficient to vote Aff in their own right. Thank you, and I urge a ballot in affirmation of the resolution.


Thank You! Please VOTE PRO!


Well, my opponent has broken the rules, which can be found here @ of this here tournament by copy/paste arguments from his previous debate, which can be found here @ for pics that cant be added to this

EVEN IF this isn"t reason enough to vote for the negative I will still represent the neg.
I negate the resolution?
National security is the requirement to maintain the survival of the state through the use of economic, diplomacy, power projection and political power.
accused a claim against
My value will be that of Morality, but more specifically the classification of consequentialism
VC national security
To better define my value
Harries, "94 writes, "in politics, it is "the ethic of responsibility" rather than "the ethic of absolute ends"" While an individual is free to treat human rights as absolute, governments must weigh consequences and the competing claims of other ends. Once we enter the realm of politics, human rights have to take their place in a hierarchy of interests, including such basic things as national security."
Even if deontology is truly ethical, states must act as consequentialists

C1 National Security out-weighs individual liberty
these rights make for more problems for the government when trying the detainee in conviction
we should use military tribunals as they are better equipped to handle the situation, they can incorporate more into their cases to convict those on trial.
Tung Yin2011
The appropriate course of action would be criminal prosecution.
for those who want to exact lawful retribution, fear federal court trials will compromise national
security by revealing classified information, the appropriate course of action might be prosecution in a military court.

Due processs would better be served in military tribunals as they are more fit and would be more practical
Jan C. Ting, 2002
But, despite the appearance of normality, we remain fully engaged in a life-and-death struggle with international
terrorism. No one can doubt after the September 11 attacks, the willingness of these terrorists to use
nuclear, biological, and chemical weapons against us if, and as soon as, they can get their hands on them.

C2: Equal protection when it comes to people accused of terrorism
A: Habeas Protections Exist for Non-Citizens
Marjorie Cohn, 2011
In 2008, the Supreme Court decided Boumediene v. Bush, upholding habeas corpus rights for the
Guantanamo detainees. In a 5-4 ruling, the Court held that they have a constitutional right to habeas corpus

Therefore the use of military tribunals is already in affect and is giving those accused of terrorism substantial due process protection.
B:citezens and non-citizens have = protection against terrorists charges.
National Defense Authorization Act section 1021
This states indefinite detention, without trial by use of AUMF of United States citizens if accused of terrorism
So by definition citizens and non-citizens already have equal rights of due process when accused of terrorism
C: This would devalue the status of citizen ship.
We can"t give non-citizens an inappropriate requisite that us as Americans don"t possess, that would be unfair and not morally acceptable.

now i will begin refutation
my opponent defined accused as formally charged
i have 2 arguments why this shouldnt be used
first is using formally charged narrows debate
and secondly we should use claim as not all accused are done so in a public, or formal, matter.

they define Due process as protected under the constitution, i have 3 arguments to why we shouldnt look to the constitution for our proceedings
1 patriot act sections 206 and 215 which allow government to exercise powers that are "protected" under the constitution
2 NDAA '14 second 1061 (g) 1 that allow for unwarranted searches another thing "protected" in the constitution
3 as long as national security is involved, the constitution has historically been trashed, we can look to schenck v. united states
i have 3 arguments to his claim on rights
1 rights can be the things he talks about but are not always true, we can look at the rights of women in middle eastern countries versus the large majority of the rest
2 rights are not trumps, historically, to utilitarian concerns especially when concerning national security, again schenck v. united states
3 we relinquished our duty to protect our rights when we entered into the social contract and gave that to the government
his value of justice is defined as giving each their due by Aristotle i have 2 claims why this is not the right way to frame the debate
1 aristotle has said that equals should be treated equally and unequals unequally
so each may have a due but that due may be of less entitlement to the gentleman next to him
2 Afsheen J. Radsan (1) writes, "Due process, however, does not
demand judicial process to review the merits of executive action if this
basically stating that due process does not equate to judicial process which is not "due"

against their value criterion of respecting human rights, i am just going to cross apply my Radsan (1) card that states sometimes respecting a right would be unreasonable, in this case he was talking about due process, my aristotle equals = equality while unequals=inequality , my first and second arguments against rights and i will make 1 more arguemtn, the united states doesn't follow the UDHR or the other two fully therefore has no merit in this debate, for examples already used look to the due process refutations.

his sub a of c1 starts with a radsan card but there are 2 reasons why we shouldnt look to this card
1 Afsheen J. Radsan (2) writes, "This holding should not, however, obscure that Boumediene itself instructs courts not to interfere with executive action abroad if such interference would be "impracticable" or" anomalous." In short, Boumediene can still be understood in light of a long tradition of judicial deference to executive action on foreign policy and national security."
basically if we further develop their radsan card we would see that radsan only shows favor to practical and non anomalous court interference.
2 this contradicts his definition of ought which is desirability, as benefits are out weighed by cost looking from the consequanlists standpoint
against the Loretta card
1 we can cross apply radsan (2) for the impracticabilities
and 2 look to Schenck vs US for NS>Liberty
sub b HR's
against his emily card
1 she claims it is ratified in all nations when it is not, how can we trust her if she can not get simple information right but even if that not enough ignore this card
2 these are not constitutional due process rights so have no merit in the first place/ off topic , no link.
Sub a of c2 detention entice terrorism 4 arguments
1 we have gotten crucial evidence in past
2 no link to c2
3 no longer torture so irrelevant info
4 old evidence from iraq
sub b c2
1 violation of rights is for information purposes not deterrent
2 no link to c2 or value and value criterion because it doesnt uphold them
against his sub c c2 i have but one argument
to think that other countries haven't done what the US has done is ignorant and childish
look to the uk for an example
for sub d of c2
look to cops interrogating criminals, does that stop civilians from giving anonymous tips or prosecuting in a court
its the same concept but to a lesser degree

vote neg
only because aff broke the rules of this debate but because neg has thoroughly broken down the aff case and shown why neg is the better vote thank you.
Debate Round No. 2


The order will be Overview, NC, AC.


About the rules... Initially, the Mods, including myself, proposed the rule against copying and pasting in order to prevent debaters from stealing other people's arguments--yet the arguments I made were 100% my own. I think the spirit of the rules should be taken into consideration. Additionally, we can see that my arguments regarding the ICCPR were never copied/pasted, nor was any of my framework (Definitions, Observation, Value, Cirterion). I urge judges to consider this as well. I have taken this admonition to heart--I honestly forgot that I had used these arguments before on DDO. I apologize. However, I would ask that in light of these facts that only a conduct point be deducted.


V: Morality - Con explains that he is defining morality is consequentialist in nature. However, I would argue that this is not what morality is. If I asked, is killing moral, the answer would be no. Why do potenital benefits deriving from an immoral act, suddenly make immorality morality?

For example, if I have the option of killing on man to save 3, Con would say I should kill the one man. Doing so would be pragmatic, but not moral. Yes, I saved 3 people, but that doesn't change the fact that killing is still wrong. It was the best course of action in a no-win situation, but that doesn't make it right. The lesser of two evils is still evil, after all. Therefore, Con cannot uphold his own value, because it is deontological in nature.

C: National Security (NatSec) - I have three points to make here: (1) I have already delinked this ends-based criterion from the value with the abovementioned analysis, (2) I can link to it regardless, (3) Con fails to justify why National Secuirity is the best criterion to use--why not some other edns-based funtion like plain-old utilitarianism or rights maximization. Why this criterion.

C1: NatSec outwighs liberty

Before I address Con's sub-points, it is important to note that his tagline is not supported by his sub-points. All his arguments show is the NatSec and liberty occasionally come into conflict--and this is a different issue than making the case for one being more important than the other. Moreover, there is a grave risk that if we take the line that NatSec is more important than liberty that we could devolve into an Orwellian state where we have no rights and where the state and its own survival is supreme. Finally, cross-apply my observation here; it explains that rights are trumps, meaning liberty actually outweighs NatSec, not the other way around.

Sub-point A: Trying terrorists in civilian courts makes them harder to convict

My opponents argument is basically this:

"Military tribunals are so biased and unfair that accused terrorists don't stand a chance of being exonerated. Therefore, if we want to incapacitate accused terrorists--even thought they might be innocent--we shouldn't let them be tried fairly."

We cannot merely assume that ACCUSED terrorists are guilty (it's immoral to lock up innocents)--military courts should be avoided because they are more likely to lock away innocent people. Secondly. if you take this logic to its logical conclusion, a government should be able to try civilians without due process, because it will help us lock away more criminals. Such pure reliance on consequentialism can lead the state down the path to the Orwellian state.

Sub-point B: Classified Information

In fact, civilian trials have effective procedures in place to preserve sensitive information. Roth asserts that, "Congress enacted the Classified Information Procedures Act, empowering federal judges to review requests for classified information with the aim of sanitizing that information as much as possible or restricting its disclosure to only those defense lawyers with security clearance. The purpose of the act is to protect a defendant's right to confront all the evidence against him while safeguarding legitimate intelligence secrets"Judges who have tried cases under CIPA speak of it as a reasonable compromise between fairness and security."

Impact Turn: Con argues for Military Tribunals. Military tribunals will actually increase terrorist violence.

Schulhoefer argues that "military tribunals allow terrorists to paint themselves as victims" and to encourage the belief that the U.S. is an unjust, cruel, and anti-Islamic regime. Such sentiments, only intensify anti-Americanism and help groups like al-Qaeda recruit. According to Kristen Lord, John Nagl, and Seth Rosen, "Since ideology unites and strengthens violent extremists, an effective strategy must undermine that ideology"s appeal...Countering the movement"s guiding narrative...and sapping it of popular support should be critical benchmarks of success...The US cannot capture or kill every violent Islamist extremist, and trying...would impair its ability to fight extremism ideologically." My sub-point D can also be cross-applied here to emphasize this point.

Sub-point D: Terror threatens global survival

There are a few things to say here: (1) Con never says how likely it is that terrorist will acquire WMDs, and (2) terror attacks are rare. Foriegn Affairs Magazine (2005) states: "Since September 11, international terrorism has killed only a few hundred people per year around the globe...the lifetime probability of any resident of the globe being killed by terrorism is just one in 80,000, the same chance of being killed by a comet." (3) My impact turn shows how Con is promoting terrorism himself.

Contention Two: Equal Protection

Sub-point A: Habeas Corpus

Habeas Corpus lets you have a day in court, but if that day is in front of a biased court, then HC is pretty useless. Military tribunals are indeed unfair: Prof. Richard Pious states, "In many respects due process protections were lacking [in tribunals]. No definition of "international terrorism" was provided...Group association and membership, rather than commission of concrete acts, could be the basis for detention and trial, and there was no requirement of "probable cause" that a crime had been committed."

Sub-point B: Already are =

If you believe this, and if you believe that this should be the case, then you should affirm. Con has to argue against = protect, but he just gave arguments for it.

Sub-point C: Devalue Citizenship

All people are equally human, and we all have equal human rights. Certain societal rights, like voting, are retained for citizens exclusively, but due process is not such a right--it is one granted to all people in equal measure.



Accused - Con's only reason for rejecting my definition is that it "narrows the debate," yet he never explains why that's bad. Secondly, if accusations aren't formal ones, then I could--as a civilian--accuse any random person of being a terrorist and that random person would suddenly fall under the topic. That's way overbroad.
DP - points 1 and 2 that Con cites are not DP protections, they are DP process exceptions. The actual protections are in and derived from the Constitution. Point 3 basically argues that we should toss out the Constitution...need I say "Orwellian State" again?

Observation: Rights

1. The ME example falls short. Simply because women's rights aren't recognized, does not mean that those women do not have those rights. Con employs this fallacy.
2. Prominent utilitarians like Singer disavow the notion of rights. Utility is not a theory of rights, and Con is confusing it in this way. Moreover, just because rights (which a moral trumps) are violated in pragmatic interests, does not mean that rights are not moral trumps. It doesn't follow.
3. We relinquished only some rights in our social contact. We have other rights enshrined in that very same contract--just read the Constitution. The SC is not license for the government to go wild in pursuit of security.


Everyone is due HR as per my C1 analysis. Moreover, Con's Radsan card is talking about judicial review of executive actions, not DP itself. Clearly, the courts have found this review to not be "unreasonable" b/c they have made rulings on it. As for the claims about the UDHR, (1) I never cited the UDHR, (2) I cited two LEGALLY BINDING treaties that the U.S. is not compliant with. Because it is violating the law, it ought to change its actions to ensure it conforms to such agreements. Just saying that because "the united states doesn't follow" something, does not mean that the U.S. shouldn't follow something. Con's point is therefore an invalid non-argument.



1. Radsan is talking there about actions "abroad." This resolution is domestic, and so Con's point is not topical.
2. It doesn't contradict ought because we ought to follow the law/the Constitution. Desirability does not necessarily imply what is consequentially best as Con asserts. For example, it is not desirable to violate rights because it is immoral.


1. Zechenter is talking about HR in general--all nations do recognize their existence.
2. The Constitution is not "off-topic" in a resolution about the U.S.



Firstly, Con provides no warrants for his claim.

1, 4 - The evidence provides insight into how detention centers appear to terrorists, and so they are valid quotes.
2 - It links to your C and turns it
3 - prove that the U.S. doesn't, and that terrorists believe it doesn't


Concedes w/ point 1. Con says the justification is getting info, but he gives no examples of how effective the U.S. is at that. If it's not effective, Con can't link to his C.


Con doesn't address my argument, he just insults it. Many nations don't want the bad reputation, because the U.S. is infamous for it.


In cases where the police are mistrusted, they also receive few tips. The U.S. is not trusted in areas that recruit terrorists, so it doesn't get tips.


1. ICCPR - never rebuts its content
2. Detention = more terrorism
3. Cole: detention = more anti-U.S. hatred



travisrice66 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3


Extend my arguments.

I would like to point out that just as my c/p-ing was a conduct violation, so too is Neg's forfeit. They may cancel out.


i like trains
Debate Round No. 4
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by oppai_lover666 2 years ago
final tally for round one debate between bsh1 and TravisRice66 is:

bsh1: 11
travisrice66: 4

Congratulations bsh1! You will be moving onto the second round of the bracket!
5 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Vote Placed by oppai_lover666 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:34 
Reasons for voting decision: As the last official tournament judge here, I realize that Travis has already lost the round, as the best I can afford is 7 points, while he is behind by 8. But alas, I will not let that sway my vote. I will leave my personal opinions about the topic out of the RFD, and thus won't go over who I agree with. Looking to conduct, I do see a violation of the rules by bsh1 by c/p arguments from previous debates, but I feel that Travis's forfeit and last comment counterbalance that. Thus, the conduct point goes to a tie. As for spelling and grammar, I never feel like this should be a big point in votes (except for extremely bad form) and thus will leave this at a tie. While Travis's arguments were very good in the second round, dropping the third (and fourth really) round has caused me to vote bsh1 for most convincing args. Both sides had reliable sources, so tie. Just because travis can't win anyways, I'll give all tie points to him, but bsh1 is the winner of this round. Congrats Pro!
Vote Placed by TheOncomingStorm 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: Com FF a round and finished his last round by saying "I like trains." That lost conduct points. Pro also has much better S&G. Con under explained his arguments, especially in the rebuttal. Pro very clearly stated what it was he was arguing and why he should be voted for. Evidence was about the same. Con just lost on the argumentation outside of the evidence.
Vote Placed by thett3 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: I, too, like trains.
Vote Placed by ej3467273 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Con ff.
Vote Placed by MrVan 2 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Con loses conduct; not because he forfeited, but because "i like trains" is not a closing argument. Also, since he didn't respond to any of Pro's contentions on the third round, he loses argument points. There are several instances where Con failed to use proper punctuation and capitalization, so spelling and grammar go to Pro.