The Instigator
Merda
Pro (for)
Losing
5 Points
The Contender
Andromeda_Z
Con (against)
Winning
34 Points

(ELO)The death penalty is a justified form of punishment.

Do you like this debate?NoYes+2
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 9 votes the winner is...
Andromeda_Z
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/7/2011 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,972 times Debate No: 16925
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (13)
Votes (9)

 

Merda

Pro

I will be taking the affirmative of the resolution "The death penalty is a justified form of punishment." My opponent will take the negation of the resolution. This will be for the ELO tourney, hosted by Cliff[1]. Anyone may accept this challenge. However, acceptance of the challenge also means acceptance of all rules, definitions, and the way in which the BOP is setup.

Rules

1.) Any forfeit will result in loss of the conduct vote.

2.) Drops will count as concessions.

3.) Semantical or abusive arguments will not be allowed.

4.) Acceptance of this debate necessarily includes acceptance of all rules, definitions, and the setup of the BOP.

5.) Arguments will begin in R2. R1's only purpose will be for acceptance and clarifications as to the terms of the debate.

Definitions

Death penalty: A sentence of punishment by execution.
http://www.thefreedictionary.com...


Justified: To demonstrate or prove to be just, right, or valid.
http://www.thefreedictionary.com...

Burden of proof

The BOP in this debate will be shared. Both debaters must not only refute their opponent's case, but must bring one of their own that sufficiently proves their position on either the negation or affirmation of the resolution.

[1] http://www.debate.org...
Andromeda_Z

Con

I accept this debate, and the rules and definitions described in your Round 1 post. Thank you for the debate, and I look forward to hearing your arguments and posting my own.
Debate Round No. 1
Merda

Pro

Merda forfeited this round.
Andromeda_Z

Con

According to Rule 1 of this debate, my opponent has lost the conduct point. I don't have any arguments I can extend right now, and I'm not going to post my case just yet, because that would make the debate unbalanced. So, it's Merda's turn.
Debate Round No. 2
Merda

Pro

Merda forfeited this round.
Andromeda_Z

Con

Arguments

1. The death penalty is not a justifiable form of punishment because it does nothing to punish the criminal, because they will be relieved of the burden of knowing that they have done something so horrible as to warrant punishment. As a punishment, it would be far more effective to sentence the criminal to a lifetime of hard labor.

2. The death penalty, although also a punishment, can be used as a way for the victim (or, in the case of murder victims, the family) to think they have justice. Instead, they prove that they are no better. They have also killed someone.
Debate Round No. 3
Merda

Pro

I apologize to my opponent and any readers of this debate for my forfeits. I concede the conduct vote as per rules. However, so as not do drop any arguments, I will respond to them below.

A1: The death penalty is not a punishment.

My opponent's first argument is that because the death penalty does not punish the criminal, it is not a form of punishment and thus cannot be justifiable. However this point is fallacious. The reason is because she makes the faulty assumption that all criminals sentenced to death would even possess a burden of knowing what they had done and thus be subject to a life of guilt. This claim is erranous in that it does not take into account the existence of people afflicted with the mental disorder known as psychopathy. Persons afflicted with this disorder are characterized by two things. The first characterization is that they completely lack the human emotion we call 'empathy'. They have absolutely no basis for putting themselves in another's shoes and so everything they do is inherently and necessarily egoistic. This might not be criminal though without the second characterization. They have an uncontrollable urge to either inflict pain on others or to kill. This type of behavior is known as sadism. The fact that they cannot conceivably feel guilt, coupled with the fact that they enjoy other people's pain is the reason why my opponent's reasoning against the death penalty fails in this sense.

A2: The death penalty is killing and is thus no better than the crime it punishes.

The assumption my opponent makes here is that killing of all kind is exactly the same. However there are multiple ways that killing can take place, that no one(or at least the majority of the population) thinks is unjustifiable. Examples of killing that are mostly seen as justified are:

A- Killing in self-defense

B- Killing during wartime

C- Abortion*

D- Killing animals for food

E- Killing plants for food, fuel, clearing land exc.

F- Killing insects simply for being

Killing seems to be universally advocated except when it is just. I defend the death penalty not simply as a retributive punishment as my opponent believes, though it could be argued. I defend it in the name of public safety. A psychopath who cannot feel guilt and has an uncontrollable lust for sadistic acts cannot be cured(currently there is no cure to psychopathy). It can only be eliminated.

Vote Pro for arguments, Con for conduct.


* While abortion is not universally recognized to be justifiable, most would agree that under some conditions, abortion can be the best option.
Andromeda_Z

Con

Argument 1:

In the case of people without psychopathy, my argument stands.

In the case of those with psychopathy, nothing would be a punishment. If they cannot feel guilt, no punishment (including the death penalty) will effectively punish the criminal, so it cannot be considered a justified form of punishment.

Argument 2:

In this case, my opponent makes a fallacious argument. The issue at hand is not what the majority of the population believes is justifiable.

As a matter of public safety, a lifetime of hard work in a prison or other secure facility would be preferable. It is more cost-effective, more productive, and there is the potential for a cure in the future. The criminal would be kept away from the rest of society while still benefiting it.
Debate Round No. 4
13 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Cliff.Stamp 6 years ago
Cliff.Stamp
Some of you guys are brutal, you need to stop hanging out with Sieben.

darkkermit, I was caught in the same scenario.

Still waiting on a few votes here to close this off and update the rankings :

-darrkermit
-merda
-el-badgero
-danielle
-headphonegut
Posted by darkkermit 6 years ago
darkkermit
I don't know what I should do with a double forfeit. Overall, Merda did a better job debating,however double forfeit seems borderline abusive as a tactic: Even though con seemed to benefit the most from it.

After all it just means It just means that one can just forfeit rounds, and then create a good rebuttal that the opponent wouldn't have space to rebute.
Posted by Merda 6 years ago
Merda
I'm embarrased.
Posted by Cliff.Stamp 6 years ago
Cliff.Stamp
Merda, that would be good as this does not reflect your debating skill at all.
Posted by Merda 6 years ago
Merda
I'm going to re-do the same debate as an open challenge in a few days.
Posted by Grape 6 years ago
Grape
So this is sort of goes nowhere...

Pro does not make any arguments, which is an auto-loss. The burden of proof is shared. Nobody gives me anything else to vote on. Con says being killed isn't a punishment because you don't feel bad about it, which I think is kind of ridiculous, and Pro counters by saying that some people don't care either way, which I think is also ridiculous. Con finally says these people couldn't be punished anyway and blankly asserts that her argument still applies. I have nothing to vote on here because Con is only ahead because she has the last word.

Con wins the debate on argument 2. She says that killing is immoral and Pro appeals to popularity to argue that killing isn't always wrong. That could have been argued much more easily. Con calls Pro on the fallacy. I won't vote on Con's other round four arguments, but this stands.

3:4 to Con because there was no debate but I have to pick a winner and the argument carried
Posted by Merda 6 years ago
Merda
Why not?
Posted by Man-is-good 6 years ago
Man-is-good
"Any forfeit will result in loss of the conduct vote."

Well, you forfeited. So you lose the "conduct vote." By the way, please do not discuss about politics with me again, Merda.
Posted by Merda 6 years ago
Merda
So I still have a chance after two straight forfeits.
Posted by CiRrK 6 years ago
CiRrK
Pro, where do you construct your own case? Cause the rules have the BoP as reciprocal
9 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Vote Placed by darkkermit 6 years ago
darkkermit
MerdaAndromeda_ZTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: One forfeit -> Conduct points Two forfeits -> Loss in convincing arguments
Vote Placed by headphonegut 6 years ago
headphonegut
MerdaAndromeda_ZTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: I do not understand why pro has any points at all Con clearly should win pro forfeited and then attempted to unsuccessfully rebut cons arguments
Vote Placed by BangBang-Coconut 6 years ago
BangBang-Coconut
MerdaAndromeda_ZTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro's double forfeits completely makes him lose any chance of getting the Conduct voter, but he only had one round, he didn't have enough time to advocate his stance in any sense of the word. I found his arguments to be overall very poor.
Vote Placed by CiRrK 6 years ago
CiRrK
MerdaAndromeda_ZTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:--Vote Checkmark3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:01 
Reasons for voting decision: Forfeits. And Im not awarding arguments because both sucked.
Vote Placed by Phoenix_Reaper 6 years ago
Phoenix_Reaper
MerdaAndromeda_ZTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:--Vote Checkmark3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:01 
Reasons for voting decision: The dropping of two rounds really hindered the debate and I am unable to give out any more points accordingly.
Vote Placed by quarterexchange 6 years ago
quarterexchange
MerdaAndromeda_ZTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:--Vote Checkmark3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:01 
Reasons for voting decision: I'm genuinly disapointed at this debate since Pro forfeited twice and Con made a really lazy effort."In the case of those with psychopathy, nothing would be a punishment." Then what? We don't even bother to punish murderous psychopaths? Con left that HUGE knot untied. The BOP was shared, the resolution was that the Death Penalty was justified, Con made arguments about how it was ineffective against certain criminals not that it was unjustified, and Pro lost a lot of his chances to build his case
Vote Placed by Grape 6 years ago
Grape
MerdaAndromeda_ZTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:34 
Reasons for voting decision: Commentz...
Vote Placed by Cliff.Stamp 6 years ago
Cliff.Stamp
MerdaAndromeda_ZTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:25 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro at most attempted to negate a position by Con offering little to advance the affirmative, even if the negation was full they would still lose on argument and this isn't the case as it was noted that Pro's objection on psychopathy for example holds to only a small class of criminals. Andromeda was also gracious about the forfeits. 5:2
Vote Placed by KeytarHero 6 years ago
KeytarHero
MerdaAndromeda_ZTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro forfeited two rounds. Also, as Pro only essentially had one round to argue, I couldn't bring myself to vote in their favor for arguments (not to mention the arguments weren't very strong in the first place).