The Instigator
ownface5000
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
TheRaven
Pro (for)
Winning
10 Points

Felons Ought to Retain the Right to Vote in a Democratic Society

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
TheRaven
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/1/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,379 times Debate No: 6101
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (6)
Votes (2)

 

ownface5000

Con

I negate the resolution: Felons Ought to Retain the right to vote.

My value for determining this is social contract.

My criterion for this is the ability of the social contract to uphold societal welfare.

Contention 1: By breaking the social contract, citizens have forfeighted their right to vote. By granting any felon the right to vote would contradict the purpose of the social contract.
TheRaven

Pro

I affirm: Felons ought to retain the right to vote in a democratic society.

Definitions:

Democratic society: society where the government is decided by the people, either directly or through representatives
Felon: one who has committed a felony
Retain: to keep in use.

Observations:

1) The resolution states felon. All ex-felons are essentially felons as they have been convicted of a felony and therefore the negative must prove that all felons should lose the right to vote.

2) The definition of "felon" states one who "has" committed a felony. This indicates past events and thus it is the burden of the affirmative to prove that felons in society should retain the right to vote.

My value for this debate is A Democratic Society, which is the inherent value indicated by the resolution. The resolution specifically states a democratic society, thus is should be the highest value. The value of a democratic society is upheld by the value criterion of protection of rights Since in a democratic society the government exists solely for the people, then therefore it is only logical that a democratic society's government ought to protect its citizens' rights.

Contention 1) Right of self-determination. This is the right to shape the conditions of one's own existence and pursue one's own happiness. Underneath the classic inalienable rights, a democratic government ought to ensure people have this right, otherwise the government would not be just. Without the right to vote one has no say in government and control of the state that they are forced to live under and abide by the laws of. Therefore, they cannot possibly control their own life when they have no say in the government that controls their life. Additionally, granting felons the right to vote infringes neither on anyone's right to vote or right of self-determination.

Contention2) The negative is punishing the person's crime already through incarceration, yet at the same time taking away their right to vote. In terms of felon disenfranchisement, the government is punishing twice; once in jail, and once out of jail. This is known as double jeopardy, or punishing a crime twice. The 5th Amendment states "nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb." Also, we do not give people a lifelong ban on marriage or freedom of speech, so why would we give them a lifelong ban on voting? It is excessive punishment to incarcerate someone and at the same time take away all their political influence and right of self-determination.

((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((REFUTE)))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

--Value: Social Contract-

This is not specifically stated by the resolution, however mine is and thus should be looked at above his.

---VC- Societal Welfare

Link this back to my VC. It is not possible to uphold societal welfare unless you protect of the citizens' rights and thus if you are even to look at his VC you must look at my VC first.
Additionally he provides no link between this and his Value and C1.

--Contention 1: "By breaking the social contract, citizens have forfeited their right to vote. By granting any felon the right to vote would contradict the purpose of the social contract."

However,
a) When a felon commits a crime, yes they break the social contract, which is why they are incarcerated. However as I show in my second contention it is unjust to punish them additionally by taking their right to vote away.

b) Also, it is feudal to continually deny felons a place in the social contract. Once a felon exits prison, although still a felon they should then re-enter the social contract. Should we not allow them a chance to become one of society once more?
Debate Round No. 1
ownface5000

Con

First off, i would like to point out that my competitor used the U.S. as an example, and this resolution is not specific to any one democracy, nor is the ban of double jeopardy an inherent trait of democracy.

I also would like to add that by losing the right to vote while in prison, felons are not "retaining" that right, because it has been lost for a period of time, therefore by arguing that felons should only have the right to vote after their process in the penitentiary system is finished, my competitor is validiting my side of the argument.
TheRaven

Pro

I'd like to start out by making the following observations.
1) My opponent has dropped his ENTIRE case. (Value, VC, and contention.)

2) My opponent has dropped nearly all of my case. (Observations, Value, VC, and first contention.)

Moving on to my opponents rebuttal.

----"First off, i would like to point out that my competitor used the U.S. as an example, and this resolution is not specific to any one democracy, nor is the ban of double jeopardy an inherent trait of democracy."

This relates back to my 2nd contention. However, my opponent is misunderstanding my point. I'm stating that it is EXCESSIVE PUNISHMENT to take away felons' right to vote. The idea of the double standard was merely to enforce the idea that it is punishing felons excessively by incarcerating them while taking away their right to vote, which, as I said, destroys their right of self-determination.

---"therefore by arguing that felons should only have the right to vote after their process in the penitentiary system is finished, my competitor is validating my side of the argument."

I have several responses to this:
a) Link this back to my second observation, which my opponent completely ignored. It directly refutes what he said.

b) I never said felons should lose the right to vote while incarcerated, I only said it was the burden of the affirmative to prove felons in society should be able to vote. Thus my opponent's logic is flawed as this alleged "argument" that I make doesn't exist.

c) Even if you do not buy into those two arguments, my opponent is wrong in saying this. Simply link everything he is saying back to both my contentions, which he dropped. He is 1) destroying the right of self-determination and 2) giving excessive punishment.
Debate Round No. 2
ownface5000

Con

ownface5000 forfeited this round.
TheRaven

Pro

Extend all my arguments and refutations.
Debate Round No. 3
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by LightC 8 years ago
LightC
Winner = TheRaven

RFD: I could not vote off the NC what-so-ever. Needed to look to Aff's standard and contentions.
Posted by bgruber93 8 years ago
bgruber93
Neg You got Creamed great aff case
Posted by TheRaven 8 years ago
TheRaven
excuse me, but I'm going to have to ask you not to offer points for this debate while its ongoing.
Posted by MartiCrazi 8 years ago
MartiCrazi
the neg hasn't lost yet...
against his 1st contention, the bit about 'forced to live here and follow its rules':

Felons living in a society are under tacit consent to abide by society's rules.

Before felons commit crimes or go to jail they do have the right to vote. They have the ability to have a say in how the society they live in operates. At any point they can leave that society and surrender the benefits of living in that society. By staying in that society and reaping the benefits of living in that society, they wholly agree to abide by the rules of that society. This is called tacit consent. To that end, if a society has a as a rule that felons can not vote, then any felon living in that society tacitly consented to that rule, and it would not be unjust to subject them to that rule. Here you are arguing a consent standard, and arguing that because we are looking at democracies, felons must have consented to the rule.
Posted by nsoccer23 8 years ago
nsoccer23
he just threw it down.
Posted by Igor 8 years ago
Igor
neg, don't even bother posting, he just destroyed you
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Luddite40 8 years ago
Luddite40
ownface5000TheRavenTied
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Vote Placed by TheRaven 8 years ago
TheRaven
ownface5000TheRavenTied
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Total points awarded:07