The Instigator
funwiththoughts
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
lannan13
Pro (for)
Winning
3 Points

In 12 Angry Men the boy is guilty

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
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 1 vote the winner is...
lannan13
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/9/2014 Category: Entertainment
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 4,353 times Debate No: 60034
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (20)
Votes (1)

 

funwiththoughts

Con

This debate concerns the guilt of the boy on trial in the play/movie 12 Angry Men. My opponent will argue that the evidence given within the play/movie is sufficient to prove his guilt, while I will argue against that notion. My opponent will present his opening argument in Round 1.
lannan13

Pro

I'd like to thank my opponent for this debate.

First I'd like to bring to the table that the boy screamed at his father, "I'm going to kill you." Now how many of us out there yell something like that at our parents. We might say I hate you or something like that, but the phrase I'm going to kill you then the boy's father winds up dead in the same night. I doubt that that is a coincidence.

Another interesting coincidence is that the murder weapon was the same that the boy had. This murder weapon was a switch blade which by itself is illegal to possess not to mention the fact that the boy claim that he had lost it within a few hours of the death of his father and the murder weapon was the same that the boy had.

The Boy also went to a movie, but doesn't remember the details. Say you go and see Aladdin. You might not remember all the plot details, but you will remember that Robin Williams is the Genie and that Aladdin wanted to get Princess Jasmine and eventually got her love in the end and also freed the Genie. See you might not remember the entire movie, but the fact that he doesn't remember what movie he went to is absurd and an interesting excuse.

Then you have to the elderly folks. The women who saw the Kid run out of the house in a flash. Now if the kid didn't kill his father then why didn't he stay in the house and call 911 or try to help his father. The old man also saw the boy.

If the boy didn't kill his father then another person had done it for reasons completely unknown and this other person had left no evidence of the murder.

In order for my opponent to prove that the person is innocent he my prove that all of these things are incorrect.
Debate Round No. 1
funwiththoughts

Con

First of all I would like to clarify that I do not intend to nor did I claim I would prove the boy is innocent. I only intend to create a reasonable doubt, as I do not believe there is any proof either way.

"First I'd like to bring to the table that the boy screamed at his father, "I'm going to kill you." Now how many of us out there yell something like that at our parents. We might say I hate you or something like that, but the phrase I'm going to kill you then the boy's father winds up dead in the same night. I doubt that that is a coincidence."

We don't know this. The old man who lived in the apartment underneath claimed to hear this, but it's unlikely he could have heard it given that an el train was going by the window as the boy allegedly said it. Even if we assume the boy screamed loudly enough to be heard over the noise, it's unlikely that the old man would have been able to identify the voice and make out the exact words.

"Another interesting coincidence is that the murder weapon was the same that the boy had. This murder weapon was a switch blade which by itself is illegal to possess not to mention the fact that the boy claim that he had lost it within a few hours of the death of his father and the murder weapon was the same that the boy had."

While true, this is circumstancial. The weapon was not unique, and there were no fingerprints on it. One of the jurors owned an identical knife to the murder weapon, and got it from the same general area that the boy lived in.

"The Boy also went to a movie, but doesn't remember the details. Say you go and see Aladdin. You might not remember all the plot details, but you will remember that Robin Williams is the Genie and that Aladdin wanted to get Princess Jasmine and eventually got her love in the end and also freed the Genie. See you might not remember the entire movie, but the fact that he doesn't remember what movie he went to is absurd and an interesting excuse."

As far as we're aware, the boy was not asked about the plot. All we know is that he didn't remember the name of the movie or the stars who appeared in it. If the boy was not the type to stick around for ending credits he may well not have known who appeared. That still leaves the issue of the title. I think this can probably be chalked up to nervousness inhibiting his ability to think-I know that I have had experiences in which I get too nervous to speak under circumstances much less stressful than being interrogated by the police while my father is lying dead on the floor in front of me.

"Then you have to the elderly folks. The women who saw the Kid run out of the house in a flash. Now if the kid didn't kill his father then why didn't he stay in the house and call 911 or try to help his father. The old man also saw the boy."

My opponent seems to be conflating two pieces of testimony. There was a woman who claimed to see the kid stab his father, and an old man who claimed to see the boy run out of the house. The woman's eyesight is questionable since at least half of the jury noted that she had marks on her nose that could only be made by eyeglasses. Since she just woke up as the murder occurred, she wouldn't have had glasses on at the time. This means she would have to identify a man 50 feet away in the dark without glasses. It's not impossible, but unlikely. Even without that, she was the only eyewitness. One person can lie.

"If the boy didn't kill his father then another person had done it for reasons completely unknown and this other person had left no evidence of the murder."

The only actual physical evidence of who committed the crime was the knife found in the father's chest, which might have belonged to the boy, but might not. There were also two witness accounts, but both are somewhat shaky. It is possible that the boy did kill the father, but the evidence is not sufficient to declare him guilty.
lannan13

Pro

The old man heard the words. It's as simple as that. With the fact added into the this old man had heard it over the roaring el train means that the boy's rage and anger was that strong and showed that his ability to do such an act. The old man was also under oath when he gave his claim and said that he had heard the boy say such a thing through the el train. Plus to add that he was beaten and abbused by his father it seems fitting that the boy had a moment of rage and decided to stand up for himself and strike his father back.

That jurror did something illegal by bringing in that switch blade. The fact remains is that this boy had the knife, lost the knife and then the murder weapon was that same knife. Even if it was easy to obtain, it still doesn't show the shere coincedence that the murder weapons were the same and the boy had just 'lost' his. How often do you lose a weapon? If you have a weapon then you keep a safe guard of it as it is either for protection or used as a threat.

Though when something major happens to you in your life you are going to remember a lot of it. Let's say he didn't recognize the actors, but say he went to watch Magic Mike. How are you going to forget something like that when there are male strippers in the movie or like in Pulp Fiction where the phase, "English motherf-er, do you speak it?" line is spoken. It's a classical line that will help to remember the movie. It's obvious that the kid didn't see the movie and was elsewhere. This is where we get PDST. You remember these events for the rest of your life.

Though lets say she only saw a blurry. She still saw someone in that blurry that was the size of that kid killing his father. Then kid than ran out of the house and was seen by the old man. (which my opponent drops) Still, if you find a family member injured from a knife wound then you are to call for help or do what ever you can to help them.

The fact is that if the boy didn't kill his father someone else did. The father is dead with a knife in his father's chest that is much like the one the kid had and admitted to having. There are so many coincidences here. The boy so happend to lose this knife just hours after his father was murdered. There are several witnesses that saw the kid do it. When questioned about the movie he didn't remember the title, stars, or anything about the movie at all. The child was arguing with his father and then yelled I'm going to kill you. Plus the man down the hall saw the kid leaving the crime scene. The actual murder used the same weapon that the kid had.
Debate Round No. 2
funwiththoughts

Con

"The old man heard the words. It's as simple as that. With the fact added into the this old man had heard it over the roaring el train means that the boy's rage and anger was that strong and showed that his ability to do such an act."

It could mean that. It could also mean that the old man was not telling the truth. An oncoming train makes a lot of noise. Even if the old man could tell someone was saying something, there's no way he could have made out a full sentence and accurately identified the voice from another apartment.

"The old man was also under oath when he gave his claim and said that he had heard the boy say such a thing through the el train."

If the man had convinced himself enough to kill the boy over it, or was immoral enough to lie in order to put a kid in the electric chair, there's no reason for him not to say it under oath.

"Plus to add that he was beaten and abbused [sic] by his father it seems fitting that the boy had a moment of rage and decided to stand up for himself and strike his father back."

That's true, but it is again circumstancial and doesn't prove anything.

"That jurror [sic] did something illegal by bringing in that switch blade."

Yes he did, as he states himself. The fact remains that it shows the weapon was not unique, which invalidates the only physical evidence placing the boy at the murder scene.

"The fact remains is that this boy had the knife, lost the knife and then the murder weapon was that same knife. Even if it was easy to obtain, it still doesn't show the shere coincedence that the murder weapons were the same and the boy had just 'lost' his. How often do you lose a weapon? If you have a weapon then you keep a safe guard of it as it is either for protection or used as a threat."

He may not have bought it for himself. He claimed to buy it for a friend whose knife he had broken dropping it on the pavement.

"Though when something major happens to you in your life you are going to remember a lot of it. Let's say he didn't recognize the actors, but say he went to watch Magic Mike. How are you going to forget something like that when there are male strippers in the movie or like in Pulp Fiction where the phase [sic], "English motherf-er, do you speak it?" line is spoken. It's a classical [sic] line that will help to remember the movie. It's obvious that the kid didn't see the movie and was elsewhere. This is where we get PDST. [sic] You remember these events for the rest of your life."

We don't know what movie he watched. We know that he was asked the title and the stars (NOT anything about the plot or the lines), but couldn't answer. My opponent admits that it's possible the boy didn't recognize the actors, and it would have been difficult to think of the title when he was probably in such a shock after finding out the police suspected him of killing his father. THAT is the kind of thing you remember for the rest of your life.

"Though lets say she only saw a blurry [sic]. She still saw someone in that blurry [sic] that was the size of that kid killing his father."

Size alone is not a good way to identify a person, especially from 50 feet away in the dark.

"Then [sic] kid than [sic] ran out of the house and was seen by the old man. (which my opponent drops)"

The reason I seemed to drop this was because I already showed that the old man's testimony was shaky, as he couldn't have made out the words and voice with the el going by.

"Still, if you find a family member injured from a knife wound then you are to call for help or do what ever you can to help them."

DEAD. The father was DEAD from a knife wound. Not much anyone could have done to help. Besides, what makes you think the kid cared about his father? You said yourself that his father beaten and abused him, for at least 13 years. Even if he didn't kill the father that doesn't mean he cared about him.

"The fact is that if the boy didn't kill his father someone else did. The father is dead with a knife in his father's chest that is much like the one the kid had and admitted to having. There are so many coincidences here. The boy so happend to lose this knife just hours after his father was murdered."

This is really just one coincidence.

"There are several witnesses that saw the kid do it."

My opponent just pulls this out of thin air. It is explicitly stated that two witnesses, one of whom did NOT see the crime being committed, were the entire case for the prosecution. Of the 11 other men in the room when this is said, at least 2 of whom are obsessed with proving the boy's guilt almost to the point of insanity, noone objects to this. If there were other eyewitnesses, they would have been mentioned at some point, but we only know of the one.

"When questioned about the movie he didn't remember the title, stars, or anything about the movie at all."

He may not have remembered the title or stars. He may have remembered them but been too nervous to speak. Even if he didn't remember the title or stars, there's never any indication that he didn't remember the plot.

"The child was arguing with his father and then yelled I'm going to kill you."

According to shaky witness testimony.

"Plus the man down the hall saw the kid leaving the crime scene."

Again, according to shaky witness testimony.

"The actual murder used the same weapon that the kid had."

Yes, but the weapon was not unique and didn't have any fingerprints on it.

I'd also like to point out one more detail, which is the nature of the wound. The murderer had stabbed the father at a downward angle, which would require an overhand stab, but switchblade knives are designed to be used underhanded. The boy was by all accounts very handy with a switch knife and must certainly have known this. It's unlikely that he would have made the kind of wound that the murderer did.

In conclusion, I have shown that the witness testimony is shaky at best, and the physical evidence does not prove that he was even there when the murder occurred, let alone that he committed it. As such, there is no evidence sufficient to prove that the boy was guilty.
lannan13

Pro

I'd like to thank my opponent for this lightning quick debate today.

The fact is that those are the words he made out and the old man reported a body hitting the floor. These are very depict able. You can shout over the train. It's possible. Then he heard the body hit the floor violently. The fact is it is possible to hear over the train. This man heard the boy yell those things. There are several videos today that show people shouting over trains, so my point here stands. Why would someone do such a thing. He heard the boy and that was that. My opponent dropps the self defense part which means that there is a viable possibility that the boy did kill his father due to the fit of rage.

He may have bought it for his friend, but the fact still remains that the boy had the knife and then lost it after the murder took place. The fact that he had it and then lost it is still a huge issue here. You just don't lose a switch blade like the boy claims he did. You just don't 'lose' a dangerous weapon like that. I personally have a knife. I keep it locked away when I'm at home out of arms reach and when I carry it it is in a case that is attached to my belt so I don't lose it. The fact that he lost this weapon is inexcusable.


I said it's possible since we don't know his movie life. For example the average Joe in the US know who Steven Segal, Adam Sandler, and Bruce Willis are. We can recognize them on command due to their popularity. The movie that the kid saw might not have been a popular one or one with famous stars in it. It doesn't explain him not remembering part of the movie or even the title. Most people don't know the name Vamprye Kisses, but they do know about the "You don't say," meme. That's were that came from. There are memorable parts in every movie that one can remember and telling that part will find the title. So that still doesn't explain the fact that he doesn't remember anything about the movie. Plus my opponent dropped the PDST portion and that helps show that he should have picture perfect memory of the account.

Still she saw someone that was the size of the boy that killed the father. Though lets say he didn't hear correctly (I'm not dropping my point thus is for the sake of this scenario) the old man still saw the boy run away from the crime scene with his own two eyes. This point being dropped shows that the boy did something and when you add in the fact that the boy didn't call 911 or get help that he had to have done it. Though the fact that he hated his father he still would have felt morally responsible to at least call 911. If he didn't he still wouldn't have ran from the crime scene.

My opponent concedes that if the boy didn't kill his father than someone else did for reasons unknown with a switchblade identical to that of the one that the kid had. I did not pull the two witnesses out of the air. There was the old man who heard the boy tell his father that he was going to kill him, heard the body hit the floor, and saw the boy run from the crime scene. There was also the old lady who saw the boy kill his father. These were not pulled out of thin air. The fact that the weapon did not have any finger prints on it can simply mean that the boy simply cleaned the finger prints off of the knife and it's possible for one to remove their own finger prints. (http://www.scientificamerican.com...) I already refuted the witnesses. My opponent bring up the boys skills in his switch blade fighting, but my opponent does not bring into account of how someone doesn't think clearly when they are angry. (http://hbr.org...) You don't think clearly or rationally meaning that it is possible for the boy to not be thinking clearly and he went for the overhand murder.

In conclusion, I have shown that the boy is guilty beyond doubt. The boy lost his switch blade, can't even remember anything about his movie, and had several witnesses that reported the boy doing the crime. We also see that with there being way to many coincidences in order for this boy to be innocent. I have effectively refuted my opponent and I have shown that the boy had a motive and that he did it.

Thank you and please vote Pro!
Debate Round No. 3
20 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by funwiththoughts 2 years ago
funwiththoughts
Speculation is not enough to execute someone over.
Posted by lannan13 2 years ago
lannan13
I said it was a speculation. There are multiple possiblilties as we do not know everything that was said at that court case. Just like the infinite monkey theory. There are thousands of prossibilities.
Posted by funwiththoughts 2 years ago
funwiththoughts
You can't PROVE he would have got PTSD. You are only speculating. Like I said he may not have even cared that the father was killed. You yourself said that the father was abusive enough that the boy would have had reason to kill him. I see no reason to eliminate EVERY SINGLE OUTCOME that does not involve the boy getting PTSD.
Posted by lannan13 2 years ago
lannan13
The movie occured before the murder. If the boy was really innocent he would have been greif stricken with PDST. The murder occured after the movie. In PDST you remember the actions leading up to and the event. Thus the movie would have been included.
Posted by funwiththoughts 2 years ago
funwiththoughts
*facepalm*

The murder is not a part of the f***ing movie! The two events have no relation, except for chronology! Why the h**l would remembering one lead to remembering the other?
Posted by lannan13 2 years ago
lannan13
*facepalm*

I claimed this and you never refuted this.

He got PDST from the murder. He will remember the movie in part of his PDST.
Posted by funwiththoughts 2 years ago
funwiththoughts
I never claimed he was acting in self-defense, so I couldn't have dropped it.

I don't even need to address the idea that he DEFINITELY got PTSD from watching the movie, I think everyone can see how ridiculous that is.
Posted by lannan13 2 years ago
lannan13
Self-Defense= Killed his father in order to protect himself.

PTSD= Had PTSD from event, will remember movie because of it.
Posted by funwiththoughts 2 years ago
funwiththoughts
I have no idea what "self-defense" part I dropped. I have no idea what the "dropped PTSD" is, unless you mean to say that the movie would have given him PTSD to prevent him from forgetting, which is ridiculous.
Posted by lannan13 2 years ago
lannan13
Sorry, for the late start. I was bussy this past weekend.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by 9spaceking 2 years ago
9spaceking
funwiththoughtslannan13Tied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 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:03 
Reasons for voting decision: lannan showed that things were going way too coincidental and that there was too much evidence for the boy's murder, while con only showed a bit of doubt in lan's evidence, the possibilities and the impossibilities overwhelm the outcome of the boy NOT being guilty.