In the United States, private ownership of handguns ought to be banned.
Resolved: In the United States, private ownership of handguns ought to be banned.
I reserve the right to clarify any terms.
First round acceptance.
The only thing shared is our love of fine wine.
Either way, I look forward to an interesting discussion. Thanks for the challenge.
What if I told you that the Gods are dead? Would you have tears well up in your eyes? Would they be of happiness or sadness, for now you are released from their grip on your life?
Now, what if I told you that you and I - Danielle and Lexus, lowliers from an obscure debate website - have killed them? You wouldn't believe me, you'd have to be able to remember what we have done together to kill them, but it was all "a dream".
And what if I told you that the Gods came back, just as strong -- maybe even stronger -- than before. Surely, you'd lose your mind.
You, Danielle, say to me, echoing the Flobots:
"Danielle," I say, "it wasn't a dream - out took we our guns and shot them. Borges described what had happened long before it happened; he was the Nostrodomus of his day." I chuckle. Borges. He reminds me of Bataille. Maybe it was his eyes and their stories. "He describes it perfectly -- he says the following quote:
Do you not remember, Danielle? What we had done to kill the Gods? What we had to do to kill the Gods, even as we were told of what it all meant?"
We have moved on from normal Gods to ones that are secular. Ones that have names and round numbers, specific speech times and lack of unknowing qualities. But the old Gods were never unknown, we knew them full well; and we know our own Gods full well, with prepackaged tubs filled with evidence that brings us no closer to anything.
The current Gods, are they worse than the past ones? Maybe, maybe not. Do they shoot down lightning? They do not. But did the old ones demand servility, waking at 4 AM to talk for days about things that you won't remember, just remember the numbers? They did not. I don't want to know, I can't know anything. "It’s really the object of the laughter, or the object of the tears, that suppresses thought, that takes all knowledge away from us" says one smart guy, but he's too smart for his own good, does he worship his own God? Maybe. Probably. Okay, he has to - otherwise he wouldn't make books.
We ban handguns, not for the sake of the handguns, but for the sake of ourselves. We move from God to God, service to service, and each step takes us further away from living life as it was. We still worship a God, except now we don't speak. Danielle, do you remember when we would walk down the beach together and talk about waking up the next day, looking to our future? I remember. But now we can't do that, because the next day is debate after debate, knowledge creation after knowledge creation, and an ultimate denial of common humanity.
If we kill this God, then we move to another, and I can't have anything else taken from me. First it was security in the world; which I regained at the loss of dreams. Or did I? Or did we, Danielle? Did we become more safe, now that we worship an institution more than we worship our own bodies?
What I mean by all of this is, we have moved from a monolithic idea of the Gods and have moved to another, just as bad, maybe worse, maybe better, but we can't hedge our bets. Remove our access to guns and make sure we can't kill this God, because the next one may remove our own living. And I want to live with you, Danielle. I wanted to dream with you, but what is dreaming without living? I don't know, and I'd rather not know.
Pro begins, "What if I told you that the Gods are dead? Would you have tears well up in your eyes?"
Nay. I would wonder how the gods have died, and if they had been killed. Then I would be grateful that I, Danielle, have a gun to protect myself from certain kinds of death - perhaps the kind of death that was responsible for the death of the gods.
Indeed, Pro goes on to confirm (or allege) that the god's have been killed by himself and supposedly yours truly.
So I, Danielle, say to Pro:
Remember, remember, that day with whomever
Their gunpowder, treason and plot
We survived that day and made it away
How did that go? I know you forgot
Someone drew their gun, you started to run
But I drew mine even faster
So I shot them to pieces
Til they were wasted like feces
And their plan failed into disaster
In the "Debate" portion of this debate, Pro goes into a schizophrenic albeit seemingly nihilist existential recollection about our supposed interaction on the beach. I'd like to remind Pro that when he saw only one set of footprints there in the sand, it was then that I carried him.
Pro says we should ban handguns "for the sake of ourselves." He suggests they do not make us any more safe. However criminals have admitted that they would not go after someone who is armed vs. someone who is unarmed for obvious reasons. As for the "safety" of potential self-harm, one's life is their property just as their guns are their property, and people are free to put themselves at risk if they so choose.
Studies show that (the attempt at) eliminating guns does not reduce gun violence - assuming that's even possible.
But of course criminals (or those interested in killing to answer life's existential questions about our conscience experience, death or the meaning of existence -- someone like Pro for example) can continue to attain guns illegally or through black markets, even if the USFG attempted to ban guns.
So I say to Pro:
Stop trying to take away my freedom
Don't want your rights? Then you concede 'em
If my gun is not used for aggression
Then I have a right to its possession
There is no need for your alarm
If I don't use my gun for harm
And if I do, go after me
And not every person's liberty
Our time together is running out -- when the timer on this debate ends, we no longer have power over what will happen next, only the people voting do. While the Gods we subscribe to in the current day are bad, we simply don't know what Gods will come next to rule over us -- will they be like the old ones, and require paying tithes in their name, or will they be the same as todays' with an erasure of our dreams and our memories (we can already see their erasing of memories by you forgetting the day I proposed to you on the beach).
The affirmative is an act of willful resistance against any change to the system of debate -- I show you that we have lost a lot of things from the death of the original Gods and the subscription to the new Gods, as a cautionary tale against trying to make any new ones. I describe the situation extremely clearly in the affirmative speech by talking to you about how I had regained my security at the loss of what had made me fundamentally human -- and that is the love that we had shared together before the days of the new God.
First, we lost security with the ultimate Gods that had ruled over us for millenia; we had no power over our own lives, and often times people that spoke against the Gods were smitten with lightning. However, we gained (or did we?) our security back, but at the price of our common humanity and our love for each other -- we lost our remembrance and our hope, because all that we do is subscribe to a belief that the Debate that we are having somehow has meaning.
Danielle, you may not believe me when I say this, but the negative speech is the ultimate act of servitude to the new Gods - your appeal to the resolution as the ultimate decider of what we are ignores the fact that we are only human insofar as we are loving. Your appeal to the out-of-round implications of this Debate make this Debate worthless - there is nothing beyond the room that we are communicating within that is changed. We can only get rid of guns within this room, and the reason that we ought to do so is to prevent the death of the new Gods, to preserve at the very least our biological life.
I will not respond to the individual studies; they may be true, I don't know, I don't want to give credence to any type of God, even if it is the one that I am saving. I don't have any faith that the negative intrinsically matters, whereas I am only believing that I am trying to save us both.
Danielle, remember that I am trying to save you. If you keep your guns inside this room, then when the Gods do something you don't like (seeing the carnations, their movements) you will shoot them, just as we had done so together before. We must remove the guns to save the Gods, because whether they are presently good or bad doesn't matter, the future holds no assurances of being good.
This is a love story that starts with me holding your hand on the beach, saying I love you, and you forgetting it the next day. I remember us going to the diner together, you ordering just a small shake, and me mozarella sticks -- that pretty much sums up what life was like before we killed the Gods and they new ones made you forget. Do you remember the night that we had become engaged, and the springs on the bed that had been broken from so much use? I do, but only because you were there -- it was special, Danielle.
Disorganization, forging nations of papers predestinating superhero capers
Save yourself and put away your guns, and put together our hearts.
At how my opponent keeps talking 'bout gods
What does this have to do with guns being outlawed?
If Pro makes 1 decent point I might stop to applaud
This country values freedom and our symbol's an eagle
Nobody is equal so our guns should stay legal
It's our right to fight back if we have to bear arms
But Pro wants to leave us easy to harm
Of course the 2nd amendment should be protected
Cuz people with guns are feared and respected
Anyone who wants a gun will find a way to get it
Force them to the black market and you'll one day regret it
If hand guns are banned, their sale won't be regulated
Any crazy who wants one can buy it and take it
Legalization requires some background checks
Criminalization inspires harmful effects
My gun is my property -
I'm sorry Pro doesn't understand
But enough of this guy's snobbery
He'll have to pry it from my hand
I have two poems. I will let you unpack the meaning in each of them, but please, allow yourself to see a meaning deeper than surface.
Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
Surely some revelation is at hand;
Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
The darkness drops again; but now I know
That twenty centuries of stony sleep
Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?
Not a star will remain in the night.
The night itself will not remain.
I will die and with me the sum
Of the intolerable universe.
I’ll erase the pyramids, the coins,
The continents and all the faces.
I’ll erase the accumulated past.
I’ll make dust of history, dust of dust.
Now I gaze at the last sunset.
I am listening to the last bird.
I bequeath nothingness to no-one.
“If someone has a gun and is trying to kill you, it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun.”
-- Dalai Lama XIV
Please extend my arguments.
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