The Instigator
The_Silent_Consensus
Pro (for)
Winning
24 Points
The Contender
Los_Altos_JW
Con (against)
Losing
6 Points

Majority rule and utilitarianism have their limits

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/15/2007 Category: Politics
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,174 times Debate No: 505
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (10)

 

The_Silent_Consensus

Pro

I cannot tell you how many times I have heard someone say that a law is legitimate because we live in a democracy and it has been voted in. Well I'm sorry, we don't live in a pure democracy where tyranny of the majority rules. We live in a constitutional democracy, where majority is accommodated, while the individuals' rights are protected. In other words, government's job is not just to accommodate the majority, but protect the minority.

Our inalienable rights, as I said, cannot be transferred nor surrendered. That includes with a majority vote. Doesn't matter how popular something is, it can still violate people's rights, and when it does, it should be considered null and void.

To go further, we can now address the limitations of utilitarianism. Utilitarianism means greatest good for the greatest number. Sounds good, and generally it is, but it has its limits. Under utilitarianism, if 2% of the people being enslaved benefits the other 98%, that's a greater good for a greater number of people, so it would be okay. Utilitarianism would also excuse giving someone a punishment greater than what they deserved in the name of protecting society. Utilitarianism often times gets cited as a justification for rent controls, even though they really don't help anyone that's a different debate, for taking one person's property and giving it to another in the name of economic development, and for taxes on individual items, such as cigarettes, gasoline, cars, and so on. Infringing a bit on certain people while having a greater outcome for the public at large is the thought and that's when it goes too far. We should do what's best for the greatest number, but not at the expense of anyone's rights.

Now, for a quick thought on individual item taxes. If taxes on individual items are used to mitigate negative harm to others, that's fine. For example, using the gasoline tax to build more roads, which reduces the amount of time a car is on the road, and to alternative fuel research. In that case, the individuals creating the problem are paying to fix it. But it should never be the job of one group of individuals to fix a societal problem they didn't create.
Los_Altos_JW

Con

Los_Altos_JW forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 1
The_Silent_Consensus

Pro

For the ease of readers I'm going to skip this and will skip every round unless I have something to respond to
Los_Altos_JW

Con

Los_Altos_JW forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
The_Silent_Consensus

Pro

The_Silent_Consensus forfeited this round.
Los_Altos_JW

Con

Los_Altos_JW forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by policydebategod 9 years ago
policydebategod
we need to all complain about the amount of voter bias and how unfair the voting here is.
Posted by longjonsilver 9 years ago
longjonsilver
Why does the guy who didn't say ANYTHING have 2 votes, putting him in the lead????????????? (My vote will tie the round.)

Some times I wonder about the voters on this website. People's win record is starting to look less and less impressive.
10 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by The_Silent_Consensus 9 years ago
The_Silent_Consensus
The_Silent_ConsensusLos_Altos_JWTied
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Vote Placed by anwermate 9 years ago
anwermate
The_Silent_ConsensusLos_Altos_JWTied
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Vote Placed by Raisor 9 years ago
Raisor
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Vote Placed by beem0r 9 years ago
beem0r
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Vote Placed by jwebb893 9 years ago
jwebb893
The_Silent_ConsensusLos_Altos_JWTied
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Vote Placed by Chob 9 years ago
Chob
The_Silent_ConsensusLos_Altos_JWTied
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Vote Placed by longjonsilver 9 years ago
longjonsilver
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Vote Placed by joesabet2001 9 years ago
joesabet2001
The_Silent_ConsensusLos_Altos_JWTied
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Vote Placed by oboeman 9 years ago
oboeman
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Vote Placed by NSG 9 years ago
NSG
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