The Instigator
Con (against)
6 Points
The Contender
Pro (for)
40 Points

Modified LD - Resolved:Public health concerns justify compulsory immunization.

Do you like this debate?NoYes+5
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 8 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/21/2009 Category: Science
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 14,767 times Debate No: 9771
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (61)
Votes (8)




You may provide your own definitions in Round 2.

Please skip Round 1 by placing a single alphanumeric.
Round 2 = Affirmative/Negative Constructive.
Round 3 = Affirmative / Negative Rebuttals
Round 4 = Crystalization

Good luck and thank you for the challenge.


I affirm, Resolved: Public health concerns justify compulsory immunization.


The only particularly hazy term of the round is "justify," which I will define per Aristotle's definition of "justice," which is giving each his or her due. Therefore, the verb "justify" will revolve primarily around what is entitled to human beings or citizens of a given society.


V: Maximization of Natural Rights. Per the U.N. Declaration of Human Rights, natural rights generally consist of the rights to life, liberty, property, and safety of person. Hence, the affirmative will attempt to prove that compulsory immunization is necessary to maximize these rights, which will adequately justify its usage, as all human beings are due natural rights.

C: Achieving Herd Immunity. Herd immunity, as will be discussed at length in my second contention, is the epidemiological principle that the more people we immunize against disease, the better protected an entire society is. Because of prohibitive medical conditions and the occasional failed vaccination attempt, 100% immunity within a population cannot be achieved. However, by achieving herd immunity (up to 95% immunized), we not only protect individual citizens against epidemics, but the world community.

1. The principle of liberty, which is a requirement of all just states, requires compulsory immunization.

A. The state of liberty does not entail absolute individual freedom. In general, all human beings are entitled to a certain set of natural rights. However, those rights are finite and governed by the principle of liberty, as discussed by John Stuart Mill. He elaborates:

"Everything that makes life worth living for anyone depends on restraints being put on the actions of other people...
So this is the appropriate region of human liberty…liberty of conscience in the broadest sense…Liberty of tastes and pursuits, of shaping our life to suit our own character, of doing what we like…all this without hindrance from our fellow-creatures, so long as what we do doesn't harm them even though they may think our conduct foolish, perverse, or wrong."

To summarize, liberty gives a human being the right to do just about anything he or she feels will increase his or her quality of life, excepting those actions which threaten the rights and safety of other human beings. This is the guiding principle behind compulsory immunizations, as well as a wide variety of other public concern legislation. Since those that I come into contact with (which has vastly increased in the contemporary world) are immediately put into danger if I am a carrier of disease, as well as the exponential number of people exposed after initial contact, I am violating the principle of liberty. It is not just to put fellow citizens in harms way to protect my own sentimentalities.

B. Objections other than medical violate the principle of liberty. As stated prior, the balancing point between individual freedom and public governance is the harm to others' rights or person. If we use this weighing mechanism to examine the current objections to vaccinations, those being conscientious, medical, & religious, the only one to pass the acid test would be medical. Obviously, if the state mandates a vaccination that is likely, per expert medical diagnosis, to harm or kill an individual, the exemption is justified as it meets the standards of liberty. However, if there are no sound medical objections to contend with, then the individual's rights to autonomy, including parental autonomy, may and should be subjugated for the protection of the right to life of others.

C. Violations of the principle of liberty with regards to immunization lead to unnecessary loss of human life. Alice Park details an outbreak of polio in Nigeria that occurred in 2001. The disastrous effects of the outbreak were caused directly by the violation of this principle of liberty and entirely preventable. She states:

"That's what happened in the current measles outbreaks in the western U.S., and that's what happened in Nigeria in 2001, when religious and political leaders convinced parents that polio vaccines were dangerous and their kids should not receive them. Over the next six years, not only did Nigerian infection rates increase 30-fold, but the disease also broke free and ranged out to 10 other countries, many of which had previously been polio-free."

The ramifications of respecting the falsely bestowed right of absolute personal autonomy are far too costly to the human race.

2. Immunizations are both medically sound and empirically beneficial to human survival of epidemics and pandemics.

A. Vaccinations have been proven medically safe for general populations. Though little evidence is needed to prove this claim, vaccinations have been successfully used in myriad human populations to prevent and even eradicate diseases since the 17th Century. Alice Park states:

"In the past century, vaccines against diphtheria, polio, pertussis, measles, mumps and rubella, not to mention the more recent additions of hepatitis B and chicken pox, have wired humans with powerful immune sentries to ward off uninvited invasions. And thanks to state laws requiring vaccinations for youngsters enrolling in kindergarten, the U.S. currently enjoys the highest immunization rate ever; 77% of children embarking on the first day of school are completely up to date on their recommended doses and most of the remaining children are missing just a few shots."

Considering that a little over � of U.S. schoolchildren alone are multi-vaccinated upon entering schools, the soundness of the vaccine is evident. If it were, droves of U.S. students would be negatively affected by these vaccines, as well as people in every other nation that employs vaccines in any part of its operations. However, a broader perspective is delivered by Dr. Michael Pazos:

"To be clear, there is no such thing as a perfectly safe vaccine. Like any other medical treatment, there are side effects and risks involved. In rare cases, live attenuated vaccines could induce the illness they protect against, which could even be spread to those who are not vaccinated. Most of the known risks are rare and relatively minor—most people are familiar with the redness and swelling following a flu shot—and the benefits of vaccination far outweigh them."

B. Vaccines' benefits to both the individual and society clearly outweigh any harms, real or perceived. As Dr. Pazos stated previously, the benefits of vaccination far outweigh the minor risks. Besides the individual protection that vaccines provide, the real impact of vaccines was discussed previously by Alice Parks and her analysis of the Nigeria polio outbreak. Dr. Pazos continues, discussing the concept of herd immunity:

"...vaccines are broadly administered in order to establish what is referred to as "herd immunity." Most infectious diseases require a ready supply of healthy hosts in order to continue spreading. So, if enough people get vaccinated, entire illnesses can go from serious public health threats to occasional isolated incidents. This way the young, the elderly, the sick, and even those who are unsuccessfully vaccinated are protected by the majority. Vaccination rates necessary to establish herd immunity vary by the pathogen, but they can be as high as 95 percent—very little room is left for those who voluntarily choose not to get vaccinated, which is why mandatory vaccinations are widely instituted."

If we review the principle of liberty, and consider the populations of people who medically cannot be vaccinated, then herd immunity is a necessary state that we must achieve to maximize the protection of all citizens. Hence, with vaccines presenting no general medical dangers and with people's lives resting on whether herd immunity can be achieved, the only just action is compulsory immunization.
Debate Round No. 1


I respectfully request that the terms: vaccination, immunization, innoculation, and shots / shoots be deemed synonomous.


INTRODUCTION: I disagree with the stated resolution. The NEG/CON will demonstrate that compulsory vaccinations are not in the best interest of public health.

STATEMENT OF RESOLUTION: Resolved: Public health concerns justify compulsory immunization.

Compulsory - Compelled; mandated by legal process or by statute. (source:

Concern – something or someone that causes anxiety (source:
Further derivative; Worry - Worry is an emotion in which a person feels anxious or concerned about a real or imagined issue, ranging from personal issues such as health (source:

VALUE PREMISE: Loss of individual freedom. Jonathan Shipley wrote in 1773 that "The true art of government consist in not governing too much." (source: Yale Book of Quotations.)

VALUE CRITERION: How can country, based on the ideals of freedom, be compelled to take vaccinations? "That government is best which governs least". Thomas Paine (source: Not only is this notion autocratic & directive in nature, but also much too ambiguous.

CONTENTION ONE: Compulsory vaccinations are a deprivation of individual freedom.
Look at the very definition of compulsory. Question: Exactly which article or amendment of the U.S. Constitution authorizes this? Answer: None of them. (source: So I ask you, by what authority is this even a consideration? America is supposed to be the land of the free. Little buy little, bit by bit, the government is taking our freedoms away, one by one. Making immunizations mandatory is just one more step in that direction.

CONTENTION TWO: The subjective wording of this resolution is typical of a government that is stealing a liberty from her citizens. Under the clever disguise of ambiguity, the government is using seemingly innocent and protective verbiage to make immunizations compulsory. Can't you almost picture "big brother" placing a hand on your shoulder, looking at you with false concern, and saying something to the effect of, "This is for your own good"?
SUB POINT A: Let's examine the word immunizations. Note the plurality of the word. Which immunizations would be compulsory? All of them? Perhaps a garden variety of: measles, mumps, scarlet fever, yellow fever, bubonic plague series, malaria, influenza, hepatitis, and polio? Well, while we're at it, since it doesn't specify, let's add in: gamma globulin, anthrax, tetanus, scarlet fever, and syphilis. The point is this, with the lack of clarity, we are a virtual pin cushion for LPNs.
SUB POINT B: There is no mention whatsoever of exempting people with existing medical conditions. The fact is there are people who have severe reactions to vaccinations. "The purpose of VAERS is to detect possible signals of adverse events associated with vaccines". (source: How is it fair to make vaccinations compulsory for all individuals in the name of public health concern, when the very vaccinations they receive can put their lives in danger?

CONTENTION THREE: Do public health concerns really justify this action? "Today I asked one of my colleagues "what makes swine flu different from the regular flu bug?" Her answer: "One is being talked about all day on TV and the other is not" (source:
The average cost of a vaccine per dose, ranges from $15 to over $100 per person. (source:
The population of the United States as of 2008 is 304,059,724. (source:
"Some parents are unable to vaccinate their children because the shots are too expensive and too complicated, experts say". (source:
If the government made vaccinations compulsory, would the government be willing to pay for them? If so, then how? With tax dollars? Would it become Socialized? Would it not only force it's will on citizens, but would it also make them pay out of pocket or bill their insurance for this "mandatory/compulsory" list of vaccinations?

CONCLUSION: Ladies and gentlemen, given the aforementioned information, it is crystal clear that the resolution, as stated, is unfair, unconstitutional, and far too ambiguous to hold merit. I have demonstrated reasonable doubt in the resolution without attacking my opponent. These are all facts, and they are undisputed. Thank you.


I thank my opponent for the response. I will begin by addressing the standards debate, and then review the negative case.

On the value debate (maximization of natural rights vs. loss of individual freedom):

1. My opponent fails to define this value properly. Is he trying to achieve a loss of individual freedom? Prevent it? Perhaps this is just a phrasing issue, but without giving adequate analysis, he's made himself a moving target.

2. Maximization of natural rights clearly outweighs this value, as individual freedom is something that must be checked at certain times for the good of the society or species. However, natural rights are always guaranteed, never compromised, and considered necessary for human existence.

3. Cross-apply my analysis on my contention 1: liberty compels us to check individual liberty if it conflicts with the natural rights of other human beings. Personal autonomy, in this case, cannot outweigh the right to life, because exercising personal autonomy with regards to immunization achieves no outweighing individual or societal good.

On the criterion debate (achieving herd immunity vs. "that government is best which governs least"):

1. My opponent's weighing mechanism is unclear. My best guess is that his criterion is essentially the implementation of a laissez-faire government, but this is not articulated, nor are his criterion and value linked in his analysis.

2. My opponent assumes that directive governmental requests are a bad thing. In this case, the directive will not only benefit societies in general, but would have saved the lives of countless civilians in Nigeria and 10 other African countries, according to my Parks card. Autocratic and directive decisions that clearly benefit human beings are justified.

3. My criterion of herd immunity will be preferred because I can achieve both my value and my opponent's. Since no human being can access any guaranteed or conditional freedom if they are dead, and the affirmative maximizes this right to life via vaccinations to achieve herd immunity, I allow more people access to their individual rights because I keep more people alive.

Neg Contention 1:

1. This resolution is not U.S. specific, so arguments about the U.S. Constitution are not valid, as only one country in the world utilizes this document to define its government.

2. Drafts are also compulsory actions, and can be justified by need and cost/benefit analysis. "Compulsory," in and of itself, does not represent an unjust action.

3. Cross-apply all of my principle of liberty analysis. In order to ensure that the natural, guaranteed rights of all human beings are preserved, individual freedoms must be compromised to a certain extent. Unless my opponent to can outline harms of vaccinations that outweigh benefits, this contention has zero offense.

Neg Contention 2 tagline:

1. There is nothing particularly ambiguous about this resolution. In fact, I believe that my opponent was able to define every single term, with citations. But, beyond the denotation of these words, compulsory immunization models are employed worldwide, including in his own home country; the U.S. has required public school students to receive compulsory vaccinations for quite some time now. My opponent is being hyperbolic.

Subpoint A:

1. This is a little bit strange…the wording of the resolution is "compulsory immunization," rather than "immunizations," so that alone could eliminate my opponent's rationale. However, considering that this is a merit-based debate, and considering my case, the debate is being framed to discuss the concept of immunization. This isn't a policy debate. Hence, without the proper research (and credentials, to be fair), the affirmative would never set down a list of recommended vaccinations.

Subpoint B:

1. I toyed with making a piece of resolutional analysis on this point, but chose not to. Luckily, I put it in case. Please cross-apply my contention 1, subpoint B. The affirmative clearly acknowledges the necessity of allowing for medical exemptions, as the right to life is brought into question by expert medical diagnosis. Furthermore, consider any compulsory act that may be justified (i.e. that protects human rights). All of them have exemptions. That is simply a requirement. The draft, for example, in order to be justified, is required to carry with it certain exemptions.

Neg Contention 3:

1. Not that numbers/budgetary concerns are the province of LD debate most of the time, but the financial and logistical burdens should be addressed. First of all, I would very much like the direct link to the page my opponent is referencing (as normally I would have an in-context card to rely upon to rebut the argument). Second of all, I maintain that the benefits outlined in my case outweigh the harms of vaccination, even the short-term budgetary concerns. Not only that, but Alice Parks specifically discusses the fiscal benefits to early childhood vaccination:

"CDC officials estimate that fully vaccinating all U.S. children born in a given year from birth to adolescence saves 33,000 lives, prevents 14 million infections and saves $10 billion in medical costs. Part of the reason is that the vaccinations protect not only the kids who receive the shots but also those who can't receive them—such as newborns and cancer patients with suppressed immune systems. These vulnerable folks depend on riding the so-called herd-immunity effect. The higher the immunization rate in any population, the less likely that a pathogen will penetrate the group and find a susceptible person inside. As immunization rates drop, that protection grows thinner."

I eagerly await my opponent's rebuttal, but believe that it will make no difference, as the affirmative clearly has the upper hand in the cost/benefit analysis of compulsory vaccinations. I am currently achieving my value as well as his, and in doing so I protect the lives of human beings more than he can, and with comparatively tiny expense.
Debate Round No. 2



In her 1AC, the PRO/AFF did not post the statement of resolution. Far from a backbreaker, however this is a breech of L-D etiquette.

In her VP, she used maximization of natural rights. In regard to natural rights there is no unanimity as to which rights are natural, and which are not. This leaves the door open for arguable inference and interpretation to what natural rights actually entail. Since this is unclear, natural rights must be considered speculative and unsubstantiated.

The PRO/AFF opens point 1A with the line, "The state of liberty does not entail absolute individual freedom". I ask, by whose measuring stick? By championing the principle of liberty, natural law, natural rights, or whatever else John Stuart Mill chooses to call it, the PRO/AFF is treading a very dangerous path. To endorse such an action is a slippery slope of precedent that would allow any government to name ANY whim "justified in the name of natural rights". Rather than take the opinion of John Stuart Mill as absolute truth, let's look at some other definitions of liberty.

lib•er•ty (source:
a. The condition of being free from restriction or control.
b. The right and power to act, believe, or express oneself in a manner of one's own choosing.

These definitions shed a different light on the word liberty.

Point 1B. The resolution does not specify ANY exceptions to a compulsory mandate. My opponent has stated that medical exceptions are the only ones that pass the acid test. By so stating, she has undermined the authority of the resolution that she is supposed to be defending.

Point 1C. A google search of "Alice Park Nigeria" enabled me to see the source of this position. Though no references were specifically cited in her positions, I was curious to learn more about the work of this lady. I bring up this point regarding source citations because I was called out for not providing a direct link in one of my contentions. I would like to point out that the PRO/AFF has not provided any direct links to any of the sources she used. In response to her request for the direct link to the average cost of vaccinations I used:

POINT 2. The PRO/AFF states that "Vaccinations have been proven medically safe for general populations". If she were able, Natalie Morton would disagree. Unfortunately she can't because she died as a result of receiving an immunization. (source: While there are many others, it would be redundant to cite numerous examples to prove the same point.

I suppose some gratitude is order for the PRO/AFF for disproving her own contention surrounding the safety of immunization with a statement she offered by Dr. Michael Pazos. "To be clear, there is no such thing a perfectly safe vaccine". Thank you!

What in the world is a "Parks card"? Neither nor could identify it with any clarity.


I will restate my VP in what is hopefully clearer verbiage. Making immunization compulsory takes away the freedom to choose.

The PRO/AFF stated that my "rebuttal will make no difference as she clearly has the upper hand". Rather than throwing in the towel, allow me to counter with the following:

I have shown that natural rights are NOT an airtight argument. Further, I have shown additional definitions of liberty that conflict with the definition provided by the PRO/AFF, which is critical to her case.

As the CON/NEG, it is not my responsibility to prove the stated resolution, it is the PRO/AFF's. It is my responsibility to discredit the resolution which I have done.

Thus far, the PRO/AFF's entire argument hinges on the unsubstantiated opinion of a dead philosopher, and a one sided definition of liberty.

Thank you.


I thank my opponent for his response, and apologize that he has to wait so long for mine.

The order will be standards debate, affirmative case, negative case.

Standards Debate:

V: "Freedom of Choice" vs. Natural Rights

1. If "freedom of choice" is now my opponent's value (as he clarified this at the end of RD 3), then natural rights will still outweigh every time, as a person's right to life, for instance, clearly outweighs one's right to choose. If it didn't, I could, for example, murder my opponent without hesitation or fear of punishment. >:)

2. Unfortunately, since we still don't have a clear picture of the negative criterion, which is the mechanism that allows us to weigh my opponent's value and that links his advocacy to his ability to achieve his value, freedom of choice still can't be upheld.

C: "Achieving Herd Immunity" vs. "That Gov't Is Best Which Governs Least"

1. Please extend the arguments that I made in RD 2. His criterion is not only unclear and undefined, but I proved that directives from the government are not categorically bad (especially when they protect all citizens' most fundamental rights) and that herd immunity will actually achieve my opponent's case by allowing people to live longer, healthier lives. This, in turn, allows them to actually to exercise free choice.

Affirmative Case (Responses Made By Neg in RD 3):

Contention 1, Sub A:

1. John Stuart Mill is generally accepted as a highly credible political philosopher who is considered a father of modern equality and democracy. Many claim he was the most influential English-speaking philosopher of the entire 19th century. I think that he can be considered a valuable source when discusses the concept of liberty.(2)

2. The concept of liberty that I am advocating and that I use Mill to support is not breaking news. This concept is part of the backbone of democratic rule. Please extend the analysis I give on just laws (like traffic laws). Laws exist to prevent people from encroaching on another citizen's natural rights (as outlined clearly in my standards). The measure of liberty is highly finite (here's that measuring stick my opponent required): if my free actions violate another's natural rights, then my free actions deserve limitation. This is why we can't murder other people, for example, or steal their possessions, or enslave them.

3. Slippery slope is a logical fallacy. Not only is it a hyperbolic argument to put on this particular contention (as this concept of liberty has informed democratic government policy-making for a few hundred years, and we have yet to see any of the harms that my opponent claims will result of "adopting" such policies), but he assumes that sequence is equal to causation, hence the fallacy.

For example, let's look at Hitler. Hitler imposed increasingly unjust restrictions on minority populations (such as the Jews) during WWII, up to concentration camps. Hitler, of course, had a number of goals in mind when he did this, one of which was to cleanse his "empire" in order to create his master race.

Logic would clearly dictate that each new imposition on these minorities was to further his ultimate goal of that master race. However, if we apply slippery slope, then we equate sequence to causation. We must instead claim that each successive imposition was caused by the one before it, and not by Hitler's ultimate goal. The restrictions didn't get worse and worse because of the step before the last. They got worse and worse because Hitler was working his way toward an end result.

4. I, too, can play the dictionary game. :) This is the definition that I located from Merriam-Webster's Law Dictionary:

1 a : freedom from external (as governmental) restraint, compulsion, or interference in engaging in the pursuits or conduct of one's choice to the extent that they are lawful and not harmful to others b : enjoyment of the rights enjoyed by others in a society free of arbitrary or unreasonable limitation or interference.

If we take a look at the legal definition of liberty, we see that, in the sense necessary to this resolution, liberty has limitations to it. In the case of the above definition, actions are limited to that which is "lawful and not harmful to others." In the second part of this complete definition, we see that liberty, again, is a limited freedom of action, in which one is only guaranteed to be free from "arbitrary or unreasonable limitation."As this legal dictionary points out, and as my Mill card points out, the concept of liberty is specifically designed to concern itself only with the protection of citizens, and to maintain a clean and appropriate balance between individual freedom and societal welfare.

5. If we accept my opponent's redefinition of "liberty," then we essentially replace the concept with the philosophical concept of "freedom," which is, in fact, unrestricted freedom. At that point, my opponent is advocating for the state of nature, which is essentially chaos. Mill's concept of liberty is that balancing mechanism that I fully articulate above. Absolute freedom cannot promote societal welfare, or even sustain a working society.

Contention 1, Sub B:

1. I would like to extend my only response to my opponent's Contention 2, Subpoint B (and extend the analysis on this subpoint). I specifically state that any compulsory system being enacted in a just manner must include exemptions, and give a wonderful example of the draft. I then linked this to my arguments about liberty, as it would violate a citizen's right to life if a trained medical professional attested to his or her inability to receive a vaccine. It isn't extra-resolution; it's simply a reality.

Contention 1, Sub C:

1. Well, since my opponent specifically asked me for an LD-style debate, one would assume that he would expect me to write an actual LD case. Hence, I went to print sources for my cards, and did not just use websites. In LD debate, the name of the professional tends to be sufficient. However, if my opponent will give me approximately 14 hours, I can get him the MLA citation for the Parks material (the cards are at school).

2.The fact that I don't give a weblink is not a reason to drop all of the analysis I put on Subpoint C, which were essentially the impacts of the contention. Since my opponent concedes these impacts, please extend the fact that a lack of immunization causes huge and unnecessary losses in human life. This will become an independent reason to affirm, as I am meeting my standards right here, and achieving more good than my opponent can.

Contention 2:

1. As directly quoted from the same article: "It is not yet known whether Natalie had an extreme - and very rare - reaction to a standard vaccine, or whether the particular dose she was given was from a rogue contaminated batch." Natalie's reaction is characterized by the investigators as incredibly rare and extreme. My opponent is basically using hyperbolic "disaster porn" as a direct appeal to pathos, rather than actually answering my warrants, which clearly outline vaccines, in vast majority, as not only safe but highly effective at preventing the loss of human life.

2.Please extend all of the warrants and analysis coming out of Contention 2. Not only do I prove that vaccines present incredibly little danger to the individual, but I also prove that, when large populations are immunized, we not only have the ability to eradicate diseases via herd immunity, but we also protect those who cannot receive vaccines due to medical exemptions. Hence, I am clearly saving far more lives than my opponent.

Negative Case:

Though my opponent provided a summarizing section to RD 3, he didn't actually refute any of the arguments that I put on his case. Since he has no remaining offense at this point, considering the standards debate at the top of this round, I can confidently say that I believe I have affirmed the resolution.
Debate Round No. 3



I wish to offer Dani a special thanks and please, no worries about using the available time. That's why it is there :o)

INTRO:According to my opponent, and quite possibly a majority of the readers of this DDO topic, I have already lost. That would leave me with several options. I could start throwing spaghetti against the wall and hope some of it sticks. I could gracefully bow out. I could play the bench and take a knee to run out the clock. The competitive side of me wants to keep running plays regardless of the scoreboard. I remind myself that I am here to learn which will make both me and my team better in the long run.

1. Since we have both presented legitimate definitions of liberty, it's safe to say that piece is a stalemate.

2. Further, the CON/NEG is willing to stipulate that immunizations are generally safe if the PRO/AFF is willing to stipulate that there have indeed been numerous instances of reaction to immunization, and in seldom circumstances, death. This woulkd effectly offset this piece.

3. Also, if we agree to eliminate all of the other machts nichts food fight items, we only have the one real question remaining. The question of whether it is justified to make vaccinations compulsory under law.

With the large number of people who voluntarily receive immunizations, we can and do create an herd effect without making it mandatory. Aside from school requirements, it isn't mandatory now, and we have good results. Of course it could be better, which is why many physicians endorse and promote immunization. It is possible to achieve an even higher level of immunity without taking away yet another freedom. Thank you!


I thank my opponent for this spirited debate, and am looking forward to debating and conversing with him in the future. As he has done, I will just provide some voting issues in the round, rather than making any new arguments.

1. Liberty vs. liberty: though my opponent attempts to call this argument a wash at last, I will extend all of my responses in RD 4 which sought to validate my analysis on the concept of liberty as the only valid conceptualization of it in the round. Not only did I warrant the heck out of that argument, but I invalidated his definition legally and logically, since his provided "" definition leads to a state of nature existence. Hence, you are going to prefer my analysis here. If you do, then compulsory immunizations are justified, as being able to immunize everyone in the population (excepting those with medical exemptions) from a given disease will achieve herd immunity, which will in turn maximize natural rights.

2. In reference to my opponent's RD 5 voter #2: both my evidence and I have readily stipulated that some very rare and minute health risks are involved in vaccinating human beings. It would be unrealistic not to. No institution or product in existence is without its flaws, but that doesn't give a valid reason to call those things categorically unjust. Hence, at the end of the day, I've still proven that the medical benefits far outweigh the costs of immunizations.

3. In reference to my opponent's crystallization: my opponent has, unfortunately, forwarded an entirely new argument in his final rebuttal stating that we already have enough people voluntarily vaccinating to create herd immunity. Though I'm not obligated to answer the argument, I would like to since I have the opportunity:

*First of all, as my card stated, only 75% of US school children are being mandatorily vaccinated to enter the public school system. This piece of evidence is meant to prove that large, diverse populations aren't negatively affected (health-wise) by receiving a vaccine. Not every country in the world uses mandatory pediatric vaccination models. We wouldn't be having this debate if herd immunity were working on a worldwide level, as there would be no "public health concern" over pandemics.

*Second of all, as Dr. Pazos states in my original case, some diseases require up to 95% of the total population to be immunized before herd immunity is successful. In the US, only 75% of children entering school are vaccinated against certain diseases. Even if those specific diseases only require a 75% immunization rate to protect a population, that only covers a few diseases and doesn't include adult populations who weren't vaccinated as children or who didn't keep up with necessary boosters.

Hence, since I'm winning standards on both sides of the debate and case, I encourage readers to cast their vote in favor of compulsory immunization.

I thank my opponent again, and thank the readers for taking a look at the debate.
Debate Round No. 4
61 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by alto2osu 8 years ago
Well, in this case you can. :P We kill some people in the short term, but save more in the long term. Yay for dressed up utilitarianism!
Posted by tombomb25 8 years ago
Can't have long term solvency without short-term solvency ;D
Posted by alto2osu 8 years ago
But, if humanity is going to cease to exist at some point, anyway, isn't long term solvency all we can hope for? Hence, long term solvency becomes our obligatory focus :)
Posted by tombomb25 8 years ago
Morally reprehensible in the present, not the future =P
Posted by alto2osu 8 years ago
Eh. You can actually quite easily link biological fitness, etc., to long term ethical solvency.
Posted by tombomb25 8 years ago
Not my views on any of this, just talking about case writing. I don't want to get into a nasty debate here about my lack of morals.


First, I'd advise not begging for people to write you a case, write your own.

As for ideas on evolution-like cases, I'd say if you're going to go for it then go all the way. Meaning:

Void any and all moral ideals and focus specifically on how nature designed them (ie survival of the fittest) and go for something like advancement/evolutionary progress, I'm not really sure. You'll need to do the research yourself if you're actually considering it as a case position. I'm not talking about social darwinism, rather darwinism as a whole. Not the weak of society, but rather the weak biologically. In this case, that would be those who don't have the immune capabilities to survive the disease. You can say that allowing for the disease without immunizations will inevitably lead to the weaker humans dieing out and the stronger ones prevailing, leaving a stronger human race. If you can find the cards and develop good warrants, it could be a strong case position. One drawback however, is that it will likely be against lay judges ideals meaning I wouldn't run it in front of them because they might just drop you on face. Go with the circuit judges, or the people who don't mind semi-morally reprehensible arguments.
Posted by alto2osu 8 years ago
Social darwinism is, essentially, a philosophy that shares fundamental components with the mentality of every colonialist government that has occupied the region. Hence, the concepts are used to justify the killing of indigenous peoples, which is genocide. Lest you'd like to argue that colonialist governments didn't actively kill native Africans. :)

I'm guessing that's where PCM was going with that. Lemme know if I'm wrong.

And, if you wanna get down to it, obligation-wise, allowing someone to starve is comparable to killing. It may or may not have the same malignant intent, but even that is a fuzzy line. If the goal is to exterminate a group of people, and your methodology is starving them, then that's pretty damning. Mind you, if you have a specific instance in mind, please elaborate.

Furthermore, while I agree that contemporary intervention is fail in the continent, it doesn't have to be. Like, rebuilding projects suck because we try to implement culturally centric models of growth in nations that are fundamentally different. Pretty much everything really bad on the continent can be traced to one Western European ancestor or another.
Posted by wjmelements 8 years ago
Genocide is killing. Witholding food that they are not entitled to is not comparable.

Africa is what it is because of intervention, first by the Europeans and then by the West as a whole. Our aid has not only brought them AIDS, but has also a dependency. Stabilizing the governments down there will better aid the development than a steady supply of everything one needs to live.
Posted by pcmbrown 8 years ago
Social darwinism essentially justifies mass genocide of That will fly with a couple of California judges at best. Rights may be cliche, but it's the way to go.
Posted by tashass 8 years ago
then wat should i use?? Annd how is it unjust?
like.. how would we knw unless we dnt do it
8 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Vote Placed by Nathan.fraly 8 years ago
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 
Vote Placed by scottkayla34 8 years ago
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:25 
Vote Placed by tombomb25 8 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Vote Placed by wonderwoman 8 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Vote Placed by pcmbrown 8 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 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 Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:05 
Vote Placed by seeley.linda 8 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 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:06 
Vote Placed by LadyHavok13 8 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 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:06 
Vote Placed by twsurber 8 years ago
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:43