The Instigator
LaLaLa
Pro (for)
Winning
4 Points
The Contender
babyjess1000
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Resolved: Jury Nullification is a just check on government (LD style)

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/23/2010 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,458 times Debate No: 12124
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (7)
Votes (1)

 

LaLaLa

Pro

Because just is the adjective form of justice, the resolution is based in normative ideals of justice. Ideals of justice and morality have no privileged normative content; the only thing inherent to the form of justice is the conceptual exclusion of the unjust. This is true for four reasons.

First, universal normative concepts are empty concepts that are hegenomized by particular identities that transform their struggle into the symbol of justice. Zizek writes,

The universal is empty, yet precisely as such always-already filled in that it, hegenomized by some contingent, particular content that acts as its stand-in — in short, each Universal is the battleground on which the multitude of particular contents fight for hegemony. no content of the Universal [could] be effectively neutral and, as such, common to all its species: all positive content of the Universal is the contingent result of hegemonic struggle in itself, the Universal is absolutely empty.
The implication is that normative concepts have no privileged content; anything could hegenomize justice or morality. All we know is that when something hegemonizes the universal it excludes other competing influences, meaning that justice is conceptual exclusion

Second, defining universals implies that we place antagonistic limits on them. Laclau 1 writes, "true limits presuppose an exclusion a signifying totality is a system of differences. This means that [the two sides] are part of the same system and that the limits between the two cannot be the limits of the system. In the case of an exclusion we have, instead authentic limits because the actualization of what is beyond the limit of exclusion would involve the impossibility of what is this side of the limit. True limits are always antagonistic."
This means that we define justice by setting a limit in a field of differences that establishes the line between justice and injustice. There is no naturally occurring place for line to be; we construct it ourselves. Thus no limit is privileged in its definition of justice's content and all that we know is that justice is conceptual exclusion.

Third, justice is not derived from some transcendental being, it is conceptualized by humans. As such, these conceptions bear the marks of their creators, their current problems, needs, and desires. As these change so does the conception of justice. For example, the early feminist movement perceived their problems as resulting from legal inequality, and so conceptualized justice in terms of formal equality and legal rights like voting. Later, they achieved these goals and their needs and situation changed. They then perceived injustice as stemming from the effective exclusion of women from roles outside the household. This illustrates how normative concepts are never stable, they reflect the circumstances of their creators. The only thing we do know is that justice excludes something as unjust.

Fourth, justice represents a negation of all particulars differences and is consequently empty of concrete meaning. Laclau 2 writes,
"different particular struggles are so many bodies which can indifferently incarnate the opposition of all of them to the repressive power. the equivalent relation shows that these differential identities are simply indifferent bodies incarnating something equally present in all of them, [and] the longer the chain of equivalences is, the less concrete this 'something equally present' will be The community created by this equivalential expansion will be, thus, the pure idea of a communitarian fullness which is absent - as a result of the presence of the repressive power This absent fullness which shows itself through the collapse of all differential identities is something which cannot have a signifier of its own - for in that case, the 'beyond all differences' would be one more difference and not the result of the equivalential collapse of all differential identities. the community is not a purely differential space of an objective identity but an absent fullness

Laclau explains that any particular can incarnate the struggle against injustice. This means that justice is just something that negates the differences of all particulars. It can't have its own meaning in the abstract because then it would just be one more difference in relation to other differences instead of the collapse of all differences. Instead all we know is that it is a fullness which is absent as a result of something that is excluded as unjust.

Thus normative concepts are empty of content in the abstract. The only thing unique to the form of normative standards is conceptual exclusion. Therefore, the affirmative burden is to provejury nullification is conceptual exclusion. This is sufficient to affirm before anything else in the round because the only thing we know about justice is conceptual exclusion of the unjust. If jnull does this, then that's sufficient to affirm.

I meet burden in two ways. First, every legal order depends on the determination of what are normal situations in which the law applies, and the exclusion from normality of abnormal situations in which the state is excepted from the law. Agamben writes, "Since "there is no rule that is applicable to chaos," chaos must first be included in the juridical order through the creation of a zone of indistinction between, chaos and the normal situation— the state of exception. To refer to something a rule must both presuppose and yet still establish a relation with what is outside relation, the sovereign decision on the exception is the originary juridico-policical structure on the basis of which what is included in the juridical order and what is excluded from it acquire their meaning. The state of exception is therefore the principle of every juridical localization, since only the state of exception opens the space in which the determination of a certain juridical order becomes possible.

Second, Jnull involves the exclusion of things from the realm of justice. It accepts that a person is legally guilty under the united states system of justice and then excludes their legal punishment.

under views: Consequentialism is flawed:
a) Consequentialist morality is paradoxical because a single act can oscillate between moral and immoral as time passes. For example, after 1 year an act may be net beneficial, after 2 years net harmful, and continue to oscillate over time. The inability to characterize acts as definitively moral or immoral precludes its validity as a moral system.

b) Values can't come from senses. Ends-based standards set empirical goals and ascribe to them value. But there's no rational way to tell which empirical states are valuable. It's completely arbitrary and not justified. "Something makes me happy" is not a rational justification.

c) Utilitarianism paralyzes decisions because infinite future generations mean even a minor harm to the future by using resources now has an infinite impact due to accumulation of harms to each person in the future. Under ends based morality, no action could be taken because doing anything would use resources future generations could not use.

2) Presume Aff: Negate means to prove false, so the negative must do so. Simply disproving the affirmatives case does not negate

3)Fairness is not a voter
a. No bright line for what is strategic and what is abusive because both exclude arguments, but there is no clear distinction.
b. The only objectively fair standard is speech time, which is already equal, so theoretical correction is unnecessary.
c. Ex post facto rule are unjust because I don't know what im being held to
e.TURN: fairness as a voter is unfair because it asks for judge intervention and every judge has different conceptions of what is fair. There is no threshold for fairness The ballot says to vote for the better debater, which theory undermines because it asks the judge to vote for personal preference
babyjess1000

Con

John Stuart Mill once stated, "The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not sufficient warrant." Because I agree with Mill, I must stand in firm negation of the resolution. Resolved: In the United States, the principle of jury nullification is a just check on government.
Before moving on to the negation case, it is important to clarify a few key terms in today's debate.
•Jury Nullification-the act or idea that a jury finds a defendant innocent because the law itself is unjust, or is unjust in a particular application, and so should not be applied. (Kelly L. Ross of the Department of Philosophy)
•Check-something that limits or restrains.
•Civilized Community-the people who live in a particular place or region and usu. are linked by some common interests.
•Government-the prosecution in a criminal case in its capacity as agents of the political unit. The complex of political institutions, laws, and customs through which the function of governing is carried out.
To set the parameters of today's debate, I offer the following observations:
•This is only dealing with jury nullification in the Unites States.
•Rather than the actual act of jury nullification, this debate is about the principle.
The value I will uphold in today's case is that of justice. Justice is defined as a scheme or system of law in which every person receives fair his or her fair due from the system, including all rights, both natural and legal. This is the ultimate value in today's debate because without justice, the society of the United States would lose all morality and understanding and in a sense fear of its law.
My value will be upheld through my criterion of equality, which is defined as likeness or sameness in quality, power, status, or degree. This upholds my value because each person in the United States has equal right and responsibility to follow each and every not only constitutional law but also those laws set by the federal government.
Now I will move on to state my contentions:
1.The jury makes unfair rulings.

A.The jury often doesn't know the full background. As well as not knowing that truth or background of the accused, they often do not even know their own rights. They are unaware that they even have the power to nullify a law. In order for one to truly nullify a law, they must actually understand that they are able to. Therefore, any ruling otherwise is unfair. According to Russ Emal of The Eagle Staff, "In a trial by jury, the judge's job is to referee the trial and provide neutral legal advice to the jury, beginning with a full and truthful explanation of a juror's rights and responsibilities." This means that is the jurors' right and power to nullify and if they are not informed then they are otherwise misinformed and cannot and should not justifiably nullify a law. This goes back to uphold my criterion of equality because all jurors must be fully aware of everything that is going on in the court, whether that be the background of the law or the background of the case. This in turn goes to uphold my value of justice because it is only just for each and every individual to be educated equally on all aspects. It is also unjust to take away rights or powers that the jurors may have by not informing them. Therefore, the entire principle of jury nullification is unjust.

B.Bias and moral stance plays a part of the ruling instead of truth and facts. Aristotle once stated, "The law is reason free from passion." But in far too many instances, the jurors looking on the cases and the trials throw every bit of passion and moral opinion into their considerations. For what the jurors understand, which is to judge based on facts of law, they are bias on every situation because that is human nature. According to Doug Lender, "In most jurisdictions, judges instruct jurors that it is their duty to apply the law as it is given to them, whether they agree with the law or not." In other words, because they are instructed to judge only the law and the facts of the action and case, that is exactly what they should do. He goes on to state, "Recently, several courts have indicated that judges also have the right, when it is brought to their attention by other jurors, to remove (prior to a verdict, of course) from juries any juror who makes clear his or her intention to vote to nullify the law." This means that jurors who are bias against a certain law, even before the moral persuasion of the attorneys and actual case, can be removed from the court. This goes to uphold my criterion of equality because every case needs to be completely unbias and free of moral and ethical opinion but based on fact in order for it to be equal among trials as well as jurors. This in turn goes to uphold my value of justice because it is just to all people and all trials to have everyone judge and look at trials completely unbiased.

C.Jurors are not held punishable for the verdicts that they render. In all cases that are trial by jury, the jurors' verdict making is to be secret. Therefore, what the jurors' say, even if that say be unjustifiable or unreasonable, they can be held responsible and accountable but not punishable by law. According to the American Jury Institute, "Even where the jury's verdict of not guilty seems indefensible, that clause prevents the State from pursuing even the limited remedy of a new trial. This rule, by design, gives juries the power to ‘err upon the side of mercy' by entering ‘an unassailable but unreasonable verdict of not guilty.' This rule is designed to safeguard the jury's power ‘to arrive at a general verdict without having to support it by reasons or by a report of its deliberations,' and to protect its historic power to nullify or temper rules of law based on the jurors' sense of justice as conscience of the community." This means that the jurors do not even have to have warrants for the law that they nullify, but that they can even if they do not like the law. This in turn is bad that the jurors are not held punishable because if the verdict is completely unjust and completely unfair especially when the jurors do not have reasonable cause for the verdict. This goes to uphold my criterion of equality because each person who commits a crime should be held by the same standards of law: meaning that it would be unequal to change the law of nullify it in general to fit a specific way of thinking and then the jurors know that they are not to be punished for it. This in turn upholds my value of justice because if each person is held responsible for what they do and say then it will go to make each trial just and fair.
Debate Round No. 1
LaLaLa

Pro

ok so my opponents first fatal flaw is dropping my framework. Remember I tell you that that justice is the conceptual exclusion of the unjust. Extend Zizek who tells us that normative concepts have no privileged content; anything could hegenomize justice or morality. All we know is that when something hegemonizes the universal it excludes other competing influences, meaning that justice is conceptual exclusion. Next, extend Laclau 1 and 2 that tell us that we define justice by setting a limit in a field of differences that establishes the line between justice and injustice. There is no naturally occurring place for line to be; we construct it ourselves. Thus no limit is privileged in its definition of justice's content and all that we know is that justice is conceptual exclusion. Any particular can incarnate the struggle against injustice. This means that justice is just something that negates the differences of all particulars. It can't have its own meaning in the abstract because then it would just be one more difference in relation to other differences instead of the collapse of all differences. Instead all we know is that it is a fullness which is absent as a result of something that is excluded as unjust. Thus we can conclude that Justice is the conceptual exclusion of the unjust; Therefore, the affirmative burden is to prove jury nullification is conceptual exclusion. This is sufficient to affirm before anything else in the round because the only thing we know about justice is conceptual exclusion of the unjust.
This means that if jury nullification excludes anything from the realm of justice you affirm.
My opponents next mistake was not disproving how i meet my burden. Extend Agamben who tells us that every legal order depends on the determination of what are normal situations in which the law applies, and the exclusion from normality of abnormal situations in which the state is excepted from the law. Then, extend my second warrant that says that jury nullification involves the exclusion of things from the realm of justice. It accepts that a person is legally guilty under the united states system of justice and then excludes their legal punishment. Thus I meet my burden of proving that jury nullification is conceptual exclusion and you affirm.
Now go to the NC, my opponent gives the value of justice. However, I have already proven that the affirmative upholds justice and thus I have a clear link into my opponents value. Now look to my opponents criterion, ensuring equality; this will function as a consequentialist standard, because an action can only be just if it has the result of equality. Cross apply my first underview: Consequentialism is flawed (my opponent dropped this so all three points can be extended). Because this is true you can no longer look to my opponents criterion, which means that her three contentions no longer give my opponent any offense in this round.

However if you don't buy anything I just said, go to my opponents point "A." Here, my opponents is wrong on two accounts. First, remember as my opponent stated, we are talking about the principle of jury nullification not the actual implementation. Now, extend where my opponent tells you that it is the judges job to inform the jury of their rights. Thus, if the jury is not told of their right to nullify, this would be an implementation problem, not an issue that is inherent in nullification. Second, contradicts herself by stating that jurors don't no their rights, but continues to say that the judge is obligated to inform them of their rights.

Now onto point "B." This contention is basically saying that we need consistent application of the law (achieved by looking at truths and facts). But, the law is way too broad to be applied consistently. If a law says "murder is illegal", that law would fail to account for instances of self-defense. The legislature cannot possibly account for all possible circumstances in which the law ought be disregarded, so juries ought retain the power to determine this. Also, you can turn this argument: The consistent application of law is a bad thing insofar as there are unjust laws. Without jury nullification, the common man would have no recourse against unjust laws, and would be directly harmed by their unfair application.

On "C," my opponent makes two main arguments. One is that there is "not the remedy of a re-trial" (aka no checks on the jury). However, you can turn this argument:No check back is a good thing. An oppressive government will use the opportunity to check jury nullification to its advantage. Two is again this notion of consistent application of the law. Here cross apply my responses to point "B."
babyjess1000

Con

babyjess1000 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
LaLaLa

Pro

I don't know if you've been busy or what the deal is, but if you still want to continue this debate then we can pick up from your rebuttal (you can even go new if you'd like)
babyjess1000

Con

babyjess1000 forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by babyjess1000 7 years ago
babyjess1000
I've done this topic too, but wow, I'm a high school student, so YOU don't kill ME. HA
Posted by LaLaLa 7 years ago
LaLaLa
just somebody debate me for the fun of it. if this was a serious debate it would be at a tournament with judges, not on the internet. so just make a few args and then talk about y I'm wrong and who cares if the args r bad or not researched enough. i literally just copy/pasted this from a word document on my computer. no extra research that i hadn't already done.
Posted by twsurber 7 years ago
twsurber
Guys, Don't kill La3, this was the most recent NFL topic for Lincoln-Douglas.
Posted by resolutionsmasher 7 years ago
resolutionsmasher
rougeagent's got a point. I love this kind of debate and the subject, but it's a whole lot of research for no votes and a whole lot of time for nothin'. Start debates on subjects that are broader and easier to debate. Take the specifics of the more arduous debates to the forums. take a look at the debate that I have open for the death penalty, I made it easier to debate without spending loads of hours doing research.
Posted by rougeagent21 7 years ago
rougeagent21
HS debates always end up being vote-bombed. No one actually reads through an entire LD round. (Or at least not enough to make up for the opinions of uneducated viewers transformed into votes)
Posted by LaLaLa 7 years ago
LaLaLa
I'm not dodging the resolution; i just have a lot of framework.
Posted by Cody_Franklin 7 years ago
Cody_Franklin
Wow. Way to dodge the resolution with your sophistry.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Atheism 6 years ago
Atheism
LaLaLababyjess1000Tied
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Total points awarded:40