The Instigator
Brik
Pro (for)
Losing
28 Points
The Contender
Logical-Master
Con (against)
Winning
30 Points

Resolved: Military Conscription is Unjust.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/3/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 4,894 times Debate No: 5255
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (43)
Votes (10)

 

Brik

Pro

Here is the final "draft" of my first argument...

INTRODUCTION

In 1979, President Ronald Reagan wrote that military conscription "rests on the assumption that your kids belong to the state. If we buy that assumption then it is for the state – not for parents, the community, the religious institutions or teachers – to decide who shall have what values and who shall do what work, when, where and how in our society. That assumption isn't a new one. The Nazis thought it was a great idea."

Because the Nazis were wrong, I espouse the conviction of Mr. Reagan, and the resolution, which states:

RESOLVED: MILITARY CONSCRIPTION IS UNJUST

But before we get started,

DEFINITIONS:

MILITARY CONSCRIPTION: compulsory enrollment of persons for military or naval service; draft (www.Wikipedia.org)

UNJUST: marked by a lack of justice. Since justice is "righteousness, equitableness, or moral rightness" according to www.Dictionary.com, injustice (the state of being unjust) must therefore be "unrighteousness, inequitableness, or moral wrongness"

RESOLUTION ANALYSIS:

1. The question today is of justice - whether military conscription is just or unjust. Proofs about its effectiveness, necessity, or other unrelated factors shall therefore not affect the debate. Genocide, for example, would be effective in eliminating racism, because there would be no one to be racist against, but it would not be just.

2. Most of my cites come from http://www.counterpunch.org.... If you can't find anything here, I will be happy to locate it for you.

3. As the most applicable example, the United States will be referenced very often in this debate. However, the injustice of military conscription extends to all nations and all peoples, and the principles described here would apply equally halfway around the world.

CONTENTION I: LOCKE'S SOCIAL CONTRACT SUPPORTS NATURAL RIGHTS

A. Natural rights are the basis of American ideals.

The American system is founded on the basis of natural rights: those rights given, not by government, but by the very nature of justice (or God; take your pick – regardless they are sacred). Among the most famous are "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness," as they are described in the Declaration of Independence. The protection of these rights is vital to any governmental system. If a government would deprive its citizens of life (genocide or simply mass murder), liberty (slavery or oppression), or the pursuit of happiness (severe constraints on business, as defined by Butcher's Co. v. Crescent City Co. in 1884), it would be condemned by both the international community and by everyday citizens who are aware of these rights.

B. Locke's Social Contract upholds natural rights.

John Locke's Social Contract, the basis of American government, declared that it was the government's duty to protect the "life, liberty, and property (analogous to the pursuit of happiness)" provided they do not infringe on the same rights of others. Only a government which upholds these criteria, in Locke's view, is a legitimate ruling system.

C. Locke's Social Contract is just.

Locke's Social Contract, when obeyed, preserves the integrity of these natural rights. Because these rights are natural rights, the government has no jurisdiction to take them away unless other natural rights are threatened. This type of system preserves natural rights and therefore is just.

CONTENTION II: MILITARY CONSCRIPTION IS UNJUST

A. Military conscription violates natural rights.

Military conscription is a blatant violation of natural rights. The government forces military service upon unwilling citizens. These citizens' lives are endangered, their liberty confiscated, and their pursuit of happiness tossed to the four winds. It is the ultimate form of dehumanization: all the rights of a sentient being are confiscated by its "benevolent" overseer.
Natural rights, not given by government, can therefore not be taken away by government without violating justice.

B. Military conscription threatens national security.

The negative will most likely make a point about national security, and the possible necessity of a draft. But military conscription not only does not improve national security, but it threatens it. One only has to look at the Vietnam War, the most famous U.S. draft example. After the draft was enacted in 1965, not only were there rebellions across the country that threatened domestic tranquility, but also the resulting military force failed to achieve its objective: winning the war in Vietnam.

But it's no wonder it didn't work. Everybody's favorite Texan Representative, Ron Paul, once quipped, "A draft weakens the military by introducing tensions and rivalries between those who volunteer for military service and those who have been conscripted. This undermines the cohesiveness of military units, which is a vital element of military effectiveness. Conscripts also are unlikely to choose the military as a career; thus, a draft will do little to address problems with retention. With today's high-tech military, retention is the most important personnel issue and it seems counter-productive to adopt any policy that will not address this important issue."

C. Military conscription is a violation of Locke's Social Contract, and therefore, unjust.

All the natural rights of Americans are tossed aside like trifles in a system of military conscription. Natural rights are supplanted with danger and deprivation; democracy with despotism. With all of these rights taken away, the only "benefit" is a larger military force – but even this does not increase security, and has not in the past. In fact, it is counterproductive to the duties of the military.
The enactment of conscription, drafts, or any other compulsory service mechanism is a direct and blatant violation of Locke's Social Contract. And when a government violates its commitment to its own citizens, that government has lost all authority and legitimacy.

CONCLUSION:

Great orator Daniel Webster once said:

"Where is it written in the Constitution, in what article or section is it contained, that you may take children from their parents, and parents from their children, and compel them to fight the battles of any war, in which the folly or the wickedness of Government may engage it? Under what concealment has this power lain hidden, which now for the first time comes forth, with a tremendous and baleful aspect, to trample down and destroy the dearest rights of personal liberty?

Sir, I almost disdain to go to quotations and references to prove that such an abominable doctrine had no foundation in the Constitution of the country. It is enough to know that the instrument was intended as the basis of a free government, and that the power contended for is incompatible with any notion of personal liberty. An attempt to maintain this doctrine upon the provisions of the Constitution is an exercise of perverse ingenuity to extract slavery from the substance of a free government. It is an attempt to show, by proof and argument, that we ourselves are subjects of despotism, and that we have a right to chains and bondage, firmly secured to us and our children, by the provisions of our government."

Word.
Logical-Master

Con

I wish I had more time to go in depth, so as usual with my debates, most of my arguments may require elaboration in future rounds.

RE DEFINITIONS:

I shall agree with the definitions of the terms for this debate.

RE RESOLUTION ANALYSIS:

I shall agree with the resolution analysis for now, but would request that PRO elaborate on what he means by "necessity" as well as how "necessity" is an unrelated factor.

Alright, I'm going to start by supplying you with my case as I believe it will make things far simpler when I begin rebutting the case of my opponent's (for reasons you shall see soon enough)

MY CASE:

LAST RESORT: I urge that the system which requires citizens to be forced to enter into their own respective country's military be used the way it was originally intended to be used; I urge that it be used as a last resort; I urge that it be relied upon when necessary. In other words, if a country's technology, regular military forces, and regular defenses can by no means guarantee the safety of the nation, compulsory enrollment should be upheld. Or in even better terms, a country should resort to it only when it needs conscription.

Now when I say "last resort", I mean a situation where the nation in question is at risk of being obliterated or by any other means compromised entirely. The people then have the opportunity look at their options. They can even contribute to the war in order to defend their nation as well as their way of life. Or, they can sit home and wait to see when they will be eliminated, conquered, or placed in any other circumstance that would negate any of the "natural rights" which PRO has pointed out . Basically, when military survivability and way of life is being threatened and the usual defenses (military and technological forces) are insufficient, a country is justified to turn to and rely on its citizens as relying on its citizens would mutually be preserving these citizen's natural rights. To rely on conscription in any other scenario would be ABUSING conscription, which is then, "unjust". From this, we can conclude that conscription itself is quite just.

Keep in mind that we are debating whether or not military conscription itself is unjust. We are not debating its effectiveness or practicality, as PRO himself pointed out. Furthermore, such a debate enables me to ignore "abusive conscription" as to rely on something when it isn't needed is certainly abusive.

Now with that being said, I shall move on to PRO's case

RE CONTENTION I: LOCKE'S SOCIAL CONTRACT SUPPORTS NATURAL RIGHTS:

A. I agree that Natural rights are the basis of American ideals.

B. I was going to make a big deal out of this, but as PRO has pointed out during C/X, the government does restrain liberty so that other liberties may be upheld. I agree with this, but this won't help PRO's case in the least as I now submit that whereas conscription does restrain some liberty, this is so other liberties may be protected, therefore, by PRO's logic, making it just. Just what other liberties does properly used conscription protect one may ask? See my case.

C. I shall agree.

RE: CONTENTION II: MILITARY CONSCRIPTION IS UNJUST

Re A: Based on my opponent's logic as well as clarification during cross examination, I merely have to demonstrate that military conscription does not violate the three "natural rights" which he brings up. In other words, I can very well concede that two of the natural rights are violated provided I show that at least one natural right isn't violated. After all, this is my opponent's justification behind a system that VIOLATES natural rights; he justifies it by pointing out that the laws that violate natural rights can still be just provided they are manifested through the intent of preserving the remaining natural rights.

Keep in mind, in order to vote CON in this debate, you only have to agree with one of the natural rights which I'll argue that conscription upholds.

Life: Refer back to my original insinuations on military conscription. When not abused, it is used when necessary in order to defend the most important of these natural rights (life; without life, you can't have liberty or happiness, so of course it's the most important. :D ). Conscription is not only a chance for some selected citizens to defend their own lives rather than merely have to sit around (knowingly waiting to have their natural rights impeded upon), but also a chance to increase the likelihood of survival for ones back at home (those not selected for conscription). True, it may endanger lives, but it is not a system with the intent of taking away lives. Rather, it a system set with the intent of preserving lives, ergo, if we accept PRO's criteria for "just", then conscription must be considered just..

Liberty: Very much similar to that of the above. The individuals selected are being given the opportunity to contribute in preserving the amount of liberty they have as well as the liberty of the citizens who were not drafted. Granted, the ones conscripted have some of their liberty restrained, but this is no different than one having their liberty restrained by ANY law. Unless PRO intends to argue in favor of anarchism, he has no argument if he wishes to attack conscription on the matter of liberty.

Pursuit of Happiness: Again, conscription (when not abused) is an effort to preserve this right for everyone to pursue happiness in the future. The only way PRO could possibly argue otherwise would be if those who were conscripted had to permanently participate in the military, those conscripted have something to look forward to in the future (which they wouldn't if they were simply going to have their natural rights stripped away by an invading nation).

Re B: Hold on one cotton picking moment. Refer back to what PRO clearly stated initially. I quote, "Proofs about its effectiveness, necessity, or other unrelated factors shall therefore not affect the debate." So noting that these words came out of his own mouth, why on earth does he decide to turn around and cite the Vietnam War (which is actually example of abusive conscription since that War wasn't necessary not to mention that the US had other means of combat which it didn't resort to) as well as "baseless conjecture" from one of the most recent potential presidential candidates? Why is he attempting to discredit the effectiveness of conscription despite earlier saying that such is irrelevant to this debate? I agree with his original proposition. This isn't about whether or not conscription is very effective but rather whether or not it can be considered just/justified. Thus, I implore you to dismiss this argument on the grounds of PRO's own resolution analysis.

Re C: This is nothing more than a repeat of Sub point A, thus, I ask that you cross apply my response to that sub point here.

CONCLUSION:

Hmm, well I wish I had myself a nice quote to present, but alas, I guess I can settle with refuting the information in PRO's quote.

". . . that you may take children from their parents, and parents from their children, and compel them to fight the battles of any war, in which the folly or the wickedness of Government may engage it"

1) Appeal to pity. 2) Hey, it's what happens when one abides by the government. They abide by its terms too and are coerced to obey its rules. Conscription is no different (the most one could argue was that it was more extreme than the usual restrained liberties, which would be a bit arbitrary I guess). Surely Mr. Webster doesn't maintain the position that most (or all ) laws are unconstitutional. If so, then I'm not even sure why he'd be complaining.

The rest of the quote either repeats the same point concerning liberty or relies on some fancy rhetoric in attempt to sway those based on emotion rather than logic as with the "appeal to pity."

And that'll do it for now.

Dynomite?
Debate Round No. 1
Brik

Pro

Round 2! Please refer to the Con's first speech to make sense of my refutation. And please don't think that my capitalized letters are an attempt at yelling – I just use them to emphasize in the absence of bold or italics.

DEFINITIONS: Cool.

RESOLUTION ANALYSIS: Great, we're in agreement. But I shall elaborate:

When I said that "necessity" should not be used as an argument in this debate, what I meant is that it is too vague. For example, the statement "It is necessary to do X to prevent Y," reveals nothing about the nature of why, nor the nature of X, nor any evaluation of whether doing X is worth the protection from Y. If the statement were "It is necessary for me to drown my younger brother so that he no longer annoys me," this may be true – but it is not just.

"LAST RESORT: I urge…when it needs conscription."

1. But does this exist? I will need more than a hypothetical situation to justify conscription. Is the maintenance of the nation's status quo necessarily the best situation for its citizens? It wasn't true in Nazi Germany. Does this mythical nation not suffer from lost morale as a result of being forced into mortal peril?

One might say by the same token that "Being prejudiced against unicorns is unjust." The issue does not exist, and therefore has no bearing on justice.

"Now when I … has pointed out."

2. But they CAN'T look at their options. They don't have the choice. They are forced into a system that jeopardizes all of their rights and one that (in every instance produced thus far) has not protected natural rights any better than voluntary enlistment. And we still don't know enough about this hypothetical nation – including whether it might even possibly exist – to prove the justice of conscription.

"Basically, …is quite just."

3. I agree that any scenario when voluntary enlistment is sufficient would be a scenario in which conscription is unjust. The problem is that there is NO situation where conscription is more sufficient than volunteerism. Give me an example of where this happens in the real world, or I will continue to disregard it as unlikely, considering the fact that the evidence presented in the first affirmative shows that voluntary enlistment has always been more sufficient than conscription.

"Keep in mind … is certainly abusive."

4. Cool, but I still don't know where (or if) this applies anywhere in the universe. And I'll talk more about what I meant by effectiveness later, since it seems to have been misconstrued (and part of that is my fault).

"B. I was going to …See my case."

5. Yes, the government restrains some natural rights, but no, it should not restrain them excessively. Military conscription is the taking away of rights to pursue an end that is no more easily pursued than it was before the rights were taken. The government is permitted by virtually every social contract theory to take away some natural rights, but none of them permit the taking or more rights than is required to maintain the state – which is basically what conscription is.

"Re A: Based on my … that conscription upholds."

6. A misinterpretation. While I did state that military conscription violates the three natural rights and is unjust, I did not state that military conscription violated justice ONLY when it violated ALL THREE of them more than volunteerism did. If conscription violated more than volunteerism in any single natural rights category (all other things being equal) it would still be unjust. I apologize for my unclear statement: I only said it because the fact of the matter is that conscription DOES violate all three to a greater extent, even though only violating one would have been sufficient to render it unjust.

7. Wait – the INTENT of preserving natural rights is not enough to make conscription just. Chairman Mao's "Great Leap Forward," was INTENDED to improve the lives of every Chinese person, but led instead to oppression, misery, and a Great Leap Backward. The INTENT of Turkey's invasion of Cyprus was to create a place where Turks could live happily, but it led to civil war, poverty, and severely damaged international relations. Intent does not make justice or injustice any more than the clothes make the man.

"Life: Refer back … be considered just.."

8. But every use is an abuse, because no situation exists where it protects rights better than volunteerism. So, even by that standard, conscription is unjust.

9. The "chance" afforded to those selected citizens is ALREADY afforded in the status quo. They can volunteer, so you're not giving them anything they didn't have already – except for a dip in morale which will affect their performance in the military. Also, the status quo is already better for the person and the nation to protect natural rights, as I have shown previously.

10. Again, intent does not make justice. Refer to #7.

"Liberty: Very much …of liberty."

11. Because this is very similar, my arguments #8-#10 can be applied. But also remember that there IS a difference between the infringement on natural rights inherent in other laws and the infringement inherent in conscription – namely, that the infringement of natural rights in conscription does not make conscription any more protective of natural rights than volunteerism. The preservation of the greatest possible sustainable amount of natural rights is not anarchy, but the American dream.

"Pursuit of Happiness: … an invading nation)."

12. If the draftees get killed, maimed, or psychologically damaged, that will most definitely infringe on their pursuit of happiness.

13. How do we know that their natural rights will be stripped away by an invading nation? Didn't happen when the USA marched on Berlin, as far as I know. In fact, if I recall the opposite occurred. One more proof that "necessity" ignores too much of the facts to be a valid argument standing alone.

"Re B: Hold on … resolution analysis."

14. Again, I was unclear, and apologize for being so. When I mentioned that "effectiveness…shall therefore not affect the debate," what I meant to impart was that something that works is not made just by virtue of its success. Looking back, I realize that I unfairly limited the debate on both sides, and some judges may want to hold me to this mistaken proposition. So here's the situation:

A. If you accept my clarification here, we can determine that conscription only poses a greater threat to the country, not a greater protection.

B. If you do not accept my clarification here, we can still disregard conscription as unjust because it violates more rights than volunteerism does. And (for the sake of preemption) don't let the CON hold me to a standard where no effects can be debated while at the same time debating the effects on his side of the resolution.

15. The Vietnam War – necessary or unnecessary – is still a proof of the failure of conscription to achieve any better results than volunteer enlistment. Whether or not we should have gone there has no bearing on whether or not our successes increased post-conscription.

"Re C: This is … that sub point here."

OK, then cross-apply my responses.

"1) Appeal to pity."

But I do not claim injustice BECAUSE of pity; I pity the conscripts BECAUSE of the injustice forced upon them. We should absolutely pity victims of injustice, and attempt to prevent any further injustice.

"2) Hey, it's what … obey its rules."

But when the government disobeys its own rules by excessively violating natural rights, the social contract as Locke theorized it declares that the citizen has no moral imperative to obey it.

"Conscription is … complaining."

Conscription is very different, because it tosses liberty to the side when voluntary enlistment is a better method and protects liberty better. Webster cried foul because of this disregard for natural rights.

That's it for my speech!
Logical-Master

Con

RESOLUTION ANALYSIS: Ah, I see. In that case, I agree.

1a. First, a situation where a country is stripped of all it's other defenses it not hard to imagine, nor is it merely a hypothetical. As for the maintenance of the nation's status quo necessarily being the best situation for its citizens, if by status quo, my opponent means the lives of the citizens in addition to the rest of their natural rights, then yes, it is.

1b. False. Unicorns may not exist in the physical world, but it is rather simple to possess prejudice against "anything", considering that anything is at very least an idea. For instance, I can be prejudiced against "Spider-Man" (as in, I am completely against the character and refuse to read or watch anything the character is associated with), but that doesn't mean I have to believe "Spider-Man" exist as anything more than an idea. The IDEA of Spider-Man exist just as the IDEA of unicorns exist, thus, one is capable of possessing prejudice against both if existence it the criteria for being able to possess prejudice. To add, all prejudice really means is "an unfavorable opinion or feeling formed beforehand or without knowledge, thought, or reason."

1c. But heck, lets say it is just a hypothetical situation. My response: So what. PRO has burden of proving it isn't just. This would mean that no matter what scenario I was capable of pointing out, he should always be able to show it is unjust. Judging from the scenario I listed, it's apparent that PRO realizes we can consider it just and is simply using his erroneous "you can't use a hypothetical situation" argument as a gambit, realizing that he'd have to accept defeat by going any other route.

2. Apologies. Wasn't completely clear. When I said "The people then have the opportunity look at their options", I was speaking in terms of the effects of agreeing or disagreeing with conscription when it is not being abused. By no means did I mean to dictate that citizens had a choice on whether or not to sign up. As for not protecting rights any better than voluntary enlistment, we must keep in mind that I'm referring to a situation where voluntary enlistment fails. To add, this debate isn't about proving which system is better (to even suggest such contradicts PRO's own resolution analysis). PRO has made it clear that a just government is one which insist upon protecting its citizens natural rights at all times. I've simply provided a means of a government still being able to do this when every other defense fails.

3. False. I gave a situation and that is when voluntary enlistment fails, there's no other defense and the natural rights of the citizens are on the line. As suggested above, I'm not obligated to cite an actual case where such has happened. But even if I were, all the times nations have been conquered after already giving their best effort to defend themselves is sufficient in terms of my ideas being applicable to the "real" world.

4. I've already answered the "real world applicability" point sufficiently, so I guess I'll respond to his "effectiveness" point later.

5. Okay, now PRO's case is starting to sound a bit contradictory. Compare what he is trying to say in this particular point to what I have quoted: "even though only violating one would have been sufficient to render it unjust."

He tells you that if a government were to restrain one right, then one could claim it is unjust, but in this point here, he is saying exactly what I based my rebuttal to his case on; he is saying that a government can restrain some rights and still be considered just. If anything, PRO is simply trying to have his cake AND eat it.

6.

Re: "I did not state that military conscription violated justice ONLY when it violated ALL THREE of them more than volunteerism did."

a)I never even insinuated that my opponent did state such. I don't even recall mentioning volunteerism.

b) See #5 as to why this point violates the law of non contradiction.

c) To a greater extent? So is PRO now suggesting that both systems are unjust? And how are we to determine what is considered to a "greater extent?" You are NOT to accept PRO's rendering of justice here as he is making it out to be completely arbitrary.

#7. Straw Man. I'm not quite sure where PRO salvaged this "intent" argument, but if you look back to my very words, you'll note that I state "True, it may endanger lives, but it is not a system with the intent of taking away lives." This does not equate to saying that "Because this system has the intent of being just, it is just." Rather, I was countering PRO's fallacious claim that conscription kills people, thus, violates the natural right which is "life."

#8. Cross apply the first section in this round since PRO is essentially making the same argument.

#9. "They can volunteer, so you're not giving them anything they didn't have already have"

Incorrect. If they are fearful of signing up for the war but are concerned with defending their own a natural rights, then this overrides any presumptions they may have about war and forces them to protect their lives. Clearly this is quite different than just allowing citizens to sit around worrying about their lives but not possessing the nerve to enlist. I reserve the right to elaborate on this point if necessary.

#10. Uh, I guess you can refer back to #7 for me as well. I'm not even certain what PRO is responding to here.

11.

a) I've refuted #8-10.
b) "there IS a difference between the infringement on natural rights inherent in other laws and the infringement inherent in conscription"

Not really. A law is a law. And I don't really need to say this again, but: Conscription is to be used when volunteerism (as well as all other defenses) fails. I'm not urging that conscription be used before anything else, thus this argument concerning which is better leads nowhere when determining whether or not conscription can be justified.

c) False. When there is no one in your life to dictate what and how you're to do things, you have a far greater amount of liberty as you're free to do as you please (for the most part anyway as I don't wanna get too technical). Basically, you have the freedom to not have to worry about laws.

12. Who says the draftees have to take up jobs that put their life on the line? There are non lethal jobs in the military. Also, tis better that they defend their rights than allow them to be taken when it comes to a last resort situation.

13. Since WW2 clearly does not abide by my "last resort" argument, attempting to use it against me is pointless.

14. I don't buy this at all and neither should you judges. Even with PRO's "redefining" of what he was talking about, it still boils down to "success rate", which would clearly mean that citing "success rates" of conscription is beyond parameters of this debate. Since I don't accept, I'll simply point out that I've already shown the errors in "B" above, but in addition, I have not once attempted to argue in favor of success rate (which is essentially an "ends justify the means approach) in order to prove that conscription is just.

15. Wrong. Because the Vietnam war wasn't a case of "last resort" ( case where all other defenses failed), PRO can in no way use it's failure against me as his example wouldn't apply to my argument.

16.

a) No, Daniel Webster did just this when he was talking about how Mothers end up having to part with their children because of conscription.

b)Fortunately, the government isn't excessively violating natural rights. We must keep in mind that we give the government the power to issue out commands so that it may protect our rights. Putting us in a position to defend ourselves when the loss of all our rights (primarily, life) is imminent may restrain liberty (no different the EVERY law does), but in exchange, protects our rights. Hence, by no means can it be considered unjust.
Debate Round No. 2
Brik

Pro

Here we go!

1a, 1b, 1c, 3: The CON states that his hypothetical scenarios are legitimate for this debate. But he fails to account for the fact that humans, when robbed of liberty, resist. This is what has undermined conscription in the past and will in the future. Unless the CON has a chemical that will invert this core idea of human nature, he must concede that conscription causes unrest in the military and domestically which negates any benefits it might provide otherwise. It makes things worse.

CRITICAL POINT: At best the CON has only shown conscription to be ambivalent – sometimes just and sometimes unjust in execution, depending on which military. But volunteerism is ALWAYS more just than conscription:

A. If military victory is indeed best for the citizens, citizens will rise to the occasion without the government having to violate their rights. But if conscripted, there would be unjust violation of rights and a less effective force, both of which are unjust.

B. If military victory would be the worst for the citizens, citizens would not fight and would be led to prosperity by the invaders. But if conscripted, they would perform poorly as soldiers – and we would still have violation of rights.

2. You say that this debate doesn't center around which system is better. But if one violates more rights than the other, it is unjust. If I can make money either by getting a job at McDonalds or by enslaving an ethnic group, which option is just? It's not both of them.

3. And when is that? I've shown you already that if a volunteer military fails, a conscripted one would only make things worse. And refer to my response to your 1A point – if there's really a danger that can and should be solved by a military, the people will rise to the occasion.

4. Then all of my responses will be above or below.

5, 6b. False. The Social Contract covers the restriction of those rights which are necessary to secure the public. But if the government excessively restricts rights in one, two, or three of those categories (when they don't have to – because in ANY case that drafts could occur, volunteerism could do it one better) then that is unjust.

This is the most basic tenet of any Social Contract philosophy – that some rights must be restricted to secure others. I don't think it's too confusing or contradictory – my use of natural rights as a basis for my case doesn't mean I am an anarchist.

6a. This is stemming from cross-examination, where (I assumed) that you thought I meant that justice was only violated when all three rights were unnecessarily abridged. It looks like this is just a misunderstanding that won't influence much.

6c. Actually, you can accept it. And here's why: a nation that uses volunteerism still violates some rights just as a government would, but preserves the most rights (which is therefore the just option) in regards to military matters. So outside of military matters, some rights would still be violated – those required to provide security. But a draft violates more rights than required to provide security – in fact, it violates so many that it DECREASES security (see above why conscription is counterproductive).

That's how you can tell when a government is being just or unjust. If it is violating an amount of natural rights that does not increase protection or decreases it (conscription being the example here), then that is unjust.

7. When you pull somebody off the street to go get shot at, people die whether you want them to or not – the intent is moot. And draftees will have to get shot at – otherwise, as can be seen in cross-examination, there will be no frontline fighters for the military.

8. Cross apply my responses to it.

9. Balderdash. If they're afraid of writing their name, then I don't want them in my military. If they're afraid of getting shot, they won't be a good soldier. And if the CON wishes to give them non-threatening jobs, see cross-examination for why this will fail.

10. I'm responding to the "intent" argument.

11a. And I've rebuilt them.

11.b Yes really. I've shown that if volunteerism fails drafts will do no better. The CON's plan of giving conscripts the easy jobs, benefits, etc. is refuted in cross-examination.

11c. No you don't. Read Hobbes. One's liberties are WORTHLESS in the state of nature because they are not protected by anything.

12. See cross-examination for why this fails miserably.

13. It still proves that the fall of a regime is not necessarily a bad thing for its citizens' natural rights. So your arguments about "last resort" aren't necessarily in the best interest of the citizens.

14. Aha! The CON has now abandoned any attempts to show that a draft has a remote chance of improving the military. He states in the previous speech that he has not argued any success rate because it is an "ends justify the means" approach. While I do not say that ANYTHING that works is just, something that has not worked in the past, has no hope for working in the future, and will AUTOMATICALLY take away more rights than necessary is absolutely unjust.

The CON advocates conscription, regardless of its empirical failings, psychological pitfalls, and oppressive, unjust nature. And while his intent may be to "save" a nation, we must recognize that this intent does not give drafts any value as government policy.

15 But that would have happened with any form of conscription, because it stems from the unnecessary violation of liberties. See Paul's evidence.

16a – This point is really irrelevant now, so I won't waste characters responding to it.

16b That would be great, if a) the CON proved that every invasion was a threat to the rights of the citizens (Berlin wasn't) and b) the CON proved that conscription can defend us, which he has not. I have shown that all the CON's clever machinations for integrating drafted personnel would hurt the military as a whole – see cross-examination.

Now let's condense things to three main reasons why the PRO win's this debate:

I: THERE IS NO REASON TO PREFER CONSCRIPTION TO VOLUNTEER SERVICE

The CON's arguments boil down to the idea that conscription ought to be available when all other avenues have been exhausted. But even if that point were reached, drafts would not be of any use. The CON says that conscription=more troops=the capability to stop a threat, but I have shown that this process would cause domestic unrest and incompetence and rebellion within the military, all of which are counterproductive to military victory.

The CON's system of easy jobs and benefits offered to conscripts would cause those front-line volunteers to either go AWOL and join as a conscript, meaning there would be no actual "fighting" force, or to rebel themselves and once again hurt the military (as pointed out in cross-examination).

Conscription, even as a last resort, would not improve a nation's chances in military matters.

II: CONSCRIPTION UNNECESSARILY VIOLATES NATURAL RIGHTS

Remember the distinction that a government is permitted to take away ONLY those rights necessary to protect the remaining rights. A volunteer system takes away no rights. A draft takes away many rights and threatens all those that remain. Plus, conscription lessens the military's ability to do its job, meaning these remaining rights, if they really are threatened by invaders, will be jeopardized as well.

A draft is outside the jurisdiction of a just government as per Social Contract theory, and since a just government can't do it, it is unjust.

III: VOLUNTEER ENLISTMENT WORKS BETTER

See my CRITICAL POINT above, where I demonstrate that whether or not rights are actually threatened, a volunteer force's response to them will still be better than a conscript force's bumbling incompetence.

Reagan was right. Hitler was wrong. Thus, I firmly urge the judges to vote PRO. Thanks!
Logical-Master

Con

1a, 1b, 1c 3:

-Alright, PRO utterly drops his points concerning why my case is illegitimate ( hypothetical argument), thus you can't vote against me for those reasons.

- I've been repeatedly insisting that all laws restrain liberty. Given that there's no real resistance (at least to the level PRO ASSUMES would come into play for those were conscripted) going on in the US right about now, this notion is clearly false. I don't have to concede on his argument that conscription causes unrest in the military. As shown in cross examination, I provided measures that would deter these instances of "unrest" actions should they have the chance of occurring and without negating the system which is conscription.

RE: CRITICAL POINT: Indeed, I shall agree that this is a critical point as PRO has just accepted defeat. We must keep in mind that HIS BURDEN is show that conscription IS unjust (no ifs or buts). If he is going to agree that I've shown there is some justness to it, then YOU SHOULD VOTE HIM DOWN AUTOMATICALLY and stop reading when I finish this sentence; his job was to show that conscription is incapable of being just.

A. Nope. Keep in mind that even as suggested by PRO, we aren't dealing with an anarchist society, thus, if military victory is indeed best for the citizens, the citizens shall turn to the government when it concerns what means ought to be used in order to achieve the goal of the citizens

B. Nope. We must keep in mind how I defined last resort. It was a situation where the nation would obliterated or by any other means compromised entirely. Citizens being treated at the hands of invaders is not the scenario I had pointed out, ergo, PRO's argument doesn't answer mine.

2. As I've explained many (MANY) times, conscription should only be used as a last resort (when volunteerism fails). My argument is not "Oh, we should just always use conscription and throw the idea of volunteerism out of the window." Thus, while using his example, it would be like a parent (who has family whose survival relies on the parent bringing home the bacon) having no other career option BUT to enslave an ethnic group.

Since PRO's example seems a bit "out there", I'll provide a more adept comparison. Let us say a single mother cannot get a job anywhere (whether it be for criminal reasons, prejudice, or her location) and has children who desperately rely on her income for survival. Looking at all of her options, she notes Both jobs require customers to violate the law, ergo putting them in a situation where the government would have to restrain their rights, not to mention both of these careers are generally considered "immoral." However, she would still be saving the lives of her children (securing their rights). Note that while using this example, I never once have to compare "prostitution/drug-dealing" with a white collar job. Ergo, my opponent's attempts to center this debate around "volunteerism vs conscription" are meaningless.

3. PRO has done no such thing. He tried arguing about the "effects" of conscription, but not only did I show how his argument was irrelevant due to the argument I made, that his sources (the wiki artical and the nzhistory link) that makes no mention of his claims (see C/X in comment section), that these problems aren't actually caused by conscription (again, note during C/x how I show that the "problems" he pointed out can be solved while still maintaining conscription), but his argument also contradict his own resolutional analysis which he created during R1. I've shut down his points in 1A, so bother looking.

4. Ditto for me.

5, 6n. Look back to how I quoted him in R2; look back to how he said that just violating ONE right would be sufficient to consider something unjust PERIOD. Thus, when he acknowledges that volunteerism still violates some rights, he should be saying that it is unjust.

6a. Dismiss.

6.c. PRO's ignores my question as I asked how we were to objectively determine "greater extent." Rather than answer, he simply repeats himself with the whole "conscription violates less rights than volunteerism" bit.

7.

a) If one is pulling someone else off the street so that they can go get shot at, then that is pretty much saying that the intent is relevant (keywords: TO get shot at).

b) See the benefits I point out for relying less on front line tactics in C/X

8. Ditto.

9. Horse radish. Part of the purpose of 12 months of basic training (as is for any draftee) is to get rid of such fears, so if that is PRO's only problem with this point, consider my argument as still standing. And I've refuted him in C/X too, so don't go looking there either.

10. I didn't label anything as #10 in the first round, so again, I have no clue what he is talking about.

11. Looks pretty torn down to me. Upon walking in, I nearly fell through the floor.

11.b Again, CON relying on C/X does him no good.

11c. This doesn't refute my position, so I'm not sure why PRO says "No it doesn't" when he still agrees that liberties aren't restrained in a state of nature (even according to Hobbes). In addition, David Hume gave Hobbe's the stomping he deserved, so I'll just cite:

12. You mean see it for why it succeeds happily.

13. Given that the USA is still functioning, it proves no such thing. And my arguments about last resort specifically say "a situation where the nation in question is at risk of being obliterated or by any other means compromised entirely." I'm pretty sure it is within the citizen's best interest not to be obliterated or compromised entirely so this rebuttal of PRO's doesn't fly no matter how you look at it.

14. Aha . . . no!

a) Although I didn't have to, I decided to entertain PRO's effects arguments during C/X, thus a clear false dichotomy on PRO's part.

b) So because PRO uses ONE example where using conscription did not produce a positive result (although incidentally, one could argue that the US's attempts were doomed to failure in the first place), that automatically proves that it will NEVER work in the future. How about Thomas Edison? After his first attempt to create the light bulb failed, that proved that he had no hope of creating a light bulb in the future as we all know that light bulbs don't exist.

15.
a) Under last resort stipulations, the US would not have been able to use the draft for Vietnam (the US's participation in said were not even remotely out of last resort, so Vietnam falls under the category of "abusive" conscription) so this is wrong.
b) I've yet to see whatever "research" Paul is using and most certainly haven't seen any from PRO.

16.
a) My point is about as relevant as PRO citing the speech in the first place. Judge as you wish here.
b) 1)See #13. 2) Simply refer back to C/X or the other times where I've countered this during the round.

RE: PRO's voters:

I: a) My response to this is point 3 verbatim. b) Refer to C/X c) Who said the front liners don't get benefits? See C/X for clarification.

II. a) This debate is not about comparing volunteerism to conscription (see Point #2 for why such a comparison is a waste of time). b) PRO yet again contradicts himself as even in this round, he has admitted that a volunteer system DOES take away rights. c) As I've shown, conscription merely restrains some form of liberty. It removes no other rights.

III. Check out my response to it.

VOTERS:

1. PRO has failed to fulfill his burden. He even admits that at most, I've shown that conscription is ambivalent in spite of the fact that his burden excludes being able to come to such a conclusion.
2. Through refuting PRO's arguments on effects (even though I didn't have to, thus, you should ignore them anyway), there is no reason for you to believe that conscription wouldn't work.
3. Since I've shown that making comparisons with volunteerism is irrelevant, you have no reason to consider conscription unjust.

Vote CON.
Debate Round No. 3
43 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
Eh screw it. This one works better here.
Posted by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
Wait, so I won this round?

Yipee! Now I get to face Darth Grievous!
Posted by symphonyofdissent 8 years ago
symphonyofdissent
Pro loses when he allows even the narrowest admission that conscription can be just in some limited cases. That was cons only burden in the round.
Posted by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
Oh yeah, and thanks for reading herr judges!
Posted by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
I wasn't even aware this debate existed. O_o

Really really old!
Posted by Johnicle 8 years ago
Johnicle
I have called in the alternate to judge...
Posted by Sweatingjojo 8 years ago
Sweatingjojo
Con, because at the core of the debate, he effectively provided a situation where it could be just, within reason, and was not sufficiently refuted.
Posted by JBlake 8 years ago
JBlake
Congratulations to both debaters for interesting and thought-provoking arguments.
Posted by JBlake 8 years ago
JBlake
Who did you agree with before the debate? Pro
Who did you agree with after the debate? Pro
-- Before and after the debate I still feel that Military Conscription is Unjust.

Who had better conduct? Con
-- I award this point to Con. Pro attempted to restrict Con on offering hypothetical situations, yet used one himself (Social Contract is a hypothetical situation).

Who had better spelling and grammar? Tie
-- This is a tie. There were no major flaws in the grammar or spelling in either argument. Both debaters displayed ample command of the English language.

Who made more convincing arguments? Con
-- The Social Contract was a weak premise for Pro to base his argument of justice in this case. Con showed how the social contract necessarily limits freedoms, and proposed a situation in which conscription was necessary. Pro's response was only to say that conscription is always unjust because it violated the three basics of the social contract, but con showed that these are limited by the social contract when necessary.
-- Pro did not refute Con's assertion that some liberties were forfeited in order to participate in the social contract, therefore negating his resolution that military conscription is unjust because it violates the social contract.

Who used the most reliable sources? Tie
-- Neither side made extensive use of any sources.

Winner (scoring based on debate.org options) - Logic-Master - 4, Brik - 0.
10 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by Vi_Veri 7 years ago
Vi_Veri
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