The Instigator
snelld7
Con (against)
Losing
14 Points
The Contender
Metz
Pro (for)
Winning
21 Points

Resolved: Vigilantism is justified when the government has failed to enforce the law

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 5 votes the winner is...
Metz
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/9/2009 Category: Society
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,164 times Debate No: 7307
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
Votes (5)

 

snelld7

Con

I stand in negation...
Metz

Pro

Draft 2. Lets see how this works

American Fiction Writer Owen Wister wrote in his book The Virginian
"When your ordinary citizen sees the justice system fail he must take justice back into his own hands where it was once at the beginning of all things. Call this primitive, if you will. But so far from being a defiance of the law, it is an assertion of it—the fundamental assertion of self-governing men, upon whom our whole social fabric is based" For This reason I must Affirm the resolution, Resolved: Vigilantism is justified when the government has failed to enforce the law.

The Value is Morality. Morality is simply defined as the differentiation between right and wrong. Morality is the obvious value as the resolution is asking a question of moral justification, in evaluating whether an action is morally justifiable we must first value Morality.

The criterion is Preserving the Will to Power:
The will to power is an individual's struggle against their surroundings that culminates in personal growth, and the ability to assert the power they hold over others. In his book Will to Power German Philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche writes: "every specific body strives to become master over all space and to extend its will to power and to thrust back all that resists its extension. But it continually encounters similar efforts on the part of other bodies and ends by coming to an arrangement ("union") with those of them that are sufficiently related to it: thus they then conspire together for power." As the will to power is an individual's struggle against their surroundings, Vigilantism is justified through this struggle against the crime that has been committed. The Will to Power can almost be applied, as sort of a rational self-interest or in which everyone works to advance his or her power. The Will of Power is actually the driving force behind all of humanity. The Urge to feel powerful is the same as the urge to feel safe, which is the primary of human actions. The reason people came together to form the first societies is so that they would feel secure and their will to power would be preserved. Thus the Will to Power is justified by the individual's existence. Were we to eliminate the Will to Power from humanity what we would have, instead of any form of prosperity, would be a total lack of incentive for progress, or even for any action whatsoever. Such a situation, where nobody exercised the will to power, would end up with everyone giving to the other, and nobody would have anything. When we preserve the will to power we allow for moral order to develop. Morals are defined by the will to power, and always have been. Why is it immoral to kill? Because we do not wish to be killed. The Will to Power dictates that morals exist and are upheld by an individual wanting to preserve his will to power and thus declaring that killing is wrong, so he would survive.

I will now provide the following definitions for clarity in this round:
Vigilantism: The act of a citizen who takes the law into his or her own hands by apprehending and punishing criminals."(Blacks Law Dictionary)
The Law: The body of rules and principles governing the affairs of a community and enforced by a political authority; a legal system: international law.(American Heritage)
Enforce: To give force or effect to (a law, etc.); to compel obedience to."(Blacks Law Dictionary)
Failed: To be unable to (Princeton)

I will offer the following observations for further clarity:

1. There is a definite difference between what is Justified and what is Just. Justified simply implies allowable, that is it can be done even if it is not the best option. So in other words it doesn't have to be right, it just cannot be wrong.

2. It is the Mutual burden of both Aff and Neg to prove their side as a general rule, not an absolute. Thus neither side may circumstantially negate or Affirm but rather must prove their side as a general rule. This is to ensure a level playing field for both sides and to prevent abuse.

3. The resolution States that the government has failed to enforce the law. "The Law" does not mean that it has failed to uphold a specific law otherwise it would require an antecedent. An example of one such government is almost seen in Brazil. In Brazil, as few as 1% of robberies are successfully investigated by the police. (Paulo Sergio Pinheiro, American Academy of Arts and Sciences) It is a situation such as this that the resolution asks us to place ourselves in, except that it is expanded to meet the entire legal system of the country in question. Because of this we have to see that the legal system and subsequently the government, has no power to keep order.

Contention 1: The Government in question has sacrificed its monopoly on the Will to Power and thus the Vigilante is Justified.
Under a governmental system the government is the highest power, thus has the ability to apply and punish laws. It has what you would call a monopoly on the Will to Power. However laws, when they cannot be enforced should have no hold over men. As Philosopher Thomas Hobbes Articulates in the Leviathan "Covenants, without the sword, are but words and of no strength to secure a man at all. Therefore, notwithstanding the laws of nature, if there be no power erected, every man will and may lawfully rely on his own strength and art for caution against all other men." In other words in the Laws cannot be upheld man must rely on his own strength in order both to survive and to prevent a total collapse into anarchy. If the Government, the highest power that asserts its power on the citizens according to its structure, has failed, the vigilante is justified in attempting to maintain order. So what we see the Vigilante actually doing is keeping the already weakened society from degrading into total anarchy, and attempting to maintain some degree of order Thus, Vigilantism is justified when the government fails to uphold the law.

Contention 2: Vigilantism is a self-regulating practice
The Impacts the negative will give you actually will not exist in a system as described by the resolution. This is because vigilantism is self-regulating.
Economist Adam Smith gave the idea of the "invisible hand" as a regulator for the free market. The Economic Theory behind the invisible hand is that because the driving force behind a free market economic system is profits company's will try to maximize their own profits and the market will settle on a price of product distribution, an equilibrium that is beneficial to producers and consumers alike. This same economic concept of the "invisible hand" can be applied to vigilantism in this resolution. The driving force behind human organizations is safety. Everyone desires to be safe and secure in his right. So if the government fails and vigilantism is used these vigilantes, just like companies in Smith's free market system, need to find an equilibrium point where society will flourish. If a vigilante becomes too destructive of rights than other will step in and take him down in turn. As Nietzsche writes in Beyond Good and Evil "The "individual" stands out, and is obliged to have recourse to his own law-giving, his own arts and artifices for self-preservation, self-elevation, and self-deliverance. The Will to Power encounters similar efforts on the part of other bodies and ends by coming to an arrangement, this union of ideas is the foundation of societal moral order" Philosopher Robert Nozick wrote that "the invisible hand explanation for a minimalist society shows how, for the sake of their own rights, citizens must be respectful of the rights of others" So any vigilante that abuses the system will be pulled down in turn, just like the criminals he sought to stop.
Debate Round No. 1
snelld7

Con

snelld7 forfeited this round.
Metz

Pro

My opponents account was cancelled
Debate Round No. 2
snelld7

Con

snelld7 forfeited this round.
Metz

Pro

Again... Vote Pro
Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by gamingmaster42 8 years ago
gamingmaster42
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Posted by snelld7 8 years ago
snelld7
It's fine bro. Take as much time as you need.
Posted by Metz 8 years ago
Metz
Will Post in probably a day... Maybe Sooner, but I will post
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Nails
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snelld7
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