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The Contender
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13 Points

States ought not possess nuclear weapons.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/29/2010 Category: News
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,034 times Debate No: 13513
Debate Rounds (2)
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hey so i'm just totally new to this website and i'd also like to learn how to be a better debater and so if you guys have any tips feel free to add them to the end of your post or in comments section....let's get started
-LD style but not format so that's why i only allowed two rounds

Value: "Life is sacred, that is to say, it is the supreme value, to which all other values are subordinate" - Albert Einstein.
Because I agree with Albert Einstein, I affirm the resolution which states
Resolved: States ought not possess nuclear weapons. I would first like to say that I am not arguing the use of nuclear weapons nor am I arguing the existence of them in general, I am merely against the ability of a state to possess nuclear weapons.
My definitions for this round are as follows:
States- Oxford Online Dictionary defines a state as "the body politic as organized for supreme civil rule and government; hence, the supreme civil power and government vested in a country or nation."*+
Ought- Hobbes defines his ought-principles as the laws of nature which are "general rules, discovered by reason, that prescribe adopting the necessary means of self-preservation and avoiding those things which tend toward loss of one's life." (309, Kavka)*
Possess-Oxford Online dictionary defines to possess as "To take possession of, Possession is "Visible power or control over something
---Nuclear Weapon is defined as being a "weapon of mass destruction" n [which is]. a weapon intended to cause widespread devastation and loss of life, (now) esp. a chemical, biological, or nuclear weapon; usu. in pl."
My value for this round will be protecting Human Life, which is important because without this basic concern, the sanctity of all human life is vital to the continuation of the human race. Anyone whomsoever opposes this value is against Human Life and therefore in support of the destruction of the Human race. This value relates to the resolution because as former president Jimmy Carter once stated in his Nobel Lecture in 2002, "In order for us human beings to commit ourselves personally to the inhumanity of war, we find it necessary first to dehumanize our opponents, which is in itself a violation of the beliefs of all religions. … From a great distance, we launch bombs or missiles with almost total impunity, and never want to know the number or identity of the victims."
-My criterion will be JUST WAR THEORY.

Contention 1: Nuclear Weapons pose the threat of Mass Murder to innocent civilians which violate JWT.

Contention 2: While ideally states could effectively possess nuclear weapons simply for deterrence of international conflict, the reality is that we can not predict the intent or true motive of every nuclear state. Nor can we predict which states possess nukes in secrecy and therefore cannot account for or justify the possession of them.

Contention 3: States that have abolished/abandoned nuclear weapons have remained safe.

sources: Oxford Online Dictionary
Hobbesian moral and political theory By Gregory S. Kavka found here...


An excellent choice for a debate topic. Good luck to both of us!

A quick road-map for the judge/audiences:
1. Negation Case Presented
2. Rebuttal

Today, I take a firm stance on the negation of the resolved: "states ought not to possess nuclear weapons."
For the subsequent round, the value ought to be safety. To attain this value, the value criterion ought to be the maximization of deterrence of harm for citizens, because protection of people by reducing risks of potential detriments – whether it be physical, mental, or financial – best preserves the paramount value of safety. Hence, the burden of the negation is to show that nuclear weapons effectively prevent risks of harm for citizens. If I can do so, then I claim victory for this round.

• My first contention is that nuclear weapons are the ultimate tools for deterrence of warfare. Simply put, the level of security for a state immediately escalates with the availability of nuclear weapons, hence, engendering a state of sharply decreased vulnerability to militant or hostile attack from other countries. Enemy states ruminating upon the idea of assaulting a nation with nuclear capabilities will be greatly dissuaded by factors, such as the possibility of a nuclear weapon deployment as retribution and the multifarious consequences of such devastating counterattack. Without such power, countries would be at the mercy of hostile states, including those that pose risk to the United States – i.e. North Korea and Iran. Nuclear weapons obviate warfare before its onset, tremendously curtailing the chances of civilian deaths, injuries, as well as not compensating for the hefty price tag of reconstructing destructed buildings, houses, etc.

• My second contention is that nuclear weapons are efficacious in halting warfare and thus an unnecessary financial burden and further deaths of both soldiers and citizens. A paragon exemplifies this explicitly: the Hiroshima Bomb of 1945. The damage caused by the atomic bomb is miniscule when compared to the magnitude of destruction that would have cost both the US and Japan had the war not ended by the intervention of a nuclear bomb. In fact, according to the History Learning Site, the Joint Chiefs of Staff estimated that the first part of the Operation Downfall (which was the name of the series of planned invasions on Japanese grounds if the bomb was not deployed) would have caused total 1.2 million American casualties, well over one-sixth being deaths; in total, the Navy Department estimated up to 4 million deaths for American soldiers, as well as 10 million Japanese casualties (the majority of them innocent civilians). The execution of nuclear bombs during wartime would promptly terminate it, protecting a myriad of lives from harm, as well as trillions of dollars of money.

I would like to remind the judge that my adversary makes no attempt to correlate how her criterion (Just War Theory) effectively attains her value. Furthermore, since her value of "protecting human life" simply cannot occur without my criterion of "maximization of deterrence of harm for citizens," the latter is automatically the preferred criterion in this round.

O-C1: "Nuclear weapons pose [a] threat of mass murder to innocent civilians which violate JWT."
As I have stated before, nuclear weapons are actually effective in halting warfare and preventing the possibility of mass murder. Let us now consider "theoretical vs. practicality." If one looks in a utilitarian perspective, there has been absolutely zero incidents in history where people have actually been killed (or where more people have been killed by then saved) by a nuclear weapon. Even the Hiroshima's "Little Boy" ultimately guarded millions of lives from injury and death as an effective deterrence. Furthermore, other aspects, such as the "Mutually-Assured Destruction" (simply put, when two states both have access to a nuclear weapon stockpile, then they will deter each other from attack), and the fact that the international community already puts so much surveillance into countries with nuclear weapons (or ones that have professed plans to pursue their production - Iran, for instance), make the fear of this "threat" quite irrational.

O-C2: "The MAD Theory is fallacious in idea because of unpredictable factors."
Again, "theoretical vs. practicality." Nowhere in history has MAD failed. The Cold War is an epitome - if the two states did not deter each other with nuclear weapons, then a biological/mortal warfare would have surely broken out. Even North Korea, a rogue and incontrovertibly "whimsical" nation, has been repressed from launching a nuclear weapon DUE to the fact that many of its enemy states (US, Japan, etc.) have access to a nuclear weapon stockpile.

O-C3: "States that have abolished/abandoned nuclear weapons have remained safe."
This is simply because the MAD Theory. For instance, North Korea's aversion to South Korea has been long-held. However, it is widely accepted that this is due to the fact that S.K.'s close ally, US, is deterring the rogue nation with its own nuclear weapons. If North Korea did not have to fear retribution of nuclear warfare from South Korea's allies, the "most militarized nation" would obviously not hesitate to execute an attack, as its sheer militant power is far greater than South Korea's troops in both numbers and strength.

Voting Issues:
• My value criterion is automatically preferred in the round because it upholds my adversary's value and value criterion, as well as my own value.
• My two contentions both fully achieve my criterion.
• My opponent's two contentions are theoretical/hypothetical, against my evidence, which is concrete/has already occurred in history.
• My opponent's third contention again proves my contention of "effective deterrence of warfare" via the Mutually-Assured Destruction Theory.

I eagerly await my opponent's response.

Sources [in order]:'s_Army
Debate Round No. 1


smileydma forfeited this round.


TheParadox forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by BlackVoid 5 years ago
The aff never expanded on any contentions. You cant just read a tagline and be done. If you run this case at a tournament you will lose all your rounds, no offense. Just make sure you complete the case.

Neg expands his contentions and refutes the aff's taglines. Plus pro drops all his arguments, the the fact that con dropped too is irrelevant because he had nothing to attack.

Thats why I vote con.
Posted by Ore_Ele 5 years ago
I really need to learn how to read. Never mind, I see it in your post.
Posted by Ore_Ele 5 years ago
By state, do you mean one of the US states? Or a broad sense of "state" meaning any government body?
Posted by Mirza 5 years ago
Is it an LD debate?
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by TheParadox 5 years ago
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Vote Placed by BlackVoid 5 years ago
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Total points awarded:06