The Instigator
Bound_Up
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
Hayd
Con (against)
Winning
6 Points

The 1st Amendment does not protect free speech

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
Hayd
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/8/2016 Category: Politics
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 400 times Debate No: 86258
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
Votes (2)

 

Bound_Up

Pro

There's a sentiment among some that makes them say things like:
"You can't tell me to shut up or call me stupid because of what I said. The 1st Amendment protects free speech."

Actually the 1st Amendment just prohibits Congress from passing certain kinds of laws, like ones that take away free speech. "Congress shall make no law...abridging the freedom of speech."

Doesn't say that state governments can't pass laws that take away free speech. Or that local governments can't. Or that your school can't, or your book club or your business or boss. They're all free to throw you in jail or detention or shun you or fire you, as far as the 1st Amendment goes.

Here, let me recognize that you might appeal to something ELSE to oppose these. Decency or respect or something. Just not the 1st Amendment, since it only restricts Congress' actions.

And it's still another level up to say that an INDIVIDUAL can't do something about your speech. Sure, they can't break laws to injure or rob or defame you. But they bloody well can call you names or yell at you, as far as the 1st Amendment goes. How on earth do you get from "Congress shall make no law" to "Citizens of the United States shall never?"

And then besides being wrong about all that, even if they were right about it, they'd still be wrong.
Because if the 1st amendment protected free speech, instead of just telling Congress what kind of laws it could pass, then it would protect the free speech of the other people in your arguments and squabbles.

You would be free to say whatever you want...
and then they would be equally free to say whatever they want, including how stupid you were or that you should shut up.
And then you can say it back. And you can even say something silly like "You can't say that to me, we have free speech." And you would be wrong to do so. And they would be free to say so. Like I just did.

Yeah, I mean, wow, if you just think about that phrase for a second... "You can't say that, we have free speech."
Hayd

Con

I am Con the resolution, meaning that I am arguing that the first amendment does protect free speech. The BoP is entirely on Pro since they instigated and are making a claim.

Pro's argument is that only Congress cannot remove your freedom of speeach, but that state authorities can. The important thing here is that Pro concedes the entire resulution; Con concedes that the First Amendment (FA) protects Congress from taking away your freedom of speech, thus the First Amendment protects your freedom of speech. Even if State and local governments can take away your freedom of speech, the FA still "protects" freedom of speech.

Debate Round No. 1
Bound_Up

Pro

If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?

Some say yes, because it produces vibrations through the air.

Others say no, because it doesn't produce an auditory experience.

But they don't actually disagree about what's going on in reality. Both of them expect the fall to produce vibrations in the air, and not auditory experiences.

Meaning they're not actually arguing about what reality is like, they're merely arguing over which words to use to describe it.

It is my impression that we don't disagree as to how reality functions. We both expect Congress to be prohibited from limiting free speech, and not other things to be prohibited from limiting free speech.

So we're just using the word "protect" differently, like the arguers above might use the word "sound" differently.

I'm satisfied with the discussion as is; we can forward it to the end, unless you want to add more, or maybe I've misunderstood your position.
Hayd

Con

It is your burden to show that the first amendment does not in any way protect our freedom of speech. I showed that it does by prohibiting Comgress from violating it. Do you concede the debate then?
Debate Round No. 2
Bound_Up

Pro

Do you think we disagree about something?

It's my impression there is no debate, we just happened to use different words to refer to the same thing.
Hayd

Con

Yes, we do disagree. You are arguing that the first amendment does not protect our freedom of speech in any way, and I am arguing that it does. I have negated your case and you have dropped my rebuttals, I win
Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by Sincerely_Millenial 1 year ago
Sincerely_Millenial
There is one exception to a State law overwriting a federal law and that is if the law infringed on the people's rights illegally and the State wrote a law meant to restore those rights to the citizens.
Posted by Sincerely_Millenial 1 year ago
Sincerely_Millenial
No State or Local government can legally make a law that goes against a federal law, especially within the Bill of Rights which was written to specifically protect the citizens of the United States of America not only from the federal government, but from any unlawful governmental institution.
Posted by MagicAintReal 1 year ago
MagicAintReal
You said:
"The 1st Amendment just prohibits Congress from passing...laws that take away free speech"

Then you said:
"Doesn't say that state governments can't pass laws that take away free speech"

Do states have congress?
If yes, then this applies to sates too.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by famousdebater 1 year ago
famousdebater
Bound_UpHaydTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro's arguments indirectly conceded because of his agreement with Con's burden.
Vote Placed by The-Voice-of-Truth 1 year ago
The-Voice-of-Truth
Bound_UpHaydTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro's arguments supported the burden held by Con, and is thus an unannounced concession. Pro made no arguments supporting his side, and Con correctly shows that Pro is arguing for him.