The Instigator
PurpleDrink
Con (against)
Winning
12 Points
The Contender
Diirez
Pro (for)
Losing
6 Points

The 2nd Amendment Would Not Protect Citizens from a Tyrannical Government

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
PurpleDrink
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/15/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,946 times Debate No: 31347
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (12)
Votes (4)

 

PurpleDrink

Con

According to The Federalist Papers written by founding fathers going over their thinking behind the Constitution, the primary reason for the 2nd Amendment is for the People to be armed should the need to resist a government that became too powerful and tyrannical. Both sides of this argument will assume this to be the intent of the 2nd Amendment and will not argue about the intent of the 2nd Amendment.

The argument will be about whether or not, now or in the future, the 2nd Amendment would be effective to deter tyranny should both A. The 2nd Amendment, as defined above, were not infringed upon any more than it already has been at the Federal level. And B. The government became tyrannical to the point where the majority of the country, excluding active duty US military who we will assume will fight for said government, became willing to physically resist it.

In the first round, my opponent taking the Pro position will submit his or her argument for why the 2nd Amendment would not be sufficient to serve its intended purpose.

In the second round, I, taking the Con position, will rebut Pro's argument and present my argument for why the 2nd Amendment would be sufficient to serve its intended purpose. Pro will address both my rebuttals and argument without adding any new arguments.

In the third and final round, I (Con) will address Pro's rebuttals and make my conclusion. Pro will make his or her conclusions.

In this format, Pro will have taken 3 turns while Con takes 2, but each will have made 1 Opening Argument, 1 Rebuttal to Opening Arguments, 1 Addressing of Rebuttals, and 1 Conclusion.

Rules:
1. No trolling.
2. The first party to forfeit a round forfeits the entire debate.
3. The format and definitions above are to be adhered to.

If reader finds any of these to have been violated by one party, with explanation, all points shall be awarded to the opposing party.
Diirez

Pro

The 2nd Amdnedment would not protect citizens from a tyrannical government. Let's be real here, I'm going to keep this short and sweet. The public cannot, or not easily, get their hands on assault rifles. Therefore, the only thing the Second Amendment would allow, in today's standards, shotguns, semi-automatic and handguns. If there was a tyrannical government, shotguns, semi-automatic weapons and hand guns will not be sufficient to take on the government. A bunch of American citizens with pistols, shotguns and semi-auto's will not be enough to take down a trained military armed with high weaponry, assault weapons, explosives and technology. Good luck fighting back when you have artillery raining down and tanks flowing in.
Debate Round No. 1
PurpleDrink

Con

Pro's only argument is that the US Military having superior weaponry and technology would overpower a resistance whose only weapons are semi-automatic rifles, pistols and shotguns. It is true that the US does have better weapons and technology currently, however, Pro failed to explain how starting off with superior technology alone is enough to beat the Resistance that I've described.

The Resistance would have two advantages.

First and most obviously, they have numbers. According to US Census Bureau, the US population is 313,914,040 as of July, 2012 [1], which means that if at least half of the population were to resist we would have at the least 156,957,020 resistance fighters. In contrast, the US Military has about 1,430,895 people on active duty [2]. In this scenario, the US Military is outnumbered more than 100 to 1.

Recently in the case of Chris Dorner in California, one man turned the entire LAPD haywire trying to track down and kill him. Although they were successful, it took a much larger personnel and use of technology than one man with semi-auto weapons. That was the LAPD vs. One Man. The resistance will outnumber the military 100 to 1.

Secondly, the Resistance is playing a defensive role as it is a new Tyrannical government that will be trying to impose its rule on the population. The Resistance can be scattered within the population and can use Geurilla tactics. It's comically unlikely that they would be standing in a Roman phalanx formation with AR-15s waiting to get carpet bombed. We can see how difficult it is fighting an embedded force with vastly inferior technology in the Vietnam War. That war was fought by the French for 11 years and then for 18 years by the USA. Both failed to conquer the communist forces who had no sea superiority and no air superiority. The Viet Cong guerillas along the north, both with inferior technology, eventually caused the western forces to withdraw, effectively defeated.

The US Government would not rain artillery down on cities for two reasons. First they destroy the resources and infrastructure that they want. Secondly, killing loyal subjects would do much to cause them to lose public support from the other half of the population. No tyranny has ever indiscriminately killed off their population in large numbers. People were targeted for race, religion, political beliefs, etc. while of course, the government having made sure to demonize them first through propaganda so the ones spared would pump their fists in the air in celebration as "those" people are slaughtered. They certainly would not use nukes on its own most prized cities.

Although the Resistance with semi-automatic weapons could succeed to resist a tyranny with semi-auto rifles, and other legal weaponry, with their numbers and favorable tactical position of embedded defense, they have the means to obtain more powerful weaponry. Military bases small and large as well as police stations with SWAT armories are scattered throughout the country. Starting from small victories and gaining more weaponry, this can snowball into greater victories, leading to the acquisition of even more weaponry. And remember this can be happening anywhere within a very large country and within short time frames of each other. It is unreasonable to think that centrally with your relatively small numbers, you could respond effectively to all of them.

I believe that an armed population of Americans could effectively resist a tyranny, although it would not be easy and could take a long time and at great loss.

[1] http://www.census.gov...
[2] http://siadapp.dmdc.osd.mil...
Diirez

Pro

You claim Chris Dorner is an example of the situation. Sure, he did turn the entire LAPD haywire, but also the LAPD didn't have significant advantage of technology over him and the LAPD doesn't have nearly the amount of killing power as the US government does. Besides, Chris Dorner didn't beat the LAPD, he just shook them up before he got killed.
In Vietnam they had the advantage of knowing the land, the US military will know the land also.
You claim the government wouldn't rain artillery on it's people? Well that didn't stop Sadaam Hussein who bombed Halabja with chemical bombs, which killed 5,000 people. Same thing happened with President Bashir in Sudan, he started bombing his own people and school's which caused wide spread fires. Or maybe Asaad's chemical bombs he put on his own people in Syria too. Those bombs contained a deadly nerve gas.
With the amount of surveying, technology and killing power the government has, petty semi-automatic rifles versus automatic rifles will not suffice.
Debate Round No. 2
PurpleDrink

Con

I brought up the Chris Dorner situation to illustrate the difficulty the LAPD had to kill a single man. My point stands that if outnumbered 100 to 1, the Resistance scattered throughout the population and armed, the situation would be hopeless for the Government. My point stands that they have neither the personnel nor the resources to deal with them all.

After 18 years, the US wasn't familiar with Vietnam? With their allies the French sharing intelligence from having 11 years experience fighting on that land? No. They lost because of Guerilla tactics and possibly numbers, the ONLY advantages the communists had, and the only advantages the Americans would have against a tyrannical government.

There are very oppressive gun laws in Sudan and Syria, removing the power from the people and so your use of those scenarios to support your argument is invalid. Per [http://www.gunpolicy.org...]: In Sudan, there are less than 5 firearms in the possession of civilians per 100 people. In Syria, there are less than 4 firearms in the possession of civilians per 100 people. Compare these to there being almost 90 privately owned firearms per 100 people in the USA. There is no comparison. Also, atrocities committed by Asaad in Syria actually led to civil war with a faction of his own military (who by the way has guns), which weakens Asaad's power. If the population were also armed, things would be even worse for Asaad.

Let's take a look at tyrannical dictatorships that confiscated guns prior to imposing their tyranny: Castro, Stalin, Marcos, Chavez, Mao, Asaad, Bashir. An armed population was a threat to their power, so they removed power from the People.

"With the amount of surveying, technology and killing power the government has, petty semi-automatic rifles versus automatic rifles will not suffice."

I've explained how it would suffice. Pro has failed to refute that and has failed to prove that the 2nd Amendment would not be sufficient to resist tyranny. And with that, I conclude and rest my case.

Thank you for the debate. I look forward to your final thoughts.
Diirez

Pro

My argument using Sudan, Syria and Iraq weren't to prove a revolution or not nor was it to show oppressive gun laws. You claimed the government would not fire artillery or bombs on its own people, so I cited three tyrannical situations in which the government bombed it's own people.
Con is taking on a very optimistic role here. She's claiming, that under this circumstance, somehow HALF, not just a small group, HALF the population of the US, which would be 156,957,020 people, would all rise up, under the same situation and beliefs. This is not only absurd, but unrealistic. Secondly, with the extensive amount of intelligence the government holds, the leaders of the resistance can be easily taken down. As well as rewards, in cash or land for people who sell out members of the opposition. It is not reasonable and no logical thinker can conclude that someone can gather half the population of America, remain in secrecy and plan and construct attacks without getting caught by the US servailence which can be done via Internet and cell phones, thereby cutting off all forms of communication, or being caught/turned in by other people and facing serious punishments. Even if somehow, the resistance could gather and not get caught, the government's jets, tanks, ships, missiles, drones and chemical's would be enough to take out the resistance.
In conclusion, I want to wrap up all of my points. There reasons why the resistance would fail and the second amendment wouldn't be enough to take out a tyrannical government is:
1. The resistance would need to unite itself. Which is unlikely that such a large group would be able to unite, considering the surveillance of the government. But, even if the resistance could gather, it still wouldn't be a guarantee that the resistance would be united. It is more probable for the resistance to split into factions in which now the factions are fighting the government and each other. Therefore, Con's argument about the numbers is invalid.
2. The US surveillance would be enough to take down the leaders and many members of the resistance. As well as rewards for members of the resistance being turned in by people too afraid of the government. As well as this being an obstacle for the resistance to overcome because of the fact this would cripple the resistance's forms of communication. Furthermore rebuting the argument of unity and numbers.
3. the resistance would be armed with petty handguns, semi-automatic weapons and shotguns while the government would be armed with assault weapons, jets, tanks, ships, missiles, drones and chemical warfare.

I want to thank PurpleDrink for allowing me to debate this subject with her and those who are reading, thank you for your time. With that, I rest my argument. Vote Pro.
Debate Round No. 3
12 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
On second thought, I will award conduct to CON because PRO's main argument was in the final round. CON also sourced, whereas PRO did not. PRO's case was exceptionally weak considering how easy it is to debunk CON's case.
Posted by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
1) CON: "the US population is 313,914,040 as of July, 2012 [1], which means that if at least half of the population were to resist we would have at the least 156,957,020 resistance fighters." Dear lord, so you would have women, children, and senior citizens fighting?

2) CON: "Recently in the case of Chris Dorner in California, one man turned the entire LAPD haywire trying to track down and kill him..." The LAPD is not the US military. Dorner was military-trained, and was able to take out several assailants before being destroyed himself, this given the LAPD's superior weapons advantage.

3) CON: "It's comically unlikely that they would be standing in a Roman phalanx formation with AR-15s waiting to get carpet bombed. We can see how difficult it is fighting an embedded force with vastly inferior technology in the Vietnam War." That's because we actually cared about civilians in Vietnam. If civilians were the actual targets, the government would not hold back.

4) CON: "The US Government would not rain artillery down on cities for two reasons. First they destroy the resources and infrastructure that they want. Secondly, killing loyal subjects would do much to cause them to lose public support from the other half of the population." 1) The USFG would not need infrastructure to support a population 1/100th the size of the civilian population it is attempting to exterminate. 2) Per your example, there are no loyal subjects. If there were, the numerical advantage would disappear from the "Resistance".

---

CON's reasoning is wholly unrealistic. PRO does bring up advanced weaponry and the population fallacy, but did not wholly refute CON's arguments. In the end, the weaponry argument is enough for me to award arguments to PRO. I really do not understand why CON believes that guerrilla warfare would have any validity when the military would more than likely just bomb resistance centers to ash from 60,000 feet in the air.
Posted by Jboughey 4 years ago
Jboughey
Of course our weapons would protect us against a tyrannical Government. If our government is oppressing us in some way we as the American people have every right to go and overthrow It. I'd like to see someone try and stop the people going against the government.
Posted by johnlubba 4 years ago
johnlubba
What about a digital goverment tyranny, like whats happening in Cyprus, all depoeitors are having a 6 or 10% automatic deduction on thier savings which is instantly deducted from thier bank accounts.. How can a gun protect you from that
Posted by Diirez 4 years ago
Diirez
I wasn't allowed to make any new arguments in the second round.
Posted by Ranch 4 years ago
Ranch
Maybe Pro should have presented the new arguments in the last round in the 1st round? Introducing new arguments that Con doesn't have the opportunity to refute is bad form.
Posted by MRReadme 4 years ago
MRReadme
Then for that matter, the 2nd amendment does suffice to protect against tyranny!
Posted by PurpleDrink 4 years ago
PurpleDrink
MRReadme: The 2nd Amendment would be required for the American people to re-establish the power of the People. They aren't fighting for the 2nd Amendment, but rather having been empowered by the 2nd Amendment, they can fight for themselves and their country (read: not government).

And tyranny as defined in the argument is simply a government that the majority of Americans would become willing to resist physically, because all other means to resist it has failed and it's worth fighting and dying for.
Posted by Daktoria 4 years ago
Daktoria
I just don't see any particular movement for the American people to unite in common around. Everyone believes the government is tyrannical for different reasons. If people revolt for the wrong reasons, others will rat them out to authorities.
Posted by MRReadme 4 years ago
MRReadme
Greetings! I would love to debate with you on this topic, but the proposed argument is very perplexing. Define "tyrannical government". Isn't tyranny the very reason for the American Revolution? So it seems to me that If the nation were in the clutches of a tyrannical government it would be cause to for revolution. In that case it will be up to every patriotic American to reestablish the power of the people, not the 2nd amendment. Although better equipped for combat, the military is but a fraction of the population. Not to mention if such an event to occur, the military itself would split into factions. Look at the Civil War. Tyrants come and go because the people will always stand up to fight for freedom.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
PurpleDrinkDiirezTied
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Total points awarded:33 
Reasons for voting decision: see comments
Vote Placed by DeFool 4 years ago
DeFool
PurpleDrinkDiirezTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Con presents an argument that does not follow... That is, it depends on too many factors and hypotheticals to be considered reliable. I noted this immediately, and was watching to see if Pro spotted the error, as well. He did, pointing out in the Final Round that there was an unacceptably long list of "if, thens." ("Con is taking on a very optimistic role here. She's claiming, that under this circumstance, somehow HALF...") This counter allows me to score arguments. The idea that deer rifles can defeat a modern and professional military requires explanation, and that explanation cannot depend on the X Factor favoring the unarmed. Might as well argue that ninjas would defeat the tanks with Lazers. I found no other clear-cut scoring opportunities for either side.
Vote Placed by xXCryptoXx 4 years ago
xXCryptoXx
PurpleDrinkDiirezTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Good debate. Both arguments were strong and has me kind of going back and forth. I decided to leave the convincing argument vote at a tie.
Vote Placed by Skepsikyma 4 years ago
Skepsikyma
PurpleDrinkDiirezTied
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Con's arguments were well constructed and thought out, drawing on historical examples. Pro failed to refute her points adequately, dropped the majority of her arguments, never cited sources, and introduced a slew of arguments in the final round (hence the conduct points awarded to con.)