The Instigator
KeepTheChange
Pro (for)
Winning
30 Points
The Contender
Juvenal
Con (against)
Losing
8 Points

The 2nd Amendment.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 8 votes the winner is...
KeepTheChange
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/13/2009 Category: Politics
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 7,921 times Debate No: 8956
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (31)
Votes (8)

 

KeepTheChange

Pro

"A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

The 2nd amendment was written for the primary reason of limiting the power of the Federal Government. When the People have the right to keep and bear arms, the government cannot take over the people in the form of a totalitarian government. The People have the ability to resist when they have the right to keep and bear arms. The Declaration of Independence states, "That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness."

The Founding Fathers knew that if and when the government became destructive of the People's Rights, The People needed to have the ability and resources to overthrow that government, and institute a new one. If The People's Right to keep and bear arms is taken away, they do not have the resources to abolish the government when that government becomes tyrannical.

I welcome my opponent's viewpoints and will present more arguments supporting the 2nd Amendment in the later rounds.
Juvenal

Con

My opponent at this point has presented one argument for consideration: If the people do not have the right to bear arms, a tyrannical government can become too controlling. I will start but rebutting this argument and then move on to my primary argument.
First, my opponent's argument relies on the assumption that the only way to stop a tyrannical government is with guns. I would argue that 1) if the US government really wanted complete control, a unorganized citizen army wielding handguns would not be enough to stop them and 2) the US government has built in checks to prevent just what my opponent fears, checks that are more effective than allowing private citizens to keep weapons.
1) A citizen army could not stop a trained government funded standing army such as the US. With tanks, missiles, radar, and more than a million fighting members, the citizens would not stand a chance. This makes my opponent's reasoning that the 2nd amendment stop tyranny fallacious and should not be given any weight in this round.
2) The US government has built in checks, such as the separation of powers, term limits, government transparency, independent state governments, and a multitude of other checks that were designed to prevent a totalitarian government. The 2nd amendment was important when these checks were not in place back in the Revolutionary War when it was written, but is now outdated and useless, providing more harm than good.
Now moving on to my offensive argument.
Primarily, the right to bear arms causes more harm than good for private citizens. 4 out of 5 violent crimes in America are performed with easily concealed and easily gained handguns. By making hand guns illegal and decreasing the number of firearms in circulation, the US government would be creating a safer society for the people of the United States, and because a government's highest duty is to protect the people, I offer the impact of creating a safer society as the impact with the greatest magnitude in the round. By showing that removing the 2nd amendment would create a safer society, I urge a negative ballot on this round.
Thank you
Debate Round No. 1
KeepTheChange

Pro

I would like to thank my opponent for accepting this debate.

1) This is the same argument that Britain used more than 200 years ago. No one seriously thought that a few rebels fighting for their right to freedom would actually overcome the largest and best Navy in the whole world, not to mention their army. But low and behold, here we are exercising our right to freedom of speech, enjoying the victory of our Founding Fathers.
Moreover, the men and women in the military are some of the most patriotic among us. They sacrifice daily protecting the very freedoms that a totalitarian government would take away. Citizens in the military would be the first ones to oppose the totalitarian government thus, refuting my opponent's argument that the "citizens" would not stand a chance. I believe he meant to say civilians.

2) Yes it is true that the U.S. government built in checks to avoid becoming a totalitarian government. But, once again, why would our Founding Fathers write in the Declaration of Independence, "That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness." They knew that it was possible that even the United States government could become too powerful.

This is almost getting off topic but I felt that I must answer to my opponent's arguments.

In refutation of your offensive argument, making handguns illegal would not create a safer society. People who commit the aforementioned violent crimes are non-law abiding citizens. The non-law abiding citizens will not give their guns up to the government whereas the law-abiding citizens will let the government take their guns, in adherence to the law. Therefore, when a non-law abiding citizen somehow endangers a citizen who follows the law, the law-abiding citizen cannot protect him/herself. Guns would then only be sold to criminals through avenues such as the black market. This would increase the amount of crime in America. Thus making it less safe. When guns are in the hands of law-abiding citizens, they can protect themselves from the CRIMINALS who should not have guns.

Thank you for providing me with a very interesting 1st debate. I look forward to your counter-arguments.
Juvenal

Con

I also would like to thank my opponent for this debate, as well as for the courtesy he is displaying. It is what sets debate aside from argument, discussion from fight.

Now moving on to my opponents arguments. I am going to move in the same order he did, in order to make the round easier to understand.
In response to the point he entitles 1):
Yes, Britain did not expect the colonies to win, nor did much of the world, but that does not in any way mean a rebellion in the US today would have any chance of succeeding and their plight is very different than during the Revolutionary War.
First, Britain was across the Atlantic Ocean. The US government would not have to ship troops and supplies from 3,000 miles oversea to meet an enemy that knows the territory better.
Second, the colonial militias did not have to fight tanks, air force, or other advanced weaponry. Perhaps they were at a disadvantage technologically, but fighting with an inferior musket is much different than using a handgun to fight a fully armored tank.

Next, to respond to his point entitled 2):
The reason our Founding Fathers put in the right to bear arms was because AT THAT TIME, the US was still a young country and the Founding Fathers feared having to fight another enemy, rightfully so considering the war of 1812. The Founding Fathers understood that there was no US standing army, and used the people as a sort of constant minutemen by encouraging the right to bear arms. But today, there has been no act of war on US soil since Pearl Harbor and the citizens have a standing army to protect them, making the right to carry firearms pointless.

Moving on to my opponent's response to my offensive argument.
My opponent, in effect, states that criminals would continue to find guns, even if they were outlawed and hte only people injured would be the already law abiding citizens. Unfortunately for my opponent, he overlooks where these guns originate. According to http://www.guncontrol.ca..., virtually all of illegal hand guns begin as legal hand guns which are then sold privately or stolen from their original owners. If the US was to place a ban on hand guns, these illegal guns would not exist and there would be less violence within the US. If a person wishes to defend themselves in their home, get an alarm, a dog, or pepper spray. If we made hand guns illegal, criminals would not be able to get them and these precautions would be enough to defend home.

I look forward to my opponent's responses.
Thank you
Debate Round No. 2
KeepTheChange

Pro

Thank you for your quick response.

You stated in one of your earlier arguments that "The US government has built in checks, such as the separation of powers, term limits, government transparency, independent state governments, and a multitude of other checks that were designed to prevent a totalitarian government." These checks were DESIGNED to prevent a totalitarian government, but that does not mean that it WILL prevent a totalitarian government from arising in the future.
"Power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely..."[1] This well-known quote by Sir John Dalberg-Acton captures my point. Even the checks and balances that the Founding Fathers put in place, as great as they are, would not be able to stop a radical, power-hungry politician and his party from becoming a totalitarian government. With 2/3 of the vote in congress, the government would be able to amend the constitution. The future power-hungry president could then appoint supreme court justices that agree with his same ideology. When the right combination comes along, it would be nearly impossible to stop the takeover, but I and many other Americans would try. I know this is once again one of those what-if statements, but it is very possible. If and/or when this does happen, I would want to have the ability and resources to fight against that totalitarian government even if the chances of victory are slim, as they were during the Revolutionary War.

Now on to the main argument.

My opponent argues, "If we made hand guns illegal, criminals would not be able to get them and these precautions would be enough to defend home."
When alcohol was made illegal in the Prohibition era[2], (1919-1933) it caused many problems. For example, the black market thrived during this time. They illegally smuggled in alcohol to the U.S. and, because of this, the consumption of liquor increased. Making alcohol illegal certainly did not stop criminals from getting it. I visited the website that you posted in your previous argument. Besides it being a biased website, promoting gun control, it did say that nearly all illegal guns start out as legal weapons. While this may be accurate, it does not state the effects that banning guns will have if and AFTER the legislation is passed to remove the 2nd amendment. The effects will be the same as when alcohol was banned. The black market will thrive not in smuggling alcohol, but smuggling guns. Therefore, it will be ONLY the criminals and the government with guns. Although nowadays, criminals and the government go hand in hand. Repealing the 2nd amendment would not stop criminals from obtaining guns. It would only stop the law-abiding citizens from getting them. Thus society would be less safe.

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org...
[2] http://en.wikipedia.org...

Thank you for being a great opponent. No matter who wins, I thoroughly enjoyed debating this issue.
Juvenal

Con

Thank you again, this has been an interesting debate.
Now moving right into it.
First, I would like to extend my response to my opponents first point. Specifically, the point saying that the American people would have no chance against the US standing army. He says that it is possible, but he does not refute the points I bring up saying why it is impossible, namely the tanks, air force, missiles, trained infantry, and numbers the US army possesses compared to the number of Americans who would rise up with their hand guns. As I said earlier, a hand gun cannot be a tank. I ask the voters to use common sense. American citizens would in no way be able to stop the US standing army if it came to that. This makes my opponent's reasoning as to why guns are important null and you should vote negative based on this alone.
But if that is not enough, I move to my offensive argumentation.
My opponent once again completely misses my point. Alcohol thrived because alcohol can be made. A mass production of alcohol in your backyard is impossible. I reiterate my point that almost all illegal weapons (the weapons in the hands of the criminals) are originally legal guns. By banning firearms, these legal hand guns would not exist making it impossible for illegal hand guns to exist thereby taking gun power out of the hands of violent criminals. Alcohol is not something that can be passed from person to person like a hand gun. Illegal alcohol did not start off as legal. My opponent has agreed to the fact that virtually all illegal hand guns start off as legal and by my logic which I have clearly shown means that there would be no guns in the hands of criminals making an alarm system, a dog, or pepper spray enough self-defense to protect a home.
I urge the voters in this round to look closely to what I argue and what my opponent refutes. I hope they will see that they do not always match up. Please look purely at what we say without adding in your own opinions and I think you will see that my arguments stand upon stronger logical analysis.
In conclusion, because I have offered a strong offensive argument and my opponent no longer has any reasons the 2nd amendment is good, I urge a negative ballot.

Thank you to my opponent for an outstanding debate.
Debate Round No. 3
31 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Dimondwoof 3 years ago
Dimondwoof
Another fallacy that Juvenal's argument is hinged is that if you declare all firearms illegal, there will be no more guns for criminals to get. From what I have been able to gather, based on FBI statistics, there are more than 200 MILLION firearms in the US. But even they don't know or sure.

Now, based on the FACT that, if handguns were outlawed, MOST people would refuse to hand over their guns, let's say that conservatively 1/2 of the people would refuse to give up their firearms (and this would include ALL criminals), that still leaves over 100 MILLION firearm on the street. That would leave 1 gun for every 3 people. And if guns were outlawed, that would mean that they would be untraceable by any law enforcement agency.

So, unless the government is willing to execute an illegal search and seizure of every gas station, residence, warehouse, farmhouse, henhouse, outhouse and doghouse in the US, there is no chance they will ever get more than 1/2 and most likely well less than 1/4 of the firearms in the US.

There is simply NO WAY to eliminate all firearms from the US. They are too much a part of our heritage and society.
Posted by Dimondwoof 3 years ago
Dimondwoof
There are several fallacies and illogical presuppositions with Juvenal's argument with the inability for civilians to "defeat our standing army" is this:

1. Not all of our military will long with the dissolution of the constitution. If this ever came to pass, it would be a full-blown civil war, not "all military against all civilians". Yes, a lot of the military might go along, maybe even most, but a large majority would not.

2. The government would not be intent on wiping out the whole of the civilian population. Just look at Afghanistan. How long is it taking us to clear out rebels? It is because our military can't just nuke everything and everyone. If for no other reason, who would be their slaves if they wiped out all of the civilians? Not only would that make this country pretty much useless to them, but it would cause even more of the military to switch sides.

This would NOT be a toe-to-toe fight where they could bring all of the nation's military to bear. They would need to be very surgical, which means NO tanks, NO bombers, NO jet fighters. Gorilla warfare doesn't depend on these types of weapons.
Posted by PainKing 4 years ago
PainKing
Maybe an armed citizenry cannot defeat an organized army, then again maybe not. For the most part most of the fighters in North Vietnam were untrained peasants, there were a few soldiers, but they threw the French out of their country and they fought the US till we withdrew. The Russians fought in Afghanistan for the better part of a decade and finally had to withdraw. They were not fighting a standing army they were fighting rebels. I'll make a bold statement, in a set piece war of Army against Army NOTHING can stand up to the United States. In guerrilla warfare though, the US doesn't do so hot, Vietnam, Somalia the current debacle in the middle east. Governments know this. Tanks, planes, machine guns and all that are great against army's, but they have a hard time stopping a few men who are hiding in among the rest of your citizens.

Here are a few quotes from some of the great gun control advocates in the last 100 years.
"political power grows out of the barrel of a gun" Mao Tz Tung
"If you kill a million people, the rest will eat out of your hand" Joseph Stalin

You can argue that guns cause crime, or not, that people don't need military hardware. It's all fluff. Malaria is probably the number one killer in the world today with almost a billion people dead by it's hand. Number two goes to tyrannical governments that decide to "purge" a section of their population. Nazi Germany, socialist Russia, socialist China, socialist Cambodia and many others. The death toll for this particular type of genocide hovers around 170,000,000. What all of these governments did to allow their pogroms was to first disarm the populace. Talk about how you would feel safer with a disarmed American if you will, I for one would rather die fighting for the Freedom my Founding Fathers found for me than die in a concentrations camp on my knees.
Posted by santanisgreat 4 years ago
santanisgreat
guns are usless,
Posted by gothmog 5 years ago
gothmog
the second admendment says the right to bears ARMS,not the right to bear handguns,rifles. look up arms and you will see military weapons. ie if the right to bear arms pertained i should be able to own and sell nuclear arms (notice the word ARMS).you canot own automatic weapons,which are again ARMS. that was decided by the supreme court.
Posted by Zeister 5 years ago
Zeister
Yes, Canada has a universal gun registry. The registry has yet to solve one crime. The Liberal Party hid the costs as a cabinet secret (nearing 2 billion $). Our Auditor General has twice commented on its lack of proven worth. Police from all services and levels have condemned the registry of long guns as being ineffective as a crime fighting tool and wasteful of scarce resources. There are approx. 5 million firearms (RCMP) missing and not registered. Mistakes are rife in the registry. Lastly, up to 95% (Vancouver) of criminal firearms are smuggled into Canada. There is no way of knowing how many illegal firearms exist. Registration in Canada has been a prelude to wholesale confiscation of privately owned firearms. Some police chiefs claim 5000 hits per day on the registry. This scary figure is grossly misleading. Any sort of police inquiry produces a hit and any firearms transaction, ie a transfer, sale, produces 3 hits. Bottom line is the registry is outrageously expensive and has NO DEMONSTRABLE OR PROVEN WORTH! Fortunately the majority of Canadians now want the long gun registry ended. Liberal lies and propaganda in support of the registry are recognised for they are.

Any serious party would review statistics from the RCMP, Statistics Canada and internal police reports for the major urban centres. For info on the situation in Europe check out crime figures compiled and published by the European Union. In Canada the OFAH and the CSSA are also reliable sources of scientific data.
Posted by critterrice 5 years ago
critterrice
I would have liked to see some real statistics utilized. It's hard to take it away from the realm of an emotional opinion without any mathematical data presented.
That being the case: My emotions tell me that no one is taking my guns away.
Posted by Lifeisgood 5 years ago
Lifeisgood
RFD
B/A: Pro.
Conduct: Tie. Good job both of you.
S/G: Tie. Nothing noticeable to me.
Arguments: Pro. This one is pretty obvious.
Sources: Pro. Pro's sources were better.
Posted by Lexicaholic 5 years ago
Lexicaholic
RFD: PRO
(1) Agreed with Pro at the beginning.
(2) Still agree with Pro.
(3) Tie. Conduct was equal.
(4) Tie. Spelling/grammar equal.
(5) Pro. Pro argued correctly the following: (1) the history of our nation is one of a weaker power committed to its ideals overcoming a stronger power committed solely to its own advancement, and this tradition is not served by accepting defeat before seemingly overwhelming odds, (2) that citizen soldiers should know when their duty as a citizen to overthrow their government outweighs their duty as a soldier to preserve it in defense of their nation, (3) that allowing those with power to utterly restrict to themselves all of those forces by which power is obtained and preserved creates a likelihood of tyranny, and (4) that where tyranny is allowed to fester the mechanisms by which it is held at bay corrode and become ineffectual. Con's best argument was, essentially, that we would have no chance, and giving that argument validity is a risk to liberty too great to take.
(6) Pro. Pro used wikipedia, yes, but Con used a statistics brief developed for Canada. Con lives in the United States. Con is debating the Second Amendment. There are lots of supporters of a gun ban in the US. Con should have used statistics prepared by such supporters, as the criminal worries of Canada are not sufficient cause to make me doubt the need of the Second Amendment. Additionally, Con's own source states that 500,000 guns of 230 million are stolen ... that's an awfully tiny ratio of stolen to legally possessed guns for Con to base his case on.
Posted by Lexicaholic 5 years ago
Lexicaholic
Reading ...
8 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Vote Placed by Yakaspat 5 years ago
Yakaspat
KeepTheChangeJuvenalTied
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Vote Placed by JonathanCid 5 years ago
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KeepTheChangeJuvenalTied
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Vote Placed by KeepTheChange 5 years ago
KeepTheChange
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Vote Placed by critterrice 5 years ago
critterrice
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Vote Placed by Lifeisgood 5 years ago
Lifeisgood
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Vote Placed by Lexicaholic 5 years ago
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Vote Placed by Volkov 5 years ago
Volkov
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