The Instigator
MoonDragon613
Pro (for)
Losing
36 Points
The Contender
JustCallMeTarzan
Con (against)
Winning
38 Points

The Death Penalty Ought to be Banned

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/9/2008 Category: Society
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 3,334 times Debate No: 3151
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
Votes (18)

 

MoonDragon613

Pro

The Death Penalty ought to be banned.
A. It is cruel and unusual
B. Innocent people die
C. It improves our relationship with other Western Democracies

A. It is cruel and unusual.
Ought being a moral term, not legal, I'm not going to mention the Constitution or the 14th Amendment (which applies the Bill of Rights to state governments). I am though going to show why the death penalty is cruel And unusual.

It's cruel because it's a terrible way to die. The victim is made a spectacle of, with the death audienced by political figures and journalists. The victim is tied down and forcibly injected with poison. The victim is given months, perhaps years, for the weight of impending extinction, a hopeless type of wait where life loses meaning since it's a death that cannot be deflected. And of course it's cruel because it's a view shared by many in both America and abroad.

It's unusual because we are the Only Western Democracy where the death penalty is legal. Most nations with governments and laws heavily influenced by the Enlightenment ideals of Locke or Montesquieu, have eschewed the death penalty, making its use in America therefore unusual.

B. Innocent people die
People are convicted of crimes, including capital crimes, on a regular basis. But despite everything possible to ensure a fair system where criminals are convicted only when the evidence is convincing beyond all reasonable doubt, let's face it, the jury, even when there's 12 of them, are still only human. Of the inmates on death roll today, how many are guilty? Most of them probably, but for the State, which exists to protect the people, to execute an innocent individual? That's a monstrosity. A perversion of what the State stands for.

Furthermore, as time progresses and criminal forensics technology becomes more and more advanced, our understanding of what actually took place in a crime scene becomes more and more accurate. DNA testing is just the first step. If we sentence those convicted to life imprisonment, then we give advances in forensics technology the time it would take to conclusively vindicate or convict a felon. Life sentences increases the likelihood of innocent convicts being vindicated.

C. It improves our relationship with other Western Democracies

Strong diplomatic relations are useful. It never hurts to have a good buddy around. With the steady weakening of the American dollar to the Euro, and with the European Union poised to become a huge force in the international economy (which in truth it already is), the furthering of relations with the European Union is worth more than killing a few hundred inmates who might be innocent isn't it? What's more important, the economic health of America / potential allies for our impending invasion of Iran? Or the lethal injections of potentially innocent falsely convicted Americans who would otherwise be imprisoned and kept safely away from society even if they were guilty?
JustCallMeTarzan

Con

You make an excellent argument against the death penalty - this should be a very interesting debate... I'll keep to your three objections and try to respond to your points in them.

A. It's Cruel and Unusual.

>>"Ought being a moral term, not legal"

That is an unwarranted assertion, considering the system that determines cruelty and unusual-ness is a legal system. Determination of cruel and unusual must stem from a legal and objective source rather than a moral ideology. What is moral for one person may not be for another... case in point - polygamy is usually considered immoral, but used to be perfectly fine according to Mormonism. Such division cannot be present in a courtroom.

>>"It's cruel because it's a terrible way to die. The victim is made a spectacle of, with the death audienced by political figures and journalists. The victim is tied down and forcibly injected with poison. The victim is given months, perhaps years, for the weight of impending extinction, a hopeless type of wait where life loses meaning since it's a death that cannot be deflected. And of course it's cruel because it's a view shared by many in both America and abroad."

The way people die isn't what the issue here is. You're arguing that lethal injection is cruel - not that capital punishment is cruel. I'm interested in capital punishment on its face, not how it's applied. The point you make about waiting around is a failure of the judicial system. A death sentence should be carried out immediately upon deliverance. Granted, there should be some leave for appeal, but if there is a unanimous decision by the jury, there is no reason the criminal should not be killed within an hour of leaving the court room, and certainly not more than 24 hours. Again - you're arguing specifics, whereas I'm interested in talking about capital punishment on it's face. Lastly, I'm not sure why many people viewing something as cruel makes it objectively so... many people view nature as cruel, but that does not make it objectively cruel or evil. Perhaps cruelty can be granted as a social construct, but then again, capital punishment as a deterrent and necessary evil is part of that social contract the public has implicitly signed.

>>"It's unusual because we are the Only Western Democracy where the death penalty is legal. Most nations with governments and laws heavily influenced by the Enlightenment ideals of Locke or Montesquieu, have eschewed the death penalty, making its use in America therefore unusual."

In the global scope, it's not unusual. There are three competitors for the Global Hegemony - the US, the EU, and China. In the US and China, the death penalty is legal, and in China, it's a powerful deterrent to crime. One can easily argue that the reason it's not more powerful in the US is because we're pretty wishy-washy about implementing it. As far as Enlightenment philosophy, why are these philosophers so much more valuable than Eastern philosophers that we need to follow them to the exclusion of other ideologies? America is the melting pot, both of culture and philosophy. Our practices are not unusual simply because other Western democracies don't do what we do. Other WD's do a LOT of stuff we don't do, and we call them unusual... who's right?

B. Innocent People Die

>>"People are convicted of crimes, including capital crimes, on a regular basis. But despite everything possible to ensure a fair system where criminals are convicted only when the evidence is convincing beyond all reasonable doubt, let's face it, the jury, even when there's 12 of them, are still only human. Of the inmates on death roll today, how many are guilty? Most of them probably, but for the State, which exists to protect the people, to execute an innocent individual? That's a monstrosity. A perversion of what the State stands for."

Yes, indeed, they are still human, and in principle, I agree that the execution of innocents is a pervasion of the duties of the State. However, the flaw here is not in capital punishment, but in the state's application of it. A simple solution to this problem would be to only allow the execution of criminals that either plead guilty or receive a unanimous jury verdict by a jury larger than 12... We can never eliminate the uncertainty from the system, but after a point, there's nothing more that CAN be done to ensure that there are NO innocents being harmed by the state. When capital punishment is blamed for the death of an innocent, it is akin to blaming the gun for killing a man, while ignoring the other man that fired it. Take away the gun, and you save the innocent man, but make it easier for other, NOT innocent men to take advantage of the man you take it from.

>>"Life sentences increases the likelihood of innocent convicts being vindicated."

It also increases the likelihood that my taxes will be used to keep a convicted child molester or rapist or sociopathic killer alive. I'm not going to pay for that if I don't have to.

C. It improves our relationship with other Western Democracies.

>>"The furthering of relations with the European Union is worth more than killing a few hundred inmates who might be innocent isn't it? What's more important, the economic health of America / potential allies for our impending invasion of Iran? Or the lethal injections of potentially innocent falsely convicted Americans who would otherwise be imprisoned and kept safely away from society even if they were guilty?"

The EU and the US are sufficiently close that our having a death penalty won't really affect the relationship, either positively or negatively, so the point is kind of moot. As far as economic health is concerned, we need to be more focused on pleasing China than the EU - after all, China is the most favored trade partner, not the EU.

While I dread the day we invade Iran if we indeed do, the EU will not help regardless of the situation. We MIGHT get help from the UK, Danes, Poles, and maybe Canada if we're lucky... NATO will not sanction another invasion in the Middle East, and the UN security council will never give us a go-ahead for it either. France and China will be diametrically opposed to it, and the international community will be highly displeased as a whole...

So actually, balanced against the evidence you present for pleasing the rest of the West, it's actually not that compelling that we should stop using capital punishment. You present the alternative of life imprisonment... I assume that means with no chance of getting out on good behavior and no chance they'll escape. In a properly structured system, that should be FAR more expensive than simply killing a killer, and that's kind of a problem for me as a taxpayer - I'd just as soon kill the killer than keep him alive.
Debate Round No. 1
MoonDragon613

Pro

Thank you for accepting the challenge. I hope this debate would prove more interesting than the last one on this topic.

A. It is Cruel
My opponent argues against the cruelty of capital punishment as follows:
"You're arguing that lethal injection is cruel - not that capital punishment is cruel." and "I'm not sure why many people viewing something as cruel makes it objectively so"

My response to the first objection is that it is absurd. Lethal injection is a subset of capital punishment. And by subset, I mean Lethal injection represents 99% of capital punishment in the United States over the past 5 years. To distance lethal injection from capital punishment is like saying the Nazis were kind hearted and compassionate just because Schindler was. If you think of a way to make capital punishment that people conceive to be humane, then kudos to you. But until that method becomes used, and used in significant numbers, Capital Punishment is still a cruel and inhumane institution.
Because in America, Lethal Injection IS capital punishment.

To the second objection, well, actually ... that Is how we define something to be cruel. Public perception. At one time, the stockade was considered appropriate, but now it's considered cruel. At one time beating one's child was considered appropriate, now it's considered cruel. There is ultimately no objective measurement of cruelty. The only measurement of cruelty is public perception.

B. It is unusual
In regards to it being unusual, my opponent argues "America is the melting pot, both of culture and philosophy." He says, we should support capital punishment ... because China does it ... and has the audacity to suggest somehow capital punishment is some major tenet of Eastern Philosophy.

I suppose his arguments have merits. Of course ... if we were to accept them ... pray tell me, what exactly does qualify as unusual? I mean, if we're going to use China's standards of punishment ... wouldn't that effective nullify the 8th Amendment? To accept his melting pot (crack pot) ideology, both the states and federal government should then have the right to impose torture ... on American citizens. So now, my opponent has two choices. He can either retract and claim the death penalty IS unusual. Or he can try here to debate the use of torture is NOT unusual. And since torture is Not Cruel AND Unusual, it should be legal in the United States.

C. Innocent People Die.
"We can never eliminate the uncertainty from the system, but after a point, there's nothing more that CAN be done to ensure that there are NO innocents being harmed by the state."
He's right, that AFTER A POINT, there's nothing more that can be done to ensure no innocents are being harmed by the state. But are we at that point? Death is unfortunately irrevocable. People vindicated can be released from prison. People executed ... well ... they can't. As I stated in my opening: "as time progresses and criminal forensics technology becomes more and more advanced, our understanding of what actually took place in a crime scene becomes more and more accurate."
I am not blaming the criminal justice system (at least not here). The truth is, keeping people in prison longer increases the chances of false positives being surfaced. Killing people increases the chances of false positives being killed which, as my opponent agrees is "a pervasion of the duties of the State."

D. Taxes will be used to keep a convict alive.
"It also increases the likelihood that my taxes will be used to keep a convicted child molester or rapist or sociopathic killer alive."
Ahhh, so many things wrong with that sentence I don't actually know where to begin. First of all, the death penalty does not apply, ever, to child molesters or rapists. Second of all, ... let me get this straight ... you want to kill people ... because you don't feel like paying taxes .........
You know what? I don't feel like paying social security. I can invest my money perfectly fine. Let's kill the old people, since ... "I'm not going to pay for that if I don't have to."
Not even Republicans will stand behind the statement we kill convicts (along with falsely convicted innocents) because we'd rather kill them then pay to keep them in prison.

In fact, let's get rid of prison altogether. Keeping people in prison is expensive. Why not revert back to whips or the rack? I am willing to bet that if we whip / rack people convicted of felonies, it would be sufficiently effective. Or how about we attach electrodes to convicts and electrocute them to teach them the consequences of crime. Then we would save even more money. And You, as a taxpayer, well, would that make you happy?

E. Closer relations with Western Democracies.

My opponent raises two points.
1. "The EU and the US are sufficiently close that our having a death penalty won't really affect the relationship, either positively or negatively"

and 2. "As far as economic health is concerned, we need to be more focused on pleasing China than the EU"

As to the first one, my opponent makes my points for me. Dreading the day we invade Iran, we "MIGHT get help from the UK, Danes, Poles, and maybe Canada". These Western Democracies are the only people who MIGHT support us in further conquests. Wouldn't it be a gesture of good will to further our good relations by showing America also cares about human life?

And secondly .... I don't actually see why China cares whether or not we impose the death penalty. Instituting the death penalty does not help or hinder our relationship with China, one way or the other. The Chinese government, unlike the British government, is not swayed by the liberals who see capital punishment as an abhorrent and barbaric practice. Nor is it run by blood thirsty monsters who take delight in state sanctioned killing ... So I don't actually see the second point.
JustCallMeTarzan

Con

A. It is Cruel

My opponent has graciously conceded this point with his quote: "The only measurement of cruelty is public perception." Since capital punishment enjoys an approval rating of between 60 & 70% in public perception according to Pew and GALLUP, it is therefore not cruel. (http://www.deathpenaltyinfo.org...) & (http://pewresearch.org...)

B. It is unusual

>> "we should support capital punishment ... because China does it ... and has the audacity to suggest somehow capital punishment is some major tenet of Eastern Philosophy."

How interesting that you've completely warped what I said. Lets look at my text again...

"In the US and China, the death penalty is legal, and in China, it's a powerful deterrent to crime." - Irrefutable fact.
"As far as Enlightenment philosophy, why are these philosophers so much more valuable than Eastern philosophers that we need to follow them to the exclusion of other ideologies?" - Valid question. Eastern and Western are the two major schools of thought. What else should I compare it to?

In twisting my words to his own use, my opponent has accomplished nothing other than do confuse the readers. He seems to have missed the point entirely - "Our practices are not unusual simply because other Western democracies don't do what we do. Other WD's do a LOT of stuff we don't do, and we call them unusual... who's right?"

C. Innocent People Die.

>> "I am not blaming the criminal justice system (at least not here). The truth is, keeping people in prison longer increases the chances of false positives being surfaced. Killing people increases the chances of false positives being killed which, as my opponent agrees is "a pervasion of the duties of the State.""

Innocent people die in war too... should we then stop fighting? Innocent people dying is not a NECESSARY side effect of capital punishment, and cannot be introduced as though it is. When it occurs, it is a failure of the state. While you are not blaming the justice system, it is clear that the justice system is where the fault lies. In a perfect justice system, no innocents would be executed.

D. Taxes will be used to keep a convict alive.

>> ""It also increases the likelihood that my taxes will be used to keep a convicted child molester or rapist or sociopathic killer alive."
Ahhh, so many things wrong with that sentence I don't actually know where to begin. First of all, the death penalty does not apply, ever, to child molesters or rapists. Second of all, ... let me get this straight ... you want to kill people ... because you don't feel like paying taxes"

Sigh... once again twisting my words. Forgiving the fact that molesters and rapists are not killed (though they should be), I see no reason why I should be forced to pay taxes to keep someone who has killed someone else alive. Actually... I'm going to kill your parents, then ask you for money to keep me alive. Are you going to pay? I think not... Nobody "stands behind" the tax argument as the only argument. It's merely a supplement, and I'm not sure why you're suggesting that is my only platform.

BTW - I don't like the idea of paying for social security... but that's just me.

E. Closer relations with Western Democracies.

>> "As to the first one, my opponent makes my points for me. Dreading the day we invade Iran, we "MIGHT get help from the UK, Danes, Poles, and maybe Canada".

Not sure how this in any way made your point for you - lets look at the quote in context - "The EU and the US are sufficiently close that our having a death penalty won't really affect the relationship, either positively or negatively, so the point is kind of moot." So it doesn't really matter whether or not we have a death penalty - other countries WILL NOT help invade Iran. The Brits, Poles, and Danes MIGHT, but the death penalty really has no bearing at all on that.

>> "Instituting the death penalty does not help or hinder our relationship with China, one way or the other. The Chinese government, unlike the British government, is not swayed by the liberals who see capital punishment as an abhorrent and barbaric practice. Nor is it run by blood thirsty monsters who take delight in state sanctioned killing ... So I don't actually see the second point."

You use the same logic to discount the second point that I use on the first. Thank you for verifying that line of reasoning as valid. And funny story about the British government being swayed by liberals... the British government, by and large, is A LOT more liberal than the US. In fact, the US has ABSOLUTELY ZERO left-wing parties (except the tiny communist & socialist)... the UK does. So this nonsense about political sway is irrelevant...

Both points under this section are indeed moot and irrelevant as my opponent conceded about the second one.

*****************************************************

Now if you want to argue Enlightenment philosophy of Locke and Montesquieu, it's interesting that Locke actually justifies punishment including death...
Debate Round No. 2
MoonDragon613

Pro

Closing Remarks:

Why do humans organize into societies? Some would say the foremost of the duties of the government is to protect the life. And in essence, this is what capital punishment is about. Looking from the prospective of the United States, does our capital punishment protect the life of our people or take the life of our people?

Before we begin, my opponent slipped this statement into his arguments, hoping it would go unnoticed.
"In the US and China, the death penalty is legal, and in China, it's a powerful deterrent to crime." - Irrefutable fact."
And then he just goes on as if by calling it a Irrefutable fact, it would become so. That the death penalty is a "powerful deterrent" to crime is NOT an irrefutable fact. Just because my opponent wishes it was an irrefutable fact does not make it so. I challenge all readers to scrutinize his arguments, and they will find NOTHING to support this "irrefutable fact".

My first set of arguments surround itself on the words "cruel and unusual". Our founders drafted the 8th Amendment to restrict the powers of our government by specifically banning the use of cruel and unusual punishment. So IS capital punishment Cruel And Unusual?

After lengthy discussion, my opponent finally responds with a link. Americans were asked the following question: "Are you in favor of the death penalty for a person convicted of murder?" They were NOT asked if they thought state sanctioned execution was cruel.

It is a fundamental principle, taking away someone's right to life is awesome. It is why we have the criminal justice system in the first place, to prevent this cruel act from taking place. It is why the death penalty exists in the first place isn't it? To prevent the death of others?

But of course to persuade you the death penalty ought to be banned, it must be cruel AND Unusual.

Here my opponent and I argued whether or not it was unusual. I argued that the United States is a Southern Democracy. In this community, the imposition of capital punishment was unusual. My opponent replied that compared to China, it was not unusual. Because somehow Eastern philosophy embodies the death penalty.

But in which community do we belong. Are we a communist police state or a democracy? Is our country and government organized following the principles of Montesquieu or Confusious?

If the voters believes that we belong in the same group as Communist China, then by all means, I concede this point. And by extension, whatever Communist China believes to be appropriate punishments become usual in the United States. But I for one believe that as Americans, we hold kinship with the countries of Western Europe, with Canada and England, with Democracy, Moderated Capitalism, and most of all, a healthy respect for human rights, human liberties, and the value of human life.
----------------------------

Putting that aside, we have the issue of "false positives", or innocents on death roll. My opponent has brushed it off as irrelevant, saying that it is a consequence of our justice system, not our punishment system. `And were it a incarceration, he would be right. Because those who were falsely incarcerated could be freed. If there was some egregious wrong doing, they could even be recompensed for the harm they were caused.

But if they were executed, there is no justice. There is no compensation. Execution is permanent, it makes for wrongs that cannot be righted.

My opponent argues that they should be executed because he doesn't want to pay to keep them in prison. I assume that he means only for prisoners with life sentences. And I responded with the challenge, "Why not revert back to whips or the rack?" I mean I don't see the need to have prison at all using his logic. Why not just beat our convicts repeatedly?

To this my opponent had no reply. Because there is no reply. Following his brand of logic will reduce America to the type of police state we abhor. One we must be ever vigilant in defending against.
----------------------------

My third argument was that furthering diplomatic relationships was more than killing convicts. My opponent has lent credence to my point with the unambiguous statement that "the British government, by and large, is A LOT more liberal than the US."
Because they are a lot more liberal than we are, they care greatly about human rights and how every individual is entitled to the right to live.
Take a look at this, from the EU Website: http://www.eurunion.org...
My opponent's claim that the EU does not care is baseless. In fact, Abolition of the death penalty is a requirement for countries seeking EU membership.

China has never ever posted information on its government website saying it was concerned over the lack of executions in the European Union or how it feels the United States is not executing or torturing enough prisoners. The idea that China only befriends countries that execute prisoners is ridiculous and both unsupported and unsupportable.
----------------------------

During this debate, I have made 3 independent points supporting the resolution that the Death Penalty ought to be Banned. Through cogent arguments, I have justified and defended my points against my opponent. Should I have triumphed in even One of these points, I have won the debate since my opponent has raised no true independent points of his own. And since I have prevailed in all 3 points, I am the clear winner of this debate.

-Hear me Roar!
JustCallMeTarzan

Con

>>"Why do humans organize into societies? Some would say the foremost of the duties of the government is to protect the life. And in essence, this is what capital punishment is about."

Actually, people organize because none of us are self-sufficient and we need each other and the structure of government (Plato's Republic). The first function of the state is to provide security for the people, and as you say, this is indeed what capital punishment is about. The state has the duty to administer justice as per the social contract of the populace. So let's examine how justice can be administered according to John Locke...

"Besides the crime which consists in violating the law... whereby a man so far becomes degenerate, and declares himself to quit the laws of human nature."
"And any other person who finds it just may also join with he who is injured, and assist him in recovering from the offender so much as may make satisfaction for the harm he has suffered."
"It will perhaps be demanded, with death? I answer, each transgression may be punished to that degree, and with so much severity, as will suffice to make it an ill bargain to the offender, give him cause to repent, and terrify others from doing the like."
John Locke, Second Treatise of Government

In short, when someone commits a crime that breaks one of the laws of nature (i.e. kills someone), then that person declares himself to have given up the rights he has violated in another. Anyone finding the cause of exacting retribution just may recover from the offender so much as to be satisfied that the offender has been punished appropriately. The death penalty is therefore appropriate when the wronged party feels it necessary to seek it, no matter if the offender repents or not - remember, he has already voided his right to life by killing another.

As far as China goes, it would do you well to take a comparative politics class - while they are actually considering cutting back on the death penalty in China, they are reluctant to let it go because it DOES indeed work as a deterrent. China is waiting for a more civilized society before removing what it considers to be an effective deterrent to crime. Just a link - the end of this article references the ideology I refer to (http://www.chinadaily.com.cn...) - took me about 2 mins to find.

>>"Our founders drafted the 8th Amendment to restrict the powers of our government by specifically banning the use of cruel and unusual punishment. So IS capital punishment Cruel And Unusual?"

At the time the Constitution was written, capital punishment was used in the United States. The fact that it says "cruel and unusual" instead of "death" is indicative of the framers' intent to prevent the use of torture as punishment - things like being thrown in a dungeon for weeks and starved to death or put on a stretch rack. If they had meant "no death" they would have said "... nor punishments abridging the right to life inflicted."

>>"It is a fundamental principle, taking away someone's right to life is awesome. It is why we have the criminal justice system in the first place, to prevent this cruel act from taking place. It is why the death penalty exists in the first place isn't it? To prevent the death of others?"

Anymore, the focus in the United States is moving from deterrent to punishment. The death penalty is at its core a punishment - and a just one. Again, a killer has given up his own right to life. The wronged may seek that life in retribution. Simple as that.

>>"My opponent replied that compared to China, it was not unusual. Because somehow Eastern philosophy embodies the death penalty. "

I have already addressed this feeble attempt at a straw man argument. I in no way implied that capital punishment was a tenant of Eastern Philosophy.

>>"But in which community do we belong. Are we a communist police state or a democracy? Is our country and government organized following the principles of Montesquieu or Confusious?"

I see you have given up Locke after I demonstrated that Locke gives evidence to support the death penalty. We are a democracy - a democracy that has decided the death penalty is appropriate.

>>"If the voters believes that we belong in the same group as Communist China, then by all means, I concede this point. And by extension, whatever Communist China believes to be appropriate punishments become usual in the United States"

This is almost funny in a way. My opponent seems to argue that simply because I gave a counterexample to his statements concerning Europe, that I'm a communist demon...

**************************************
The issue of false positives is indeed unjust. However, capital punishment may be responsible for the deaths, but it is not TO BLAME. Consider the fact that there has been a failure in the justice system that results in a mechanism being employed. If this mechanism were a slap on the wrist, would you still hold that it's the slap on the wrist's fault that an innocent person was slapped? Of course not - that's laughable logic.

Following his comments here, my opponent tries to suggest that I hold that we should execute innocents because I don't want to pay for them. This is of course completely false - if one reads the debate text, it's fairly easy to see how he twists my words to his own meanings. The fact of the matter is that the average taxpayer doesn't want to pay to keep a killer alive.

>>"o this my opponent had no reply. Because there is no reply. Following his brand of logic will reduce America to the type of police state we abhor. One we must be ever vigilant in defending against."

This is another one of my favorite arguments of my opponents - that somehow following my suggestions will make America regress to the dark ages and we'll sit around in sack clothes... Actually, my logic would have us simply keep the status quo - America would be no different with my suggestions that if we didn't change at all. I'm a little confused as to who has the improper logic here...

**************************************
>>"My opponent's claim that the EU does not care is baseless. In fact, Abolition of the death penalty is a requirement for countries seeking EU membership."

This is immaterial.. the US can't apply for membership in the EU unless we somehow drift across the Atlantic and hook up with them again... It's like telling a man that he needs to do his makeup so he can join the girl's club - completely illogical.

>>"The idea that China only befriends countries that execute prisoners is ridiculous and both unsupported and unsupportable. "

I completely agree - but then again, I never implied that it does. So I'm not sure where you pulled this one from.

******************************************
>>"Through cogent arguments, I have justified and defended my points against my opponent."

Through straw man arguments, you have attacked your opponent without actually debating any of the philosophy you claim to hold so dear or the simple economics of the situation, or the failures of the justice system.

>>"Should I have triumphed in even One of these points, I have won the debate since my opponent has raised no true independent points of his own."

Hard to triumph when you respond with ad hominems and straw man arguments. I don't need to raise independent points - you're the instigator, I simply need to respond to yours.

*****************************************
Here's an independent point for you - America is a democracy that has determined capital punishment appropriate. Your argument against that must therefore be based in the philosophy and morals of the situation, considering you say it ought to be banned... I provided language from a philosopher you suggested (Locke) concerning the situation and you didn't address it at all...

Read and vote - an excellent debate and a challenging opponent.
Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by Ylareina 9 years ago
Ylareina
Congrats, guys, one of the best debates here, on both sides.
Posted by JustCallMeTarzan 9 years ago
JustCallMeTarzan
Rob, I'd love to debate the philosophy of that situation - read the stuff from Locke I put up here... It's not that we're giving the power to the government per se - it's that the government is the arbiter of the social contract, and that arbiter, no matter if it's the government or the individual, has the right to exact just remuneration when another has been wronged.
Posted by Rob1Billion 9 years ago
Rob1Billion
Tarzan, I am against capital punishment because I don't believe any man/woman has the privilege, or the wisdom for that matter, to conduct the affair of deciding whether or not another man or woman can live or die. Since the death penalty is not a necessity in any case, I don't see why you would want to give our government this privilege...
18 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by snelld7 6 years ago
snelld7
MoonDragon613JustCallMeTarzanTied
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Total points awarded:40 
Vote Placed by comoncents 8 years ago
comoncents
MoonDragon613JustCallMeTarzanTied
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Vote Placed by JustCallMeTarzan 8 years ago
JustCallMeTarzan
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Vote Placed by studentathletechristian8 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by rougeagent21 8 years ago
rougeagent21
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Vote Placed by s0m31john 8 years ago
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Vote Placed by BeatTheDevil89 9 years ago
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Vote Placed by Jamcke 9 years ago
Jamcke
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Vote Placed by jiffy 9 years ago
jiffy
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Vote Placed by C4747500 9 years ago
C4747500
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