The Instigator
Jackconway
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
Domr
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

The Second Amendment Restricts Gun Ownership More than it Grants the Right of Gun Ownership

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/17/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 483 times Debate No: 63432
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
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Jackconway

Pro

Please excuse my inexperience. This is my first debate here. But here is my position:

The Second Amendment restricts the right of the individual to bear arms (weapons) more than it grants the right of gun ownership. And without the Second Amendment the individual would have more rights to gun ownership.

As we all learned in high school history, there are two versions of the Amendment. The first version, which passed by two-thirds of the members of each house of Congress (the first step for ratifying a constitutional amendment) and the final version, passed by three-fourths of the states (the second step for ratifying a constitution amendment). The primary difference between the two versions are a capitalization and a simple comma. Here they are:

The version ratified by the states and authenticated by Secretary of State Thomas Jefferson reads:

"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 version passed by Congress is:

"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."

Generally, a capital letter denotes a proper noun. So the upper case M, as in the Congressional version, references a particular militia; that being the state-sanctioned militias, as most currently defined by the Militia Act of 1903. The lower-case m in the second version would refer to a group of individuals who form an ad hoc group of armed men and women.

In this same way, the upper case A in "Arms", refers to only to state-sanctioned weapons; those being weapons that are currently legal to buy. If the A was left as lower-case, the word "arms" would refer to all and any weapons.

So, the Second Amendment serves to restrict gun ownership more than it guarantees the right of gun ownership, and without the Second Amendment, the individual would have more freedom to arms ownership.
Domr

Con

Thank you for making this debate Pro, I will be arguing against your premise. My arguments will show the Second Amendment does NOT restrict Gun ownership.

My opponent has outlined the differences in the Second Amendment detailing the punctuation and capitalization of the text creating different meanings.

As Pro stated, an Amendment is passed by two-thirds of the members of each house of Congress (the first step for ratifying a constitutional amendment) and the final version, passed by three-fourths of the states (the second step for ratifying a constitution amendment).

However, both the ratified and passed verisions must contain the same language. This could possibly nullify the Amendment all together.


Also, due to there being separate versions of the Amendment, there is no reason to assume one is more correct than another.

Pro has stated how one version unrestricts guns, and the other restrcits them. If neither side is more "true" than the other, it would be assumed 50/50, meaning the Second Amendment does not restrict gun ownership MORE than granting it; as the premise suggests.

Until the Second Amendment is ratified and passed again, both language/punctuation/capitalization can be assumed true, not making either one more correct than the other.




Debate Round No. 1
Jackconway

Pro

Thank you for debating.

I believe that what Con is referring to when he says "both the ratified and passed verisions must contain the same language" would be covered under the British Bill of Rights of 1689. However, all British laws in the colonies would nullified after the United States was formed on July 2, 1776 when the actual vote for independence was passed. So ratified and passed versions do not have to contain the same language. And the final version is the supreme law.

But good stuff, I had to think about that for a while.
Domr

Con

I was unaware the "same language" was part of British Law. Thank you for the information and I gladly drop that argument.

However, there are two completely necessary parts to passing an Amendment. Ratifying and the passing through Congress. You cannot do one with out the other. Making them mutually exclusive. One is not more important than another.

There is no legislation stating that the "passed amendment" is to take precedence over the "ratified amendment".

Therefore, it still stands that either language is appropriate when viewing the law, meaning the second amendment could restrict gun usage, or allow it depending which grammar you choose to look at it.
Debate Round No. 2
Jackconway

Pro

I would actually accept "The Second Amendment Restricts Gun Ownership AS MUCH AS it Grants the Right of Gun Ownership". What do you say?
Domr

Con

I would glady accept this as well.

I am glad we are able to come to an agreement upon this.




Now, our acceptance of the change of premise would essentially end in this debate as a draw, which I also will gladly accept.

I do apologize to any readers who have gotten this far hoping to pick a side to win, but I urge you to NOT to vote.




But please leave comments as to any thoughts on this debate.

Thank you Pro!
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by Jackconway 3 years ago
Jackconway
Thanks to Con for the great debate!
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