The Instigator
Adam2
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
Stonewall
Con (against)
Winning
3 Points

The "Seinfeld" gang did not deserve jail

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
Stonewall
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/15/2013 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,142 times Debate No: 41384
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (1)

 

Adam2

Pro

In here I will argue that the "Seinfeld" gang did not deserve jail, and that, however childish the four may have been at times, they did not break any laws. George might be an exception, which I'll explain later. The only thing they did deserve was a fine for breaking the new Massachusetts law on the show. There was a double standard which I will also argue was previlent in the trial of trying to portray the gang as evil, when several of the show's characters, such as Newman, have actually tried to cause harm towards, at the very worst, or at the least, trouble for Jerry and his friends.
Stonewall

Con

Thanks for the opportunity to debate this topic. I really look forward to it.

"...however childish the four may have been at times, they did not break any laws."

Oh yes they did:

Jerry: Urinating in public, mugging (for a loaf of marble rye), and an overdue library book.

George: Parking in a handicap spot, pretending to be someone else to get a limo ride.

Kramer:
Cockfighting, mail fraud, smoking cuban cigars

Elaine: Revealing the Soup Nazi's private recipes, causing him to go out of business.

Overall, they were just childish, goofy characters. They didn't break any major laws (aside from cockfighting, which is a felony), but there were laws broken all the same. Yes, most of the small-part characters just testified about dumb stuff that happened with no legal repercussions, but all of the main four characters did commit one crime or another.
Debate Round No. 1
Adam2

Pro

"Oh yes they did:

Jerry: Urinating in public, mugging (for a loaf of marble rye), and an overdue library book."

It would only be a break of law if he didn't pay the fine, which I'm sure he did because no where in the show after that season did that haunt him again. The marble rye incident, technically that would be more like shoplifting than something serious, because, it's not like he raped or got violent with her, he just took it from her. And the overdue library book: he paid it. It was overdue, but he paid the entire, large amount back. And it never even came up until KKK Hoyt made it an issue.

"George: Parking in a handicap spot, pretending to be someone else to get a limo ride."

As for the first one, it was only Kramer giving a used wheelchair that was used against them in court, not the handicaped parking, so that doesn't count. The other case, the limo, wasn't mentioned either, so it doesn't count.

"Kramer: Cockfighting, mail fraud, smoking cuban cigars"

Actually Marcelino was the one responsible for the cockfighting; I don't remember Kramer ever being accused of mail fraud; smoking Cuban cigars is not illegal."

"Elaine: Revealing the Soup Nazi's private recipes, causing him to go out of business."

This one is a tough one. It's messed up, but hey, it's not illegal. If anything this is more a case that would make it on "Judge Judy" than a real case of crime. Elaine didn't technically cause of crime. She screwed the Soup Nazi, legally.

"Overall, they were just childish, goofy characters."
In saying that, you agree with me.

In a court of law this would not hold up to go against them, aside from the little Jim Crow, elitist town of Massachusetts that this trial was set.

Now I will say all the times Newman, who should have been the one tried, has tried to harm Jerry and other characters:
"The Old Man" -- Newman and Kramer were trying to get money for used records. When the store owner didn't accept it the first time, they went to try to find better records. When it didn't cut it for the owner the second time, Newman starts to go Jim Crow on the owner, harassing him, then he gets violent with him. That's more serious than anything Jerry and the gang did.
"The Label Maker" -- Newman makes a threat of blackmail against Tim Whatley: "I just hope Tim Whatley's electric bills don't suddenly get lost in the mail, or it could be lights for him." And just laughs about it. How a vicious and heinous scam like this could not get someone at least 10 to 15 years in prison is beyond me. In this same episode, we see a very evil side of Newman, a type of evil not shown on TV since the days of segregation, we his robes and hoods as well, if you know what I mean. Here while playing a game of conquer the world, he makes snearing remarks about Ukranians. Surely you're gonna say that, it's not a hate crime to say racist remarks. True. However (and I do agree that they should have had a minor punishment of 1 month in jail for breaking the good samaritan law), if you're gonna use their remark about the fat guy, I can use this one about Newman as well.
"The Engagement" -- Newman attempts to kidnap a dog.
"The Package" -- Jerry is not satsified with his stereo, so he breaks it (again, last time I checked that's not illegal). So he tries to frame Jerry for doing it, when he clearly did nothign wrong.
Here I've got four serious cases which altogether should have given Newman at least 20 - 25 years in prison.
Vote pro
Stonewall

Con

"It would only be a break of law if he didn't pay the fine, which I'm sure he did because no where in the show after that season did that haunt him again."

By that logic, I could kill someone, pay a fine, serve fifty years, and I wouldn't have broken a law. It's the same exact logic on a much smaller scale.

"The marble rye incident, technically that would be more like shoplifting than something serious, because, it's not like he raped or got violent with her, he just took it from her."

Last time I checked, theft is still a crime.

"And the overdue library book: he paid it."

Like I said before, that doesn't make it not a crime.

"As for the first one, it was only Kramer giving a used wheelchair that was used against them in court, not the handicaped parking, so that doesn't count."

Just because that was the only part addressed in court doesn't mean the other crime didn't occur. Reminder: The gang only served time for breaking the Good Samaritan law. They were not locked up for their petty childish behavior; the judge only encouraged them to reflect on it. In the first round, you merely said that you'd try to prove that the four "did not break any laws," which is untrue. Trying to prove that those crimes did not factor into their sentence is useless; of course they didn't. The show never suggested they did.

"The other case, the limo, wasn't mentioned either, so it doesn't count."

Same response.

"Actually Marcelino was the one responsible for the cockfighting..."

Was Marcelino also responsible for Kramer showing up to the cockfight, watching it, and participating in it? That's still illegal.

"I don't remember Kramer ever being accused of mail fraud..."

In the episode, "The Package," Kramer sent an insured package to Jerry, which contained a broken stereo, with the intent of getting the insurance money (1). Again: Just because it was not addressed in court does not mean a crime was not commited.

"...smoking Cuban cigars is not illegal."

Sorry, let me rephrase: It is illegal to buy or own Cuban cigars in the United States, both of which Kramer did.

"It's messed up, but hey, it's not illegal."

Private recipes are private property. (2) She stole the recipe. She screwed the Soup Nazi illegally.

"In saying that (they're childish), you agree with me."

Yeah, wholeheartedly. They're also petty criminals on occassion.

"In a court of law this would not hold up to go against them, aside from the little Jim Crow, elitist town of Massachusetts that this trial was set."

First of all, why are you taking such a bizzare, personal offense to a TV show?

Second, with all of the crimes I provided, the four could have easily gotten more jail time. But they were only charged with breaking the Good Samaratin law. This does not mean they weren't guilty of other crimes, which was the only real criteria for this debate.

"Now I will say all the times Newman, who should have been the one tried, has tried to harm Jerry and other characters..."

Why? Just because Newman did a bunch of crimes doesn't mean the Seinfeld gang was innocent. What kind of logic is that? Maybe after the show was cancelled, Newman was tried by the Seinfeld gang. Who knows. Anyways, two episodes of your evidence are also evidence against the gang: "The Package" (Kramer's mail fraud), and "The Engagement" (Kramer paid Newman to kidnap the dog).

1. http://en.wikipedia.org...(Seinfeld)
2. http://blogs.findlaw.com...
Debate Round No. 2
Adam2

Pro

"By that logic, I could kill someone, pay a fine, serve fifty years, and I wouldn't have broken a law. It's the same exact logic on a much smaller scale."
First of all he didn't buy a book, he rented it. Of course he was late with by a long shot, but he paid the fine at the end of the episode, and that was the end of it.

"Last time I checked, theft is still a crime."
Still wasn't serious enough.

"Like I said before, that doesn't make it not a crime."
Technically something like this only goes on a crimnial record is the fine is not paid, so therefore not a crime.

"Just because that was the only part addressed in court doesn't mean the other crime didn't occur. Reminder: The gang only served time for breaking the Good Samaritan law."
Actually, they weren't tried just for that once Hoyt knew he was going up against a better lawyer, named Jackie Chiles. If it weren't for Chiles, the gang would not have stood a chance. But because they were going in their rights to get the lawyer they could afford, Hoyt resorted to deceit and lies to try to hurt the gang. Hoyt took this to the next level and made it a case against petty little unpleasant, though legal things. 95% of the cases, like the contest, were not cases of legality. Some of them were actually started by other people, such as the Bubble boy fight, which was started by Donald. George was wrong for saying Moops, but Donald laid his hands on George first.

"They were not locked up for their petty childish behavior; the judge only encouraged them to reflect on it."
Last time I checked, when you've got cases against them other than the BS cases (most of which weren't illegal), then you're prosecuting them for more than something they were initially arrested for.

"In the first round, you merely said that you'd try to prove that the four did not break any laws, which is untrue."
Those fines Jerry got were all paid. So that clears him. Some of the cases that did indeed happened were not used in court, so it's irrelevant.


"In the episode, "The Package," Kramer sent an insured package to Jerry, which contained a broken stereo, with the intent of getting the insurance money"
OK, I stand corrected, but last time I checked, Newman only ordered Jerry to pay a fine, which I assume he did. After all if you pay a fine, nothing is posted on your record.

"Private recipes are private property. (2) She stole the recipe. She screwed the Soup Nazi illegally."
It wasn't private when the Soup Nazi foolishly left it in his china. It was his negligence and his own foolishness that brought upon his downfall, he must suffer the consequences.

Closing argument: here I have successfully refuted what I have said. While I agree that one person's crimes doesn't make the other innocent, I did argue that Newman's crimes were more serious in nature, which my opponent hasn't refuted. He actually agreed with me that Newman did indeed commit crimes. Part of the opening arguement was proving that Newman did more serious things than Jerry and the gang. 95% of the "cases" in the finale were not even illegal to begin, such as the contest, Elaine exposing her nipple. Some of the actual criminal cases were actually fabricated lies: such as the bubble boy, the wig master cases, etc.

I'd like to thank my opponent for taking up this argument, but I say vote pro.
Stonewall

Con

"First of all he didn't buy a book, he rented it."

My point was in regards to the public urination, and remains unrefuted.

"(Theft) still wasn't serious enough."

What are you talking about? Serious enough for what? He wasn't charged for that crime; he was charged with breaking the GS law. The fact remains that he commited that crime. That is completely undeniable.

"Technically something like this only goes on a crimnial [sic] record is the fine is not paid, so therefore not a crime."

That is so glaringly wrong on numerous levels. So, if a person doesn't have a criminal record, they have absolutely never commited a crime? That's idiotic, frankly speaking. I've been caught speeding a few times. I broke the law. I paid my fines. That does not mean I never commited a crime. That's stupid to even suggest.

"Actually, they weren't tried just for that (GS law)..."

I never said they were, but that they were only charged with it, which is true. From the final episode (1):

"And how do you find with respect to the charge of criminal indifference?"

"We find the defendants guilty."

None of the gang were charged with any of their prior fights, spats, crimes, idiocy, or contests, so quit trying to pass this off as fact.

"95% of the cases, like the contest, were not cases of legality."

And how about the other five percent which you have yet to refute?

"Last time I checked, when you've got cases against them other than the BS cases (most of which weren't illegal), then you're prosecuting them for more than something they were initially arrested for."

Perhaps to put them in a bad light, but for the umpteenth time, they were not charged for those things.

"Some of the cases that did indeed happened were not used in court, so it's irrelevant."

That doesn't matter. The only criteria for this debate was that you would try to prove that the Seinfeld gang never commited any crimes other than breaking the GS law. I have shown you numerous times that that is false, and you have yet to refute them. Again: This debate was not over whether their past crimes reflected on their sentence, which is worth debate. I've showed many different crimes the gang committed, which has blown an un-fixable hole in your debate.

"OK, I stand corrected, but last time I checked, Newman only ordered Jerry to pay a fine, which I assume he did. After all if you pay a fine, nothing is posted on your record."

Why do you keep reiterating this same idiotic point? Just because you pay a fine does not make the original act not a crime.

"It wasn't private when the Soup Nazi foolishly left it in his china. It was his negligence and his own foolishness that brought upon his downfall, he must suffer the consequences."

Let's replace recipe with "car":

"It wasn't private when he foolishly left his keys in his car when she stole his car. It was his negligence and his own foolishness that brought upon his downfall, he must suffer the consequences."

I hope you realize how foolish this sounds.

"I did argue that Newman's crimes were more serious in nature, which my opponent hasn't refuted. He actually agreed with me that Newman did indeed commit crimes."

No, that's misleading. In the opening argument, you said:

"There was a double standard which I will also argue was previlent in the trial of trying to portray the gang as evil, when several of the show's characters, such as Newman, have actually tried to cause harm towards, at the very worst, or at the least, trouble for Jerry and his friends."

However, this was not the main debate. The main debate was "The Seinfeld gang did not deserve jail." I have proven without a doubt that not only did the gang deserve jail, but that they commited other crimes that they could have also gotten in trouble for. Tossing in the Newman situation just seemed like a way of pointing out that other people did worse things, which, fine, is true.

But, you know what? Just to pacify you, I will refute all of your Newman points as well.

"The Old Man": Despite what you said, Newman did not go "Jim Crow" on the owner (whatever the hell that means). Kramer was there, telling Newman what to say to the store owner, of which the owner was fully aware. Newman also did not get violent with the owner; the owner attacked him first. This whole paragraph of making Newman look like a racist, violent, screaming lunatic is actually incredibly miseading, especially since it was entirely Kramer's doing. Thus, that's another point for me (2)

"The Label Maker": Newman never threatened or blackmailed Time Whatley. He merely made a joke about what he could do. What's the harm in that? Have you ever said to yourself, "I'm gonna spit in that jerk's burger!" You have absolutely no intent to do so, but the though sure sounds fun. Techincally, spitting in someone's food can be considered attempted homicide. Obviously you won't do it. Obviously Newman feels like doing that, but that certainly doesn't mean he has any intent to do so. Big deal. Making a dumb joke to yourself is not worse than cockfighting.

"The Engagement": Kramer paid him to do so! Another point against the gang.

"The Package": Newman's attempts at framing Jerry are laughably useless and are of absolutely no real harm. Let's not forget that Kramer did commit mail fraud, which is a felony, and justifies Newman's actions. Another point against the gang.

___


My opponent's entire argument consisted of trying to find loopholes in how certain crimes the gang commited were not technically crimes at all. Every single one fell flat, mostly due to your lack of knowledge in regards to how basic law works. Among my points that went unrefuted:

Jerry's public urination, theft, overdue library book, George's parking in an illegal area and impersonations, Kramer's cockfighting, impersonations, mail fraud, attempted kidnapping, and ownership of Cuban cigars, Elaine's theft and illegal distribution of the Soup Nazi's recipe, and Newman's sneaky, yet totally innocent, behavior.

On the other hand, I refuted all of my opponent's points, and have met all of the requirements of the original debate. Not only this, many of my opponent's points were entirely misleading (especially in regards to Newman's antics).

Vote for whoever made the better argument.

1. https://www.youtube.com...
2. https://www.youtube.com...
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by Stonewall 3 years ago
Stonewall
Thanks for the challenge! Could we perhaps discuss via I.M. when a good time would be for this argument? If you respond to this shortly, I'd be tempted to finish this debate tonight.
Posted by Stonewall 3 years ago
Stonewall
I wholly intend to debate this topic when both myself and the opponent would have the time to do so, due to hour time limit. He can let me know however he wants- I simply want to be fair.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by funwiththoughts 3 years ago
funwiththoughts
Adam2StonewallTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro left many points unaddressed where he only said they weren't charged with something, when the debate is about what they deserve.