The Instigator
bsoten
Pro (for)
Tied
7 Points
The Contender
TheGhostOfFreedom
Con (against)
Tied
7 Points

The U.S. should mandate firearm training & insurance requirements for ownership & concealed carry?

Do you like this debate?NoYes+1
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
It's a Tie!
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/5/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,006 times Debate No: 41726
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (0)
Votes (3)

 

bsoten

Pro

I think that a mandatory minimum requirement for weapons training and liability insurance for private ownership and public concealed carry would reduce crime, increase public safety, while in no way reducing a citizens right to exercise their 2nd Amendment right.

Round 1: Acceptance
Round 2: Opening arguments (no rebuttals by con)
Round 3: Refutation of opponent's arguments (no new arguments)
Round 4: Defending your original arguments and conclusion (no new arguments)

Full disclosure:
I served in the U.S. Navy for 20 years as a Gunner's Mate. Most of that time was spent at three Naval Special Warfare commands, and I have 2 combat deployments to Iraq. Three years of my career I was the lead instructor for a medium risk course of instruction called Visit, Board, Search, & Seizure (non compliant).

I also currently own 10 firearms, (1 M4, 1 HK shotgun, 1 revolver, and 7 pistols), and I used to compete in IPSC (combat pistol) matches. In 1997 I won first place in the modified pistol category at the Panama Open.
TheGhostOfFreedom

Con

I look forward to debating you on this subject.

Accepted.
Debate Round No. 1
bsoten

Pro

Thank you for accepting this debate challenge. I hope that we can have a debate based on logic, reason, passion, and the power of persuasion. I am not interested in an argument based on propaganda, partisan rhetoric, or juvenile behavior, nor am I interested in attacking you personally.

My argument begins with:
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 Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution

There certainly is room in the exact wording and the implied spirit of the 2nd Amendment to require, or to well regulate, the training of the armed citizenry of America. The SCOTUS has decided in 2008 that the 2nd Amendment does not specifically apply to a militia, as in the National Guard, but to private citizens. A training requirement for firearms ownership, especially for (in public) concealed carry would improve the safety of the owner, his family, the safe storage of the weapon itself, the greater community, and even necessary to the security of a free State. Part of the argument against gun ownership is the fact that you've got a lot of people, of questionable character and motive, that are untrained and out in public and armed. A training mandate for weapons ownership and public carry would greatly reduce the question of untrained, unqualified, armed citizen in public places. No law, regulation, or situation would guarantee a perfect outcome, but there is definitely room for improvement regarding the safety of all law abiding American people.

I believe that an adult of sound mind should be allowed to own as many different kinds of weapons that they can afford and that they can safely store, regardless of the legal reason; hunting, collecting, sport shooting, self defense, etc. If you would like to carry your weapon concealed out in public, you should also be of reasonably sound body and insured. A person in a wheelchair shouldn't be excluded from armed self defense either. With that said, why shouldn't reasonable training not also be required?

Just like a car or motorcycle that is used on public roads, you are required by law to have a license, which requires a written test and a practical exercise, and (at least) liability insurance. All these reasonable things would truly elevate public safety well beyond the hit or miss (pun intended) standards of today.

The SCOTUS could argue and deem that the 2nd Amendment can allow for regulatory training just like it regulated the types of weapons one can own, who it can be sold to, who can't be in possession of one, what it can be used for, and where it can be carried. In fact, regarding the Heller Decision, The Supreme Court stated that the Second Amendment should not be understood as conferring a "right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose." The Court identified examples of "presumptively lawful" firearm laws, including laws prohibiting firearm possession by felons and the mentally ill, forbidding firearm possession in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, and imposing conditions on the commercial sale of firearms. Adding a training, license, and insurance regulation would not violate anyone's 2nd Amendment rights.

I look forward to reading your response.
TheGhostOfFreedom

Con

My argument starts the same, with the second amendment of the US constitution.

"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."

in"fringe"ment
inG2;frinjmənt/
noun
1.
the action of breaking the terms of a law, agreement, etc.; violation.
"copyright infringement"
2.
the action of limiting or undermining something.
"the infringement of the right to privacy

My argument against a national mandate for training & insurance requirements to be satisfied before a citizen may legally own or carry a firearm is based upon the infringement that such requirements would place upon the individual.

The Second Amendment clearly states that an individuals right to both KEEP (own) and BEAR (carry or possess on their person) arms "Shall not be infringed".

Insurance costs money to maintain, and money is a legitimate obstacle that infringes on peoples ability to do a lot of things that are NOT protected by the constitution. Many people do not own their own home because they do not have the financial capabilities to do so. Many people do not go to college because they can not afford to do so. Many people don't get to travel the world and experience its many wonders because they can not afford to pay for these trips.

The right of the individual to keep and bear arms is the right to defend their life, the right to defend the lives of their family. If a national mandate to be insured before you may bear arms was put into place, undoubtedly a percentage of low income or no income citizenry would be stripped of their ability to legally keep and bear arms.

This would only server to expand the gap of inequality between the rich and poor in this country, the rich being able to afford the mandatory insurance, training classes and fees, while the poor would be totally reliant upon the state for protection.
Debate Round No. 2
bsoten

Pro

Thank you but your argument doesn't persuade me on an intellectual level or on an emotion level.

There are very few absolutes in the real world, and there is not such thing as a free lunch. Your argument implies that even if you can't afford a weapon, one should be afforded to you so as not to have your rights infringed upon. That would be a ridiculous proposition. I don't mine paying for your lawyer, but not a weapon. It costs money to buy a weapon. It cost money to buy ammunition. It cost money to get a permit to own (where applicable), it cost money to get a concealed carry permit. It cost money to get a driver's license. In most cases, a driver's license is required to exercise your right to vote. In every legal case a driver's license is required to buy a weapon.

The Supreme Court has a right to interpret what the Constitution says and how it's applied to our everyday lives. The right to keep and bear arms has been "infringed" since 1934. Nothing about the Constitution is absolutely absolute. You can't own if you're a convict? You can't own if you're crazy? You can own a tank in most circumstances? You can't own a machine gun in most circumstances? You can't store an unlimited amount of ammunition in your home? You can't take a weapon inside of a school, courthouse, or airplane (to your seat NO - but in checked baggage YES)? You can't fire a weapon anywhere you choose. You can't fire a weapons at anything you choose. You can't purchase a weapon from anywhere you choose. You can't sell your weapon to anyone you choose. You can't modify your weapon anyway you choose. You can't operate a vehicle without a license and insurance. A vehicle can be considered a deadly weapon if used in the wrong way. Why should you be allowed to own and operate a weapon, which is considered a deadly weapon regardless of the way its used, without descent training, license, and insurance to cover against liability.

Just because it's a right obviously doesn't give one absolute use of it.

You can't yell FIRE in a crowded theater even though you have freedom of speech. You can't plan at murder and legally get away the plan even though you didn't actually murder someone. That's still attempted murder. You can't walk into a bank with a weapon, ski mask, and a robbery note, then change your mind and just walk out. That's still attempted robbery.

Again, regarding the Heller Decision, The Supreme Court has clearly stated that the Second Amendment should not be understood as conferring a "right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose." The Court identified examples of "presumptively lawful" firearm laws, including laws prohibiting firearm possession by felons and the mentally ill, forbidding firearm possession in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, and imposing conditions on the commercial sale of firearms. Adding a training, license, and insurance regulation would not violate anyone's 2nd Amendment rights.
TheGhostOfFreedom

Con

Your argument in round 2 is a continuation of the slippery slope.

The SCOTUS can rule in such a way, but SHOULD they. I don't think they should. You seem to be perfectly content pushing the second amendment firmly out of the reach of our nation's poor. I'm sure you'll be happy to part with all of your firearms if your retirement takes an unexpected downward turn and you have choose between keeping your large house or paying for insurance because you own all these firearms.

Public safety is exactly what gun rights are about. The police aren't ever present, they can not protect all of us all the time. They do coincidentally seem to protect the wealthiest neighborhoods the most. And as I pointed out in my previous argument, adding additional obstacles that burden the poorest among us more than the wealthiest, only serves to expand the inequality between the rich and poor in this country.

http://gawker.com...
http://innercity.org...
http://mobile.bloomberg.com...

Its easy to summon people's emotions and demand further restrictions on firearms, free speech, voting, driving, etc etc. Which is exactly what is happening. The authoritarian types resist every change that they don't agree with, such as legalized marijuana, by using technicalities contained all these federal laws.

http://nation.time.com...
http://www.denverpost.com...

So who do we trust to fairly enforce a new layer of federal gun laws? You stated that to OWN or CARRY a gun you should have to pay for insurance. So suddenly heirloom guns passed down from father to son, if the son can't afford insurance, are illegal weapons.

This new mandate would ONLY effect those people who try to obey laws, who don't already illegally own their guns and probably don't need any new bills to pay in a time of economic crisis. People shouldn't be taxed and fined out of their basic rights.

Lastly, statistics show that carry permit holders are less likely to shoot an innocent bystander than sworn police officers!

https://www.usconcealedcarry.com...
Debate Round No. 3
bsoten

Pro

Ok so I'll ignore the personal attacks and maintain topicality.

Only your last link was even remotely on topic, but it does actually play into my argument. I'm saying that mandatory training would IMPROVE public safety by turning an otherwise unsafe knucklehead with a Dirty Harry fetish into a competent armed citizen. If you can afford or pass the training requirement, then I contend that you aren't competent enough to defend your country, yourself, or your family. No one is born with the innate ability to handle a firearm. So when does one get that knowledge to become safe and effective? Maybe one gets some training. Maybe they don't. But the deadly weapon they carry in public is a constant. Why maintain the standards of a criminal. Government makes people earn a license and acquire liability insurance because of the public good.

Those who choose to engage in quality target practice may fair better in an armed altercation. If it were mandatory for gun owners, especially those that want to be armed in public, to achieve and maintain a certain level of proficiency, then the citizenry would be that much safer. The armed citizenry would be far less likely to be held liable for an accidental shooting, which happens all the time. Innocent people get hit by bullets all the time the otherwise well meaning "wannabe gunslingers".

Criminals are going to do whatever they feel they need to do. Law abiding citizens should always seek to exceed the actions of wrong doers. Assuming that law abiding citizens are better than criminals in every imaginable way, why not require that they be trained to properly defend themselves in the unlikely event that they are forced to engage in a shootout in public with an armed criminal? Why leave it up to chance that the criminal may or may not be better trained?

If the police make a mistake and shoot the wrong person, the police officer, her department, and the city can be held liable. If you shoot someone by accident, without insurance, you'd have to be taken to civil court, time away from work, and you could loose all your assets (your home, vehicles, savings, even your weapons). If you had a family, why put them in financial danger like that? Why not let your insurance company battle it out with the victim's insurance company? The 2nd Amendment only states your right, but what about your responsibility if something goes wrong and you injure or kill an innocent? You wouldn't (hopefully) drive a car without insurance. If you got into an accident, you'd have to pay for all damages to the person, their vehicle, and your vehicle out of pocket, not to mention the legal ramifications. Do you have that kind of money. I don't. Even if I did, I'd rather have my insurance company, who I pay on a monthly, deal with the lump sums of money needed for medical bills and auto repairs. Even if my premiums go up, I'm still not required to pay massive amounts of money up front.

Just like some people shouldn't be allowed to drive, some people honestly shouldn't be allowed to own weapons. The SCOTUS has the right to stipulate who can and can't, and for what reasons. An additional reason should be fore lack of training. If you don't learn to drive. You can't drive a car. If you get into an accident without insurance, those costs are pasted on to all other law abiding citizens that pay for car insurance. I've earned my rights by not only being born in this country, but by serving it in times of war. Make no mistake, the only thing that makes me better than any other knucklehead on the street with a gun is that I'm highly training, mature, disciplined, law abiding, compassionate, respectful, patient, not looking for trouble, and especially reasonable.

The state and federal government already have laws for who can and can't own weapons, backed up by SCOTUS and not in violation of the Constitution. I'm saying that mandatory training would be good for America because being an American should mean being educated, trained, and responsible with regards to safe weapons handling, self defense, and civic duty. Otherwise, as it stands now "A well regulated Militia..." are just words without substantive meaning because our citizen apparently have the right to be ignorant and poorly trained, and that "...being necessary to the security of a free State..." is really just an illusion because it's clearly not truly about protecting the state or even the family, it's just so insecure idiots with "large penis envy" can feel like tough guys and go looking for trouble, which means that "...the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed" is more about an irresponsible sense of false security because your fear of the dark outweighs your actual sense of civic duty, love for your country, and love for your family. I guess it's also your right to pretend to be a viable citizen of is great country. Stupid is also apparently protected by the Constitution. No one can force you to do anything that you don't want to do, even at your own peril.

Apparently it's your right to be a bumper sticker(...from my dead cold hand) American instead of a true American that is reluctant to start a gun fight but is more than trained to win one, and without hurting the innocent. You know your rights, but what about your responsibilities?
TheGhostOfFreedom

Con

Round 3: Refutation of opponent's arguments (no new arguments)

I wasn't personally attacking you, I was refuting your arguments. As you requested in your framework...

Since you're breaking your own framework in round 4 I'm going to defend myself against your round 4 post and then reiterate my original round 2 argument as per the framework suggests.

Dirty Harry: this is presumptive on your part that there is any higher rate of "Dirty Harry" complex among armed civilians than there is among armed and trained authority figures. The statistics that I sourced in my previous post might even suggest that sworn officers have a higher rate of Dirty Harry complex than do armed civilians.

Training: Most states do require you to take a short class and pass a live fire range test BEFORE you are issued a carry permit.

Affordability: This is the weakest part of your argument. Money absolutely will serve as filtering mechanism limiting which civilians will be capable of affording these hypothetical insurance requirements should they be imposed at the federal level. In this case socioeconomically infringing upon the 2nd amendment rights of our poorest citizens who, as demonstrated in my previous post, have less police protection with longer wait times.

Some people shouldn't be allowed to own weapons: I agree with this statement but your proposed solution would determine who "some people" are by socioeconomic status. This is unfair and discriminatory.

Its your right to be a bumper sticker: Once again the statistics I sourced previously show that there is a much lower occurrence of innocent bystanders being shot by civilian carry permit holders than by sworn police officers. Perhaps the police are the "wannabe gunslingers" who need to reevaluate their responsibilities.

Reiterating my round 2 argument as per the framework:

A federal requirement to obtain insurance for any person who wishes to OWN or POSSESS a firearm would unfairly limit the 2nd amendment rights of our nation's poorest citizens. Furthermore "training" also costs money and would have the same effect. This nation already suffers from dramatic inequality between the rich and poor. Education, housing, medicine and much more.
Debate Round No. 4
No comments have been posted on this debate.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by TrueScotsman 3 years ago
TrueScotsman
bsotenTheGhostOfFreedomTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:32 
Reasons for voting decision: Had a hard time deciding which way to vote, while I believe some of the changes Pro made, such as insurance for owning a gun (people pay enough insurance already...). However, I believe the main premise that Con lost was that it somehow infringed people's Constitutional rights. Pro's logic does seem sound when he asserted that guns should be given out freely, if what Con said should be enforced. Given the dangerous nature of firearms and the original intention of the 2nd Amendment, Pro's argument is sound. Argument to Pro, Sources to Con (as he was the only one who provided any). Tie in all other areas.
Vote Placed by janetsanders733 3 years ago
janetsanders733
bsotenTheGhostOfFreedomTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Good job to both debaters, but I think Con showed how this act would be considered discrimination to those who can't afford insurance, and it assumes that civilians are the problem, and not the solution. But, good job to both debaters and great debate.
Vote Placed by iamanatheistandthisiswhy 3 years ago
iamanatheistandthisiswhy
bsotenTheGhostOfFreedomTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:42 
Reasons for voting decision: I am not an advocate for gun rights, however if they exist I have to agree with Pro and say they should require regulations like any other right. Pro's argument where more compelling as they followed a logical pattern comparison to the society in which we function. Spelling and grammar points go to Pro as well, as Pros arguments were easier to read and less broken. Con gets source point awarded, as sources were offered. Both debaters had good conduct despite the protests between them in the final round of debate.