The Instigator
kasmic
Pro (for)
Winning
14 Points
The Contender
Domovoi
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

The United States is a Democracy

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
kasmic
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/18/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,491 times Debate No: 61923
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (17)
Votes (3)

 

kasmic

Pro

Round one: acceptance
Round two and three: arguments and rebuttals.
Domovoi

Con

I'll accept this one, you're on
Debate Round No. 1
kasmic

Pro

Thank you Domovoi for accepting this debate and good luck to you!

Definitions:

Democracy: "government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system." (1)

Direct Democracy: "a form of democracy in which the laws and policies are made directly by the citizens rather than by representatives." (2)

Indirect Democracy: "a form of government in which people elect representatives to rule in their interest."(3)

Republic: "a state in which the supreme power rests in the body of citizens entitled to vote and is exercised by representatives chosen directly or indirectly by them."(4)

Opening argument:

The following is an article I wrote for Infobarrel (5)

Republic or Democracy

Most citizens of the United States, when asked what type of government the United States has, will answer, "a democracy." Is that the right answer? At the same time there are many citizens who would say, "we do not live in a democracy, we live in a republic." What do they mean, and which is it? What is a democracy? What is a republic? Lets take a closer look at these two types of government and find out which is typified by the United States government.

Types of Democracy

Simply defined a Democracy is a "government by the people; a form of government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised directly by them or by their elected agents under a free electoral system."(1) Generally speaking there are two types of democracies. The first is a direct democracy, also know as a pure democracy. This is "a form of democracy in which the laws and policies are made directly by the citizens rather than by representative." [2] The second type is a representative form of democracy, also know as an indirect democracy, where the people elect representatives.(3)
In his famous Gettysburg address, President Abraham Lincoln used the phrase "...that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth." Clearly President Lincoln believed we lived in a type of democracy.

A Republic

The story is often told of Benjamin Franklin telling a woman that the newly formed government would be "a republic, if you can keep it." A Republic is "a state in which the supreme power rests in the body of citizens entitled to vote and is exercised by representatives chosen directly or indirectly by them." (4)Those who feel strongly that we are a Republic and not a Democracy often quotes founders of the United States saying negative things about democracies. for example, John Adams once said "Democracy... While it lasts is more bloody than either aristocracy or monarchy. Remember, democracy never lasts long. It soon wastes, exhausts, and murders itself. There is never a democracy that did not commit suicide."[6] The founders did have fears concerning Democracies, the same could be said of Republics. For example, James Madison said "In Republics, the great danger is, that the majority may not sufficiently respect the rights of the minority."[7]

Our Republic is a Democracy

The United States is a Representative Democracy. The United States is a Republic. We, the people, are vested with the power and authority to elect our representatives. Upon examination, it is easy to see that a Representative Democracy and a Republic are synonymous. When you are asked the question which type of government does the United States have, a Republic or a Democracy? Feel free to simply say, yes we are a democratic republic.

Concluding opening argument:

The United States is an indirect democracy and is organized as a republic. These words are synonymous. (8)

(1)http://dictionary.reference.com...
(2)http://dictionary.reference.com...
(3)http://dictionary.reference.com...
(4)http://dictionary.reference.com...
(5)http://www.infobarrel.com...
(6)http://www.brainyquote.com...
(7)http://www.brainyquote.com...
(8)http://www.thesaurus.com...
Domovoi

Con

Domovoi forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
kasmic

Pro

Well, bummer. It seems con was unable to post an argument. I maintain my position. The United States is a democracy.

In response to those who commented I will submit the following.

@funnycn you said "Why is this even a debate. It's a Republic."
@A_mysterious_stranger you said "The U.S. is a Constitutional Republic."

I got the impression that the two of you were disagreeing with the resolution. Since my opponent did not provide anything for me to respond to I will respond to your comments.

The link provided by @A_mysterious_stranger lead to this page which states that the U.S. ".. is a constitutional republic and a representative democracy in which majority rules is tempered by minority rights protected by law".(1)

the following is taken from Wikipedia"s page on democracy

"In contemporary usage, the term democracy refers to a government chosen by the people, whether it is direct or representative. The term republic has many different meanings, but today often refers to a representative democracy with an elected head of state, such as a president, serving for a limited term, in contrast to states with a hereditary monarch as a head of state, even if these states also are representative democracies with an elected or appointed head of government such as a prime minister."(2)

As stated here the term republic refers to a representative democracy, as I stated in round two.

I am open to debating either of you, or anyone else who is under the delusion that due to the fact that we are a republic we cant be a democracy.

Conclusion:

Having studied political science formally in college, it has become a pet peeve of mine to hear people who call our country a democracy corrected by some ill-informed individual that it is not a democracy but is in fact a republic. The United States is a Republic. It is also a Democracy. To say that the United States of America is not a Democracy is an inaccurate and uneducated statement.

The United States is a Democracy! The resolution stands.

Thank you to all who take the time to read and to vote.

(1) http://en.wikipedia.org...
(2)http://en.wikipedia.org...
Domovoi

Con

Domovoi forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
17 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by charleslb 3 years ago
charleslb
Bennett91wrote: "To cheyennebodie: At the top of my head I can think of one Islamic country that had real potential to become a full fledged democracy. Iran, before the CIA ousted Mossadegh. Had that not happened Iran might even be looked at as an ally, or at least not as a state sponsor of terror like it is today. You don't think America has imperilist tendencies? How do you explain Puerto Rico and Hawaii? What about our temporary control over the Philippines? You know nothing abouyt this country. You'll deluded by a myth."

His ideological orientation is such that he won't really be able to process any of this.
Posted by Bennett91 3 years ago
Bennett91
I just saw your open letter charleslb, and holy crap the islamophobia in here. To settle the debate issue, the US is a democratic republic. There everyone is right. Democracy is more of an adjective than a noun when classifying types of government. (Source: a degree in Political Science)

To cheyennebodie: At the top of my head I can think of one Islamic country that had real potential to become a full fledged democracy. Iran, before the CIA ousted Mossadegh. Had that not happened Iran might even be looked at as an ally, or at least not as a state sponsor of terror like it is today. You don't think America has imperilist tendencies? How do you explain Puerto Rico and Hawaii? What about our temporary control over the Philippines? You know nothing abouyt this country. You'll deluded by a myth.
Posted by charleslb 3 years ago
charleslb
So, lol!, you apparently can't help yourself, you're straightaway back to assigning all blame for the existence of poverty under capitalism to individuals suffering from poverty. It seems to be beyond your simplistic-moralistic thought processes to ascribe any portion of responsibility whatsoever for the presence in our society of a large demographic of economically downtrodden & suffering folks to the dynamics of capitalism, or the recurring crises that they produce (such as the current recession, which being a morally superior conservative you've no doubt remained blissfully untouched by but might perhaps have read about in the newspaper), or the bad behavior of bankers and CEOs that the system's inner demons drive, or the seriously adverse impact on the economy of a $3 trillion (yes, trillion with a T) war fought to benefit certain corporate special interests (http://www.theguardian.com...),etc.

Yes, clearly none of this bigger picture of the inherent flaws and foibles of the capitalist system that inflict conditions of economic hardship on millions of innocent working-class victims is of the slightest interest to you, because you intellectually inhabit a blissfully simplistic ideological universe in which its the case that anyone enduring an existence below the poverty line is just a contemptible bum who needs to get a work ethic and pull himself up by his own proverbial bootstraps. In other words, you're a smugly happy conservative nincompoop, happy from looking down on a neighbor in need and beholding a loser. Yours is a quite unlovely and unloving mentality indeed.
Posted by cheyennebodie 3 years ago
cheyennebodie
My, you do hate success.I am saying that if a person wants to freeload off government, vote democrat.And we are not superior to anyone, just our outlook on life is superior. And this outlook is a matter of choice.I have found that wealth creation is according to mainly lifestyle.And people like you are just dandy with the fact they stay in poverty. We want them to change the way they think and the way they do things. Because prosperity is to all and for all who will operate in principles that produce wealth. And freeloading on government will not do that.Yopu are just dandy comfortable enabling them to just stay in poverty.You are the egotist. Thinking that they are there and have no way out but through government.Government gave the American Indian welfare 130 years ago and they are still in poverty.

Your kind has established a permanent welfare class.Because they look to YOU to supply them with things and pity.I am especislly down on liberal politicians who do everything they can to keep them dependant on them. The liberal democrat does not want a strong, wealthy middle class. One that will not go to them for their needs. You are the pathetic one that gives your vote of confidence to that system.
Posted by charleslb 3 years ago
charleslb
Yes, and I might also point out that it's actually quite pathetic that conservatives have to derive their sense of superiority, their ego boost from comparing themselves to people whom they view and disrespect as losers. That is, you-all on the right seem to set the bar rather wretchedly low for yourselves by designating negatively stereotyped welfare moms and homeless folks as your negative reference groups! Just a little unpalatable-to-your-egos food for introspective thought, conservatives. (See my reply to which this is an afterthought below)
Posted by charleslb 3 years ago
charleslb
Typo correction. "...in which rich capitalist are esteemed as ..." should of course read "... in which rich capitalists are esteemed as ..."
Posted by charleslb 3 years ago
charleslb
cheyennebodie wrote: " ... we are now a freeloader society ..."

No, actually we're a society of in the main decent and willing-to-work people who have been systematically reduced to a state of precarity and poverty by our capitalist system and elite, but conservative sweethearts such as yourself prefer to portray them as "freeloaders", prefer to rather blantly go in for blaming and maligning the victim.

Well, I suppose that it makes one feel quite morally superior to denounce and contemn the less fortunate as "freeloaders" and bums, but then of course conservatism is after all largely but an expression of a superiority-oriented mentality; one that thinks in terms of the characterological inferiority of welfare recipients, of the homeless, of minority groups not faring well in a racist society, of unwed mothers, of addicts, et al. Conversely, members of the economic elite are viewed as superior specimens of the species who are the only ones entitled to a decent material quality of life, who are entitled to control most of society's wealth and the means of producing it (even though in reality it's the labor of the working poor, a group for whom you have such conservative disdain, that creates the unfairly distributed prosperity of capitalist societies)!

Mm-hmm, the conservative's cognitive orientation really is quite the caveman mentality, in which rich capitalist are esteemed as modern-day equivalents of strong alphas who deserve all respect and power; and the poor are unsympathetically perceived to be inferior moral weaklings who merit only their miserable lot, not one bit of compassionate assistance from society. And despite your possession of such a morally & spiritually benighted mentality you're actually quite cocksure that you're morally superior to Muslims, who at least don't wish to impose an inherently unfair and cruel system such as American-style capitalism on the rest of humanity! This is indeed what in Yiddish is called chutzpah.
Posted by cheyennebodie 3 years ago
cheyennebodie
And Charles. Your rant about the way this country was founded is not unexpected . You were taught in liberal government propaganda schools, right.Now we have miillions of people vote who actually suck off the labor of others. If there ever was a law that freeloading would make you ineligible to vote, that would put the democrat party out of business.Why do we want freeloaders making important national and state decisions?

America imperialistic. Not a chance. We do npt want to take on the problems of other countries.Now sometimes we do step in when wrongs are so egregious that it morally would be the right thing to do.And that elitist power structure as you called it did not stop anyone from wealth. We became the envy of the world in less than 200 years. So, they must have done something right.
Posted by cheyennebodie 3 years ago
cheyennebodie
Charles. How old are you?Why do you think I would feel insulted?And what I said is true. An entire culture is just tha. Anytime that islam rules, freedom goes out the window. When Christian principles rule, freedom is everywhere. Because God demands that personal responsibility be tied to freedom.

Now America has drifted away from those principles and we are now a freeloader society, instead of the land of the free and the home of the brave.How much courage does it take when things get tough to walk into a welfare office and have others pay your bills.
Posted by charleslb 3 years ago
charleslb
Is the United States of America a democracy? Hmm, that depends, are we talking the Founding Fathers' elitist vision of a power structure with a democratic fa"ade behind which clout and control are exerted by gentleman of means (i.e., an economic elite)? Are we saying that what qualifies as a democracy is a system in which only propertied individuals could vote, in which the president of the country is not actually directly elected by the popular vote; in which important and powerful political positions such as secretary of state, secretary of defense, attorney general, etc. are not elected; in which Supreme Court justices are appointed for life rather than democratically elected; in which senators were originally appointed not elected; in which it was proposed that House of Representatives members be selected and appointed by state legislatures rather than being directly elected by the people? Is our definition of a democratic polity really satisfied by a system that clearly embodies mistrust of and contempt for the common people, one in which they're superficially enfranchised but in fact structurally disempowered, ostensibly to protect them from the "tyranny of the majority", but in truth to establish the rule and regime of the rich? And furthermore, is genuine democracy compatible with the imperialistic vision of the U.S.' "manifest destiny" to rule the hemisphere and beyond? Well, if this seriously anti-populist form of government of, by, and for the gentry; of, by, and for the bourgeoisie, that is; and the expansionist dream of exporting the hegemony of America's elite doesn't run at all contrary to your democratic conceptuality and sensibilities, well, then yes, our profoundly plutocratic and dominating system can indeed be perceived to pass muster as a democracy.
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Vote Placed by YYW 3 years ago
YYW
kasmicDomovoiTied
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Vote Placed by 9spaceking 3 years ago
9spaceking
kasmicDomovoiTied
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Vote Placed by lannan13 3 years ago
lannan13
kasmicDomovoiTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Forfeiture