The Instigator
AbandonedSpring
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
sengejuri
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

The government has the Military power to end domestic armed conflicts/rebellions. (ex. Cliven Bundy)

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/18/2014 Category: Politics
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 509 times Debate No: 63446
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (3)
Votes (0)

 

AbandonedSpring

Pro

Round 1: Agreement only
Round 2: Argue for your side
Round 3: Rebuttals
Round 4: Argue rebuttals, then give a closing statement. No new arguments
Debate Round No. 1
AbandonedSpring

Pro

Awesome, thanks for accepting! Id like to begin my argument by talking about about 2 overarching points, and the will be labeled as A and B.
Point A: The government ought to have the power to end domestic armed conflict. I believe the American government should have this power to protect the overall American body- civilians. While of course it would be important to go through congress first to prevent corruption, the government has to be able to protect it's civilians.
Point B: In the situation of Cliven Bundy, money was owed to the federal government. Therefor, the government had the right to take property as a form of payment. Because Bundy believed it was his right to revolt, he threatened to do so, however he had no right to do so. If in fact he had opened fire on the government, it would have been treasonous.
sengejuri

Con

Ok, the prompt is: "The government has the military power to end domestic armed conflicts/rebellions." The phrasing of this means Pro is arguing that the U.S. military is powerful enough to end a domestic rebellion. The prompt is in the present tense, meaning the U.S. military is strong enough right now in its current state.

The U.S. military is not strong enough to suppress a nation-wide rebellion for three reasons.

First, it simply doesn't have the manpower. The U.S. military has struggled, and arguably failed, to suppress insurgencies in Iraq and Afghanistan for the past 13 years. According to the CIA World Factbook, the population of Iraq is about 32,500,000 and the population of Afghanistan is about 32,000,000. Combined, this is a civilian population of about 65 million. The population of the U.S. is about 319,000,000. If the American military failed to defeat an insurgency among 65 million people, how could it possibly do so among 319 million?

Second, the military would face widespread desertion. If asked to fight against their own home cities, families, and friends, many soldiers would refuse or desert. The American military is currently about 1.5 million people in size, and the vast majority of those 1.5 million are support troops, not combat troops. This number would undoubtedly shrink once the military was forced to turn on its own people.

Third, the U.S. military would be completely outgunned in the scenario of a nation-wide rebellion. According to gunpolicy.org, there are approximately 300 million civilian-owned firearms in America. If a nation-wide rebellion happens, 300 million people with guns would easily destroy the military. Even if every one of the 1.5 million troops became combat troops, then each soldier would have to kill 150 armed people. These odds are impossible. True, civilians do not have the powerful weapons like jets, tanks, and artillery. But neither does the Taliban, Al-Qaeda, or ISIS, and they still managed to fight effectively.
Debate Round No. 2
AbandonedSpring

Pro

Let's not get ahead of ourselves. If I wanted to talk about a nation wide rebellion, I would have said so. However, I'm not. For clarity, I provided an example, which you promptly ignored. Since you are arguing a different topic, your entire argument as of right now is invalid.

Now, I will support my argument with three contingencies.

Contingency A: If Cliven Bundy had risen up, and fought the government, they would have gone against the liberties that the rest of the nation had been protected under. The government's job (as listed in the constitution) is provide for the general welfare. Just because a few people in some place decided they needed to revolt, for a reason that makes no sense, they are basically asking the government for war.

Contingency B: The government has already dealt with a situation similar to this. It was called the Whiskey rebellion, and it happened under the Articles of Confederation, the original doctrine of the USA. The constitution gave George Washington the power to stop these men from starting a full out war.

Contingency C: Ignorance is not to be taken lightly. Believing you have a right to revolt over a situation that does not require a revolution is ignorant, and the simple solution is to leave. Or, in Cliven Bundy's case, just paid the money he knew he owed and move on.

Thanks, and I now stand open for rebuttals.
sengejuri

Con

Ok, it sounds like you're trying to argue that the military SHOULD have the LEGAL power to end domestic conflicts/rebellions. If that's true then I would suggest you provide a better prompt next time.

Re-read the prompt. The word "should" or "legal" is not found anywhere. You simply said "the government has the military power to end domestic armed conflicts..." When this is read at face value, it means you're arguing that the military can physically end them.

You also did not specify or define what you meant by "domestic armed conflict/rebellion." An example is not a definition. As such, I can assume that the entire spectrum of rebellion is in play - from Cliven Bundy all the way up to nation-wide revolt. If you include the word "rebellion" you must be prepared to argue for all kinds of rebellions.

Finally, no military forces were involved in the Cliven Bundy incident, so I'm not sure how that's a valid example. It was the Las Vegas police department and the Bureau of Land Management.

If you wish to discontinue the debate due to misunderstanding of the prompt, let's call it draw. Sorry for the confusion.
Debate Round No. 3
AbandonedSpring

Pro

"Ok, it sounds like you're trying to argue that the military SHOULD have the LEGAL power to end domestic conflicts/rebellions. If that's true then I would suggest you provide a better prompt next time."
v.
"The government has the Military power to end domestic armed conflicts/rebellions. (ex. Cliven Bundy)"

I feel this is as clear as possible, so I don't see the confusion.

"Re-read the prompt. The word "should" or "legal" is not found anywhere. You simply said "the government has the military power to end domestic armed conflicts..." When this is read at face value, it means you're arguing that the military can physically end them."

This is correct, and there is no need for me to reread the prompt. The government does have the power, the government just did not use it in the appropriate time. face value would be what I was going for, so I suppose, thanks?

I will supply this short article to show how I am right in that the government had the power to stop this conflict.

http://www.mountvernon.org...

"Finally, no military forces were involved in the Cliven Bundy incident, so I'm not sure how that's a valid example. It was the Las Vegas police department and the Bureau of Land Management."

I also understand, Now, its your turn to reread the prompt. There was no military action involved. All I'm stating is that the military has the power to act. Whether that confused you or not is not my fault.

Thanks, I have finished
sengejuri

Con

My opponent has admitted that the prompt is to be taken at face value, so my round 2 argument is back in play. Pro did not offer any rebuttals to my round 2 argument, so we must assume they are accepted as valid.

When taken at face value, the prompt does not specify arguing in favor of the military's constitutional or legal power to act against civil rebellions. Therefore, I assumed the discussion was about the military's physical ability to end a rebellion. When discussing general rebellion, the entire spectrum must be considered - from one single person to a massed, nation-wide revolt. The military can easily stop a small rebellion, but it does not have the power to physically stop a massed revolt.

Offering an external article as an argument is a logical fallacy called "appeal to authority," so this argument is invalid. The article doesn't apply to this debate anyway, because it's one isolated example of a small rebellion. I admit the army could put down a small rebellion, but my opponent's position falls apart once we increase the rebellion's notional size.

The only contemporary example Pro offered was the Cliven Bundy incident, which didn't involve any military forces so it has no application to this debate.

I would encourage Pro to clarify their position better next time.
Debate Round No. 4
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by cheyennebodie 2 years ago
cheyennebodie
How did that work in Viet Nam? Or Afganistan in the case of the Soviet Union or America.There are some in the military who would fire on the folks, just as their are those in the civilian military who,outside the law, would fire on people.The problem the politicians have is they are still staring down the barrels of 300,000,000 guns.

This debate is why the second amendment is so right.
Posted by AbandonedSpring 2 years ago
AbandonedSpring
Power as in strength of force. Like the government has the power to bring in the army to combat
Posted by autodidact 2 years ago
autodidact
Power as in legal right or power as in strength of force?
No votes have been placed for this debate.