The Instigator
Spatz
Con (against)
Losing
7 Points
The Contender
I-am-a-panda
Pro (for)
Winning
42 Points

The homeless should be allowed to vote.

Do you like this debate?NoYes+2
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Vote Here
Con Tied Pro
Who did you agree with before the debate?
Who did you agree with after the debate?
Who had better conduct?
Who had better spelling and grammar?
Who made more convincing arguments?
Who used the most reliable sources?
Reasons for your voting decision
1,000 Characters Remaining
The voting period for this debate does not end.
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/15/2009 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,361 times Debate No: 6539
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (5)
Votes (8)

 

Spatz

Con

I shall be taking the con side.
I-am-a-panda

Pro

As the the resolution states, I will be taking the Pro side on that the homeless should be allowed to vote. Due to the fact my opponent, the instigator, has not provided an argument, I will make one. I am assuming, because my opponent resides in the U.S.A, we will be arguing in the context of the U.S.A.

Contention #1: The homeless are still part of society.:

In society, a citizen is allowed to vote in an election. Everyone has only 1 vote, whether they are a billionaire, or just a factory worker. The point is, every citizen is entitled to vote.
What is a citizen? Here are a few definitions from WWW.Thefreedictionary.com:

1. A person owing loyalty to and entitled by birth or naturalization to the protection of a state or nation.
2. A resident of a city or town, especially one entitled to vote and enjoy other privileges there.
3.A civilian
4.A native, inhabitant, or denizen of a particular place

As we can see, all of the above descriptions describe a homeless person. He is entitled to protection of the state, he is a civilian, and he inhabitants an area. We can clearly see that if a homeless man fits the description of a civilian, and a civilian is entitled the right to vote, then clearly, it is discriminatory to the homeless person. It is on par with supressing the rights of other minorities, and, should be treated a so.

Contention #2: There is no reason why a homeless person shouldn't have the right to vote:

As mentioned before, a homeless person has the same rights of any other citizen. If people have the same rights, then why should one person not be allowed to do the same as another. In the constitution of America, it says:

' The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, colour, or previous condition of servitude. '

It is quite clear from this paragraph that no person can be denied the right to vote because of their standing. The government rules the people, but the constitution rules the government. The government cannot, without good will, breach the constitution. Denial of the homeless their right to vote is a violation of the constitution, and anyone who denies them is a criminal.

Contention #3: You cannot suppress the voice of the homeless:

Like all people, the homeless have an opinion, and in government, want their interests to be represented, like any other citizen. If someone agrees with the Republican party, they vote for them. If someone agrees with the Democratic party they vote for them. The homeless would obviously want someone to address the issue of homelessness. Not having their voice heard means they may never get out of poverty and find a home.

Referring back to the U.S. Constitution

'Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. '

It is clear from the U.S. Constitution, every citizen has the right to have the freedom of speech. This includes having the right to vote. It is clearly a constitutional violation if they are not given the right to vote, and subsequently, the right to freedom of speech (i.e. Have their opinion heard through representation by a political figure)

This is the basis for my argument and hope my opponent responds.
Debate Round No. 1
Spatz

Con

I would not cite the constitution, as this is a more philosophical question.
This is not an argument on what is, rather what "should be". I apologize to my opponent as I did not make that clear enough, and I attribute that to my lack of a first argument.
Onward, then:

The homeless should not be allowed to vote because they are too concerned with their own day-to-day survival and lack the education/means to make a worthy, well informed decision. They are busy enough determining the location of their next meal, how can they make an accurate political choice? They do nothing to benefit society, in fact, why should they even be considered a citizen? The way I view it is you are only a member of society if you contribute to it's existence. They do not pay dues, or work, and lack a peaceful place/time to sit and think about something thoroughly.
I simply do not want our democracy to be run by a "ship of fools". If you do not contribute to society, you have no say in how things are done, IMO.

I wish my opponent well.
I-am-a-panda

Pro

I would like to thank my opponent for responding:

Rebuttal:

'The homeless should not be allowed to vote because they are too concerned with their own day-to-day survival'

In an equal equation, a worker should not be allowed to vote because he is too busy with his job. A housewife should not be allowed to vote because she is too busy looking after children and doing household work. College students should not be allowed to vote because they are too busy with course-work. Just because the homeless are pre-occupied with a task, does not mean they shouldn't be allowed to vote. It is an argument that under the same logic, would include anyone else pre-occupied with a task which means their survival, which includes people's jobs for their income

'lack the education/means to make a worthy, well informed decision.'

1. Since when is education the scale of allowing people to vote? Someone who dropped out of school early still has their right to vote because they are a citizen. Everyone born in a country is regarded as a citizen. A citizen's basic right is that to vote. It is blatantly discriminatory to exclude someone the right to vote simply because they don't have a certain IQ level. This would also be excluding people who dropped out of school early, people with mental disabilities, the elderly with alzheimer's, and various other groups of citizen.

2. The generalisation that a homeless person is uneducated is a flawed one. You may think a homeless person has a thick beard, fingerless gloves and sits at the side of the street, but homeless means someone without a permanent residence. This could be anyone, and in the midst of our current economic climate, many more people. They could be a computer technician, a teacher, anyone.

'They are busy enough determining the location of their next meal, how can they make an accurate political choice?'

If you didn't notice, during the U.S. presidential elections, there were posters for either candidate everywhere. If a homeless person felt they hit hard times during the Bush regime, and saw an election picture for Obama that read 'Change', surely this would give them a political choice. Again, you are assuming the homeless are uneducated peasants. The homeless can be anyone, and in most cases would be able to distinguish what a republican and what a Democrat thinks.

'They do nothing to benefit society, in fact, why should they even be considered a citizen?'

This is blatant discrimination. On the same scale, the unemployed do not benefit society. Should they be denied the right to vote, merely because they cannot find a job? A high percentage are unemployed at the present time, and denying them the right to vote on the basis that they don't benefit society is discrimination, and would not be stood for. And what about the elderly? They do not work, and in most cases, do not contribute to society alot. There are way in which the homeless benefit society:
1. They are more concerned with buying food, and thus give profit to stores they buy from.
2. They are an example to people to work hard and keep their jobs.

I would ask my opponent to define what he sees as beneficial to society.

'The way I view it is you are only a member of society if you contribute to it's existence.'

There are many ways in which citizens contribute to society. Some are obvious (e.g. Teachers, Doctors, Policemen) but some not so obvious. A homeless person may not have much to contribute to society, but he none the less can contribute. Let's take for example, inspiration. There are cases of homeless people becoming successful. The stories of ruins to riches. These are a great inspiration to people, and can give them a goal to achieve. Not to mention the story he would teach of how he got into poverty. This story could benefit society by making them wary of the decisions he chose.

Again, I would like my opponent to sate what he sees as beneficial to society.

'They do not pay dues, or work, and lack a peaceful place/time to sit and think about something thoroughly.'

It would seem to me that the homeless sit on the side of a street day in, day out. They have nothing to do but think, and therefore have alot of time to think something through thoroughly. I will agree, they do not work or pay dues, but it's ignorant to say they don't want to.

'I simply do not want our democracy to be run by a "ship of fools".'

This is presuming that the homeless are uneducated, which is mostly untrue. A democracy may be better if a different minority had a say in it's running. Pulling the homeless out of unemployment would increase tax paid and reduce any welfare spent. Charities would be less existent, and that money would be pumped elsewhere.

I will end with saying this. My opponent has merely assumed the homeless are lazy and worthless people, unable and unwilling to contribute to society. I have proven this to be untrue.

I would like to remind my
Debate Round No. 2
Spatz

Con

Spatz forfeited this round.
I-am-a-panda

Pro

I extend all my arguments and await my opponents response.

I would like to remind him he has the burden of proof.
Debate Round No. 3
Spatz

Con

Spatz forfeited this round.
I-am-a-panda

Pro

I extend all my arguments and await my opponents response, if he will have any.
Debate Round No. 4
Spatz

Con

Spatz forfeited this round.
I-am-a-panda

Pro

My opponent has not responded to my argument and has forfeited 3 rounds. i think it is clear who has won.

As a quick summary, my points are
1) The homeless are still part of society.
2) There is no reason why they shouldn't have the right to vote.
3) The rights of the homeless cannot be suppressed.

My opponent has contended that the homeless cannot make an accurate decision, but that's assuming the homeless are uneducated and worthless, which is untrue, as nearly anyone can end up homeless.
He also contends the homeless do not contribute to society, which is true,, but it is untrue in saying they do not want to.

I urge a PRO vote. Thank you.
Debate Round No. 5
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by Harlan 8 years ago
Harlan
"The homeless should not be allowed to vote because they are too concerned with their own day-to-day survival"

Likewise, people who own homes are probably too busy paying electric bills and mowing their lawns to be concerned about other things.
Posted by I-am-a-panda 8 years ago
I-am-a-panda
There seems to be a glitch at the end of my second argument. It says 'I would like to remind my opponent that he has the burden of proof'
Posted by I-am-a-panda 8 years ago
I-am-a-panda
The 5,000 character limit is frustrating, my arguments would be longer.
Posted by I-am-a-panda 8 years ago
I-am-a-panda
I might take this, have to confumble myself an argument first.
Posted by JBlake 8 years ago
JBlake
Drop it to three rounds and I will take it if no one else does by then.
8 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Vote Placed by I-am-a-panda 7 years ago
I-am-a-panda
SpatzI-am-a-pandaTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 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:04 
Vote Placed by The_Booner 8 years ago
The_Booner
SpatzI-am-a-pandaTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 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:70 
Vote Placed by Zeratul 8 years ago
Zeratul
SpatzI-am-a-pandaTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 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:07 
Vote Placed by Diebold 8 years ago
Diebold
SpatzI-am-a-pandaTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 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:07 
Vote Placed by philosphical 8 years ago
philosphical
SpatzI-am-a-pandaTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 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:07 
Vote Placed by wjmelements 8 years ago
wjmelements
SpatzI-am-a-pandaTied
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 
Vote Placed by JBlake 8 years ago
JBlake
SpatzI-am-a-pandaTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 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:07 
Vote Placed by s0m31john 8 years ago
s0m31john
SpatzI-am-a-pandaTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 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:07