The Instigator
LR4N6FTW4EVA
Pro (for)
Winning
20 Points
The Contender
alvinthegreat
Con (against)
Losing
16 Points

The right to bear arms

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/15/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,644 times Debate No: 4422
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
Votes (10)

 

LR4N6FTW4EVA

Pro

Okay, gahbage had another debate like this, and it looks interesting. Unfortunately, I can't challenge him at this moment, so I am bringing this debate to the world.

Parameters:
The right to bear arms: For PRO, I have to defend that it is an individual right of the people to keep and bear arms. CON must show that it is a militia-only right.

Contention 1: The grammar of the second amendment strongly suggests that the right to bear arms is an individual right.
The version of the Second Amendment that was ratified by the states reads "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." This is important. The first clause, talking about well regulated militias being necessary and all that is an ablative absolute. This is a Latin construction that prefaces the main clause of a sentence by stating the time, condition, or circumstances of an action being described in the main clause of the sentence. So, if it was meant to be a militia only right, our Founders must have been horrible at Latin, which we know is not true. The Founders were well versed in Latin, and knew exactly how to use ablatives. That means that in modern English, the second amendment would read: "Because well regulated militias are necessary to the security of a free state, the people have an undeniable right to bear arms." In short, it is saying that the people have a right to keep and bear arms so that they could form militias to defend themselves.

Contention 2: The word choice of the Second Amendment suggests that it conveys an individual right.
The second amendment says that the right of the people to keep and bear arms cannot be infringed. If it were truly a militia only right, it would read "the right of militias..." It says the people, which means everyone, not just militias.

Contention 3: The historical situation of the second amendment suggests that it is an individual right.
The second amendment was written in 1789, and there are two conditions from those times that suggest that it is an individual right.
A. The first fact is that only 14 years ago, the militias at Concord and Lexington lead the rebellion against British power. These militias were not military sanctioned groups, they were simply thirty men standing on the town commons with their hunting rifles and shotguns. In the founders' time, militias were just groups of people that got together to defend themselves. The founders felt that the right to actually have weapons is necessary to form a militia.
B. Also, around that time, pioneers were moving west over the Appalachian mountains. They were stirring up the anger of the Native Americans, and to deny them the right to have a rifle to defend themselves would be a death sentence. James Madison, the writer of the amendment, was from Virginia, a state that was leading the way in pioneerism, he would have wanted to guarantee the settlers protection.

Contention 4: At the time it was written, it was meant to be an individual right.
Joseph Story, the first commentator on the Constitution, and one of the first members of the Supreme Court said that the Second Amendment gave an individual right. Also, William Blackstone, an 18th century British jurist said that the right to bear arms was an individual right. The founding fathers were avid followers of Blackstone, and agreed that it was an individual right.
alvinthegreat

Con

Thank you LR4N6FTW4EVA for hosting this debate on this interesting topic.

Overview: One of my main problems with the Aff's contentions is that they deal mainly with Framer's intent, which is problematic with the idea that the Constitution is "living". Furthermore, current conditions in the United States are far different than those in the 1780s, thus, the original intent of the Constitutional's Framers are no longer applicable. This question is in the sole jurisdiction of the Judicial Branch (in fact, there is a case pending in the Supreme Court that will answer this question). I will, however, debate my opponent's contentions.

Contention 1: Grammer
i)If the Framer's intent was for all individuals to own firearms, why did they include the first phrase dealing with Militias? The inclusion of the first phrase clearly signifies that the Framer's did intend for some sort of connection between the right to firearms and a citizen militias. Thus, it is not too far of a stretch to assume that the firearms are to be used solely for a citizen militia.
ii) I don't totally get your Latin Construction argument, but I'll try my best to argue against it. You say that "Latin construction that prefaces the main clause of a sentence by stating the time, condition, or circumstances of an action being described in the main clause of the sentence ". Since the Latin construction states "the time and CONDITION" of the action described. The condition is clearly described in the first clause/phrase which states that the Condition is for a "well regulated militia".
Furthermore, the Latin ablative case is often used to signify the condition by which some action should be done (http://en.wikipedia.org...). Clearly, the presence of the preceding phrase clearly shows that the preconditions for the second phrase.
iii) The first draft of the second amendment clearly suggests that the right to firearms should be only given to only state militias:
"The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed; a well armed and well regulated militia being the best security of a free country; but no person religiously scrupulous of bearing arms shall be compelled to render military service in person." (http://en.wikipedia.org..., citation 33)
The phrase after the second semi-colon clearly emphasizes the fact people carrying firearms should be compelled to render military service. Furthermore, this construction flips the Latin construction found in the final second amendment. In this case, the "right to bear arms" is an ablative clause (correct me if I'm wrong) to the second phrase, which shows that the precondition to bear arms is for a well armed and well regulated militia. This version clearly shows Framer's intent better than the final draft, since it is the original version.
Contention 2
Although it says the right cannot be infringed, the clear intention of the amendment is for the militia, as shown by the preceding sentence which clarifies the intention of WHO should be given the right to carry arms.
Contention 3:
i)Historical situation has changed, thus making this argument null and void. Framer's intent, although important, is only a part of what should be in consideration when considering conditions today. My opponent should be arguing that the historical situation still is in occurrence today in order to make this argument extendable to today's world.
ii)"Lexington and Concord" – This argument does not support your point, it merely supports the fact that guns should be given to only militias, as shown by your last statement: "In the founders' time, militias were just groups of people that got together to defend themselves. The founders felt that the right to actually have weapons is necessary to form a militia.". This SHOWS NOTHING about why EVERYONE should be given the right to bear arms exclusive of the purpose of formation of militias. In fact, this supports my position that guns are necessary for militias more than the general right to bear arms.
iii)"Pioneers" – one singular person supporting a specific agenda (pioneers) does not demonstrate the intention of all framers to expand right to everyone. Furthermore, the pioneers may be considered militias, since they're defending themselves against a foreign enemy.
Secondly, this situation no longer applies today, so this argument cannot be used to support the right to own guns in today's world.
Contention 4:
i)If you're going to argue Framer's intent, I think you need citations from actual writers of the constitution instead of "commentators". Experts such as the "first commentator" or "british Jurist" shows nothing about either 1) the framer's intent or 2) the application of the second amendment today.
ii) Unless these commentators can magically read minds of long dead writers, I doubt their arguments should be considered as the whole truth.
iii) Just because the founding fathers admired someone did not mean they agreed with him or her in everything. Just like how the Founding Fathers admired the Locke, they changed his basic phrase "life and liberty and property" to something else. They DREW ideas from him, but did not agree IN WHOLE with everything he said.
iv) An individual opinion does not show the collective intent of all the writer's of the constitution
v) Did every single writer admire Blackstone? I doubt it.

My opponent's emphasis on the ORIGINAL wording or FRAMER's INTENT, I feel, is not the correct way to demonstrate that the right to bear arms still existed today. I feel that the parameters clearly signify that the debate is about to right to carry ARMS TODAY, not 220 years ago. Thus, I feel that my opponent needs to demonstrate that the original wording is still APPLICABLE in today's world and give specific examples of how it is.
Debate Round No. 1
LR4N6FTW4EVA

Pro

Opponent's Overview: The issue I have with this is that the constitution is a law. It is not written to be subjectively interpreted to fit the times. The founder's intent tells us what the law means, so if the founders wrote an amendment to give the individual the right to bear arms, we have to uphold that right, no matter what the times are, it's the law. If you believe that the Constitution is a "living" document, you must show why it is "alive." Support this claim, and then we can talk about what the right to bear arms should be like in today's world.

Contention 1: Grammar
i) The reason the founders included the phrase "well regulated militia" was to show that the reason we need the right to bear is arms is so that we can form militias. in short, it is saying that Danny Minuteman and his buddies can all have rifles so that they can form an effective militia to defend themselves and their families. Militia, meaning armed civilians.
ii) Yes, it is saying that we have the right to bear arms so that we can defend ourselves. That's what I said, the right to bear arms is an individual right, so that the individual can serve in the protection of himself and others.
iii) Firstly, in this draft, the right to bear arms is not in the ablative, so your ablative flip is wrong, it is an independent clause, with again, the militia part being a dependent clause, this time as an appositive, and the conscientious objector clause being another independent clause. This however does not change the meaning I have argued for. It is saying that the individual can have an arm, so that he can defend himself and his buddies, and you can't force him to defend himself and his buddies if he has a religious objection. in short, we have the right so that we can form militias, but we cannot be forced to form militias if we have religious qualms in doing so. It is still an individual right, closely related to, but not dependent on militia service.

Contention 2: First, we're going to have to extend this contention, because you didn't actually address my point that the word "people" is used, rather than militia in the second clause. But, addressing your point about the first clause, I again say this: The right to bear arms is related to but not dependent on militia service, that is, I have the right so I can join or form a militia, but I don't have to use the weapon to join or form a militia. Nowhere does it say that the right to keep and bear arms is revoked if one is not in the militia.

Contention 3: Historical situation
i) Well, a law is a law, no matter the historical situation. I used historical situation to show the founder's intent.
ii) The militias at Concord and Lexington were not state sanctioned militias, they were civilian vigilantes, so what this shows us is that people have the right to keep that shotgun under their bed so that when the British come to take over Massachusetts, civilians can fight back. Militias were pretty much EVERYONE, or at least everyone capable of bearing arms (besides women).
iii) First point- He was the one who actually wrote the amendment, so his intent is most important.
Second Point- If pioneers can be considered militias, than Suburban Joe can be a militia as well, defending his home from burglars, murderers, and thugs.

Contention 4: Founder's intent
i) Here's some quotes from framers: "The great object is that every man be armed . . . Everyone who is able may have a gun." (Patrick Henry, in the Virginia Convention on the ratification of the Constitution.)
"To preserve liberty, it is essential that the whole body of the people always possess arms, and be taught alike, especially when young, how to use them." (Richard Henry Lee, Virginia delegate to the Continental Congress, initiator of the Declaration of Independence, and member of the first Senate, which passed the Bill of Rights.)
"The advantage of being armed . . . the Americans possess over the people of all other nations . . . Notwithstanding the military establishments in the several Kingdoms of Europe, which are carried as far as the public resources will bear, the governments are afraid to trust the people with arms." (James Madison, author of the Bill of Rights, in his Federalist Paper No. 46.)

Here are quotes from early commentators, note that many refer to Blackstone:
"And this without any qualification as to their condition or degree, as is the case in the British government." -St. George Tucker, Chief Justice of Virginia Supreme Court, publisher of 1803 edition of Blacktone, annotated to American Law, followed (William) Blackstone's citation on the common law right "of having arms suitable to their condition and degree, and such as are allowed by law" with this quote referring to the Second Amendment

William Rawle's "View of the Constitution" published in Philadelphia in 1825 noted that under the Second Amendment: "The prohibition is general. No clause in the Constitution could by a rule of construction be conceived to give to Congress a power to disarm the people. Such a flagitious attempt could only be made under some general pretense by a state legislature. But if in blind pursuit of inordinate power, either should attempt it, this amendment may be appealed to as a restraint on both."

The Jefferson papers in the LOC show that both Tucker and Rawles were correspondents of Jefferson, and that their views were shared by Jefferson, Madison, and many others.

"the palladium of the liberties of the republic" -Joseph Story in "Commentaries on the Constitution"

This entire subsection is sourced to http://www.constitution.org...

PS I just showed framer's intent, and as I have said, the meaning of a law does not change with the times. You can try to prove me wrong.
ii) These commentators were contemporaries of these "long dead framers"
iii) Specifically, they admired his views on the right to bear arms (Source: http://www.supremecourtus.gov...)
For that source, go to Justice Scalia's second question to Dellinger.
iv) Above I have provided much more than a single opinion, and if pressed could likely find an opinion from the majority of the framers of the second amendment.
v) I don't, seeing as the vast majority of legal professionals use his law dictionary, so I think it is safe to say he was widely admired.

Ending overview of opponent: The law that gives us the right to bear arms was written 220 years ago, so the intent of of that law is what is important, as that shows us what the law means.
alvinthegreat

Con

Here is the rub, he has not demonstrated how the 2nd amendment SPECIFICALLY gives an individual his or her right to bear arms. He has basically agreed with me that the major purpose of the 2nd amendment is to provide a militia, but he has not shown how this extends into a collective right.
Premise 1: The constitution is living
The concept of "living constitution" is widely present in our society today. The fact is, every time a court makes a ruling that offers a interpretation of the constitution, they're espousing the concept of "living constitution". As important cases such as PLessy vs. Ferguson, Brown vs. Board of Education, and various other laws that have offered interpretations of the constitution shows, the constitution is indeed a "living".
Furthermore, the Supreme Court has also embraced this idea, as Justice Brennan advocates in the 1988 trial of Hazlewood District vs. Kuhlmeier: "that our Constitution is a living reality, not parchment preserved under glass." (http://writ.news.findlaw.com...).
All of these quotes serves to support the fact that the Constiution is meant to be interpreted as times change

Premise 2: The living constitution allows us to interpret laws, in this case the second amendment, differently than the framer's intent due to social conditions.
The conditions today are far different than the ones of the fledging American republic. Today, we're a nation of 300 million no longer terrorized by the British or Indians, in fact, we have little to fear from domestic enemies that originally necessitated the 2nd amendment. Back in the 1780s and 1790s, America's only armed forces were STATE MILTIAS, a formal army was not raised, not even during the Whiskey Rebellion. Thus, the only means to protect the nation was through Citizen Militas. Clearly, this is no longer the case, we now have a very capable standing army to protect us, and thus taking away the very basis of the argument of some of the founders: see my opponent's contention 4 quotes from James Madison and Richard Lee.
Back then, every able bodied man was suppose to serve in the milita in times of emergency, and thus, they were given the right to own guns. Now, we no longer have that situation, so we no longer have any need for the "individual" right for gun ownership
Now, due to the fact that the Constitution is a pliable ideal, we have the ability to change the meaning of the amendment due to the simple fact that the ORIGINAL CONDITION S THAT NECESSTIATED THE FORMATION OF THE SECOND AMENDMENT NO LONGER APPLY, thus, it is in our best interest, whether to lower crime rates or what not, to enforce the ORIGINAL PURPOSE of the 2nd amendment (provide arms to militias)
Conclusion: The main justifications given by the framer's for the second amendment have mostly faded away in today's society. Thus, the framer's intent should not be taken into account when deciding whether or not it is a collective or individual right given by the 2nd amendment.
Now to my opponent's contentions:
Contention 1)
Ok, I missed something on the first pass through your round 1 arguments, you said that:
"The first clause, talking about well regulated militias being necessary and all that is an ablative absolute. This is a Latin construction that prefaces the main clause of a sentence by stating the time, condition, or circumstances of an action being described in the main clause of the sentence."
Ok, you said "stating the time, CONDITION, OR CIRCUMSTANCES OF AN ACTION DESCRIBED".
So does this not DISPROVE your point? Because if the condition or circumstance of the right to bear arms is the upkeep of a militia, doesn't this mean you are bad at Latin? Does this not prove my point that the RESTRICTIONS on the 2nd amendment is that the main purpose is to Upkeep a militia?
Furthermore, you agreed with me numerous times in various shape or forms throughout your arguments:
" in short, it is saying that Danny Minuteman and his buddies can all have rifles so that they can form an effective militia to defend themselves and their families."
"the right to bear arms is an individual right, so that the individual can serve in the protection of himself and others."
"It is saying that the individual can have an arm, so that he can defend himself and his buddies"
Do these statements not support my points? Because I am arguing that the sole premise of the 2nd amendment is to provide for a militia, which back then, meant DEFENDING themselves or Protection of himself and others?
Then lastly, you make the statement:
"It is still an individual right, closely related to, but not dependent on militia service."
Ok I'll happily grant that the second statement "closely related to milita service" is true. BUT WHERE DID YOU GET "AN INDIVIDUAL RIGHT" from the wording of the second amendment? Does it in any way, shape, or form, specify that it is an INDIVIDUAL right? NO, rather, it explicitly stated that the PRECONDITIONS (demonstrated earlier) for the right to bear arms is for the upkeep of a MILITIA.

Contention 2: You keep saying that the right to bear arms is closely related to military service, but where does it say that the 2nd amendment explicitly gives the INDIVIDUAL the right to bear arms? Nowhere, but it does say that it should be used for milita service. What my opponent is claiming is based totally on inference, whereas my assertion is directly supported by a RESTRICTIVE clause preceding the main clause.
Contention 3:
i)Look, just because it's a law doesn't mean it's set in stone. We have reinterpreted the first amendment NUMEROUS times when times change. I bet the founding fathers never foresaw the internet as the subject of first amendment cases did they? With the far different conditions today (as stated earlier), the 2nd amendment should only be
ii)IT matters not whether they were "state-sanctioned" or not, the point is, they were STILL MILITAS. The state-saction has nothing to do with it, they were amateur soldiers who were defending themselves – the definition of a milita.
iii) His intent was justified based on Indian Attacks, and those are no longer present in today's society, so this justification and his intent are baseless and thus null and void.
Contention 4:
Back then, America was a different country, being threatened by all sides with rebellions (Shay's rebellion ect), Indian Attacks, and Foreign aggression. Thus, to maintain the safety of the country, a stable militia was needed. Back then, nearly everyone was called expected to serve in the militia, so the difference between an "Individual right" and "militia right" was nearly indistinguishable, and thus, my opponent's quotes all demonstrate the need for PROTECTION of either the country or ideals such as "liberty and freedom", which are necessarily the function of the militias. So, these quotes demonstrate conditions in the 1780s, not today.

Summary:
My opponent has basically agreed with me that the main purpose of the 2nd amendment is to guarantee the existence of militias, but he has not proven why the right should BE extended to EVERYONE in today's world.
Furthermore, my opponent has focused his arguments on the necessity of militias BACK in the 1780s, not today. His only argument is that "a law is a law". But laws are interpreted by the Supreme Court, and when the DC. Vs. Heller decision comes back in a few weeks, we wouldn't need to be debating this. But the arguments that justified a militia back then are no longer valid.
Debate Round No. 2
LR4N6FTW4EVA

Pro

Okay, first his case, then mine.

Premise 1: The Constitution is living.
First, simply because the Supreme Court does something, does not mean they are right. In the Dred Scott case, and Plessy v. Ferguson I think we can agree that they were wrong. The fact that the Supreme Court overturns itself is not proof that the Constitution is living, it is simply proof that the Constitution is very confusing, even to experts on the topic, and they are sometimes wrong, (Dred Scott, Plessy). Your Justice Brennan quote does not prove the constitution is living, as if we just use quotes to prove our points I'll use Justice Scalia's famous statement: "The constitution is dead!" It doesn't prove my point, but neither does your Brennan point, one of them is wrong, the other is right. You have not refuted my point that a law's meaning does not change simply because the times change, the first amendment does not lose its meaning as protector of free speech, neither does the second amendment. But since you dropped the point it is flowed across regardless of your defense.

Premise 2: The living constitution allows us to interpret laws, in this case the second amendment, differently than the framer's intent due to social conditions.
Since I took out Premise 1, this premise fails. Anyways, the times don't call for a change in interpretation anyways. They may call for safety restrictions such as licenses, trigger locks, assault weapon bans, but not for an outright ban on firearms possession. Men still can form one man militias against intruding murderers, robbers, and thugs. This is especially important in more dangerous parts of the country.

Conclusion: As I proved the constitution is not living your conclusion fails.

My case:

Contention 1: Actually I think you said that. Anyways, as I have said, they have the right so that they can protect themselves, and at the time, a local militia was most effective. That's why it referred to militias in the ablative. They have the right so that, if they wish, they can join a militia. Just because one is not in a militia does not revoke the right. Or maybe you mean militias are no longer necessary. As I mentioned earlier, the "one-man militia" is necessary today to protect one's home and family especially in dangerous parts of the country. You also claim I agree with you multiple times, but this is false. The first amendment was given to us so that we could make anti-government speech, but it does not apply only to anti-government speech, most speech is protected under the first amendment. The same goes for the second, the right was given so that we could join militias, but it is not limited to militias. You also say that I have no justification that the second amendment gives individual right. I do, and I have said it. It says the people in the second clause, rather than the militia's. If it gave a right to militias only it would say militias, not people. The word people implies that the right to bear arms is given to the people, not just the military.
Contention 2: Addressed this but, the ablative is not restrictive, it is explanatory. It is the why, not the how. Example: "The city having been captured, Aeneas fled." Aeneas fled because the city was captured, it does not mean that Aeneas can only flee if said city is captured. I also pointed out the usage of "people" and the eight primary sources or so in C4.
Contention 3:
i) Addressed that up in opponent's P1
ii) one man militia I mentioned is the same thing. Anyways, you contradict yourself, you first said that it was only for state militias.
iii) Addressed this.
iv) Opponent dropped this, ergo he agrees that founders intended it to be an individual right.
v) Opponent dropped this, ergo he agrees that founders intended it to be an individual right.
Contention 4: Already showed the constitution is not living so 21st century conditions are irrelevant.

Summary: Since I have proven that the Constitution's basic meaning does not change, and I have proven that the founders intended it to be an individual right, you voter PRO.

I rest my case.
alvinthegreat

Con

So the debate boils down to these three topics:
1) Is the Constitution living or not?
2) Does the original wording of the 2nd amendment necessitate an individual right?
3) Has my opponent proven an individual right is necessary today?

1) Living Constitution
Ok, let's break down my opponent's arguments bit by bit
---First, he says (roughly paraphrasing) "Supreme Court is not always right"
This does nothing to support neither your or mine points because the cases I was referring to were cases clarifying the constitution. Every time any court makes a decision dealing with constitutional rights, they're reinterpreting the constitution, and thus, making the constitution "living". If the constitution was "not living", then we would not need such a complex court system. EVERY TIME A COURT MAKES A DECISION DEALING WITH CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHTS, THEY'RE MAKING THE CONSTITUTION LIVING!
---"Brenner quote shows nothing"
If a Supreme Court Justice says something, it should be valued. Scalia merely sticks to a strict constructionist view of the constitution; however, he did not say it was "dead". His personal philosophy is also very ironic, since every time he's making a decision about constitutional rights, he's making the constitution living.

Underview: My Opponent makes the claim that such cases that define the constitution such as Plessy vs. Ferguson and Brown vs. Board of Education are showing that the constitution is "Confusing". But where does one draw the line between Confusing and Reinterpretation? Is not clarifying the confusion essentially equal to reinterpreting the constitution?
The answer is simple: They are. My opponent cannot disprove the fact that the constitution is a living entity, being changed every day by court decision.

2) Premises in a syllogism are mutually exclusive, thus, attacking premise 1 does nothing to premise 2. Although these two premises may be linked, invalidating premise 1 only makes the conclusion null; however, the living constitution is a very real thing. Furthermore, my opponent has agreed with me that THE CONDITIONS HAVE CHANGED.

Why you should vote for me: My opponent has essentially dropped the second premise. I believe that I have clearly demonstrated that the Constitution is living, thus my syllogism is valid and should justify a vote for me.

Question 2:Does the original wording of the 2nd amendment necessitate an individual right?

There are several holes in my opponent's logic.

---First he makes the extrapolation: " They have the right so that, if they wish, they can join a militia."

This is the crux of my opponent's case perhaps. Does the 2nd amendment make gun rights justify a militia, or militia justify the right to own guns? Here, my opponent contradicts himself. First, he states that the ablative construction makes the militia the main reason to own guns, THEN, he makes the statement quoted above. This is an illogical leap. No where in the 2nd amendment does it imply or say gun rights justify a militia, but it says militias justify gun rights (as argued earlier).

---He then makes an analogy to the 1st amendment

This is an unjust analogy. First, the 1st amendment does not only protect anti-government speech. It forbids the government from censoring anything, so your extrapolation that "most speech is protected under the first amendment" was actually WORDED into the 1st amendment. Unlike the 1st amendment, the 2nd amendment is very restrictive due to the ablative construction of it, making militias justify gun rights, not gun rights justifying militas.

---Justification of an indvidiual right

My opponent claims that "the PEOPLE" somehow gives EVERYONE the right to own guns. I shall make 3 arguments against it.

i) The People and the Militias were indistingishable back in those days. Everyone was expected to serve in the militia in order to protect their communities. However, since the conditions have changed since then, this interpretation no longer makes sense.

ii) I ask a very basic question again: WHY INCLUDE THE PHRASE DEALING WITH MILITIAS IF IT WAS MEANT TO BE AN INDIVIDUAL RIGHT?

iii) As stated earlier, the conditions have CHANGED, no longer are we threatened by the British or the Indians, we're now safe on the home front, thus the original justifications have now changed.

Question 3: Has my opponent proven an individual right is necessary today?

Simply said, he has not. He has given two reasons, both of which are inadequate, to justify this claim:

1) A Law is a Law and 2) "The People" = individual right

Number 2 was rebutted earlier, and #1 was rebutted in my first premise.

The Constitution changes, and the "The People"'s meanings have changed.

Voting Issues, remember the burden of the proof is on the affirmative. I said repeatedly that the an individual right is not supported by the 2nd amendment due to the restrictive clause, and I believe that my opponent has not proved his point sufficiently, thus a vote for the negative is in order. Furthermore, the constitution is changing everyday, thus taking away my opponent's main arguments.
Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by magpie 8 years ago
magpie
Con: Would you contract with a builder whose contract verbiage attested that "This is a living contract that can be overridden by an entity of my own choosing"? The Constitution is a contract! It facilitated the conferring of powers that originally fell to the states, and the subordination of individual rights to the federation. The purpose of judicial revue is to interpret original meaning, not modify it. The framers defined an exacting amendment process that would have been unneeded in a living (non-existent contract) constitution.
Posted by gahbage 8 years ago
gahbage
OK. I won't point anything out about your contentions then. =P
Posted by LR4N6FTW4EVA 8 years ago
LR4N6FTW4EVA
Yeah, but I didn't realize we could only have one debate at once, so yeah...
Posted by gahbage 8 years ago
gahbage
Was this intended for me, because if it is, you only have to wait for my opponent to post his last round.
10 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Vote Placed by magpie 8 years ago
magpie
LR4N6FTW4EVAalvinthegreatTied
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Vote Placed by alvinthegreat 8 years ago
alvinthegreat
LR4N6FTW4EVAalvinthegreatTied
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Vote Placed by surfride 8 years ago
surfride
LR4N6FTW4EVAalvinthegreatTied
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Vote Placed by sccrplyr40 8 years ago
sccrplyr40
LR4N6FTW4EVAalvinthegreatTied
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Vote Placed by Biowza 8 years ago
Biowza
LR4N6FTW4EVAalvinthegreatTied
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Vote Placed by WarPig 8 years ago
WarPig
LR4N6FTW4EVAalvinthegreatTied
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Vote Placed by gahbage 8 years ago
gahbage
LR4N6FTW4EVAalvinthegreatTied
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Vote Placed by CP 8 years ago
CP
LR4N6FTW4EVAalvinthegreatTied
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Vote Placed by slayer54321 8 years ago
slayer54321
LR4N6FTW4EVAalvinthegreatTied
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Vote Placed by Sweatingjojo 8 years ago
Sweatingjojo
LR4N6FTW4EVAalvinthegreatTied
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