The Instigator
Pro (for)
0 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
6 Points

We should have the right to secede from the United States

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/2/2012 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,935 times Debate No: 23345
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (1)
Votes (1)




I believe that every state has the constitutional right to secede from the corrupt union that is America. America has lost its moral value and so such deserves to be disolved and the 50 states become their own political entities, or join with other states to form a nation.


Since Pro has stated a proposition as the debate topic, taken the "Pro" stance and did not specify a shared burden of proof in his opening round, I will take it that Pro has assumed the burden of proof. I will also take it that, by secession, Pro means unilateral secession, which is morally controversial, as opposed to amicable separation of states, which, while rarely practiced, is not.

Don't get me wrong; I think that the United States of America would do far, far better without certain states which have low education, high ignorance, high metaphysical gullibility, and strong desires to make all the other states the same way. The states I am thinking of happen to be geographically contiguous, which would make secession convenient, and also have a tendency to pay less in federal taxes than they receive in government spending. If these states up and left, the remainder of the USA would instantly jump several points on the human development indices. So I wish Pro was right.

Unfortunately, while Pro states that every state in the United States has the Constitutional right to secede, he does not state where in the Constitution this right exists, and my own perusal of that document has failed to find it. Pro also states that "America has lost its moral value," but even if true, this does not, in itself, establish a right to secede. Pro has therefore not established the resolution.

Moreover, participatory democracy is undermined when discontent minorities can invoke, or wield as a threat, a right to secession; in lieu of discussing and resolving their differences, they would be tempted to use secession as a de facto veto over any majority decision.[1]

Since Pro has offered no reason to affirm the resolution, and since we have at least one good reason to deny the resolution, I submit that a vote of Con is indicated.

[1] Sunstein, C., “Constitutionalism and Secession," University of Chicago Law Review 58 (1991).
Debate Round No. 1


The reason I believe that we should be able to secede is quite simple. It is constitutional. No where in our founding documents does it say we can't. Our own Declaration of Independence says that when a form of government becomes destructive, it is the right of the people to alter or abolish it.

America has in short became a global bully. Throwing its weight around to get what it wants. If the states and people of this union believe that America no longer defends it rights as it should. Then we should be able to leave the nation.

America has taxed us to the extreme. Invaded nation after nation in the name of Democracy. And subsequently pissed of the rest of the world. May I ask you something? Have we ever spread democracy to one of the oil-free zones in Africa? No? Didn't think so.

My Arguments

America has became morally destructive only serving the means of the rich 1% in the nation while the 99% are forced to grind under the heel of the US government. It invades other nations under cover stories to secure its' own destructive future

The Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Though I applaud Obama for getting us out of Iraq, he is still slow to get us out of Afghanistan, and we are hurdling on a crash course towards war in Iran. Also though he says it's an evil war they refuse to admit the reason they invaded was to secure some money for the corrupted pockets of the government.

The Military budget. Haven't you noticed that our defense budget is higher than most of the rest of the worlds combined? And despite all that a rag-tag band of Muslim extremists armed with nothing but box cutters managed to break through everything we had to kill more that 3,000 Americans.

So I conclude that America has endangered our lives and destroyed our liberty. And such deserves to be dissolved


The right to secede is not expressly denied in the founding documents, but nor is the right to cannibalism. The Declaration of Independence is a document whose significance is historical; it has no legal standing.

The remainder of Pro's argument merely a detailed restatement of his "America has lost its moral value" theme. He makes good points, some of with which I can sympathize, but none which establish the right to unilaterally secede, or that we should have that right given the argument I made above, which Pro has not addressed.

Pro has not made a prima facie case for the right to secession. I again submit that a vote of Con is indicated.
Debate Round No. 2


If you read the constitution you will see in the 9th and 10th amendments that it explicitly says that all powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people. And since it doesn't give the federal government the power to prevent secession, it by default allows us to secede.

Most people defy the issue of secession with the word treason. But the celebrate our independence (fancy word for secession) from Britain in 1776. We knowingly committed treason then to better our civil and political rights. So we should be allowed, if it forwards our human rights, to secede from this broken union.

In our history as a nation in hundreds of cases we supported secession across the world. We have always tried to enforce human rights and liberty. But in America secession is considered Taboo? WHats up with that? We hide our SECESSION from England as independence which as I said above is fancy talk for secession. SO america is a hypocritical nation. We secede our self, but we refuse to let our people do it themselves.

We need the right to secede because it is not forbidden in the constitution, we have always supported it, and we did it ourselves. Your move comrade.


There is no reason why the Ninth Amendment applies to this case. As for the Tenth Amendment, a cursory reading of the Constitution makes it hard to avoid the interpretation that the Constitution gave the United States the power to preserve its own existence. This power therefore does not belong to the states or the people.

Pro provided no examples of the United States supporting secession among athor nations, much less "hundreds" of such examples. Moreover, even if he did provide such examples, this would be an example of the <em>tu quoque</em> fallacy. An entity being hypocritical does not make it wrong.

Pro still has not addressed Sunstein's anti-secession argument, presented in my opening statement, and so I take it that he concedes that argument.

In conclusion, Pro has not supported the resolution that the states have, or should have, the right to secede.

I thank Pro for an engaging debate. I thank the readers for their attention, and ask for a vote of Con.
Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by YYW 4 years ago
As an undergraduate, I had a few con-law classes. I've also had a class that dealt heavily with the topic of secession, in regard to the American Civil War. Given that background, this was an especially entertaining debate to read.

Thanks, gentlemen, for the smiles.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by ScarletGhost4396 4 years ago
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Reasons for voting decision: Generally, the arguments offered by the CON were greater, and he provided more resesources that the PRO did. The CON's grammar and spelling were masterful in contrast to PRO's.