is it morally right to use deadly force as response to repeated domestic violence
Debate Rounds (5)
The resolution before us today, as it stands, is be it resolved that it is morally right to use deadly force as a response to repeated domestic abuse.
I have accepted the challenge, and would like to thank my opponent for extending it, and any future voters for taking the time to read our arguments and come to a concise decision.
I am going to allow my opponent to speak first.
Kristin Lardner, a talented young art student living in Boston, tried to end her relationship with Michael Cartier after he brutally beat her on April 15, 1992. A month and a half later, Michael Cartier killed Lardner. But before Michael killed Kristin Lardner, he violated a total of three restraining orders that were place on him by his ex-girlfriend and two others. George Lardner, Kristin Lardner's father, accused the justice system failing to address Cartier's violations and not processing warrants for his arrest in a timely manner. But it wasn't until two decades after Miss Lardner's death that some changes were made to ensure cases like hers don't fall through the cracks of the system.
On 2010, Ms. Jones was a victim of domestic violence. When she spoke out at a news conference that highlight a new domestic violence report, she said that she knew that her ex-husband was going to beat her as she answered the door.
I affirm the resolution; it is morally permissible for victims to use deadly force as a deliberate response to repeated domestic violence. I am going to define the following terms to prevent any confusion
Deadly force (legal dictionary from the U.S. Legal Forms): physical force which, under the circumstances in which it is used, is readily capable of causing death or serious physical injury.
Domestic violence (domesticviolence.org): Domestic violence is violence and emotional abuse behaviors used by one person in a relationship to control the other. Partners may be married or not married; heterosexual, gay, or lesbian; living together, separated or dating.
Deliberate (the free dictionary by Farlex): an action done with care and intention or premeditated.
My core value for this resolution is respect. The free dictionary by Farlex defines respect as willingness to show consideration or appreciation. We treat people and object with care because we have respect for them. My criterion is law of equivalency, which states the same value of an object in all forms taken must be payback with the same value and the Exodus 21:23-24 which said "But if there is serious injury, you are to take life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot" It say that if somebody are being injury, they are to do the same to the offender.
Contention 1: Many victims of domestic violence feel that the system is failing to protect them. According to NCADV (National Coalition against domestic violence) 50% of the civil protection orders and more than two-thirds of the restraining orders were violated. The 2010 Domestic Violence Court Watch Report shows that of the 1916 domestic violence cases in Municipal Court, only 13% percent resulted in convictions and the rest were dismissed. Victim's advocates stated that victims don't feel safe in court and they have no confidence that the court has the ability to stop their abusers from committing crimes against them. Studies also show that laws are not enforced adequately or consistently, and perpetrators are becoming more and more dangerous after their victims report these crimes. If the court and laws can't protect us from becoming victims of domestic violence, we have to act on our own to protect ourselves. I strongly believe that using deadly force is the best way for us to protect ourselves against domestic violence.
Contention 2: Not having enough protection from our laws and justice system isn't the only reason why we should be allow to use deadly force to retaliate against domestic violence. According to Exodus 21:23-24, which said "But if there is serious injury, you are to take life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot" The victims are able to use deadly force against the offenders because they are being abused. If the victims are being harmed, then the victims are obligated to fight back with the same intensity.
Contention 3: when we respect someone, we treat them as well as we can. When we don't respect someone, we can treat them like dirt. Matthew said to do to others what you would have them do to you. If the offenders do not respect the victims as a human being and abuse them, then the victims do not need to respect the offenders and allowed to use deadly force as a deliberate response to it.
If we don't allow the victims to use deadly force to retaliate against the offenders, then we can never stop domestic violence.
I agree with your resolution, and your definitions.
Firstly, to rebut a few of the things you've said in your argument.
1 - Just because a man or woman doesn't feel safe, does not mean that they aren't. If a man or woman is violating the restraining order, the victim simply has to notify authorities who WILL persecute them. Feelings and reality often get mixed up, especially during such traumatic times. Secondly, the cited statistic occurs in municipal court, as we all know, serious offenses like battery or assault get tried in provincial (I'm Canadian, I don't know your levels of court. But assuming it's the same, it's the courts at state level) court systems and NOT municipal court. This is why only 13% of charges ended up being convictions. This story also does not take into consideration the fact that people lie, it's innately human to do so. Why should a court convict based on a story? Our courts are designed so that you're innocent until proven guilty - the onus of proof lying on the positive - as it has to be in physics, debates, and judicial systems. If there is inconclusive proof, there's a good chance that the accused didn't do anything. We cannot therefore arrest them for it. The problem with the American judicial system is that it focuses on redemption instead of rehabilitation. This means that a man who wants to kill is going to sit alone in a cell for hours a day. Of course this is making him more dangerous. Here in Canada, our primary focus is on rehabilitation- which is why opposite studies show that our recidivism rate is much lower than yours.
2 - Throughout your argument you cite a verse from Exodus. I have a problem with this verse for two reasons; one, I am not a Christian. I do not feel that the bible is a reputable enough source for information or even morality. After all, it allows followers to own slaves and insists them not to shave their beards (it's in Deut, I don't remember where). Secondly, as a far greater man than those who wrote the bible said, "An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind." ~ Mahatma Gandhi. And Ghandi could not have been more correct. If we answer violence with violence, how are we ever supposed to accomplish anything?
If that example is too Muslim, or if you don't like me because I am an Atheist, let's take a look at your own bible (Assuming you are a Christian). Exodus is, of course, located in the old testament. This is before Jesus comes and saves the world. When Jesus is confronted by the Romans, to be brought to hung (pardon, I may have gotten that bit wrong. I'm an atheist, not that good with the bible), and someone (I don't know who, sorry. It's in Matthew though) tries to fend off the Romans and pulls out his sword. "Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword." (Matthew 26:52).
Exodus happens before, before Jesus comes and is sacrificed for our sins. His sacrifice therefore makes it so that we do not have to sacrifice others or other things for judgement and the pleasing of the god(s).
In essence, if you look at the root of any religion, any spiritual being or book, anything- it can be interpreted numerous ways. This is why it's necessary never to cite the bible. In fact, you make the bible sound bloodthirsty and angry. The bible is a masterpiece of literature, but you must NEVER take anything out of context.
3 - "Matthew said to do to others what you would have them do to you."
Matthew is absolutely right. This golden rule stands as the precedent for morality. But alas, if you kill somebody, you are essentially saying that you would WANT people to kill you. Matthew's comment is not about retribution, but about forgiveness and peacefulness. Again, think to Jesus. Those who pick up the sword perish by the sword. Those who lead a life of violence will die in violence.
Again, you're twisting the bible to make it work. Don't take a literary work of genius and decompile it into segments. I can get any novel to say anything if I try hard enough. But if you look at the big picture, you'll often realize that it has much broader, more interesting implications, and ultimately contradicts that entire work to begin with. Follow the message of the bible- love, peace, non-violence, forgiveness.
Finally, I agree entirely that our laws on both sides of the border are not tightly enough maintained to protect witnesses. I propose cutting spending on fighting imaginary bad guys in the mountains and increase spending protecting Americans and Canadians.
Seeing as I am opposition, and there are no further points left standing, I rest my case. I look forward to your reply and anticipate a great debate.
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