Presentation on theme: "Basic principles part 1. Harm Principle The state should only restrict the actions of an actor if they are going to cause a harm to another actor. (the."— Presentation transcript:
Harm Principle The state should only restrict the actions of an actor if they are going to cause a harm to another actor. (the offence principle applies this to the moral standings/feelings of society) The harm principle is based on the idea that the role of the state should be to prevent harmful actions taking place.
How to use it In a debate you can use this principle to support your argument by simply proving that the course of action you DON'T want taken causes a harm to another actor (a person, society in general or the person harming themselves). Or conversely that the ban they are trying to propose doesn't prevent any harms.
Example An example of where this principle can be applied: THW Ban abortion As the opposition you could argue that preventing an actor from aborting a child causes a harm to the actor because they receive direct harms from carrying a child to term such as; social embarrassment, physical harms and harms to a person's career/livelihood.
Balance of harms This principle is directly linked to the harm principle. When both courses of action cause harms to an actor or offence to society in some way, you can still apply the principle. You simply have to prove that the course of action you want taken causes less harms, or that the harms it causes are less severe.
Example THW promote the use of full body scanners at airports. The proposition will say that there are harms to national security if you don't implement this motion. The opposition will say that there are harms to a person's freedoms if you do implement it. As proposition you could use this principle to show that the harms to national security are more dangerous than the harms to a person's freedom. As opposition you could use this principle to show that the harms to a person's freedom are unnecessary.
Social contract This principle states that there is an unwritten contract between individuals and the state, in that contract a person gives up certain rights in exchange for state run services. By rights we don't necessarily mean human rights from the human rights act. An example of this being used in society today is that we don't allow people the right to enact their own justice and instead provide them with the service of a police force and legal system.
How to use it In a debate you can use this principle to support your argument by simply proving that removing a person's right to something is fine as long as you are providing a specific service to replace it. Be cautious when using this principle, certain rights will be easy to prove more essential to an individual than the service you intend on replacing it with.
Example THW ban the BNP The proposition can TRY and argue that the right to freedom of speech (the right) in this situation should be removed to provide the rest of society with a higher level of national security/personal security (the service provided). This will be very difficult to do if the opposition can prove that the right to freedom of speech is more important.
Role of the state The principle here is that every government has a duty to uphold the wishes of the actors it governs, and to do this it has to fulfil certain responsibilities, if those responsibilities can be applied to a different situation then it must fulfil those responsibilities in that new situation. Simply: The state has a responsibility(role) to fulfil, it must always do this in similar situations. Conversely, it may be possible to show that the state doesn't have a responsibility to a specific actor (a corporation for example)
How to use it Show the judges what your side of the debate believes the role of the state is (for example, the role of the state is to protect it's citizens by preventing harms from occurring), you then explain why you believe this is their role citing previous examples. Once you have established the role of the state in this way you can go on to apply it to your side of the argument showing that the state has a responsibility to act in the way you propose and proving that the action you support has a precedent. Or alternatively showing that the state doesn't have a responsibility in this situation.
Example THW ban alcohol. The proposition could argue that the state has a responsibility to protect it's citizens from harming their well-being, it does this regularly through the restriction of certain drugs that can be abused. Since alcohol can also be abused, and since there are other less harmful drugs currently prohibited the state has a role of protection to provide by removing this harmful substance from society just as it has in the past.
Practice What principles can be applied to the following motions? THW ban abortion THW allow Euthanasia THW allow schools to teach creationism in science lessons THBT Obama should close the Guantanamo Camp immediately THW allow mothers in prison to be accompanied by their babies THW test nuclear weapons THW ban Coca Cola
Practice Debate THW further support the developing world