Feb 5, 2009

litterbug vigilantes and the nanny state

Here's a perfect example of the potential for petty vigilantism in the Affirmative world of the March / April resolution: A man poses as a state trooper to shame someone who littered.
Police said the unidentified man was driving a red pickup truck with a dash-mounted flashing blue light when he stopped the woman and told her he was an off-duty Maine State Police trooper.

The impersonator never threatened the woman, Toman said.

"He just said, 'I stopped you because you threw a cigarette butt out the window in Augusta,'" Gardiner Police Chief James Toman said. "He didn't ask her for any identification and he certainly didn't show her any identification."
Just what the nanny state needs: freelancing nannies.

[Via Obscure Store]


ldn00b said...

Would this work for aff or neg? It seems absurd to have this widespread, but it also seems absurd to say this was a really bad thing.

Jave said...

If the aff suggests an instance wherein an innocent stops or prevents a bank robbery from taking place occurs, how would one defend against this? It's a minor act and doesn't harm anyone, so why should acts like these be unjustified?

Jim Anderson said...

ldn00b, I'd use it to help craft a Neg based on the creeping 1984ization of government. (Although in England, it's not exactly creeping.)

Jave, well, it's an instance. Does it represent the bulk of vigilantism? Probably not.

You can still argue that the (minor) instance would still encourage a general disregard for the law that fosters criminality.

Also, the argument seems to a presume an ends-justifies-the-means form of reasoning that you may argue against.

Eileen said...

The only problem I have with exampls such as this:

Did the government "fail" to enforce the law?

And when the Aff brings up people who stop robberies the Neg I think can effectively argue that ex. is non-resolutional.

Anonymous said...

Couldn't this work as an affirmative example as well?
The vigilante helped the law in a minor way without causing any damage.