The Voices Debating Society of MMU Melaka recently organised a series of events under the theme of Voices week. They had various activities which range from a debate exhibition in 3 different languages, an interfaculty debate and a forum session by Dr Emmerson & Madam Kavitha. There was also Public speaking, 3-word challenge followed by News Reading. However, for the purposes of this article, we will only cover the interfaculty debate, particularly the final round between FOB v. FOL.
It was around 5 pm when the debate started. The adjudicators consisted of Monisha, Gajelan and Sukhvin. The audiences were students of various backgrounds and there were around 20 of them. After some time, the debaters were given a topic right out of left field, “Assuming this tech exists, this house will forcefully erase the memory of addiction from drugs users”. It sure sounds like something out of a sci-fi movie, particularly “Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.”
And we’re off to the debate. FOL was the Government and FOB took on the role of the Opposition. Irfan, the Prime Minister defined terms that would be used, particularly addiction. He then stated his stance of addiction not being a crime. Instead, it is a disease that needs to be cured by erasing their memories. The government rejected prison as it would bring the criminal social stigma when the criminal is released into society. Peer pressure was also cited as one of the cons of prison.
The Opposition also raised some ethical concerns regarding the erasing of memory. They cited that it was unconstitutional to erase one’s memories and that the mind belongs to the addict and not the Government, which was then rebutted by stating it’s a necessary evil. The Government also stated that erasing of memories is not the primary solution but a supplement to existing measures.
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