I’ll start with his case first before touching on his rebuttals.
Pro’s postulation can be summed up thusly:
1. People in developing nations need relief from pollution now.
2. Pollution-reduction is languid, and developed nations are not stepping in enough to drive change.
Ergo, people should leave their city/country/region in search of less-polluted land.
It remains uncontested that emigrates incur a cost when they move (Pro says so in the last paragraph of R1,) and lengthier voyages are more costly than shorter ones. Yet, Pro suggests that emigrates should put themselves in danger by encouraging emigrates to move farther away to unpolluted countries. Just so we are clear, the cost of emigrating is not small. Many countries prohibit domestic and international movement of their citizens. Violation of these laws may result in bodily harm or detention (see my China and Tunisia example and also note the number of countries that prohibit movement of some kind). People escaping Syria's perpetual discord have perished from the elements, often drowning. The financial cost is also important since legal emigration (a much safer route) requires unaffordable passports. None of this is factored into the resolution’s verbiage or Pro’s argument, so expect people to die en masse as a result of unsafe passage in Pro’s world. It bears repeating; 9/10 people live in areas that have higher air pollution levels than what is recommended by the WHO (1). That’s a lot of people with varying families, cultures, personal health conditions, and wealth. Is it really tenable to assert that everyone, no matter how unprepared to pay the pecuniary and health costs inextricable to emigrating, can pack their bags and leave? I don't think so.
Pro also fails to establish solvency. He lays out his intentions in the final paragraph of his first argument when he mentioned that people should do what is most healthy for them. If reducing health risks to vulnerable people is the foremost priority of Pro, then he can’t just brush away the sequestering of 290 million people in China. Many emigrants will never reach their destination, which means they incurred the onus of a long voyage all for naught assuming they made it out of their home country/city/state without being imprisoned. My cost-benefit analysis framework suggests that when the costs are large, and the benefits are minimal, an action is not worth pursuing. This is a clear Con win.
First, note that my framework and harms are not refuted byPro. He does offer philosophical repudiation of my arguments, which I will dissect.
Pro claims that not leaving the developing world over the threat of pollution is lazy and pessimistic. I would think that any impartial assessment would find that the truth is more complex than any over-generalization. People who choose not to move are motivated by pragmatism. Moving provides dubious benefits, and the cost is too high a hurdle to overcome. Renderingmoral judgment on the poor garners Pro no ground. Even if I concede that not moving out of a reasonable fear for one’s life is a lazy position to take, what's the impact? Why is it important that some people are lazy and pessimistic? Weigh this against the burden of emigrating.
Note that my position does not preclude people from moving. If people have the resources to leave, they can. I object solely to the monolithic obligation of “all” people emigrating from polluted lands. In other words, people are not stopped from moving away from pollution in the Con world. They just have no obligation to do so. At least in Con’s world, people are able to take the “non-lazy” option with respect to their resources and ability. It isn't lazy to not run a 5-mile marathon if I broke my leg because it is not within my current abilities, just as it isn’t within the abilities of millions to travel to another country/state/city.
Heroism reposes against insanity with a needle-thin line dividing the two concepts. Not assessing whether movement is more within one’s abilities before moving is nowhere near that line; it is insanity. My opponent is setting up millions to die in what can only be described as a massacre through his imperative-to-move doctrine. Vonnegut famously wrote:
“…there is nothing intelligent to say about a massacre. Everybody is supposed to be dead, to never say anything or want anything ever again…”
Under my opponent’s definition of heroism, he could defend opening up a restaurant with zero culinary experience on scant funds. At least they tried, right? Just because the journey is more important than the destination (a trite aphorism to be sure) it doesn't mean that we should journey with no destination in sight.