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View Full Version : Debating. A Debate about Debating


Arcesious
12-04-2007, 07:52 PM
I dunno how this thread will turn out, but i bet it will be unique.
This debate is about why or why not we should debate and about what things we shoudl debate or not debate. Such a debate thread coudl help others come up with new ideas for debates and maybe change their debatign tactics or something of that kind.

So I'm on the side of not debating the more serious subjects now, but more on the lesser ones. People who don't normally debate on this site, it would be nice if you participated in this thread.

Hopefully this is one debate thread that doesn't get too heated up over moral disagreements and all that other maddening stuff.

Why do i think the more serious issues shouldn't be debated? (rhetorical)
Here's why.
They often can cause flaming, even though the rules clearly state not to flame, there sometimes is flaming or flame-baiting.
Threads over morals always make everybody get really heated up, and that's one of the reasons why i think it's better to leave debates of that kind to our leaders.
I do however agree that debating of serious issues has been important to do in the past and present, such as about slavery and racism and war and criminal punishment, etc, etc, the debating eventually contributing to the world and leading to a good change.
Debates over religons tend to leave everyone mad and are a bad idea to start in general, including myself. But that's a matter of opinion more than fact. (that also means that i think my start of the debate over everything about Christianity and science thread was a bad idea now)
Also, lots of debates tend to leave some people sometimes saying things they later regret and can't change and feel like an idiot saying. (the sentence before this sentence applies to me quite a bit)
But debates like this are more better to do, becasue they are more minor and more often leave people from both sides content with what they've put intot he debate anmd the debate's results.

(on a side note, i want to say i'm sorry for being a bad debater and being arrogant and not admitting my mistakes and such, and i don;t intedn on participate din the bigger debates anymore becasue i realize now it will only lead me to make myself look stupid and arrogant.)

and with that i'd like to start this debate, however short it may likely end up being.

Web Rider
12-04-2007, 08:08 PM
We should debate everything. As long as the debaters can keep their tempers in check, there's no harm in a heated debate as long as you stick to debating and not mud-slinging. But one should only NOT debate something if they don't have the info to back up a claim. Unless it's a debate of opinions, then, who cares.

I don't trust my leaders half the time, so I'd hardly rely on their skills to figure out morality. Most of the time, morality needs to simply be legt out of legisation and the government. It's a personal deal.

In short: question everything. if you're not good at debating, watch some debates, and look stuff up, see how other debaters operate, and learn. Better yourself so you can debate.

John Galt
12-04-2007, 09:17 PM
To quote George Orwell:

"In our age there is no such thing as "keeping out of politics." All issues are political issues, and politics itself is a mass of lies, evasions, folly, hatred, and schizophrenia."

Arcesious
12-04-2007, 09:19 PM
Yeah i guess that pretty much sums it up. I agree with you after reading your post. My only point now is that some things that can be debated might just be better left alone in some cases.

John Galt
12-04-2007, 09:36 PM
Yeah i guess that pretty much sums it up. I agree with you after reading your post. My only point now is that some things that can be debated might just be better left alone in some cases.

that's why I avoid some issues. Not going to stop other people from talking about them, but I stay away.

Arcesious
12-04-2007, 09:40 PM
Yeah now i really wish i hadn't participated in the homo thread and made the Christinity/Science debate over everything thread...

Aeroldoth
12-04-2007, 11:52 PM
I agree with Web Rider that everything should be debated; there is NO topic that should be considered taboo or off-limits. None. However, I disagree that all things can be discussed civilly. Controversial subjects are inherently touchy, moreso however when a person involved is harmfully affected by the subject at hand. Would you expect a black person to be calm and civil when discussing re-instituting slavery in the US? Would Jews be polite about your plans to build crematoriums? Should gays be respectful when speaking of their lobotomies?

IMHO, and I do mean IMHO, it seems to me that ofttimes some people forget that an issue being discussed is not some dry, abstract concept, but something that has a very real impact on people's lives. It's one thing to argue over corporate gains taxes or trade relations with China, quite another to discuss controlling somebody's life.

Now, if one wants to actually attempt to change somebody's mind, or "win" a debate, then yes, it behooves them to be as civil and restrained as possible. In casual discussion, however, don't expect too much of this. Nobody likes being insulted or verbally attacked, and few will accept being browbeat into an opinion. What kind of debate people have in a thread is often set by the tone of the original poster.

Most importantly however, as far as the reader is concerned, is what they want out of the debate. Is your goal to "win", to learn, to influence, what? When I first came on the net, I spent countless hours debating sex, drugs, politics, civil rights and religion. While I initially wanted to "correct" all the others who clearly thought wrong, I quickly realized that was a hopeless task. Even if I could provide overwhelming evidence on a subject, my points were still dismissed. But something good did come out of it for me.

I changed my goals from trying to influence people, to trying to learn from people. The net is a wondrous thing, allowing instantaneous connection with people we will never meet from countries and regions we will never visit. The chance to learn is too amazing, IMO, to pass up.

What enriches my life now is not so much arguing with someone, but learning what they think, and why. Being exposed to views both simple and extraordinary from others around the world is one of life's greatest accomplishments, I think. I was fortunate enough to travel overseas when I was a teen, and the experience changed my life.

For me, the net provides access to all kinds of people with all kinds of views. It lets me ask people who hold radically different positions from me, why they hold them. I may learn something, and better myself because of it. For me, debate is about improving myself, seeing if there is something I hadn't considered before, or didn't know. Now, instead of trying to change others, I try to change myself.

I will leave you with two quotes:

"When you see how difficult it is to change yourself, you begin to realize what little chance you have of changing others."

"Arguing over the internet is like running in the Special Olympics: even if you win you're still retarded."

Jae Onasi
12-05-2007, 01:51 AM
Sticky on structuring arguments (http://www.lucasforums.com/showthread.php?t=175873)
Rules for Kavar's Corner (http://www.lucasforums.com/showthread.php?t=175866)

SilentScope001
12-05-2007, 02:09 AM
Shame that I thought this topic would deal with this question:

"Is debate really useful? Does it really resolve issues? Is it better to just adhere to your ideology and not test them? Why bother talking?"

Jason Skywalker
12-05-2007, 06:58 AM
Of course we should debate. That way, not only do we get to know more about the topic but we also learn about people's philosophies and if oneself is right or wrong.

Tommycat
12-05-2007, 08:19 AM
Of course we should debate. That way, not only do we get to know more about the topic but we also learn about people's philosophies and if oneself is right or wrong.
Bah, I'm always right. Even when I'm not entirely correct, I'm still right. Even when I make completely false statements I'm always right. Except when I'm talking to my wife. Then I'm always wrong:D

mur'phon
12-05-2007, 09:34 AM
Arc, you shouldn't regret participating in threads, I'm sure a lot of people here (including me) where arogant and "all knowing" when they first came. Just learn from it, question your ideas, your morals, heck everything. There is no shame in changing your mind.
Anything should be debated in order to learn about what others think, but also to pherhaps see if we agre completely with ourselves.

tk102
12-05-2007, 03:08 PM
Shame that I thought this topic would deal with this question:

"Is debate really useful? Does it really resolve issues? Is it better to just adhere to your ideology and not test them? Why bother talking?"
SilentScope001, I am debating on whether we should debate the debate on debating.

SilentScope001
12-05-2007, 06:14 PM
Of course we should debate. That way, not only do we get to know more about the topic but we also learn about people's philosophies and if oneself is right or wrong.

But debate often times waste valuable energy, energy that could be used to supporting your own worldview that may very well be the only correct worldview, or be used for more productive stuff, such as making money. Plus, debate can make people unhappy that their viewpoint is wrong, and the saying "Ignorance is Bliss" isn't just a lame cliche. [/DevilAdvocate]

Web Rider
12-05-2007, 06:28 PM
But debate often times waste valuable energy, energy that could be used to supporting your own worldview that may very well be the only correct worldview, or be used for more productive stuff, such as making money. Plus, debate can make people unhappy that their viewpoint is wrong, and the saying "Ignorance is Bliss" isn't just a lame cliche. [/DevilAdvocate]

But Debating is also useful in that you may not be wrong, or you could attract more people to your side, which makes it easier to attract even more people. More people=more energy, time, and money to work on putting forth your world-view.

Jason Skywalker
12-06-2007, 06:43 AM
I say we should debate but i'm not going to force people to debate. I'm just one boy. People can do whatever they want but if they want to debate, then debate away. And our viewpoint is only wrong if oneself thinks it to be wrong, whereas on other it might be right.