The Instigator
Kescarte_DeJudica
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
Emmarie
Pro (for)
Winning
6 Points

Affirmative Action

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
Emmarie
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/26/2016 Category: Politics
Updated: 5 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,069 times Debate No: 91504
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (39)
Votes (2)

 

Kescarte_DeJudica

Con

In this debate, I will attempt to prove that the very nature of affirmative action is racist and sexist.

Definitions:

Racist- someone or something that discriminates on the basis of race

Sexist- someone or something that discriminates on the basis of sex

Affirmative Action- The encouragement of increased representation of women and minority-group members, especially in employment

Minority groups- anyone who is not a white male.

Tax Credit- a deduction on your taxes.

Subsidy- a direct cash payment from the government.

Legal mandate- a law requiring that certain action is taken.

Rules:

1. No trolling. (bringing up irrelevant topics, making snide remarks, etc.)
2. No forfeits. Anyone who forfeits a round loses the debate automatically. No exceptions. All vote points then belong to the forfeiter's opponent.
3. Anything else pretty much goes.

I have made this debate impossible to accept. If you somehow do manage to accept it in spite of this, without my consent, you then lose automatically. If you wish to debate, notify me in the comments section. Once five interested parties comment, I will pick my own opponent. I will then say that I consent to have them as my opponent in the comments section, and change the settings to challenge them to the debate. They have two days to accept the challenge and confirm their participation, otherwise, I offer the challenge to someone else. Any questions, please direct them to the comments section, where I will do my best to answer them. I look forward to an interesting and intellectually stimulating debate!
Emmarie

Pro

Thank You, Kescarte, for this challenge. I accept! I have read and agree to the terms that you have outlined, and I look forward to reading your arguments.
Debate Round No. 1
Kescarte_DeJudica

Con

Thank you Pro, for accepting the debate challenge. I will now make my argument against Affirmative Action.

Affirmative Action programs come in one of two forms. Either they mandate compliance, or they provide economic incentive to all who comply (in the form of tax credits, subsidies, etc.)

Although affirmative action programs are created with good intentions, their very nature is racist and sexist. The reason is because they discriminate in favor of women and minority racial groups (black, hispanic, indian, etc.). And by discriminating in favor of these groups, they inadvertently discriminate against white males.

Suppose for example I have my own business in Ohio, named Kescarte Inc., a manufacturing plant. Let's also suppose that the state of Ohio has a law that for every seven employees I hire, one of them must be a minority. This law forces me to discriminate in hiring based on race. I don't have a problem hiring someone who is a minority, as long as this person can do just as good a job as anyone else. But what if there are very few minorities like that, at least in that particular area of Ohio? If I have six white male workers in my manufacturing company and I need to hire a seventh worker, what if I can't find a good minority worker? Or what if three people apply for the job, and two are whites that just happen to have a very good work history and the other is a minority that just happens to have a bad work history? I will have to hire the minority worker. In this case, even though the other two workers would probably have been a better option, I would have to hire the third. Wouldn't that be awfully discouraging to those two other workers? To know that even though they are clearly the better workers, and that one of them would have gotten the job, if only they had the right skin color? Or if they had been born the right gender? Then they would realize that they were being discriminated against based on race, or sex. But what can they do about it? They're not minorities. And the state dictates that minorities have the legal advantage. Thus, short of petitioning for a change in state law, they can do little.

But then again, what if Ohio doesn't have a mandatory affirmative action law? What if there are only incentives for hiring minority workers, like a tax credit or a subsidy, instead of it being mandatory? Well, again there is still the problem of discrimination against white males. Take the example above. If the state government will pay my business, Kescarte Inc., $100/month to hire this minority worker over the other two white workers, who will I hire? The minority worker of course. Even though that worker isn't as good a worker, I'll hire him because the extra $100/month should more than make up for the difference in performance. Meanwhile, the other two have plenty of time to dwell on the fact that their tax dollars are being given to me to not hire them, even though they are more skilled.

What most people don't understand is that in a free market economy, there is already a system in place that discourages racism and sexism, and promotes equality in the workplace. What is this system? Supply and demand.

Allow me to provide another example. Let's suppose that there are no affirmative action programs in Ohio, and that as the owner of Kescarte Inc., I am free to hire whomever I please. And let's say that I am prejudice against women. I will hire any worker of any race, as long as they are male. This is for no reason other than the fact that I have a personal problem with women, and I don't want them working for me. Well, my personal prejudice immediately puts me at a disadvantage in the marketplace. Because if I have a competitor who manufactures the same product, and he doesn't care what sex his workers are, as long as they're good at their job, then he has an advantage over me. The reason is because my competitor has access to a greater supply of quality workers than I do, and I have limited myself to only a certain portion of the labor market. Since he has no limits, my competitor has an edge, and will probably eventually end up having more skilled workers than me, on average, and thus be able to provide a higher-quality product at a more competitive price than I can. And that is because my competitor is not sexist, and the free market system indirectly punishes those who are.

Thus, there is a sytem in place to promote diversity in the work place, so long as the quality of work is equal. And unlike affirmative action programs, which effectively encourage the selection of a worker based on race or sex, or outright demand it, this system discourages the selection of workers based on anything other than the quality of their work. My conclusion is that we should maintain such a system, and not set up governemnt controlled, affirmative action programs.

This concludes my argument for Round 2. I look forward to reading my opponent's arguments!
Emmarie

Pro

I would again like to thank Kescarte for the opportunity to debate this topic.


Con’s Case: No Evidence and Half Truth Argumentation

It seems that con’s arguments are based on what-if scenarios and are not backed up by any evidence or sources. In, an americanbar.org publication, it is suggested that affirmative action is seen in a negative light because of the way that surveyors pose questions regarding affirmative action, that cause the respondents in these surveys to view affirmative action programs unfavorably. [1] I prefer to focus on the facts about affirmative action, which I will state whileI refute my cons claims.


In con’s opening statement where he describes the forms of affirmative action, he states that “they (I’m assuming he is referring to the government) mandate compliance or provide economic incentive.” Both of these claims are inaccurate (nonspecific) or unfounded. After researching this topic, that makes some people uneasy at its implications, I have found evidence that affirmative action programs based on race or gender are nowhere near as prevalent as many people perceive them to be.


Affirmative Action: Racial and Gender Mandates in the Workplace

Con implies that mandatory Affirmative action programs are formally in place in all employment situations. Formal Affirmative Action Programs, as far as how they relate to the workplace, are only required for companies that meet specific criteria or under certain conditions. This leaves the majority of employers,(including small businesses) with hiring and promotion practices at liberty to hire and promote individuals (as long as they adhere to the EEOC [2]) without specific quotas or formal regulation.

  1. Under Executive Order 11246, OFCCP administers and enforces regulations which prohibit federal contractors and federally-assisted construction contractors and subcontractors, who do over $10,000 in Government business in one year from discriminating in employment decisions on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin. The Executive Order also requires Government contractors to take affirmative action to insure that equal opportunity is provided in all aspects of their employment.

  2. Each Government contractor with 50 or more employees and $50,000 or more in government contracts is required to develop a written affirmative action program (AAP) for each of its establishments. [3]

  3. Courts may require employers to adopt affirmative action programs as a remedy for past discrimination under Title VII. [4]

Taking these factors into consideration, affirmative action, by law, isn’t affecting most employers in the US. The employers that formal affirmative action programs are effecting through government mandates, are companies that get much of their business from the government themselves, therefore affirmative action programs are warranted to ensure that these companies are hiring and promoting those who could be at a disadvantage without these mandates. The history and continuance of discrimination within labor unions of the construction trade, is one of the reasons that affirmative action programs are needed for companies that receive government contracts. [5]



Affirmative Action: Economic Incentives

I could not find any evidence that economic incentives are given to companies to employ or promote individuals based on race or gender; what I did find was evidence that companies can receive economic incentives for employing those with disabilities [6][7](including those deemed economically disadvantaged who had previously received economic government assistance) or Military Veterans who were unemployed. [8] Cons argument is based on what if scenarios that don’t exist in reality. There are no economic incentives given by the US Government to hire minorities or women, only economic incentives to hire the disabled, economically disadvantaged, or unemployed veterans.


Affirmative Action: Supply and Demand

Con makes the claim that supply and demand should dictate the hiring and promotional practices of employers. Many employers chose to implement affirmative action programs within their hiring and promotion practices. It is still “affirmative action” whether it is mandated by the government, or practiced voluntarily. “The majority of corporate affirmative action programs are voluntary attempts to improve workforce diversity.” Many corporations voluntarily engage in affirmative action practices because diversity of the workforce is desirable. Problem solving that requires more than one approach or perspective improves with the creative solutions offered by a diverse workforce. [1]


“Strong corporate support for affirmative action programs makes it likely that such programs will persist, even in the absence of government support.” [1] In a free market capitalistic society, private companies themselves are finding that hiring a more diverse workforce, including minorities, women, and those with disabilities offers an advantage in the manufacture and market of their products or services. If companies are choosing to implement their own affirmative actions policies, without being required by law to do so, then affirmative action must hold benefits to companies themselves, and not just to the individuals who benefit from these policies. Affirmative Action is beneficial to more than just minorities, women, or individuals with disabilities, as the perspectives they bring to the workforce offer innovative ideas to solving problems that may have never been thought of in a work setting where everyone came from similar perspectives in life.


This concludes my arguments and rebuttals for round two.


Sources

[1]http://www.americanbar.org...

[2]https://www.eeoc.gov...

[3]https://www.dol.gov...

[4]https://www.dol.gov...

[5]http://laborunionreport.com...

[6]https://www.doleta.gov...

[7]https://www.doleta.gov...

[8]http://www.benefits.va.gov...

Debate Round No. 2
Kescarte_DeJudica

Con

Thank you Pro, for posting your argument. I will now proceed with my counter-argument.

1. Half-truth arguments.

Pro is correct when she says the majority of my arguments are based on what-if scenarios. My reason for doing this is to show how affirmative action programs are detrimental to society at large, even though I provided no physical evidence of such. Part of the reason for this is because there are few, if any, government-mandated affirmative action programs in operation within the United States. But that does not mean that there are none at all. For example, in Wikipedia, it says: "Some countries, such as India, use a quota system, whereby a certain percentage of government jobs, political positions, and school vacancies must be reserved for members of a certain group. In some other regions where quotas are not used, minority group members are given preference or special consideration in selection processes." (Source: https://en.wikipedia.org...)

While it is true that quota based systems are currently illegal in the United States, this is not the point. The point of the debate is, should affirmative action programs be legal? And if not, why not?

Pro states that affirmative action programs within the government are not common. This is true, corporate programs are much more prevalent. I did not "imply" that those types of programs are in place, my example was purely hypothetical as a case against such mandatory government programs, should they ever be considered for implementation.

2. Corporate Programs

According to the article that Pro cited from the ABA, "The majority of corporate affirmative action programs are voluntary attempts to improve workforce diversity. They are unaffected by thorny constitutional issues, such as those raised by the lawsuit against the University of Michigan, which plague university admissions programs. Jennifer Gratz, a white student, alleges the university's affirmative action program denied her admission based on her race, even through she was qualified. Terry Pell, senior counsel for the Center for Individual Rights, makes a clear distinction between the Michigan case and voluntary corporate affirmative action. The Washington D.C.-based public interest law firm is suing the university on behalf of Ms. Gratz. He argues that the purpose of the university program is irrelevant, because it violates the Fourteenth Amendment. "If affirmative action is illegal and unconstitutional, it doesn't matter whether it serves a purpose," Pell said."

Here is a link to a copy of the 14th Amendment. https://www.law.cornell.edu... . If the actions of the University of Michigan are constitutionally prohibited under this Amendment, then similar corporate programs must also be prohibited. Pro attempts to make the claim that voluntary affirmative action programs are implemented by employers, with strong support that stems from the desire of a diverse workplace. "It is still "affirmative action" whether it is mandated by the government, or practiced voluntarily."

What is the crucial problem with this? Well, remember the definition of affirmative action that we previously agreed upon when beginning the debate? Allow me reprint it here: "Affirmative Action- The encouragement of increased representation of women and minority-group members, especially in employment"

Now, take a look at the page for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (https://www.eeoc.gov...). Please note that this is one of Pro's cited sources. The first paragraph states: "The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is responsible for enforcing federal laws that make it illegal to discriminate against a job applicant or an employee because of the person's race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and sexual orientation), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information. It is also illegal to discriminate against a person because the person complained about discrimination, filed a charge of discrimination, or participated in an employment discrimination investigation or lawsuit."

The paragraph above states quite plainly that companies are not allowed to discriminate against job applicants based on sex or race. But if an employer wishes to set up their own affirmative action program, in an attempt to maintain a state of "workplace diversity", then he is violating the law. Why? Because under the definition of affirmative action, as set forth in the debate, an employer would encourage increased hiring of women and minority groups, when the laws that the EEOC is required to uphold do not allow this.

Pro brings up another interesting point. Based on another cited source, a page from the Department of Labor (https://www.dol.gov...), the government requires certain companies to form an affirmative action plan, in order to receive contracts from the government. Notice two key sentences: "Each Government contractor with 50 or more employees and $50,000 or more in government contracts is required to develop a written affirmative action program (AAP) for each of its establishments." "A written affirmative action program helps the contractor identify and analyze potential problems in the participation and utilization of women and minorities in the contractor's workforce."

According to this information, a company must have an affirmative action program in place to receive government contracts. This means that the government is encouraging the preference of hiring women and minority groups, at least to the point where the company in question has some sort of "workplace equality". This is, however, in violation of the laws regarding equal employment, where a company is not allowed to discriminate on the basis of sex or race in hiring decisions. By encouraging the development of an affirmative action program, the government is encouraging violation of its other laws. From this, I come to a small number of possible conclusions: 1. The government laws contradict one another. 2. The government likes to make special exceptions for their business partners. 3. Some other reason that I haven't thought of.

3. Economic Incentives

My opponent is correct about there being a lack of affirmative action programs that operate on economic incentives, instead of mandatory compliance. At least not in the formal sense, or in the manner of the hypothetical example that I presented. But one could argue that there are other types of economic incentives that show preference to women and minorities. Take the company receiving government contracts for example. Pro showed that they would have to draw up an affirmative action plan for their company to receive contract opportunities. This is a good example of economic incentive. In this case, the government is giving business opportunities to companies that participate in affirmative action, versus not giving any to those that don't.

A second good example of economic incentive would be the work of the Small Business Administration. Under the Small Business Act, aid is given to "Socially Disadvantaged Individuals", in the form of grants, loans, and contract preferences. In fact, there is a process that one can go through to have their business branded as "Women Owned" (WOB) or "Minority Owned" (MOB). It can be argued that this is a form of affirmative action, although not in employment, it is giving preferential treatment to WOBs and MOBs over regular small businesses, as far as aid is concerned.

(Source: http://womeninbusiness.about.com...)

Conclusion

I believe that my counterargument in this round has helped to strengthen my position, that affirmative action programs, of any kind, are grounded in principles of discrimination, and that discrimination is necessary to make them work. I have attempted to prove that such programs can and do exist, and that their existence is detrimental to society at large. This concludes my argument for Round Three. I will enjoy my opponent's next argument.
Emmarie

Pro

Con contradicts himself.


Con’s section 1. Half Truth’s.

Con states, “The point of the debate is, should affirmative action programs be legal? And if not, why not?” If that was truly the “Point” of the debate, then he wouldn’t have posted his “what if scenario” arguments during R2. Obviously he learned something from the information that I documented in my R2, so now in R3 he wants to pretend that this debate is about, “should affirmative action be legal.” Maybe we can have that debate on another occasion, but the resolution of this debate simply says, “Affirmative Action.” He is con and I am pro. He is attempting to make the resolution what he wishes it would have been, had he known the information that I provided.

Con’s section 2. Corporate Programs

In R2 he states that private enterprise ought to determine the need for affirmative action, and then in R3, he attempts to link the citing of how the fourteenth amendment was used in a court decision involving College admissions to imply that affirmative action is unconstitutional in hiring and promotional practices by private enterprise. No such decision by any court has ever been made involving affirmative action and employment. Here is a quote of him to show that he viewed voluntary AA favorably until I refuted him in R2:

“Because if I have a competitor who manufactures the same product, and he doesn't care what sex his workers are, as long as they're good at their job, then he has an advantage over me. The reason is because my competitor has access to a greater supply of quality workers than I do, and I have limited myself to only a certain portion of the labor market.”

Then in round 3 he then attempts to link private enterprise’s attempts at finding qualified candidates from diverse backgrounds, with a violation of the 14th amendment. When a private enterprise seeks to diversify its workforce, it does so by marketing to the types of applicants for which it hopes to recruit potential employees. Is con trying to imply that we need government intervention in how employers decide how to market to get applicants to know about job openings? “Affirmative action in employment involves active recruitment of women and minorities by looking for candidates beyond informal job networks traditionally dominated by white men.
Affirmative action encourages the public advertisement of jobs to identify qualified candidates in places where employers might not otherwise look.” https://oied.ncsu.edu...


Recruiting qualified applicants is much different than discriminating against applicants based solely on external factors. Con quotes:

”The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) is responsible for enforcing federal laws that make it illegal to discriminate against a job applicant or an employee because of the person's race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and sexual orientation), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic information. It is also illegal to discriminate against a person because the person complained about discrimination, filed a charge of discrimination, or participated in an employment discrimination investigation or lawsuit.”


but what he fails to realize is that affirmative action in private employment is aimed at finding qualified candidates, not hiring unqualified candidates over qualified white males."


In Richmond Times Dispatch online, Karen Michael discusses how and why the court rulings against affirmative action in College admissions, fails to apply to affirmative action in employment.

“Whether you are a federal contractor or not, affirmative action does not mean preferences or quotas. Period. The obligation of federal contractors who have affirmative action obligations simply means that they must track applicants, engage in nondiscrimination, analyze the racial and gender make-up of the organization, and, importantly, cast the net to find qualified minorities and females for consideration in the application process.
However, at no point, ever, is the employer permitted to use race or gender as a deciding factor in hiring an employee and must consistently hire the most qualified candidate. To hire a less-qualified person due to race or gender would violate the other federal discrimination laws. For example, it would be illegal to discriminate against a more qualified white male in favor of a less qualified Hispanic female. If an employer did this, the white male could sue alleging discrimination… and he’d win if it was true that the employer made the decision to hire the lesser qualified Hispanic female due to her race or gender. Such discriminatory motive is a textbook violation of Title VII.
Federal law is clear that even federal contractors who have affirmative action obligations cannot use illegal considerations in their hiring and promotions practices. The law states as follows as it relates to determining how to attempt to diversify the workplace:”

She then quotes the law itself. http://www.richmond.com...


In con’s section 2. Corporate Programs he also states, “Because under the definition of affirmative action, as set forth in the debate, an employer would encourage increased hiring of women and minority groups, when the laws that the EEOC is required to uphold do not allow this.” First of all that quote is a dependant clause, a fragmented sentence, as it does not make sense on it’s own, but aside from that, the point he was trying to make is misleading. “An employer would encourage..…..,” is an idea that there is no law against! For an employer to practice the encouragement of hiring individuals, who are not of the race or gender of the most common type of applicants is not illegal. It is illegal to discriminate, it is not illegal to encourage.


Con’s section 3. Economic Incentives

In R2, con argues that affirmative action discriminates against white males. There are several government grants that are available to any company who bids on them (at which time they only need to have a written plan for hiring more than just white males.) It isn’t unreasonable, in a country where white males have had a social and economic advantage throughout its history, for the government to encourage conditions that lead to prosperity for others, some who have needed to depend on government assistance to survive. The government recognizes the value of being economically independent, so affirmative action is about equal oppurtunity, not the oppression of white males.


Conclusion

Affirmative action is a way of providing equal opportunity for all andis legal. I have relayed the facts about how and why affirmative action is applied to employment situations in the US. Con has attempted to make the programs that include the idea of affirmative action about the oppression of white males, which he has not proven.
Debate Round No. 3
Kescarte_DeJudica

Con

Thank you Pro, for presenting your case. I will now offer a rebuttal to your three main arguments, as posted in Round 3.

Half Truths

Please notice that Pro states that because I used "what if scenarios", I cannot effectively argue that "The point of the debate is, should affirmative action programs be legal? And if not, why not?"

I'm afraid this is taken out of context. When I wrote that quoted phrase, it was preceded by: "While it is true that quota based systems are currently illegal in the United States, this is not the point."

The point I was making in my previous argument was that although affirmative action programs like I used in my hypothetical examples are not currently in effect here in the United States, like they are in India, this was not the point. The point was not whether or not they are in place, it was should they be in place. And if not, why not? That's my argument. I hold that affirmative action programs are racist and sexist by nature, and I am trying to prove that as a reason for affirmative action being illegal. Whether or not it is currently legal, here or elsewhere, is purely secondary.

Secondly, the title of the debate is "Affirmative Action". But that isn't the "resolution" of the debate. If Pro did not understand that, I'm sorry. But the fact is, I as Con am attempting to prove, as best as possible, that affirmative action is not a beneficial program to be administered, whether by corporate programs or government programs, for the reasons which I present. Pro is, as I understand it, attempting to prove that affirmative action is a beneficial program. That is the resolution. My hypothetical example of affirmative action programs being administered was simply an example of what can be the case, assuming that such programs exist.

Corporate Programs

My opponent says, in reference to me, that: "In R2 he states that private enterprise ought to determine the need for affirmative action, and then in R3, he attempts to link the citing of how the fourteenth amendment was used in a court decision involving College admissions to imply that affirmative action is unconstitutional in hiring and promotional practices by private enterprise."

Pro makes it sound as if I agree with corporate alternative action programs if they are administered by private enterprise, which is certainly not the case. She goes on to say that I "viewed voluntary AA favorably" until she refuted me, using this quote from my argument as proof:

"Because if I have a competitor who manufactures the same product, and he doesn't care what sex his workers are, as long as they're good at their job, then he has an advantage over me. The reason is because my competitor has access to a greater supply of quality workers than I do, and I have limited myself to only a certain portion of the labor market."

This is, again taken out of context. in fact, one could argue that Pro is taking my words and twisting them around. Please view the entire paragraph in Round 2 where this quote came from. You will see that this had nothing to do with AA, private or otherwise. What I was saying that in the private marketplace for labor, any potential employer who discriminates against (or for) any class of employee, whether by race or sex, puts upon himself a limit to whom he can hire.

Again we must go back to the definition of AA, as outlined in Round 1, and agreed to by both me and
Pro:

"Affirmative Action- The encouragement of increased representation of women and minority-group members, especially in employment"

My case in Rounds 1, 2, 3, and now 4, are the same: Businesses should not discriminate for or against any worker based on race, sex or anything else. The only requirement should be that the worker does their job well. It doesn't matter whether there is a "diverse work environment" or not. Even pushing for something like a "diverse work environment" is essentially racist! After all, if we say "this business has 40% white workers, 30% women workers and 30% black and Hispanic and Asian workers. This business is diverse", than we are effectively discriminating by making it an issue when it doesn't need to be an issue.

The point is, my opponent is saying that I think it's okay for a business to have a private AA plan. But what I'm pushing for is a complete abstinence of acknowledgement of such things altogether. I mean, what difference does it make if someone is black or white or whatever? Why make this an issue? Why can't we be people first, and why can't we hire people based on their capabilities as workers, rather than based on the color of their skin? Now, I know, people do discriminate against others, because some people are racists, and that certainly is a problem. But we who aren't racists don't need to be combating racism with racism. What we need to do is let the free market run its course, because as I have demonstrated, people who discriminate against potential employees are instantly punished in the marketplace, as opposed to those who do not discriminate.

Another argument I have is the way my opponent uses the term "qualified candidates" in relation to job applicants, without so much as offering a definition. As in the sentence: "Affirmative action encourages the public advertisement of jobs to identify qualified candidates in places where employers might not otherwise look." What do you mean, Pro when you use the term "qualified candidates" in this sentence? Do you mean people who are qualified for the job based on their skill as a worker, or based on the fact that they fit within the requirements of the affirmative action plan (and if both, which is more important)?

As for Pro's argument about affirmative action programs not hiring "unqualified candidates" over "qualified" white males, I must ask, what exactly are you referencing here? If this is an affirmative action program that meets our definition, then doesn't it mean that women and minorities will receive preference over white males, even when it comes down to matters of qualification. And if not, that is, women and minorities are not given preference over white males if the white males are more qualified for the position, then this could only mean that preference is given to whoever is most qualified for the position. In that case, why have an affirmative action program in place at all? You wouldn't be encouraging the "increased representation of women and minorities" you would be encouraging the increased representation of whomever was most qualified. Such a program does not really sound like it meets our definition of "affirmative action" at all. This can only mean one of two things:

1. Such a program does not meet the our definition of affirmative action, and therefore does not warrant discussion here in our debate, or

2. Pro is incorrect when she says that such affirmative action programs do not ever hire "unqualified candidates over "qualified" white males.

Moving on to Pro's next argument, where she again quotes my own words from section two in my previous argument, she states:

"In con's section 2. Corporate Programs he also states, "Because under the definition of affirmative action, as set forth in the debate, an employer would encourage increased hiring of women and minority groups, when the laws that the EEOC is required to uphold do not allow this."
First of all that quote is a dependant clause, a fragmented sentence, as it does not make sense on it's own, but aside from that, the point he was trying to make is misleading. "An employer would encourage....
is an idea that there is no law against! For an employer to practice the encouragement of hiring individuals, who are not of the race or gender of the most common type of applicants is not illegal. It is illegal to discriminate, it is not illegal to encourage."

Here, we have a strong bent on the fact that affirmative action is only encouraging increased hiring of women and minority groups. Pro, what do you think "encourage" means? Does it simply mean that you'll be on the lookout for women and minorities to hire as long as their just as good as "qualified" white males? I doubt it. Again, such an effort would be futile because employers are looking for the best employees anyway. Thus, again, I feel that "encourage" means something more along the lines of going out of one's way to search for. This would certainly make the most sense.

Economic Incentives

Please notice that Pro did not offer a rebuttal to my piece on the Small Business Administration. Therefore, my point still stands unless she attempts to take it on in her next argument.

Conclusion

Affirmative action is a way of discriminating against white males in favor of women and minorities, in ways that should otherwise be illegal under the Equal Opportunity Act. I have done my best to show that while Pro's intentions are good, the idea that one can encourage without discriminating in employment is something that sounds good in theory, but does not work well in practice. Pro has attempted to show that affirmative action creates equal opportunity for all, and does so through the administration of private corporate programs, which she has not proven that they do not take part in discrimination. Thank you Pro, for presenting your position, and I look forward to your next argument!
Emmarie

Pro

Refutations R4

Half Truths

I will list two of con’s quotes regarding the resolution, and show that they are not necessarily able to be interpreted to hold the same meaning:

[1] “But the fact is, I as Con am attempting to prove, as best as possible, that affirmative action is not a beneficial program to be administered, whether by corporate programs or government programs, for the reasons which I present,”

[2] "The point of the debate is, should affirmative action programs be legal? And if not, why not?"

Quote [2] is a question, which asks if affirmative action should be legal, which assumes that conclusive evidence exists that show that it is harmful in some way shape or form when used in employment practices. Let me remind the readers that we are engaged in dialog over affirmative action and how it is administered in the workplace, not arguing about affirmative action in higher education.Con’s initial argument in R2 may have been to show why affirmative action shouldn’t be legal, but after I provided factual information about what affirmative action IS and the criteria involved in its administration, con changed his argument to dispute affirmative action’s applications under the legal guidelines. The following quote by con is an attempt to show that affirmative action guidelines are illegal based on the EEOC’s own definition of its purpose:

“But if an employer wishes to set up their own affirmative action program, in an attempt to maintain a state of "workplace diversity", then he is violating the law. Why? Because under the definition of affirmative action, as set forth in the debate, an employer would encourage increased hiring of women and minority groups, when the laws that the EEOC is required to uphold do not allow this.”

The key word here is encourage, and the laws that the EEOC is required to uphold DO allow companies to market job openings to whomsoever they wish to. What they don’t allow is discrimination against anyone on the basis of “race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and sexual orientation), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic…………, when hiring or promoting applicants or employees“ The EEOC makes no mention of the illegality of a private enterprise or company that receives government contracts in so far as any law that prohibits to whom a company can advertise a job opening to.

Quote [2] is NOT what we are arguing in this debate where the title is simply, “Affirmative Action.”

What we are arguing is more closely related to quote [1], whether or not affirmative action is beneficial. Con has not proven that affirmative action (as defined how OFCCP administers and enforces Executive Order 11246) isn’t beneficial to individuals or companies / contractors, so he dances between trying to establish that it is a violation of laws set forth by the EEOC (which I have proved that it is not), and trying to dismiss the actual laws regarding the facts about affirmative action, that they are somehow unfairly established and applied. Con hasn’t cited any facts to show how affirmative action is harmful, instead he wrote a “what if” scenario about his ideas about affirmative action in R2. When I provided facts about affirmative action and how it relates to employment in R2, he then attempted to show that the government's own affirmative action program, as defined by Executive Order 11246, is against the very law that the EEOC upholds.

Corporate Programs

In R4, con asserts that I am, taking his words and twisting them out of context, and then instructs the audience to reread the paragraph that I quoted that led me to believe that con was in favor of affirmative action in private enterprizes. He also asserts that his statement:

"Because if I have a competitor who manufactures the same product, and he doesn't care what sex his workers are, as long as they're good at their job, then he has an advantage over me. The reason is because my competitor has access to a greater supply of quality workers than I do, and I have limited myself to only a certain portion of the labor market,”

had nothing to do with Affirmative Action private or otherwise. In reality the above quote was referring to this statement by con:

”What most people don't understand is that in a free market economy, there is already a system in place that discourages racism and sexism, and promotes equality in the workplace. What is this system? Supply and demand.”

Let’s compare the above quote of con to the data that I provided concerning how the hiring of women and minorities is beneficial to private enterprise:

“In a free market capitalistic society, private companies themselves are finding that hiring a more diverse workforce, including minorities, women, and those with disabilities offers an advantage in the manufacture and market of their products or services. If companies are choosing to implement their own affirmative actions policies, without being required by law to do so, then affirmative action must hold benefits to companies themselves, and not just to the individuals who benefit from these policies.”

Seeking qualified candidates from diverse groups is beneficial to private enterprise. That it is called “affirmative action” only means that qualified applicants from traditionally disadvantaged groups of workers will be sought to complete the application process, it doesn’t mean that under-qualified workers will be hired simply to fulfill diversity. A company would do harm to itself by hiring workers who could not fulfill the expectations of their job title.

The comparison of cons statement about the supply and demand system of free enterprise discouraging racism and sexism, and my findings about the reasons that private companies seek a diverse workforce, are complimentary, and show that both con’s and my line of thinking regarding the liberty of private enterprise to hire whomever is beneficial to them, is similar. Why wouldn’t I conclude that he is in favor of affirmative action - when defined as the liberty of private enterprise to seek and hire those who would be qualified and profitable to the company? His own statement regarding the system of supply and demand brought me to my conclusion.

Let’s take for example the engineering and design of tools. Tools designed for and by women serve a growing market, that the service of can’t be as easily obliged without women engineers. Business insider briefly touches on this subject:


http://www.businessinsider.com... tech industry knows it can't fill all the jobs it has while discouraging half the population from joining the industry. It also knows that it can't do a good job of designing new tech products for women if women aren't part of the design process.” and, ”Women engineers can't join the ranks soon enough to help ensure future tech products work well for both halves of the population.”

This is proof that sometimes it is in a company's best interest, in regards to supply and demand, to seek qualified applicants from a specific demographic.

My response to con's wordy inquiry about whether minorities will recieve preferencial treatment over white males is that the word “qualified” is subjective in how it relates to the position being applied for. My example of the need for female engineers, to design tools with the strength of females in mind is an example of where a company may seek a qualified female engineer to fulfill this goal. As con stated:

“What most people don't understand is that in a free market economy, there is already a system in place that discourages racism and sexism, and promotes equality in the workplace. What is this system? Supply and demand.”

What is called affirmative action works with supply and demand, not against supply and demand!

Con confuses a company’s desire to hire and promote a diverse workforce with discrimination against white males. He also assumes that companies use quotas, which in itself is illegal.

He states,”What we need to do is let the free market run its course, because as I have demonstrated, people who discriminate against potential employees are instantly punished in the marketplace, as opposed to those who do not discriminate.” I agree with the previous statement.

Who decides WHO is the most qualified person to hire? Private Enterprise and the laws of supply and demand. How are companies going to assure that they get a wide range of prospective applicants? To advertise in venues frequented by their targeted demographic. There is nothing illegal, or immoral about this approach to finding potential qualified applicants. The previous statement is in response to my opponents inquiry about private enterprize seeking job applicants from a specific demographic.

Economic Incentives

Con states that I didn’t offer a rebuttal of his piece on Small Business Administration, when in fact I did, i made a typo "R2, that should have read R3.

Government contracts are only given for extremely specific tasks. The following link shows the kinds of grants that are currently seeking a contractor. http://www.grants.gov... link shows that grants are not only available to specified groups, but to anyone who can show that they qualify as disadvantaged. "Individuals who are not members of one or more of these groups can be considered for the 8(a) program, but they must provide substantial evidence and documentation that demonstrates that they have been subjected to bias or discrimination and are economically disadvantaged.” https://www.sba.gov...;

Cons argument that, “It can be argued that this is a form of affirmative action, although not in employment, it is giving preferential treatment to WOBs and MOBs over regular small businesses, as far as aid is concerned,” is not necessarily the case.

Conclusion in R5


Debate Round No. 4
Kescarte_DeJudica

Con

I have very much enjoyed this debate. Pro did a good job, and was one of the most challenging opponents I have ever faced.

Below is my last argument for this debate, mainly comprised of a rebuttal to all of Pro's points that were argued in the last round.

Half Truths

I'm afraid that Pro is again confusing the issue of the legality of affirmative action programs versus whether or not they are beneficial to society at large. She is attempting to pin upon me the accusation that I start by arguing about one thing and then dance over and argue about another. The manner by which she does this is by taking two different quotes out of context, and comparing them to one another in ways that are not appropriate or relevant to their intended meaning, thus giving an entirely different impression of the truth.

Please allow me to reprint the full paragraphs from whenceforth these two quotes came. I will then explain why they are not related in such a way as to consider them contradictory to one another. The first is as follows:

"Secondly, the title of the debate is "Affirmative Action". But that isn't the "resolution" of the debate. If Pro did not understand that, I'm sorry. But the fact is, I as Con am attempting to prove, as best as possible, that affirmative action is not a beneficial program to be administered, whether by corporate programs or government programs, for the reasons which I present. Pro is, as I understand it, attempting to prove that affirmative action is a beneficial program. That is the resolution. My hypothetical example of affirmative action programs being administered was simply an example of what can be the case, assuming that such programs exist."

Now the second paragraph is making reference to the paragraph that was printed previous to it. So, I will reprint both of them:

"Pro is correct when she says the majority of my arguments are based on what-if scenarios. My reason for doing this is to show how affirmative action programs are detrimental to society at large, even though I provided no physical evidence of such. Part of the reason for this is because there are few, if any, government-mandated affirmative action programs in operation within the United States. But that does not mean that there are none at all. For example, in Wikipedia, it says: "Some countries, such as India, use a quota system, whereby a certain percentage of government jobs, political positions, and school vacancies must be reserved for members of a certain group. In some other regions where quotas are not used, minority group members are given preference or special consideration in selection processes." (Source: https://en.wikipedia.org......)

While it is true that quota based systems are currently illegal in the United States, this is not the point. The point of the debate is, should affirmative action programs be legal? And if not, why not?"

When viewed in the proper context, the quotes that Pro uses do not really help her argument. Quote #2 was not saying that the only point to the debate was whether or not affirmative action programs should be legal. It was meant to express the fact that I knew perfectly well that quota-based systems are not legal in the United States, and that wasn't the point because they could be established in the future, and they aren't unheard of in foreign countries. This came about as a result of Pro's argument that my hypothetical examples were not based on reality, which, in the context of our current laws, is true.

As for Quote #1, I was arguing that the title of the debate is not the "resolution" of the debate, since the title simply reads "Affirmative Action". So, as far as the title is concerned, any argument related to AA can be considered legitimate. But there is indeed a particular angle from which I am coming at AA from. What is it? Well, consider my own "resolution" which I outlined in Round One:

"In this debate, I will attempt to prove that the very nature of affirmative action is racist and sexist."

This is and has been the chief element to affirmative action that I have been attempting to prove, and my earliest hypothetical examples were created with this point in mind. And if I prove this to be true, then I certainly have proved that AA "is not a beneficial program to be administered". Thus, Pro has once again attempted to twist my words (whether by direct intention or otherwise) and assign them a meaning which they were not intentionally created to have.

Below is a paragraph copied from my opponent's argument:

"The key word here is encourage, and the laws that the EEOC is required to uphold DO allow companies to market job openings to whomsoever they wish to. What they don"t allow is discrimination against anyone on the basis of "race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and sexual orientation), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic"""", when hiring or promoting applicants or employees" The EEOC makes no mention of the illegality of a private enterprise or company that receives government contracts in so far as any law that prohibits to whom a company can advertise a job opening to."

By rebuttal to this argument is as follows. My opponent would probably agree that discriminating in favor of any one particular class (race, sex, etc.) is equivalent to discriminating against the rest of the classes. For example, if I discriminate in favor of hiring white male workers over anyone else, regardless of their work ability, then I effectively discriminate against all the other social classes who don't fit into that category. This is fairly straightforward.

Now, there is a bit of a contradiction in Pro's statement. She says: "the laws that the EEOC is required to uphold DO allow companies to market job openings to whomsoever they wish to." but then she goes on to say: "What they don"t allow is discrimination against anyone on the basis of 'race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy, gender identity, and sexual orientation), national origin, age (40 or older), disability or genetic"""", when hiring or promoting applicants or employees'"

The contradiction here is that to comply with the anti-discrimination laws, companies clearly would not be allowed to "market job openings to whomsoever they wish to." I mean, can you imagine seeing the following advertisement in the jobs classified section:

"Help Wanted. Forklift driver. $12/hour FT, possible overtime. Will consider white, male applicants only. (555) 726-5489."

This would certainly be an illegal job ad description because the employer would be discriminating against all the applicants who were not white males, regardless of the fact that white males are the only demographic that this employer wants to hire. Thus, companies really can't market job openings to whomever they wish. They can only market them to everyone, because if they narrow down the prospects in the ad based on discrimination factors, it is no longer a legal ad. This, I believe successfully, counters the point.

Corporate Programs

I shall again reprint one of my opponent's paragraphs, and then offer a counterargument to it:

"Seeking qualified candidates from diverse groups is beneficial to private enterprise. That it is called "affirmative action" only means that qualified applicants from traditionally disadvantaged groups of workers will be sought to complete the application process, it doesn"t mean that under-qualified workers will be hired simply to fulfill diversity. A company would do harm to itself by hiring workers who could not fulfill the expectations of their job title.

"The comparison of cons statement about the supply and demand system of free enterprise discouraging racism and sexism, and my findings about the reasons that private companies seek a diverse workforce, are complimentary, and show that both con"s and my line of thinking regarding the liberty of private enterprise to hire whomever is beneficial to them, is similar. Why wouldn't"t I conclude that he is in favor of affirmative action - when defined as the liberty of private enterprise to seek and hire those who would be qualified and profitable to the company? His own statement regarding the system of supply and demand brought me to my conclusion. "

While I agree with my opponent that private enterprise certainly should be allowed to hire whomever they please, and that the dictations of supply and demand certainly work better than anti-discrimination laws, this does not mean that I favor AA programs. However, Pro asked a good question in the last paragraph that I definitely should answer. It is as follows:

"Why wouldn't"t I conclude that he is in favor of affirmative action - when defined as the liberty of private enterprise to seek and hire those who would be qualified and profitable to the company?"

Pro, allow me to say that, defined as thus, I certainly would be in favor of AA. But that's the problem. What you have described is not the definition used in this debate. As I have constantly repeated myself in pointing this out, the definition we are using for this debate is: "The encouragement of increased representation of women and minority-group members, especially in employment." This is strikingly different then what you printed as a definition. I otherwise would be in favor of AA if we used your definition, but as long as we stick to the definition we agreed upon at the beginning of the debate, I am opposed to such programs.

Conclusion

Unfortunately, I've run out of characters, so I can not continue. Allow me to close by once again saying that I have thoroughly enjoyed this debate, and would like to have similar debates again in the future. Thank you Pro for providing substantive arguments, and I look forward to reading your last argument. Thank you also DDO, for hosting this debate.
Emmarie

Pro

I’d like to thank Con for a really rigorous debate with integrity. I haven't had many debates on DDO with the content or conduct that my opponent has demonstrated.

In round 4, I wasn’t able to articulate on con’s inquiry about a few key points, because I ran out of characters so I will begin this round by addressing his inquiry from R4.

The most important thing I’d like to elaborate on is the meaning of qualified persons in the application process. Con inquired in R4, " What do you mean, Pro when you use the term "qualified candidates" in this sentence? Do you mean people who are qualified for the job based on their skill as a worker, or based on the fact that they fit within the requirements of the affirmative action plan (and if both, which is more important)?” Let’s look at the definition of qualified - “officially recognized as being trained to perform a particular job; certified.”

https://www.google.com... this definition, many applicants could be qualified; it is at the discretion of private enterprise to determine whom it will hire or promote. We have already determined that it is illegal to discriminate on the basis of race or gender, so any applicant / employee would need to have the qualifications that the employer seeks.

I will dedicate a little space to rebutt con’s round 5.

Con brings up his position on the legality of affirmative action, “It was meant to express the fact that I knew perfectly well that quota-based systems are not legal in the United States, and that wasn't the point because they could be established in the future, and they aren't unheard of in foreign countries.

I think this debate could have been much better, had we established in R1 or R2, whether we were going to be arguing the concept of Affirmative Action within itself, or how and why affirmative action is practised in the United States and whether or not it is on balance a positive thing. As a result, I haven’t engaged in the type of dialog that would have allowed me to interject more emotion into the topic.

The truth is, it is a very personal topic to me as I:

[1] am a single mom of two young adult minority sons who works in a male dominated field (general laborer - lawn service and landscaping) I worked for the company for three winter seasons shoveling snow (at the most 3 times per week) but they wouldn’t hire me on for spring summer and fall because they didn’t think I could physically handle the exertion of the spring clean-up or mowing season. ( I’m 46 yrs old, 5’3”, 115 lbs.) I think they only gave me a shot because they didn’t have enough applicants for spring clean up, and were maybe fearful that I’d report them to the EEOC for failing to hire me full time. The first few weeks were difficult to get the guys approval. They deliberately gave me tasks they thought I would fail at, like hauling 3, waterlogged, 7’ x 6” diameter wood branches from the shore of a river up a steep hill to the truck 100 yards from the shore. They weighed almost as much as I did but with determination I dragged them individually and also rolled a water logged 10” diameter x 12 “ stump to the truck. At first they criticised me for needing to stand on the wheel well of the trailer to get enough leverage to dump the 50 gallon buckets of leaves and / or grass clipping, into the trailer. The supervisor recommended that I ask one of the “young guys” to assist me. I refused to ask for assistance and continued to climb onto the wheel well and dump the buckets myself since I didn’t wanna put extra responsibility onto my co- workers. What does this have to do with affirmative action? Opportunity! I would have never had without it! I’m the best mower, who mows all the ditches - tight spots and hills. I have never ending endurance and they’ve finally accepted me as an asset to the team, but without affirmative action I would have never had the opportunity to work in a field that allows me to be outside all day and not have to listen to bytches gossip!

[2] My oldest son (22) is on parole. He works in a restaurant 6 days per week that received a bonus for hiring him. He hasn’t missed a day of work in almost a year and is friendly and courteous to his co workers. Without affirmative action, he may not have had the opportunity to rebuild his reputation as an honest and hard worker who his co workers enjoy working with.

[3] My youngest son (19) is tri-racial. He was hired by a janitorial company shortly after graduating from high school. He cleans the offices, bathrooms and break rooms of a huge shipyard (that recieve government contracts), with a work crew of 2 employees who are older and have been janitors for 20 years, who no one else will work with because the better you work, the more they slack. The workers at the shipyard notice my sons work ethic and tell him that he should apply at the shipyard, but he stays working as a janitor because he likes the hours, and because he knows the older workers depend on him. He is highly respected because of who he is, but he was given an opportunity immediately upon applying because of his complexion. Affirmative action has worked for me and my family.



Conclusion

In order to argue “Affirmative Action” and how it relates to employment situations, we must define the laws pertaining to its implementation. I have quoted and a provided a link to Executive Order 11246, and how it relates to the EEOC’s definition of discrimination. In no way do the guidelines for affirmative action in Ex. Order 11246, violate any of the laws set forth by the EEOC, as my opponent would lead you to believe. Affirmative Action is a set of Government Guidelines that was originally established to ensure that disadvantaged segments of the population would be given EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES to white males in companies that receive government contracts.

The art of debate as I understand it, is making a strong case based on facts in favor of of one’s position on a decided topic. The more clear and concise the case is made, the more likely that audience is to believe the evidence of the case, and one’s opponent is able to refute it. Con’s case is worded in such a manner, that it is neither clear or concise, which may leave him plenty of room to define and redefine his case throughout the debate, but it offers no factual conclusion in regards to the topic we have been debating.

I know this debate has been rather factual and "dry", but I ask the judges to consider the need to present the facts about what affirmative is and how it is applied. My personal testimony of why it is needed., in R5 has hopefully added some personality to this debate!


Thanks to Kescarte, and to anyone who reads and judges this debate.

Debate Round No. 5
39 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by DavidMancke 5 months ago
DavidMancke
Those are all understandable, but not insurmountable obstacles. Perhaps there could be some form of prioritizing vote reviews where the most egregious and obvious bad votes have an expedited resolution process.

There could also be expedited resolve for votes that simply need minor revisions if adhering to/including current standards is valued by the panel/team. In some cases rather than a suspension perhaps a vote could just be flagged for 24/48 hrs and a message/email sent to the voter so they can make the suggested change. This expedites vote reviews, improves the process and yields better votes from members over time, reducing long-term workloads for mods.

The panel I suggested would actually be for tougher examples like the vote I cast on that debate between Famous and Kasmic (horrible cases on both sides and I dropped Famous for blatantly fallacious examples as well as shifting, vote taken down after it was twice upheld)

The panel could be as few as three folks to prevent ties and occasionally weigh in where the issue is more than a minor correction/clarification that is needed (Dude, fill out your paperwork this time!) or where the problem is glaring, falls under a pattern of consensus judging philosophy (invariably all judges would agree with a given resolution) or if its a policy violation like multi-counting.

Some of this may require more involvement on the part of the parent company, but to draw the interest of that outfit they may need greater incentive. right now it seems like juggle is treating DDO as an idle asset they may decide to use one day. IE; the leadership would need to sell Juggle on inventing the time/resources and making the source code available.

There's also bound to be some tech savvy members here that may be willing to contribute to some of those efforts on some kind of volunteer basis.
Posted by Ragnar 5 months ago
Ragnar
This in depth a talk on vote reform, should probably be handled in the forums.
Posted by whiteflame 5 months ago
whiteflame
I'm not saying any of these ideas are bad, but they appear to demand quite a bit more of vote moderation, including managing a larger number of team members than we've ever had and conferring with them on a regular basis, if not about every vote than about at least the policies. It requires restructuring the voting policy in a way that pushes for discretion on individual votes, which bolsters any claims that voting moderators are being subjective and applying standards arbitrarily. I'm not saying that an objective system is necessarily better, but this has been a common complaint with the more objective system.
Posted by whiteflame 5 months ago
whiteflame
Alright, I can see where you're coming from, but this does appear to introduce a whole lot of systems that would have to be tested.

To start, how large would the panel have to be? Every member would have to be consistently active and involved, something few members (to my recollection) are willing to do. The panel would also have to be composed of people who generally agree on a set of standards for debates of various quality, otherwise it would just devolve into arguments over whether a given vote deserves any kind of action rather than any cohesive effort. That requires setting some kind of standard and having everyone adhere to it, even if it's a tiered standard that applies to certain debates, but not others.

I'm also unclear how many members would have to read each given vote and whether or not the process of making determinations would be left up to the panel or to subsets thereof. Maybe it could be parceled out, but in any case, there are days when we get a large number of reports, and this process would have to be manageable.

Similarly, the process of suspending votes (which would have to be done informally, since there's no coding on the site that allows us to remove votes for a short period of time or remove pieces of a vote) would have to be manageable - we could be talking about as many as 50 reports in a day, each of which have to go through this process and each of which also has to be monitored to determine whether they've met the requirements for improving their RFDs.
Posted by DavidMancke 5 months ago
DavidMancke
I sent Blade a clearer version of what I think would be better, but essentially I suggest a more contemplative process for judging votes. One that reads the subject material and determines if the vote is overall reasonable before moderating the vote.

This would probably be best with a panel of folks that read the debate in its entirety with the main aim of deciding if the vote is well reasoned and accurate. I prescribe a case-by-case method rather than a checklist method.

You could also incorporate some things like selective moderation of content and votes. Like suspending a vote until the RFD is revised with the understanding that if the voting period expires without a revision, that ballot drops. You could also have selective point revisions for examples like mine. Apply the suspension to just the point for sources.

This has the added benefit of reducing workload while enhancing education, since the voters will be revising RFD's from time to time, learning to better analyze the material in question and codify the vote in such a way that will pass muster with the panel I suggested.

The system you have right now can give technical passes to votes that are poorly reasoned, rooted in bias or placate to a social element. IE: they can scratch all T's and dot all I's and get the question wrong.

My method would be a more analytical approach that ask core questions before moderation and adheres to those paradigms rather than if they filled out a blue ro pink form, if you take my meaning. This seems more reasonable and massively improves the pedagogical value of the product. Again, the ultimate purpose of competitive debate is learning, and to be worthy of the name it ought to be educational.

Again, please don't take me as mean-spirited, I am simply looking at the bigger picture of this proud tradition as a whole. I would hate to think that a precocious young student would avoid the academic activity based on what they have seen here.
Posted by whiteflame 5 months ago
whiteflame
Well, you're certainly welcome to your views on my activity as well as the standards themselves. I frankly disagree on both, but then, I don't profess to be an expert nor do I claim that I know better. The standards. could be better, and I don't doubt that the way they're enforced could be improved as well. If you'd like to discuss some ways to improve both of those things, I'd be more than willing to do so. Shaming me based on your perception of both my motives and willingness to act won't accomplish anything.
Posted by DavidMancke 5 months ago
DavidMancke
Whiteflame, the kind of laziness I accuse you of is intellectual laziness. If you put that much time into this site and still fall short of something so fundamental then one has to wonder how well you use your time.

Moreover I understand the "voting standards," I just think they are poor and require considerations that are not in the spirit of good debate while eschewing the considerations that are good for debate.

You are either up for the task at hand or not. If you are going to carry the moniker "debate" then aspire to be worthy of it.

I discussed this with Blade of Truth, and compared my point to a scene in, "The Emperor's Club" where Richard Gere reminds a student of where they are. "Walk the path that great minds before you have walked."

I feel overall your methods, especially regarding votes fall utterly short. Debate is the domain of Socrates and Cicero. What you have here is a product that offers, "feeling smart" to internet users. That's not debate, and it's not worthy of the moniker. It certainly isn't worthy of the great minds that have defended and developed the dialectic for thousands of years.

If you haven't noticed, I don't opt for debates on this site anymore, and never vote since our ideas of what debate ought to be are so far apart. You seem to think it's a product like hair gel or shoe polish. I think it's something much more than that. This sacred craft shapes our concepts of justice and reasoning. Any your application is a cheap substitute on a good day.

I apologize if I sound inflammatory. I am not trying to be mean-spirited, but in the words of Patton, "If one can shame a coward, one can hope to restore a man to his self-respect.

I recommend a shift toward the true dialectic and away from product pushing.
Posted by Danielle 5 months ago
Danielle
[[ RFD part 1 ]]

Con begins by arguing that AA unfairly discriminates against white males, and provides examples where the government has either mandated inclusion of certain demographics or encouraged it with monetary incentives. He says this is unfair as it does not allow "the best person for the position" to obtain the role which is encouraged by supply and demand. He believes S&D will ensure equality in the workplace.

Pro responds by saying that AA does not impact most employers in the U.S. While she proves this to be true, it doesn't explain why AA is a good thing. However she does point out that most places that utilize AA are funded by the government and therefore the government has an incentive or justification in making those demands. Pro responds to Con's point on AA mandates by noting that some AA policies are voluntary which is an excellent response to Con's claims about the legitimacy of the free market.

In response to her point on voluntary AA, Con says that AA might still be illegal and should therefore be prohibited even if it serves a welcomed purpose. He claims AA violates the 14th amendment on equal employment opportunities. Thus he suggests it's hypocritical for the government to violate their own employment laws: if they bar discrimination based on sex and race, they shouldn't reward companies for discriminating based on sex and race.
Posted by Danielle 5 months ago
Danielle
[[ RFD part 2 ]]

In R3, I agree with Pro that Con cannot change the resolution of the debate to be about the legality of AA specifically as opposed to the merit of such programs. Plus both debaters have acknowledged that AA isn't incredibly popular, so this debate seems to be about the concept of AA as opposed to the scope of its current legal implications.

To continue R3, Pro pointed out that Con seemingly argues against his own free market ideals. Earlier Con mentioned (in response to Pro's contentions that diversity = good) that the market would take it upon themselves to find the best candidates and promote diversity, therefore AA doesn't need to be imposed. But then he suggested that it would be illegal for the market to discriminate based on race. Pro rightfully argues that Con cannot have it both ways: he must either support free market employment or embrace the limitations of employment as outlined in the Constitution. By stating the government shouldn't have rules about diversity, he is saying the government (or the companies it grants contracts to) wouldn't be violating any Constitutional amendments if those rules did not exist.

Pro states that affirmative action in private employment is aimed at finding qualified candidates, not hiring unqualified candidates over qualified white males. She also claims that quotas and other AA standards are not universally applied wherever AA is concerned. Moreover, she argues that AA is/should only be encouraged and not necessarily mandated.
Posted by Danielle 5 months ago
Danielle
[[ RFD part 3 ]]

Con responds, "What I was saying that in the private marketplace for labor, any potential employer who discriminates against (or for) any class of employee, whether by race or sex, puts upon himself a limit to whom he can hire." He repeats that he thinks the best candidate should be hired, regardless of their demographics. Yet this doesn't address Pro's point regarding his 14th amendment claims. More about that later. Con's main point is that AA "encourages" employers to seek out specific individuals that are qualified as opposed to accept any individual that's qualified (or the most qualified individual).

In R4, Pro reiterates that it would behoove private companies to promote diversity since diversity yields positive results. Therefore she believes race based discrimination is acceptable whereas Con does not accept any benefits of diversity in and of itself. Pro offers more proof in R4 that diversity (such as hiring women, specifically) does have some employment value and therefore private businesses can and should discriminate for their own sake. Pro advocates for the demand of employment diversity. She notes that the most qualified candidate may be the most qualified specifically because of the added benefit or value of diversity.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Danielle 5 months ago
Danielle
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Reasons for voting decision: RFD in Comments Section
Vote Placed by DavidMancke 5 months ago
DavidMancke
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Reasons for voting decision: Reasons for voting decision: I vote for Pro for the following reasons. if further clarity is required, please ask for it before reporting the vote. Reasons for Pro vote: First, Con establishes contextually that AA is aimed at increasing diversity and is largely voluntary. Con also shows all scenarios from Con first constructive are fiction. Reasons voting against Con: Con shifted on his burden big time. When the topic was offered it was to show that the practice is racist and sexist. In the second Aff constructive it becomes about legality of the practice. These are not the same, and this kind of shifting gets you dropped. Con failed to meet his own burden set out from the start (AA is racist/sexist and harmful) Most of the claims were entirely speculative and Con admits to that during the speeches. This disparity of evidence gives source points to Aff too.