The Instigator
Adam2
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
jvava
Con (against)
Winning
3 Points

Denmark should leave Greenland

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
jvava
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/5/2013 Category: News
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,388 times Debate No: 38530
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (1)
Votes (1)

 

Adam2

Pro

Their presence there is that of an empire and imperialism. They should leave and grant Inuits their independence.
jvava

Con

Hello! It appears we will be debating again.

Now, I want this debate to be based on fact rather than opinion. If you post an opinion, I will ignore it and give further reason to why Greenland should remain with Denmark. Got it?

Let me start off by saying that Greenland is 85% ice - and is roughly three times larger than the state of Texas. That's a big chunk of ice. It also has a population of 57,714 - the 205th largest in the world. That is not a lot of people. And it shows no signs of growth: 0.03%, the 190th largest in the world. And migrants obviously won't grow the population: -5.98 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2013 est.) They are LOOSING migrants. People are moving away. Why?

The economic situation is not great. The island relies almost solely on the export of seafood; it has a small amount of mining, but the profits earned from this sector are very limited. Its GDP is $2.16 billion (2011 est.), the 192 largest in the world. So how does Greenland make it?

Greenland relies heavily on subsidies from Denmark. The subsidy is budgeted to be about $650 million in 2012, approximately 56% of government revenues in 2012 for the year.

Obviously, if Denmark sees a need to supply Greenland with such a large subsidy, it can't be self-sufficient. The icy nation needs a bit of assistance.

My argument is that Greenland wouldn't make it on it's own as an individual nation. How would it pay for healthcare, education, its military, and other such matters?

Good luck and may the best win.

(I would like to state that I got my facts from the CIA's World Factbook.)
Debate Round No. 1
Adam2

Pro

Sounds nice and innocent, but no.
http://en.wikipedia.org...
In 1951, the Danish government did this. It seems as though the Danish were ripe on getting resources they could steal. So they resorted to this. It seems to have been a divide and conquer method initiated. The only thing I don't agree with is "cultural genocide." That is an oxymoron. I mean if you hate someone's culture, you're not going to treat those people very nicely are you?
Remember now, the culture of the Inuits was nomadic. Not organized to the extent that say the tribes in North America were, so of course there weren't wars against them like the English did, so there was no need to have a ware.
http://arcticcircle.uconn.edu...
This presents how Inuits feel about Denmark intruding on their land.
Best of luck to you, too my friend thank you
Thank you for listening. I am of the opinion that Denmark's presence in Greenland isn't beneficial. And never has been. Besides, here's the thing, why is the Danish government even in Greenland in the first place. Doesn't that by UN standards mean imperialism? Your turn
If it was to help Greenland, they'd be doing trade, not taking over their government.
Also look at the racism against Inuits in Denmark. They're treated like dirt there.
jvava

Con

That is a horrible story; anybody who would disagree with that is mentally insane. But you fail to mention that most nations, including the USA, have indulged in such acts as the ones committed in Denmark.

Let's see. When Japan conquered the whole of Korea, the Japanese enslaved millions of Koreans - not only to perform labor tasks, but also sexual acts.

When Arabs conquered North Africa, the Natives were given three options:

1) Join us.
2) Leave us.
3) Die.

Perhaps the most shocking assimilation is the one committed by the USA. The Native Americans were always being run out of their homes and killed. They were forced to live in Indian Reservations.

What I'm trying to get at here is that most great nations have had a taste of cultural assimilation. Most have mistreated groups of people - no matter how organized and well-established.

But I don't believe it's in the Native Americans' best interest to secede. They couldn't possibly survive in the modern economic world; it's the same for Greenlanders.

"Due to Greenland's continued dependence on exports of fish - which accounted for 89% of exports in 2010 - the economy remains very sensitive to foreign developments."

I pulled this off of the CIA's World Factbook; it proves that Greenland's economy is too fragile to survive without some foreign assistance. It proves that Greenland could not make it in today's economic world. This is the difference between now and when Greenland was independent - the economy is more globalized, and without aid Greenland would go under.

Let me also point out something you mentioned - that Denmark isn't helping them but instead taking over their government. Since the 1970's, Greenland has had home rule - meaning that, with both Greenlandic and Danish funds, Greenland has the power to do what they want. Without Danish money, Greenland could not construct as much as it has within the last few decades.

You also said that if Denmark really wanted to help Greenland, they would trade. Let me tell you that, according to the CIA, Denmark is Greenland's biggest trading partner - around 60%. The next biggest exporting partner is Japan, at 15%. The next biggest importing partner is Sweden, at 17%. It seems to me that Denmark, despite ethnic tensions, is doing a whole lot of good for Greenland.
Debate Round No. 2
Adam2

Pro

I have conflicting views about it. Denmark is a country also known for holding racist views (https://www.google.com...)
http://politicalstew.com...
But I guess in a way you can make the argument that there are good Danes today trying to help Inuit people and give them aid and whatnot, and yes foreign funding is good, but they have no right to be on their land.
No one has even ever apologized for the atrocity that occured in 1951.
jvava

Con

It is a shame that no one has apologized for that incident. It is a horrible story.

But Greenlanders have to be realistic about the state of their economy. They have to realize that, if they were an independent nation, they wouldn't have funds to be able to purchase things such as educational, healthcare, and military facilities. They'd have to realize that they'd need to sacrifice a lot - things like good hospitals and an acceptable education for their children.

My point is this: Greenland should keep its ties to Denmark. I do support Greenland being a self-governed entity of Denmark; I just don't believe it should be completely independent. It's economy is much too weak and undeveloped to run itself.

You say that Denmark is a nation known for racist views - but which nation isn't? Whether it is ethnic groups in China bickering, tribes fighting over land and water rights, or White Americans bickering with African-Americans (and vice versa), all nations have some form of racism.

Danes should not treat Intuits as a lower class, period. But when money taxed from Danish citizens helps pay for projects that aim to improve life in Greenland for both natives and Danes, I think that the benefits outweigh the concerns.

Without Denmark, Greenland would remain an uncivilized ice block in the North Atlantic.
Debate Round No. 3
Adam2

Pro

I don't agree with you about them being uncivilized. Just because they were nomadic group, their definition of civilized is no less acceptable than our's. They should get foreign funding but the Danish government has no right to be on their land. Now, that might not be true that taxes go to Greenland. I don't believe that, but I could be wrong, but I don't think so at the moment. The Danish government is very indifferent to what happens in Greenland, at least in my opinion. However, I do think that Greenland shouldn't severe it's ties with Denmark. If we are realistic, an independent Greenland with strong ties with Denmark would be a valuable solution. Right now I believe the Danish government is indifferent to what they've done to the Inuits.
jvava

Con

Both of us are getting a little too opinionated. I'm going to focus on the fact: does Greenland have adequate funds to survive as an independent nation?

I'm going to summarize everything I've said to make it easier to understand. And then, the voter can decide on which side of this argument is more logical.

Here are three definitions provided by The Free Dictionary that fine the word 'civilized' -

1. Having a highly developed society and culture.
2. Showing evidence of moral and intellectual advancement; humane, ethical, and reasonable
3. Marked by refinement in taste and manners; cultured; polished.

By these definitions, we can now determine Greenland as 'civilized'. It has adequate transportation systems, acceptable health care and education.

Now, let's look at the definition for the word 'uncivilized' -

1. (Social Science / Anthropology & Ethnology) (of a tribe or people) not yet civilized
2. lacking culture or sophistication

Now, you said that their definition of civilization is just as good as ours. They have different meanings than we do; however, would YOU determine nomadic as civilized in any form or fashion?

What Denmark has done is given an opportunity for Greenlanders to have a better chance at life, for both Natives and Danes. They have built roads, hospitals, etc. And, of course, there are going to be ethnic disputes; but you can't compare this to independence movements like the Indian movement in 1948, headed by Gandhi. Why?

India could take care of themselves; they had a developed economy, one that could withstand the troubles of the times.

Greenland can not.

You said that the best option for Greenland was that it become its own nation and receive funding from Denmark. My question is - why would Denmark give money away to another nation that revolted?

"Due to Greenland's continued dependence on exports of fish - which accounted for 89% of exports in 2010 - the economy remains very sensitive to foreign developments."

Again, from the CSI World Factbook - but how can you ignore this fact? How can ignore something that may determine any hope of a free Greenland?

I do not believe that Greenland has the money to run themselves as a nation. 56% of government revenue comes from Denmark. Without this revenue, less than half would remain. Less than half would be available to the government to build essentials - schools, roads, you get the picture.

In one of the articles that you referenced, it said:

"Infrastructure improvements are punishingly expensive and desperately needed in a place where, for instance, people travel by boat or plane because there are no roads connecting towns."

Transportation is a key issue in a country that is made up of 85% ice. These needs are "punishingly expensive" and "desperately needed". Who do you think pays a majority of these costs?

Denmark!

"The economy remains critically dependent on exports of shrimp and fish, income from resource exploration and extraction, and on a substantial subsidy from the Danish Government. The subsidy is budgeted to be about $650 million in 2012, approximately 56% of government revenues in 2012 for the year. The public sector, including publicly owned enterprises and the municipalities, plays the dominant role in Greenland's economy. Greenland's real GDP contracted about 1% in 2009 as a result of the global economic slowdown, but is estimated to have grown 2% in 2010 and 3% in 2011. The relative ease with which Greenland has weathered the economic crisis is due to increased hydrocarbon and mineral exploration and extraction activities, a high level of construction activity in the Nuuk area and the increasing price of fish and shrimp. During the last decade the Greenland Home Rule Government (GHRG) pursued conservative fiscal and monetary policies, but public pressure has increased for better schools, health care and retirement systems. The Greenlandic economy has benefited from increasing catches and exports of shrimp, Greenland halibut and, more recently, crabs. Due to Greenland's continued dependence on exports of fish - which accounted for 89% of exports in 2010 - the economy remains very sensitive to foreign developments. International consortia are increasingly active in exploring for hydrocarbon resources off Greenland's western coast, and international studies indicate the potential for oil and gas fields in northern and northeastern Greenland. In May 2007 a US aluminum producer concluded a memorandum of understanding with the Greenland Home Rule Government to build an aluminum smelter and a power generation facility, which takes advantage of Greenland's abundant hydropower potential. Within the area of mining, olivine sand continues to be produced and gold production has resumed in south Greenland, while rare-earth and iron ore mineral projects have been proposed or planned elsewhere on the island. Tourism also offers another avenue of economic growth for Greenland, with increasing numbers of cruise lines now operating in Greenland's western and southern waters during the peak summer tourism season."

This is pulled off of the World Factbook. Pros and cons can be found in this article - but the economy is still unstable, still shaky.

But read this, extracted from the article:

"During the last decade the Greenland Home Rule Government (GHRG) pursued conservative fiscal and monetary policies, but public pressure has increased for better schools, health care and retirement systems."

It seems as though the Natives - which make up a large majority of the population - don't want to return to their old, nomadic ways. They prefer civilization rather than tradition. Your argument about how much the Inuits hate the Danish way of doing things is incorrect - they may not like Danes, but do enjoy a better standard of living. They do enjoy better schools, health care, and retirement systems."

Who funds these programs - Denmark!

Here are the Natives' stance on this debate, or at least how I've interpreted it. They want independence, but want a better standard of living. This is a waffled stance - the Danes have provided for them! Without them, their would be no schools, health care, or retirement systems. None of this would exist in Greenland.

"If it was to help Greenland, they'd be doing trade, not taking over their government."

This is what you argued - but I am going to prove it false once again. Like I said,

"You also said that if Denmark really wanted to help Greenland, they would trade. Let me tell you that, according to the CIA, Denmark is Greenland's biggest trading partner - around 60%. The next biggest exporting partner is Japan, at 15%. The next biggest importing partner is Sweden, at 17%. It seems to me that Denmark, despite ethnic tensions, is doing a whole lot of good for Greenland."

See? And your comment about them taking over the government was ONCE true - but now has been invalidated with the introduction of self-governance in Greenland.
Debate Round No. 4
Adam2

Pro

OK here me out, I never said revolt. No former colony of any power is in that stage anymore. Countries like England and Denmark have given their countries self-government, but I think they should grant them independence. I'm suggesting an independent Greenland receiving funding, but assuming the Danes are nice enough to give Greenland independence. I can understand an independent nation being given funding from the country that used to colonize it. But when you're on another people's land, that just draws the line for me. If Denmark gives Greenland it's rightful independence, then I can see Denmark and Greenland having a nice trading relationship. I'm not suggesting Greenland goes William Wallace on them. Denmark and England hold on to their territories out of a sense of supremacy over them, which they don't want to admit, but if they want to give their lands independence on good terms, then we can do something. And like I said, Denmark being in Greenland is not the same as the USA occupying Iraq. The USA occupied Iraq just to give relief to Iraqi citizens. In this case however it's classic leftover from the empire they had. That's why it draws the line for me. No government is in another's land to benefit the conquered. It's to benefit themselves. Now, like I said independence doesn't have to be violent. The American Revolution didn't have to be violent either. If England had given the colonists it's peaceful terms, all would've been well. Denmark can give Greenland its terms and then Denmark can help the newly independent Greenland. But at the moment, I mean we're talking a former part of Denmark's empire, that's why it draws the line there. You're on another's land, you're not there to help them. Not an opinion but just part of the messed up nature of imperialism. Again thanks for the debate
jvava

Con

Yes, but the question is: are the Danes nice enough to give independence AND provide funds for Greenland? Here is what you said earlier:

"The Danish government is very indifferent to what happens in Greenland, at least in my opinion."

If they don't care now when Greenland is a colony, they will never care. And that leads me to believe that Denmark would not be as friendly as imagined if Greenland independence did indeed take place.

Let me change the phrase in which I said the word 'revolt'. I should have said secede.

I never compared Greenland to the US occupation of Iraq; that was during wartime. The two have nearly nothing in common.

"No government is in another's land to benefit the conquered. It's to benefit themselves."

This is a phrase in which you said. I agree with the phrase partially. I believe that the Danes are there for their own benefit, but I believe that the Natives have gained as a result. The standard of living has increased and will continue to increase if the Danes hold onto their claim.

And yes, independence doesn't have to be violent; it just depends on how important Greenland is to Denmark. And seeing as how they've held onto their claim since the 18th century, I'd say it's pretty crucial to them.

I believe, quite simply, that Denmark has civilized Greenland and had made the lives of the people there significantly better, easier, and more modern. I believe that if Greenland became independent, it would have a hard time surviving in the modern economical world. More people would be disadvantaged by an independent Greenland than would benefit. That's not to say that I don't support a self-governed Danish Greenland. I believe that Greenland should govern itself but remain an entity of Denmark for financial reasons.

I also thank you for this debate. I certainly learned a lot about the Greenland independence movement, and the reasonings behind both sides of this issue.

May the voter decide who's reasoning is more logical.
Debate Round No. 5
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by wrichcirw 3 years ago
wrichcirw
sorry, no interest in this topic. Why did you challenge me?
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by imabench 3 years ago
imabench
Adam2jvavaTied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Con showed that Greenland has good reason to sever from Denmark and why Denmark should not leave Denmark, which pro completely failed to argue against. Instead pro only gave examples of conflict that are nothing more then footnotes of past activity between Denmark and Greenland, but failed to justify why that should warrant the two countries severing. Arguments to the con easily