The Instigator
Bimal
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
Wallstreetatheist
Con (against)
Winning
7 Points

Do terrorists have rationalities?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
Wallstreetatheist
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/6/2012 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 760 times Debate No: 25028
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
Votes (1)

 

Bimal

Pro

I argue that terrorists have rationalities depending upon their own context and belief system. Conventional appraoches to understand terrorism by sociological and psychological approaches are not sufficient to chart the terrain of terrorism, because they are found to be deterministic and much more instrumental from conventional sense, which does not capture the dynamics of contemporary terrorism. Therefore, understanding terrorist rationalities can be a space to know much about terrorism today.
Wallstreetatheist

Con

I suppose my opponent is arguing about the terrorism executed by Muslims, so I offer the following definitions:

Terrorism: a form of religious terrorism committed by Muslims for the purpose of achieving varying political and/or religious ends.

Rationality: the state of having good sense and sound judgment

Rational: Based on or in accordance with reason or logic


"I argue that terrorists have rationalities depending upon their own context and belief system."
A belief-inspired act of violence is not a function of rationality, but one of obsequios obedience to text and culture. There is nothing rational about a) believing in Islam and 2) violently acting on that belief in Islam.

"Conventional appraoches to understand terrorism by sociological and psychological approaches are not sufficient to chart the terrain of terrorism, because they are found to be deterministic and much more instrumental from conventional sense, which does not capture the dynamics of contemporary terrorism."

The terrain of modern terrorism is difficult to map because it is an irrational act of violence.



Therefore, understanding terrorist rationalities can be a space to know much about terrorism today.
Illogical conclusion...

Tell us more about your position, so we can advance debate.








Debate Round No. 1
Bimal

Pro

Bimal forfeited this round.
Wallstreetatheist

Con

Pro hasn't upheld his BOP. He forfeited last round. I did stuff.
Debate Round No. 2
Bimal

Pro

Regarding terrorism, Con offers deterministic view, in this I like to explain terrorism: has various forms and involves a wide range of objectives. It can occur anywhere in the world and anyone can practice it. Thus, it is a contentious term to define. However, for simplicity it is a premeditated use or threat to use violence by individuals or subnational groups against noncombatants in order to obtain a political or social objective through the intimidation of a large audience beyond that of the immediate victims. Terrorism undermines state sovereignty and it is characterized by the quality of the act not by the identity of the perpetrators or the nature of their cause. Thus, I simplify terrorism as an act of violence to fear audience to achieve certain change. Islam is not a necessary condition for terrorism, rather it is a technique in asymmetric warfare and any group can employ it as long as it is effective.

A belief-inspired act of violence is not a function of rationality,but one of obsequios obedience to text and culture.

Rationality is not only instrumental rationality, rather there are various types of rationalities depending upon the context of the individuals in question. Thus, Con has a very limited notion of rationality. The dynamics of means-ends relationship can be equally applicable even when ends are not concrete from a different perspective. Therefore, belief-inspired action is rational as long as the actor believes that the action helps him/her reach goal.

There is nothing rational about a) believing in Islam and 2) violently acting on that belief in Islam.

This is another sweeping statement. Believing in Islam can offers logic or rationalities that can inspire actions, including terrorism. Of course, it does not necessarily inspire all believers in the same way, but how it has been explained and received by the individual is important. Thus, there is a clear relationship between beliefs and action.

The terrain of modern terrorism is difficult to map because it is an irrational act of violence.

It is not an irrational act,at least for the terrorist, because they believe this act is a means to reach their goal. There are many types of terrorism, and we can not put all of them in a single basket. Learning about the topologies of terrorism can be helpful to address it.

My intention was/is to inspire discourse, and I am not concluding, rather trying to learn from different perspectives. Importantly I understand employs the rationality as a justification for a real or perceived controversial behavior or decision. It is made not to render truth inherent in any act, but to justify the act; therefore it is a sort of defense mechanism motivated by the interest of the subject. From this perspective, I acknowledge the existence of various culturally relative rationalities in the social spectrum.
Wallstreetatheist

Con

After a weak round 1 and a forfeited round 2, my opponent has decided to present us with a definition of terrorism and a basic overview of why he thinks terrorists have 'rationalities'. As a general rule of debate, arguments brought up in the last round do not count if they are not continuations of previous arguments. Judging discretion is advised.

Upholding my "case"

"belief-inspired act of violence is not a function of rationality,but one of obsequios obedience to text and culture."
By the mere act of engaging in debate, I am exercising my right of self-ownership via my physical body as well as my cognitive functioning. Through debating, my opponent and I both implicitly recognize our individual right to exclusively control our individual bodies. Consequently, we understand that the anti-coercion principle is surmised as well. Therefore, communication with individuals necessarily presumes self ownership and anti-coercion. Deviating from argumentation and self ownership to the extent of bringing violence into the equation violates both of the principles previously established; it is therefore, immoral and illogical. [1]

Summary: Violence violates rationality.

"There is nothing rational about a) believing in Islam and 2) violently acting on that belief in Islam."
Islam is not rational because it is not attainable through reason. The opposite of religion is philosophical rationalism, which was started with the Milesian philosophers in Ancient Greece. Seeking supernatural answers for things that can be understood naturally is not rationalism, it is superstition. Furthermore, violence only exacerbates the situation; cross-apply my previous critique. [2]

Summary: Islam is superstition, not rationality. Acting violently on superstition only exacerbates the irrationality.

"The terrain of modern terrorism is difficult to map because it is an irrational act of violence."
Initiatory violence is irrational for the reasons I've previously stated. The only type of violence that is rationally, therefore universally morally, defensible is violence used exclusively in self-defense. [3]

Conclusion:
My opponent says, "My intention was/is to inspire discourse, and I am not concluding, rather trying to learn from different perspectives." His intention was not to win this debate, or to debate period, it was to generate discussion. We have a forums for topics of this nature:

Politics: http://www.debate.org...
Philosophy: http://www.debate.org...
Society: http://www.debate.org...

My opponent forfeited a round, had a weak opening round, and introduced new arguments and definitions in the last round. I ask that the conduct point be deducted for this reason.


Arguments should be clear. When acting violently, you are not acting rationally, as you are compromising a rational structure for an irrational/immoral one.

===sources===
[1] http://mises.org...
[2] http://www.answering-christianity.com...
[3] http://wiki.mises.org...
Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by RyuuKyuzo 4 years ago
RyuuKyuzo
Bimal, you've got to define your terms in round 1, not round three. By allowing your opponent to define the terms in your debate, you allow them to set up their own victory. =p
Posted by TheBossToss 4 years ago
TheBossToss
"I did stuff"

Priceless.
Posted by Axiom 4 years ago
Axiom
This isn't really a matter of contention.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by RyuuKyuzo 4 years ago
RyuuKyuzo
BimalWallstreetatheistTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
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Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro didn't even begin debating until the last round. Perhaps with a few more rounds Pro would be better able to develop his argument, but he shot himself in the leg with that ff in round 2.