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Do you think forced schooling of teenagers should be allowed?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/21/2014 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 697 times Debate No: 49649
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (4)
Votes (1)




I do not think innocent people willing and able to think for themselves should be forced to go somewhere they don't wish to be. The average American teenager is forced against his/her will to go somewhere they don't want to be and barred from leaving or banned from refusing to comply with their agenda. This is an unconsentual act and should therefore be forbidden from forced compliance. They are forced to go there, take place in whatever activity the controllers (teachers/administrators) have planned. They haven't even done anything wrong. This forced schooling is wrong and violates the most simple rights human beings have. Please remain civil during the argument. I will remain civil if you remain civil.



I"d first like to thank saiga12boy for initiating this debate and I look forward to debating against you. In order for us to take part in a clear and coherent debate, I have decided that in order to avoid debating the minutiae, it is in everyone"s best interest for me to pragmatically infer the following structure.

Given Topic:
"Do you think forced schooling of teenagers should be allowed?"

Forced: obtained or imposed by coercion or physical power.
Schooling: Beginning in 1855 with the "compulsory era" up into modern day education system.
Teenagers: A person aged 13-19 currently enrolled up to a secondary school.
*(For the sake of avoiding the "19 is of legal age" debate, let"s debate of non-legal age in the country of choice. I must inform you that ground was lost on the affirmative in that you can no longer argue the "technically adults and have constitutional rights" argument. Feel free to let me know if you accept this term.
Allowed: admit (an event or activity) as legal or acceptable.

1. No forfeits
2. Semantics are established in R1 while allowing the Negative to pragmatically infer any information not structured by the affirmative.
3. No new arguments in R5
4. BOP: Each side must uphold their portion of the resolution on balance, or as a general principle
5. Violation or non-acceptance of any of the R1 rules or setup constitutes a 7-point loss.

This will be formatted in a Lincoln-Douglas debate style. Debaters are expected to offer or stipulate to a Value-Criterion structure and evaluate the round through that mechanism. Despite unpopular amongst some, theory, "kritiks," off-cases, and other non-traditional techniques are allowed and encouraged by the negation. The resolution is to be discussed in the abstract, though real-life examples may be used where appropriate.

R1: Acceptance
R2: AC, NC (i.e. no rebuttals)
R3: 1AR, 1NR
R4: 2AR, 2NR

Now that we have a clear format, rules, structure, guidelines and definitions, I look forward to your first negative constructive in round 2. As a point of inference, the debate is not limited to your country of origin. Good luck!
Debate Round No. 1


First of all I would like to say that you are right in noting me on the 13-19 year olds being teenagers quote and this discussion is only regarding teenagers under the legal age of majority of 18 in the United States and other countries with 18 as their age of majority. With that being considered I would like to justify my point. Forced schooling of teenagers is an unconsentual act, it is forced by parents or other legal guardians,government,and teachers on the student ( the reason I say teachers instead of just including them in the government is because of private schools). It is against a person who can make their own decision's will,someone who is not being punished for their own wrongdoing. It is forced action against someone's free will. They are not young kids who can not make their own decisions rightfully and need an adult to guide them through the early stages of their life. These people are old enough to govern their own actions. It is therefore incarceration of innocent people old enough to guide their own actions. It is by definition,slavery.
Forcible detainment in school is wrong. Students aren't allowed to leave. It is forcible detainment. Forcing someone who hasn't done anything wrong, who can guide their own lives the way they choose,into forcible servitude is unethical. Many people accept the idea that forced schooling of older innocent people is okay because 1. It doesn't affect them in a major way (or perhaps they profit from it) and/or 2. it is easier to accept wrongful deeds to be okay and apathetic to the sad truth around them because it's easier to live with themselves and with their life (this applies to many other topics as well). It's the sad way of accepting lies to sleep better at night.
School is the source for apathy and blind obedience in our society. It teaches children from very young ages that they are the subjects and the teachers/administrators are the controllers, and that this is the way it always will be and you must not fight it because it, by their logic, is the way it must be. It's the sad truth behind tyrannies throughout history. The young are the must susceptible to lies for many reasons and if they are brainwashed at a young age the vast majority of them will never recover their logic and free will from this indoctrination. This is,again, the sad truth.
Another sad fact is that large percentage of teenagers (if not the majority,which there's a good chance it is) cannot even comprehend the deep philosophical meaning of this article without quitting. A big part is due to the free-will and common sense taken by kids through the school system. Not purely because of corrupted curriculum, but mainly due to what I stated before that kids are taught they are the subjects and the teachers/administrators are the masters and they are taught to blindly accept as a fact applying not only in school,but for the rest of your life. From cradle to grave.
Even with my above conversation those still do not include the primary these schools create and that is in society today,fear.
School teaches the individual that if they stand up to their controllers that they will be punished at school, and in most circumstances,at home(sometimes,the cops or other "legal" authorities become involved). Fear is the root cause of societies problems and school is one of the first places it starts.
For these reasons mandatory schooling or detainment at all of innocent human beings old enough to guide their own lives is immoral and should be stopped. This isn't an issue of finances or practicality, it's an issue of ethics. Ethics should be undying and unwavering. None of us are perfect but we should try to be the best we can. For the sake of ourselves and others.

I would also like to thank you for taking the time and energy to engage in this discussion and I would like to also thank you for remaining civil in the conversation, there are many people who don't.


Economic Benefits:
In May 2012, Communities In Schools released the results of an economic impact study conducted by EMSI, one of the nation"s leading economic modeling firms. The purpose of the study was to quantify the return on investment of Communities in Schools" 113 high school-serving affiliates in its network to taxpayers, businesses, and students.

Among the significant findings are:
"The average annual rate of return to society is 18.4%.
"The benefit/cost ratio is 11.6, which means that every dollar invested in Communities In Schools creates $11.60 of economic benefit for the community.
"High school graduates will be net contributors to their communities for an average of 44 years of their working life, using their increased income to purchase homes and cars, and paying taxes that will support police officers, firefighters and teachers. [1]
This information illustrates a fraction of the Macroeconomic Benefits that education can provide a community. As well as the obvious real world impacts that education provides the community, it also provides the individual with a unique set of skills that help guide them through their lives. During the Feudal Era, public education was not only non-existent, it was laughed upon. The monarchs thought education best be reserved as a right endowed to the wealthy, and for hundreds of years, that is exactly what it was. Education was not only restricted from the poor, but the sheer thought of educating the poor was blasphemous. What I, and most, consider to be a hallmark achievement in the founding of this Great Nation is that our founding father believed passionately in a Democracy.
Democratic Advantage:
I want to begin with an overview of what democracy is. We can think of democracy as a system of government with four key elements:
1. A political system for choosing and replacing the government through free and fair elections.
2. The active participation of the people, as citizens, in politics and civic life.
3. Protection of the human rights of all citizens.
4. A rule of law, in which the laws and procedures apply equally to all citizens. [2]
The keystone points to a Democracy which will be elaborated on in this debate are the Second and Fourth elements. Let us begin with the second. The key role of citizens in a democracy is to participate in public life. Citizens have an obligation to become informed about public issues, to watch carefully how their political leaders and representatives use their powers, and to express their own opinions and interests. What compulsory education has given all citizens is the basic skills required to be participants in our Democracy. If compulsory education were to be abolished, as my opponent proposes, education and basic reading and writing skills will become privileged, not universal. Not only will the society halt in progress, but we will no longer be able to strive for a true Democracy. Education not only provides a basis of equality, but also lays the foundation of Critical thinking. Absent our education system, we cannot be sure that our citizens are informed, let alone know how to think and formulate ideas for themselves.
Onto expanding the fourth element of a democracy, I will be showing how our current education system establishes a firm, concrete system which allows every citizen equal rights. In a democracy, the rule of law protects the rights of citizens, maintains order, and limits the power of government. It is common fact that all citizens are equal under the law. No one may be discriminated against on the basis of their race, religion, ethnic group, or gender. We must thank our education system for indoctrinating us with these ideology and beliefs. Absent our previous educational experiences, we cannot say, truthfully, that any of us would have developed the skills necessary to have made it this far in our intellectual endeavors, neither can we say that in a system without educational institutes, children will be given the skills and knowledge needed to survive. I must agree that our education system is not perfect. We humans created it and thus is should be inherently flawed in some areas, but this does not mean that the latter approach to total abolishment is the answer.
Thomas Jefferson once wrote, "I know no safe depository of the ultimate powers of the society but the people themselves, (A)nd if we think them not enlightened enough to exercise their control with a wholesome discretion, the remedy is not to take it from them, but to inform their discretion by education. This is the true corrective of abuses of constitutional power. " This clearly illustrates the importance of education and the need for us to implement a system in which all citizens are endowed this right!
Societal Benefits:
What is the ultimate purpose of education? Early philosophers such as Aristotle and Plato pointed out that education was central to the moral fulfillment of individuals and the well-being of the society in which they live. In the past few decades, research has supported this conventional wisdom, revealing that education not only enables individuals to perform better in the labour market, but also helps to improve their overall health, promote active citizenship and contain violence. [3]
Contenders continue to argue that our education system strips civil liberties from individual. I strongly disagree. In proving this claim to be fallacious, I must expand on our civil liberties endowed to us in the Constitution.
"Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.."
Life expectancy reflects a long trajectory of individuals" socio-economic circumstances that affect their health conditions and other mortality risks. In OECD countries, life expectancy at birth, on average, reached 80 years in 2010. Women live almost six years longer than men, averaging 83 years vs. 77 for men. Data show that life expectancy is strongly associated with education. On average, among 15 OECD countries with available data, a 30-year-old tertiary-educated man can expect to live eight years longer than a 30-year-old man who has not completed upper secondary education. Among men in Central European countries there are particularly large differences in life expectancy by level of education. A 30-year-old tertiary-educated man in the Czech Republic can expect to live 17 years longer than a 30-year-old man who has not completed upper secondary education. In the 15 OECD countries analyzed, differences in life expectancy by level of education are generally much smaller among women. On average, a tertiary-educated woman can expect to live four years longer than a woman without an upper secondary education. [3a]
A cohesive society can be found in countries where citizens actively engage in civic activities, trust others and have faith in the functioning of public institutions. Data show that adults who have attained higher levels of education are generally more likely than those with lower levels of educational attainment to report stronger civic engagement, in terms of voting, volunteering, political interest, and interpersonal trust. For example, among 25 OECD countries with available data, the gap in the self-reported voting rate between adults with high and low levels of education are on average 15 percentage points. This gap widens considerably to 27 percentage points among younger adults (25-34 year olds). For younger adults in Germany, the corresponding figure is as high as 50 percentage points. "Education at a Glance" in 2011 and 2012 show that similar associations also exist for the relationship between education and volunteering, political interest, interpersonal trust, institutional trust and engagement in social activities. [3b]

*continued in comments*
Debate Round No. 2


First off you do bring up many good points in your argument. Your logic behind the OECD related text does make quite a bit of sense and during feudal ages they did not want the lower-class to be educated these facts are true. Being educated does help you live in society better and contribute more. While these statements are true it's also true that I said teenagers in the title.
I believe parents ( I do not believe in government legislation mandating for children to go to school) have the right to force their young single-digit aged kids to go to school. This is when they can learn basic skills such as reading,writing,basic arithmetic,etc.,however forcing anyone older than that,especially teenagers, to go to school is wrong. Even if it benefits society.
It's an issue of ethics and morality not economics and practicality. School teaches forced servitude and submission. If forced schooling of older kids helps life to be more free than why does it teach to be obedient to all authority. Mindless drones told their entire life that they must obey all authority are not going to grow up and make the world a world of freedom, they are going to make it one of tyranny.They will vote for the one who wants to keep everything the way it is or get rid of freedom for more supposed security to keep corralling and controlling them. This is the way they have been taught to behave and it is very hard to break loose of programming you've been feed for all of your life. You cannot expect them to act as free human beings capable of controlling themselves. School can help you in life but it can also impair you. When older teenagers get jobs they can not work as much as they may like to because of obligatory schooling requirements. This will result in a smaller paycheck which can turn out really bad for them later in life because they could not have made as much money to save up for when they leave their parent's home and start their own lives. This can impair them especially with rising costs of living. They may not be able to afford a house combining loss of saved up money and loss of work experience.
In school subjects (students) are subjected to unconstitutional violations of their freedoms regarding themselves and their property. Drug dogs will sniff their lockers,possessions,possibly even themselves without any reason to suspect that they personally broke any tyrannical statute or code. They aren't allowed to speak without an adults consent violating their first amendment right to freedom of speech(I am not talking about interrupting the staff).They are not allowed to carry any weapons on school campus baring them from means of protecting themselves and infringing on their 2nd amendment guaranteed rights.The worse offense of all is forbidding them from leaving school campus. Some schools go as far to put guards whose plethora of duties includes stopping kids from leaving school grounds. This infringes on their basic rights of life,liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
If older kids want to tae control of their own lives and choose if they want no further education that should be their choice and their choice alone. The smart thing to do is to be educated in whatever way is best but this should not be put on teenagers against their will.They are human beings who should be able to be free and choose what happens with their own lives. Saying no infringes on their most basic of human rights.


CloudKylion forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3


I will gladly debate this discussion with you but i have already stated my key points in this argument and if you give me nothing to argue against I have nothing to say.


As many of you may have noticed, I chose to go silent in my last speech. Many of you may now be confused when I ask you to go back and evaluate the arguments in my last round. The silence was my argument. It was me attempting to give a voice to those voiceless. It was me attempting to give those in who have been stripped of their rights with their indoctrination in our education system a right to be heard. What many of you are forgetting is that the grass always looks greener from the other side. While we stand here today debating a the immorality of our education system, we forget that we are debating as products of that system. We forget that it is because of that system that we are able to carefully examine, analyze and refute each others argument in this debate. I would like to ask my opponent, absent our education system, could you honesty and truthfully be able to articulate your ideas, evidence and thoughts enough to debate me? In looking deeper into this system, I find Paulo Freire to be prime candidate in explaining its inception. In his groundbreaking novel, Pedagogy of the Oppressed, Freire writes "Education either functions as an instrument which is used to facilitate integration of the younger generation into the logic of the present system and bring about conformity or it becomes the practice of freedom, the means by which men and women deal critically and creatively with reality and discover how to participate in the transformation of their world." Whatever the reason may be, our system, although not perfect, helps prepare us for the future we cannot yet grasp while providing equal opportunities for all citizens alike.

Going back to my silence. You cannot advocate for those being oppressed while coming from the seat of oppression. You yourself must come from a seat of illiteracy and lack of presence in academia for your arguments to then hold any weight. I ask to audience to look deeply into my arguments and vote for the society in which you would wish to live in. One which education is mandatory and teenagers are given the skills and literacy to succeed and strive for their American Dream, or one which favors those select elites by giving them an unfair advantage over the majority whom are then forced to work under that elite. I pray that you use reason and avert the latter.
Debate Round No. 4


It is true I would not be able to debate this without early forms of mandatory education.( I learned a lot my grammar and decided my beliefs afterwards) I was talking about forced education for kids in their double-digit years. Education can absolutely help but it shouldn't be forced on people old enough to make their own decisions. changing society, for better or for worse, should not be forced on people old enough to govern themselves. If the age to be able to leave home and drop out of school became 25 would you agree with it(regarding if schools were good)? It may make society better in the long run but does that make it right? Convenience and practicality do not make up for morals and ethics. Doing what's right matters more than doing what is easy and requires not even examining what is good and bad and going with what is accepted and enforced. Schools teach what schools want, obey and teach others to obey. They want you to grow up and conform to all regarded as authorities and to teach your offspring to do the same and repeat over and over again until there is no shred of human intelligence and especially when noone has a moral compass. I am not accusing all educators and administrators of being part of this scheme but that was the original scheme of it. It has been working perfectly since then,just look at yourself.
Everyone, please look at yourselves.
If you want to continue this debate please do so in the comment section.


CloudKylion forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by CloudKylion 2 years ago
I didn't conceit the round btw. I just found it better to go silent for my first rebuttal.
Posted by CloudKylion 2 years ago
Pursuit of Happiness:
Indicators such as life satisfaction and happiness have also become important benchmarks to assess the extent to which government policies address people"s well-being beyond what can be captured using purely economic measures (see also OECD, 2011). Adults who have attained higher levels of education are generally more likely to portray greater satisfaction in life than those with lower levels of educational attainment. On average, the gap in self-reported life satisfaction between adults with high and low levels of education is 18 percentage points. [3c]

After considering the advantages to a well-educated individual and his contributions to a society, can you firmly stand by the claim that education should not be guaranteed to all individuals? In going forward with this debate, I will be expanding on the Economic, Democratic and Societal advantages in my rebuttal speeches. Any further contentions which will be presented will stem directly from these contentions or will be refutation to my opponent"s arguments.

Posted by queenofmayhem 2 years ago
Great job Pro! I believe this debate has already been won.
Posted by Zaradi 2 years ago
Apparently you've never heard of being a high-school drop-out.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Wylted 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:10 
Reasons for voting decision: Ff