Elephants should have certain inalienable rights.
This is a normative resolution.
Pro will contend for the resolution.
Con will contend against the resolution.
Elephant "a very large gray animal that has a long, flexible nose and two long tusks" .
Inalienable "impossible to take away or give up" .
My case will hinge on the notion that having inalienable rights is necessarily harmful to ALL living things, not just elephants or humans, because it requires the existence of the State. Rights are bad for all living things because having a State to protect them is bad.
You can argue first, that was just what my argument was going to be about (unless I change my mind) - you have the BoP.
Claim 1: elephant brains are similar to humans.
Warrant:" Interestingly, the growth and development of the elephant's brain is similar to that of mans. Both the elephant and man are born with small brain masses. The mass of the new-born elephant's brain is 35% of that of the adult, while Mans is 26%. Thus, there is considerable growth and development as the calf grows up. As the mass of the brain increases, so does the learning ability of young elephants.
Not surprisingly, evidence gathered from both anatomical details, as well as from behavioural studies, suggest that the elephant is a very intelligent animal. :)" .
Impact: Elephant should have at least some of the rights humans have due to similarities.
Claim 2: Elephants can pass the mirror test for sentience.
Warrant: "Elephants can recognize themselves in a mirror, joining only humans, apes and dolphins as animals that possess this kind of self-awareness, researchers now report." .
Impact: Elephants are surely sentient and can suffer.
It is clear that elephants should have at least some inalienable rights. Thanks for accepting the debate.
C1. Intellectual similarities
Pro just doesn't offer any links between having a smaller brain at birth than in adulthood with providing inalienable rights. He just says that they are similar thus they should have rights. But, I can say this: a rock has an astounding 0% new-born brain mass as an adult rock, therefore it logically follows that they should have inalienable rights! ...
Wait, something doesn't add up; to jump from "intellectually alike" (which I agree completely) to they must be given inalienable rights is a falsehood. This contention just doesn't hold up because it makes no sense.
Pro falls into the same trap as in C1 - they provide no A->B->rights link; they have sentience->suffering->inalienable rights???? How exactly is this a valid mode of thought ... a robot can be coded to see itself in a mirror, but it shouldn't have inalienable rights - for it lacks the 'human-ness' that rights are constructed about.
Now, onto my case.
O1. Rights are only inalienable in a protective state that will have a means for protection ... inalienability doesn't mean anything if there is no state to ensure that there is inalienability.
My case will hinge on the idea that if you have a State to protect rights then you are the main cause of all problems in the world ... the framework that the Aff is arguing for necessarily requires the existence of a rights-protecting State - if they advocate against the existence of such a State then they concede the debate.
C1. The State undermines communal responses and will lead to human extinction.
Murray Bookchin, 1990, argues:
C2. Genocide and war can only operate under the State.
Thus the affirmation's framework is inherently flawed; any change that they wish to bring is in a system that is entirely bad, thus any changes they make are bad unless they address the system itself - the State.
Don't let the aff get away with saying that inalienable rights are good - because, truly, they are only possible in the worst invention in human history. We need to take a step back and dissolve the state before we can even talk about the humanity of elephants.
Humans have been given inalienable rights. Pro has proven elephants are very similar to humans. Since elephants are very similar to a creature that already has rights, humans, its a very small leap to state that elephants should have the same rights as humans.
The only way Con can wiggle out of this is if Con states that nobody should have inalienable rights, which is exactly what Con states in Con's rebuttal.
"sentience->suffering->inalienable rights???? How exactly is this a valid mode of thought ... a robot can be coded to see itself in a mirror, but it shouldn't have inalienable rights - for it lacks the 'human-ness' that rights are constructed about." Con
A robot that advanced should have inalienable rights also. As for lacking the humanness there are some who think that humans are extremely advanced robots. The wiring in our brain is similar to those of computers. DNA is a storage device not that much different from a hard drive on a computer.
"My case will hinge on the idea that if you have a State to protect rights then you are the main cause of all problems in the world ... the framework that the Aff is arguing for necessarily requires the existence of a rights-protecting State - if they advocate against the existence of such a State then they concede the debate." Con
Con seems to be arguing nobody or nothing should have inalienable rights. Neither man, beast, nor robot. Pro has no idea what Aff is or stands for.
Pro disagrees that a state's enforcement is necessary for inalienable rights to be respected. Think of two cooperative humans. Human A makes a noise that annoys only human B. Human B says "please stop that" person A agrees and stops making the noise.
Families function all the time by respecting each other rights. Often strangers cooperate, think two vehicles passing each other on the road and no law enforcement in sight. The strangers cooperate not out of fear of the state but because they don't feel like getting into a car accident.
Pro contends that inalienable rights are achievable through cooperation and a state is not necessary for these rights to be honored. Thanks for the debate, looking forward to Con's response. Elephants should have certain inalienable rights because they are so similar to a being that already has such rights, humans. Vote Pro.
Similarity does not equate to "they must be equal". Let's take a rock - most of these have carbon. We have carbon in us. Therefore, they should have inalienable rights. Um ... no. Similarity doesn't mean that you SHOULD do something ... pro doesn't offer a reason WHY this is so, just that it *IS*.
Inalienability is only possible when a state can protect the rights in the first place. I may have the hypothetical right to life without a government, but that right is not INALIENABLE if I do not have a government to protect this right. Elephants should not have rights because nobody should have rights. If pro's claim that "what humans have, elephants should have" holds up, then they must concede that because people should not have inalienable rights, ELEPHANTS should not, either!
Pro doesn't attack the idea that the government (the entity that controls rights) is bad with any logic, just saying that it is invalid. A sore loss for pro.