The Instigator
Schopenhauer
Pro (for)
Losing
9 Points
The Contender
YYW
Con (against)
Winning
18 Points

Equality In Human Society Is Impossible

Do you like this debate?NoYes+4
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 6 votes the winner is...
YYW
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/29/2014 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 7,709 times Debate No: 44858
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (7)
Votes (6)

 

Schopenhauer

Pro

Essentially, I will be arguing that economic and social equality in human society is impossible, and that it is unachievable by humans. No trolling, the lay out of rounds are detailed below
1. acceptance only
2. opening arguments
3. rebuttals and closing remarks
definitions
1. Equality-the quality or state of having the same rights, social status, etc.
By the way, for the purposes of this debate we will be assuming that equality is not subjective, rather a universal concept. Meaning that there can be no arguments accusing equality as a different definition than the one posted.
I wish my opponent the best of luck and may this debate question peoples ideas and change minds.
YYW

Con

I accept. In this first round I want to make explicitly clear what must be done for either side to win this debate.

The resolution reads: "equality in human society is impossible." PRO must argue that there is no conceivable way that equality, as he defined it, could ever come to be. Not that certain conditions render it impossible, but that that there is no possibility of equality ever existing -that equality is inconceivable. CON must only argue that equality is conceivably possible, given some set of conditions. If CON can illustrate even one way that equality, as PRO defined it, to be realized -however outlandish, bold or irrational- then PRO necessarily looses this debate.

No semantic nonsense.

With that, let's have some fun.
Debate Round No. 1
Schopenhauer

Pro

Let us begin, but before that I need to clarify something.
"If CON can illustrate even one way that equality, as PRO defined it, to be realized -however outlandish, bold or irrational- then PRO necessarily looses this debate."
This is true. However, I still possess the ability to post rebuttals to your ideas, because I am arguing that equality could never be achieved in HUMAN SOCIETY, meaning that they must therefore be at least semi realistically applicable to human society. If your arguments are outlandish, bold, and irrational, I can still disprove them or at least attempt to.
Now that is done with, I will proceed with the debate.
1. The central point- This is central to understanding my argument, and part of the epicenter. If equality is achieved, a equilibrium like state, then there will be a new branch of individuals. These people will attempt to seek something to make them in the elite. Whether it be power, wealth, social status etc. They will try to seek something to put them above the rest. This will happen eternally, and is nigh impossible to stop as it is part of human nature. Even if people bring themselves up to date and in the same position as these, "elites" these "elites" will still strive toward more and more wealth, power, social status etc.
Even if we discount the above argument, even the subtlest fluctuation in the flow of equality disrupts it, thereby making even the most minuscule of advantages halt the equality in this fictitious society.
2. All attempts within the history of humanity to achieve perfect equality have failed. To address this point I point to the most well known example of a people trying to reach equality, communism. To further show this I will point to examples of communist systems that have failed.
1. North Korea- A supposed communist country, this nation has immense disparity between its dictator and its citizens. The economy is horrendous, and there is no freedom at all. However, this is irrelevant, as the main question is whether there is equality. The answer is a resounding no, as key officials and dictator have the luxury while with others the best they may achieve is a frugal, if not starving, lifestyle.
https://www.cia.gov...
2. China has seen a steadily increasing amount of inequality since it has welcomed the west into its economy, making the nation that had already been ravaged by things such as the great leap forward see even more inequality between the rich and poor, the haves and have nots.
http://www.forbes.com...
http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk...
3. It s part of human nature- It is part of human nature to dominate our environments, so it is only natural that humans attempt to become advanced beyond others, to succeed more and get more. This is ingrained in our very nature.
I will post more next round, I look forward to cons arguments.
YYW

Con

PRO is making the claim, therefore PRO carries the BOP.

The resolution we're debating is this: "Equality in human society is impossible." What that means is that there is no conceivable strategy by which equality could be facilitated. The resolutions speaks about human society generally, not specifically addressing any one society against which extant social norms could be reasonably argued as having any impact or not. I'll work within the scope of pro's definition for equality. (Some minor notes: whether equality is subjective or objective is beyond the scope of this debate, and no requisite assumption thereof is needed.)

PRO's main argument is this: People cannot be equal because they will always seek to make something elite. PRO cites that all previous instances to achieve equality have failed, but limits the scope of "previous examples" pursuing equality to "communism." PRO cites North Korea and China as examples, and concludes that human nature precludes equality because inequality is "ingrained in our very nature." How lovely.

Aside from none of his arguments, evidence or examples cited not actually affirming the resolution, he has in no way substantiated the claim that inequality is inherent to human nature. w/e

I want to focus specifically on PRO's definition of equality which reads "the quality or state of having the same rights, social status, etc." What he has to do to win this debate is argue that there is no conceivable possibility that human beings could share an existence in which they have "the quality or state of having the same rights, social status, etc."

Rights and social status are codified in law. So, if any society's law is founded on the idea that all men are created equally, that they are endowed with equal rights by their creator, and that none are of a higher class than another, then that means that the law has facilitated a quality or state of having the same rights and social status among that society's members.

This is the case in the United States. Constitutional rights are the source of legal and social equality in US society. Constitutional rights are indispensable to citizenship and guaranteed to all Americans.

The 14th Amendment reads: "All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."

From this we derive that not only is equality possible, but it is codified into law. I have provided one example in which equality as PRO defined it is possible, meaning that equality cannot be impossible. Consequently, I have rendered impossible any chance of PRO meeting his BOP and therefore, I have already won this debate.

Peace and Love,

YYW
Debate Round No. 2
Schopenhauer

Pro

Thank you for responding, let us get straight to the rebuttals
1. "pros main argument is this: People cannot be equal because they will always seek to make something elite. PRO cites that all previous instances to achieve equality have failed, but limits the scope of "previous examples" pursuing equality to "communism." PRO cites North Korea and China as examples, and concludes that human nature precludes equality because inequality is "ingrained in our very nature." "
This argument still stands, as you have neither disproved my example of North Korea and China nor my example of the fact that inequality is in fact part of human nature.
To substantiate my claim I point to the last ten thousand years of human history, when farming was taken in instead of hunter gathering. Because of this an egalitarian society was made impossible, as people no longer had to rely on one another. One may ask that this has only been in the last ten thousand years when humanity has had a much larger history. Well think of it this way, as soon as people no longer were forced to rely on one another, they simply took advantage of one another. This means that the aspect of inequality as part of our nature, though it has showed up recently, still is part of our nature as we no longer have to rely on one another for survival, but can manipulate others and survive at the same time.
http://www.ditext.com...
Also, provide me with a nation in human history that has not had inequality, you will find this task impossible. We as a race have struggled for millenia, and have never found equality. Even if we do manage from some nearly impossible way to find equality, there will still be those born with defect, and eventually our repetition of human nature will begin anew.
"Aside from none of his arguments, evidence or examples cited not actually affirming the resolution, he has in no way substantiated the claim that inequality is inherent to human nature."
Perhaps you could describe yourself in what way I have failed to provide evidence to support that inequality is inevitable?
"then that means that the law has facilitated a quality or state of having the same rights and social status among that society's members."
You are citing the U.S. Constitution, in what way, please, has this been exercised in reality? Blacks did not have full equality until the Civil Rights Movement http://www.history.com... and Gay people still do not have the right to marry, and controversially women do not even have full rights over their own bodies.
"The 14th Amendment reads: "All persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside. No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws."
Please then show me how this has been put into practice to prevent wealth or social status disparity in a nation where the 1% control 35% of wealth. http://www2.ucsc.edu...
"I have provided one example in which equality as PRO defined it is possible, meaning that equality cannot be impossible. "
The example you have provided is simply words on paper. This has no bearing on the fact that the wealthy control much more than the poor, or that their is social disparity between classes. In fact, a wealthy person will be more likely to win a judge ruling, as a wealthy person could hire a superior lawyer. The inconvenient truth we must face is that equality is a much different ideal than liberty or freedom.
Finally, let me move on to back up the central ideas I supported.
if there is even the tiniest, most minuscule difference in wealth, income, status, etc. than equality is impossible to achieve, therefore I win.
Even if perfect equality is met then there will still be those who strive towards ambition of being elite, and then when others join up to them they will try to become more elite etc. Ad Infinitum. For an example of this I point to starters of businesses and corporations who must be ambitious to succeed.
Again I stress the point that even the smallest change in equality means that there is no longer equality.
thank you for this debate, it has been quite interesting.
YYW

Con

My, goodness. Judges, bear with me.

PRO laments that I disregarded his examples of North Korea and China, yet fails to realize that in offering the United States as an example of extant equality (as he defined the word "equality") in human society, I proved that equality is not only possible, but realizable. So, that negates the resolution that "equality in human society is impossible." But since he mentioned it, I think I'll talk more about the extent to which his argument is flawed.

PRO's idea is that because North Korea and China are what they are, inequality is "inherently" a "part of human nature." There are a few problems with this notion: (1) the fact that he is fallaciously generalizing absolutes from isolated cases, (2) the fact that his general conclusion about human nature does not follow from the state of things in either country he cites, (3) the fact that even if his argument were deductively valid, it is irrelevant, because he's talking about human nature whereas the resolution is about human society and whether or not equality is possible.

PRO importunes me to "provide him with a nation in human history that has not had inequality" -which is, likewise, a fallacious scope shift -because we are only talking about the kind of inequality which he defined in the first round, which is "the quality or state of having the same rights, social status, etc." I have demonstrated that the United States is an example of a society in which that society's members enjoy the quality or state of having the same legal rights and the same social status as citizens. As such, within the scope of his definition, I have negated the resolution because the United States example illustrates that equality is NOT impossible.

PRO continue to deviate beyond the scope of the resolution or his definition which he offered in the first round, in ways I see no reason to rehash. I have demonstrated that equality as PRO defined it is not impossible, and therefore I have won this debate and PRO has failed to sustain his BOP.
Debate Round No. 3
7 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Posted by bladerunner060 3 years ago
bladerunner060
RFD 1/2:

Overall an interesting debate. Unfortunately for Pro, I feel like he created a resolution he couldn't really support.

Perhaps Pro would have done better with "Equality In Human Society Is Unlikely", or "Implausible", then his arguments might have had more merit. But examples of failures do not directly support the *impossibility* of the proposition of equality in human society, though they might indicate the implausibility. Impossibility's a horse of an entirely different color, and I'll be repeating it the distinction in this RFD a few times, as it's the central reason for my decision.

As to Conduct: I found both sides equal enough to not award points. Similarly, S&G was fine.

On sourcing, though Pro had more sources, I didn't find them particularly relevant to his case. So while he did have more than Con, I didn't really find it worth awarding him points for.
Posted by bladerunner060 3 years ago
bladerunner060
RFD 2/2:

As to the long one, arguments:

Pro, Con had no need to refute the examples of North Korea et al., for the same reason someone arguing that we might make a manned trip to mars doesn't have to address the relative lack of powered flight capability in Ecuador's space program (and yes, apparently they have one sort-of, I just looked it up...it's apparently a private organization. The more you know! *star whoosh*).

Pro had to demonstrate, well enough to meet his BoP, not that such a thing was unlikely to occur, but that it was, in fact, <em>impossible</em>. His claims about human nature historically did not support an "impossibility".

The greatest merit Pro had was not in the "rights" argument, for as Con noted the US Constitution guarantees equal rights (and our failure to actually achieve that yet doesn't indicate impossibility, particularly since even Pro notes when trying to fault it, we've gotten better on the subject), but in the "social status" argument.

This was where Con might have lost the debate. Except, Pro didn't define "social status" in R1 in the way he wanted to use it later on. As Con noted, it's perfectly reasonable to use "social status" in the way Con did, that is, having no formal class distinction. Pro would have done well to explicitly note economic disparity in his setup of the resolution. But even then, Pro gave no reasons to believe that it was truly "impossible", though I think the vast majority of folks may find it "implausible". The closest he came to arguing for that was when he argued "it is only natural that humans attempt to become advanced beyond others, to succeed more and get more"...but that humans will always *attempt* to do so, even if taken at face value, does not mean they must always *succceed*.

Pro failed in his BoP, in failing to establish the *impossibility* of equality in human society, and so arguments to Con.

As always, happy to clarify this RFD.
Posted by Mikal 3 years ago
Mikal
Referring to society as a whole, this would almost be impossible to dispute. Would be more curious if you did it as a though experiment with a specific society.
Posted by Schopenhauer 3 years ago
Schopenhauer
Both
Posted by InVinoVeritas 3 years ago
InVinoVeritas
Equality of opportunity or equality of outcome?
Posted by Schopenhauer 3 years ago
Schopenhauer
Yes I believe it would be considered inequality.
Posted by xXCryptoXx 3 years ago
xXCryptoXx
Would one individual being more successful than another individual be defined as inequality?
6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by Jay-D 3 years ago
Jay-D
SchopenhauerYYWTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:24 
Reasons for voting decision: I award S&G to Con, for Pro's lack of caps/punctuation and poor formatting. Pro somewhat failed in upholding his BoP, but gave better sources. Conduct is indeterminate, but overall I give it 4-2 to Con.
Vote Placed by Mikal 3 years ago
Mikal
SchopenhauerYYWTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: This was clear cut and was destined to lean con from the start. The resolution claiming something is impossible set con up for an easy ride. Pro would have been better off saying it is more than likely impossible or probably will not happen. The biggest nich pro had was his argument for social equality as a society, which was loosely defined. Con bit down on this and pretty much had the debate from that point. Con took the resolution and ran a muk with it.
Vote Placed by bsh1 3 years ago
bsh1
SchopenhauerYYWTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:24 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro's rebuttals and points are largely economic, whereas "Equality" references rights. Pro's arguments, for the most part, are therefore off-topic. Pro also fails to consider that the resolution is talking about what is "possible" not what is probable. His arguments focus on probability vs. possibility. Thus, args go Con. S/g also goes Con in that Pro's formatting was extremely hard to follow. Sources go Pro--he used them. Conduct was tied. Hence, I vote Con.
Vote Placed by bladerunner060 3 years ago
bladerunner060
SchopenhauerYYWTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: RFD in comments.
Vote Placed by iamanatheistandthisiswhy 3 years ago
iamanatheistandthisiswhy
SchopenhauerYYWTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:Vote Checkmark--2 points
Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: I have to award Pro argument points in this debate as his argument was well founded and made sense that a perfect equal society is not possible with respect to social status and same rights. While Rights could be equal in society there is no demonstrable case of equal social status ever and as such Pro wins the argument as Con was unable to provide an example. The USA example is a fine one, but its not equal as Pro required. Sources points go to Pro for citing resources while Con offered none. S&G was tied and the conduct of both debaters was good as such conduct is also tied. Great debate and a good read.
Vote Placed by ConservativePolitico 3 years ago
ConservativePolitico
SchopenhauerYYWTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro's spelling and grammar were alright but Con's was better. Pro had un-capitalized letters at the start of their sentences. They had horrible indention and spacing which led to a rougher read. Pro tried to show that Communism was a failure in producing actual equality on grounds that it was the only true attempt in legal law to achieve true equality but Con showed how any law structured to promote actual equality in society would suffice. Just because communism failed doesn't mean another legal system would. The resolution reads that equality is "impossible", Con left the idea that equality would be possible in another society. Pro failed to fulfill the BoP when they did not give me any reason to believe beyond a doubt that equality was impossible. Con wins for these reasons.