The Instigator
bryanlink
Con (against)
Losing
3 Points
The Contender
Pfalcon1318
Pro (for)
Winning
13 Points

Feminism: Positive or Negative

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
Pfalcon1318
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/21/2014 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,319 times Debate No: 62072
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (29)
Votes (4)

 

bryanlink

Con

I am obviously against Feminism, because I feel it's no longer just a movement for equality, but a movement implying that all men are misogynistic pigs, which I obviously refute.

There are no rules in this debate. Whoever wants to debate, accept the challenge and post your argument.
Pfalcon1318

Pro

Hello, hello! Let's make this a great debate.

Introduction

Some debate issues before I make my arguments. Since this is an "A or B" debate, Burden of Proof is shared between us. Meaning, I must make a reasonable case to believe Feminism is positive, and CON must make a reasonable case to believe Feminism is negative.

First and foremost, a definition. "Feminism" is "The advocacy of women’s rights on the ground of the equality of the sexes".

Since my opponent has offered no explication of the terms "positive" and "negative", I will do so. To say that "X is positive" is to say that X benefits society such that if X were not in effect/existence/practice, there would be some maxim that is not achieved. To say that "X is negative" is to say that X is a detriment to society such that if X were not in effect/existence/practice, there would be some maxim that is achieved.

I find the maxim "All people, regardless of gender, race, age, sexuality, should be held equal under law" to be quite appropriate, given the topic of discussion. Of course, this can be challenged and discussed.

To achieve the Maxim

"Feminism" has a long standing tradition. The practices and beliefs that feminism embodies ideologically first became prominent in the 18th century. This was around the time that the system of coverture was in place. Coverture is the legal principle whereby, upon marriage, a women's legal identity is subsumed into that of her husband and she can no longer control the use of her property, nor can she sue or be sued herself, nor execute contracts. Essentially, a woman was unable to be independent of her husband. Regardless of one's beliefs regarding the subject (some suggest this was misogyny; others suggest it was a fair trade), the fact remains that a woman did not have those rights which men were afforded.

It is here that advocacy comes into play. "Advocacy" is "Public support for or recommendation of a particular cause or policy" [3]. Since coverture was a legal principle, it could only be changed if it is changed in the law. Someone, at some point, had to support women's rights, otherwise coverture would still be in affect. By acting to change the law, this person X has shown support for women's rights, towards the goal of the sexes being equal, thus this person has advocated for women's rights. This person, by definition above, then, would be a feminist.

Conclusion

So, then, feminism allows for men and women to be equal under the law. Thus, the requirements for feminism to be "positive" have been fulfilled, per the maxim described above. Again, the maxim can be challenged, just as my explications can. However, if they are not challenged, and CON cannot show feminism to lead to a failure to attain the maxim, I have fulfilled my burden of proof.

I do look forward to rebuttals.

[1] http://www.oxforddictionaries.com...
[2] http://womenshistory.about.com...
[3] http://www.oxforddictionaries.com...
Debate Round No. 1
bryanlink

Con

I am not going by the traditional definition of feminism. Because if I did, I would classify as a feminist. If feminists actually lived up to the dictionary definition of feminism, then people would not have such a problem with them. I am going by the so called "tumblr feminists" or radical feminists. Feminism is supposed to mean equality for women " that"s the same social, economical, political, workplace and home life benefits as men. It"s supposed to mean that women get treated the same as a gender that, since history began, has had the upper hand. There"s no denying we as a society are almost there " yes, there"s still more men in senior positions at the biggest companies in the world, and yes there"s more stay-at-home women than men, but women are entitled to everything men are, give or take a few things. But the new definition of feminism promotes a hatred of men, just because their men. It may come as a surprise to some people that I call myself "Masculistfeminist" whilst I have systematically criticized the feminist movement and advocated for men"s rights. Why have I done that? To demonstrate what someone would actually do, if they saw the state of the feminist movement at the moment and actually lived up to the dictionary definition of the word feminism that so-called "feminists" hide behind. If feminists were authentic and transparent individuals, then they would be criticizing their own movement and actively attempting to change it. Bigots and hypocrites are using the word feminism to disguise their actions under a banner of equality and are using this banner as a shield to not only deflect any criticism of their actions, but to also ostracize critics and falsely label them as misogynists. So I thought I would claim the word feminism back from these gender ideologues and return it to society. They are using feminism to disguise their double standards. They are also disgracefully using this tarnished banner of equality as a weapon to silence critics.

Polls in the US reflect that only 23% of women classify themselves as feminists and you have to really wonder why. If feminism was really about women"s rights based on the principle of equality between the sexes, then why are not all women feminists? I assume women care about their rights. There are many reasons for why women don"t identify with feminism, but they all seem to have a common theme. Feminism does not represent women. Why? There are so many reasons that I could probably write a hundred hubs on that question alone. However to summarize, most women don"t hate men. Therefore most women find it relatively difficult to blindly follow feminist dogma, patriarchy theory, rape culture, the threat narrative of male oppression and the encouragement that goes along with it to develop a mindset that men are the enemy. Secondly most women don"t like to think of themselves as powerless and helpless victims.

Most women are aware that their gender has always had power in society and that this was merely a less overt form of power in comparison to that of men. Most women like to think of themselves as possessing self-determination and prefer to not regard themselves as mindless puppets or victims of the patriarchy or men. Perhaps the number one gripe women have with feminism that I have come across, is that feminism actually tells women what to do with their own lives and judges them on it. Feminism pressures women to conform to some ideal image of what a woman should be and if women don"t conform to that role or behave in the manner feminists approve of, then they are letting the sisterhood down. No wonder women are resentful of the feminist movement. These women are judging other women. Then again I am a man, what would I know? As feminists will say, I should check my male privilege!
Pfalcon1318

Pro

Hey, hey, glad this debate is fully underway! Thanks for your arguments, bryanlink.

The resolution states "Feminism: Positive or Negative".

I find a good portion of what CON said to be of value. However, most of what was said here does not affirm the resolution. I offered a Maxim by which to decide a winner. It currently remains unchallenged. As such, my rebuttals will be in relation to CON"s failure to address the Maxim in these opening statements.

A Philosophy/Ideology is not equal to it's adherents.

CON opens by stating "I am not going by the traditional definition of feminism", yet offers no definition, and chooses not to challenge the one I have offered.

Even if all of what CON claims is true, a "feminist" is not "feminism". For example, one cannot argue that law enforcement is, on balance, a negative based on the fact that there are some bad cops. A cop might be in law enforcement, but a cop is not identical to law enforcement. There are good and bad people in the world. The fact that some people are bad, or make poor decisions does nothing to suggest that people are, in fact, bad. This is the Composition Fallacy. CON is reasoning from the fact that a selection of the set is bad that therefore the entire set is bad. A feminist is not feminism, any more than a brick is a house. If tumblr feminists and radical feminists were the only ones which existed, then perhaps this would work. However, Feminists have existed at least since the 18th century.

The majority of CON's arguments rests on this fallacy. Even CON's comments on rape culture, Patriarchy, and Male Oppression rest on this fallacy. I agree that these are harmful theories, however, they are not embraced by feminists everywhere. In fact, if we take the definition above, most people are feminists, that is, they wish for men and women to be equal by law. The term "masculinist" refers to a person of this mindset in relation to men.

CON's reasoning does not offer support for the resolution that must be upheld. CON must offer reasons to believe that Feminism is negative. The Maxim and definitions I offered are up for challenge and discussion. However, they stand unless a challenge is presented.
Debate Round No. 2
bryanlink

Con

I find the maxim "All people, regardless of gender, race, age, sexuality, should be held equal under law" to be worth ignoring. Under the law men and women are generally equal, so this maxim is irrelevant. I was trying to think of examples most feminists bring up as an argument towards this. One example is gender pay gap. The ever-changing wage gap has many fallisices (see this source: http://dft.ba...). The point here is that there is barely any wage inequality. But by focusing their outrage into a tidy, misleading statistic, feminists have become jaded. In the source, she brings up that after mixing in different variables, a women makes 91 cents to a man, even then there are other undiscussed variables like maternity leave among others. Plus I am not sure 9 cents is something to throw a hissy fit over.

Now I will move on to "a feminist is not feminism". I am not mixing them, but rather doing the opposite. I clearly said I was talking about radical feminism. Because by going with regular feminists who just want equality for all sexes, it's hard to think who disagrees with that. The basis of feminism is almost unarguable from my point of view, because I want equality for both sexes. That is why I am going by the radical feminist point of view, because that is something I strongly disagree with. Here is an excerpt from the wikipedia page of radical feminism:

"A common criticism against feminism on the internet argues that radical feminism promotes a victim mentality amongst young women, inciting protests against events that have little to do with feminism. Susannah Breslin, a Forbes contributor wrote "Feminism claims to be about empowerment. In fact, over the years, it has increasingly devoted itself to promoting the image of women as victims. Victims of men. Victims of pop culture. Victims of sexism. Victims of discrimination. Victims of other women."
Pfalcon1318

Pro

Thank you for submitting your Round 3 arguments.

Rebuttals
CON's objection to my Maxim is hardly an objection at all. Simply finding something worth ignoring does not mean it should be ignored, especially considering no official alternative has been offered. That is to say, that CON has not provided us with a relevant maxim by which to decide who's points are stronger. Simply because men and women are currently equal in most places does not then mean the Maxim is worth ignoring. Perhaps there is some other Maxim that could have been offered. However, my definitions stand. As such, when casting your vote, do pay attention to how the arguments are made as relates to the Maxim provided.

CON then begins addressing my point regarding his conflation of a group of people with the ideology/philosophy that they adhere to. The reasoning CON offers for believing that feminism is negative is fallacious. This is similar to arguing that since there have been bad Christians (for example, those of the Spanish Inquisition or the Westboro Baptist church) that therefore Christianity is negative, that is, has a negative effect on society due to failure to achieve a certain maxim. Simply because there are some people who are bad within a group does not then mean the entire group is bad. While I will not assert that feminism is detached from its adherents, it seems, to me, quite absurd to look at only one specific subset of a group to render a decision. "Feminism" is the "advocacy of women's rights on the ground of equality of the sexes". That means that we must look at those circumstances wherein this advocacy takes place.

CON's points in regards to the supposed Wage Gap are of very little strength. There was a time when it was determined that an Act must be passed for the achievement of the Maxim. The Equal Pay Act of 1963 (EPA-63) was meant to ensure that no one was paid unfairly based on race or gender [1]. The EPA-63 is still in effect. Whether or not the Act was necessary (as it can be argued it wasn't), the maxim is still being acheived. All people are to be paid the same amount if they are of the same labor value. That is to say, that if a man and woman have the same level of experience, education, and dedication, their income should be equal, provided they are under the same employee for the same length of time.


CON, once again, attempts to ease the burden of proof that must be satisfied. The resolution states "Feminism: positive or negative" not "Radical Feminism: positive or negative". This is, again, related to the Fallacy of Composition. Even if radical feminism is negative, this is one sect of feminism. This is an invalid argument. It can be summarized as follows:

Radical feminism is a part of feminism as a whole.
Radical feminism is bad (assumption).
Therefore, Feminism as a whole is bad.

Even if it were summarized as a Modus Ponens:

If radical feminism is bad, then feminism as a whole is bad.
Radical feminism is bad (assumption).
Therefore, feminism as a whole is bad.

The conclusion could still be false, given new information, thus making the argument unsound, and removing the warrant it would provide. For example, the fact that "feminism" is the name given to the actions that lead to women being able to vote, getting paid as they should, being able to sue and be sued, being able to own property, and having their own legal identities. These facts demand a reconsideration of reasons to believe feminism is negative. CON did not address any of these points. They still stand.

Conclusion
As stated earlier, my definitions stand unchallenged. The Maxim also stands unchallenged. As such, they are the official guidelines for voting on this debate.

My argument goes as follows:

1. X is positive if and only if X benefits society such that if X were not in effect/existence/practice, there would be some maxim that is not achieved. (definition offered in R1)
2. The Maxim is "All people, regardless of gender, race, age, sexuality, should be held equal under law".
3. If feminism were not practiced, women would not be legally equal to men (supported by arguments from EPA-63 and Coverture and definition).
4. From 4, without feminism, the Maxim cannot be attained.
C. From 1 and 5, feminism is positive.

While I agree with some of CON's commentary on the modern iteration of feminism, this does not count as an affirmation of the CON resolution. Feminists are not feminism, articles are not advocacy, and radical feminism is not the entirety of the feminist movement. There are somethings that have been done in the feminist movement that, were they mentioned, would affirm the CON resolution. However, these things were not mentioned.

I have provided sufficient warrant for my position. The summary above is what was intended to be taken away from my arguments. I look for to the votes and any feedback that is offered.

Thank you for an exciting debate and good luck in the future.

[1] http://www.eeoc.gov...;
Debate Round No. 3
29 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Longline 2 years ago
Longline
farewell then as-hole (:
Posted by Pfalcon1318 2 years ago
Pfalcon1318
Riiiight.
Posted by Longline 2 years ago
Longline
i see, that's the kind of person you are, well, I ready don't get along with a-hole, even if they are right, an a-hole is always an a-hole. sometime they have no idea how much of an a-hole they are being, thinking they are actually talking sound able things.

if I had known that you where an a-hole, I would never had wasted my time on you, but nevertheless I do believe in enlightenment.
Posted by Pfalcon1318 2 years ago
Pfalcon1318
Better to be an a-hole and be right than be a punk and be wrong.
Posted by Longline 2 years ago
Longline
you never did challenge my believe, your just being, an a h.
Posted by Pfalcon1318 2 years ago
Pfalcon1318
Lol, don't get your panties in a wad kid.

If you can't handle your beliefs being challenged, you don't need to be on this site anyway.

You really have a problem.
Posted by Longline 2 years ago
Longline
Refrain myself? If I do that what will be the point of me using this free web service? Unless you creat your own free online debating web service and somehow know whatever account I may creat on it, only then I might consider the idea.

IM NOT HERE ON THIS PLANET TO LIVE FOREVER, SO IF I NEED TO SAY SOMETHING, YOU BET I WILL, AND I DONT CARE WHO LISTEN OR WHO FIND ME TO BE IGNORANT. SO BECAUSE YOU SAID THAT SPECIFICALLY, IM GONNA KEEP COMMENTING ON THIS POST UNTILE I NOTICE THERE IS NO MORE ATTENTION TO IT.

:)
Posted by Pfalcon1318 2 years ago
Pfalcon1318
Please refrain from commenting on any debates that I participate in.

You are absolutely imbecilic.
Posted by Longline 2 years ago
Longline
You sound like the kind of person who only have one way of reasoning. Your the kind of person who can write a knowledgeable book and still people will get sick of hearing about it and will never want to even see it. Please stop trying to sound intelligent, wast all that so call knowledge on making a better you. I have no idea how this simple thing got so out of control here, but it was nice seeing a pice of your mind, it's no place for me. Have a wonderful life, and remember to smile every morning. It's a good start.
Posted by Pfalcon1318 2 years ago
Pfalcon1318
http://www.oxforddictionaries.com...

"Lacking knowledge or awareness in general; uneducated or unsophisticated"

Not seeing things the way you do isn't the issue. The issue is that you don't understand the term "equality" or it's implications.

Simply put, you don't know what you're talking about. If you can't see that, I hope being on DDO will open your eyes to it.
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by Jellon 2 years ago
Jellon
bryanlinkPfalcon1318Tied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: Although Con wasn't specific enough in round 1, he clearly stated he wasn't talking about feminism by definition, but rather the people involved in feminism. Pro's argument was an attempt to exploit the lack of specifics given by Con when the debate was created. Because Pro did not give any strong argument that the feminist movement is positive, but Con showed many ways in which it was negative. 9spaceking failed to recall Con's use of sources, because it appeared inline instead of at the end of the round as many debaters tend to do. Con should have used more sources though. The sources used by Pro were almost completely used for definitions, not support for arguments, so no source points awarded to either side.
Vote Placed by Relativist 2 years ago
Relativist
bryanlinkPfalcon1318Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: There are numerous branch of feminism. Con failed to specify what type con was contesting, as such the view that it is wholly negative is easily refuted by pro.
Vote Placed by 9spaceking 2 years ago
9spaceking
bryanlinkPfalcon1318Tied
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Total points awarded:05 
Reasons for voting decision: con only focused on one kind of feminism, thus losing largely to pro's wide arguments. Also, pro was only one to use sources.
Vote Placed by Atheist-Independent 3 years ago
Atheist-Independent
bryanlinkPfalcon1318Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: Interesting debate. Con did not fulfill their BoP because he/she did not show how feminism as a whole is bad, rather only showed how radical feminism is bad. Pro, on the contrary, fulfilled the BoP and also effectively rebutted Con's arguments. The major issue with Con's arguments was that he effectively changed the means of the debate from debating about "feminism" and rather was debating about "radical feminism".