The Instigator
belle
Con (against)
Losing
11 Points
The Contender
Ryft
Pro (for)
Winning
15 Points

Human Beings have a Moral Responsibility to preserve Biodiversity on Earth

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/29/2010 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 6,921 times Debate No: 11016
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (16)
Votes (6)

 

belle

Con

I already tried this once, but please... if you are not going to take this seriously then don't accept the debate. I actually think this topic is fairly interesting.

"Biodiversity is the variation of life forms within a given ecosystem, biome, or for the entire Earth. Biodiversity is often used as a measure of the health of biological systems. The biodiversity found on Earth today consists of many millions of distinct biological species, which is the product of nearly 3.5 billion years of evolution."

http://en.wikipedia.org......

Many argue that this state of variety ought to be important to us as a species, either in itself, or in relation to our survival, and as such should take precedence over other concerns. I contend that this is not the case, that the state of biological diversity on this planet need not concern us when considering the consequences of our actions and policies.

I look forward to a rousing debate :)
Ryft

Pro

The proponent of this debate [1] has staked her position on a denial of the proposition, which is to say that her proposed argument amounts to the following: "Humans do not have a moral responsibility to preserve biodiversity on earth." As the Pro side of her proposed debate, it is my task to uphold the proposition against her critical attempts to defeat it, or at least undercut it. In other words, as the Con side of the debate she has proposed, she has shouldered the burden of proving that humans do not have a moral responsibility to preserve biodiversity on earth.

Although I shall not challenge the definition of 'biodiversity' that she has provided (for I find it acceptable), I certainly do challenge her use of the term 'moral' because it is contestable, whereby her entire argument is built upon a certain ethical stance. In order for her to argue that we do not have the aforementioned moral responsibility, it will require a great deal more than the force of her brute assertion. In other words, she has stated her case, but by no means has she made her case. Yet that is what she is required to do and without begging the question, [2] while I am required to prove that she has failed to.

== References ==

1. She is "the proponent of this debate" in the sense that she is the one who has instigated it or has proposed it. 'Proponent' is not to be confused with the Pro stance; she has taken the Con stance, which means she is challenging the proposition, while I am taking the Pro stance, which means I am defending the proposition.

2. I am using the term "begging the question" in the logical sense, which refers to the logical fallacy (Laitn 'petitio principii') of simply assuming the truth of the very thing in question (q.v. Walton, Douglas N. "The Essential Ingredients of the Fallacy of Begging the Question," in Fallacies: Classical and Contemporary Readings. Hanson, Hans V. and Robert C. Pinto, eds. Penn State Press, 1995. Print. pp. 229-239.; "Begging the question." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Web.; Curtis, Gary N. "Begging the question." FallacyFiles.org. Web.)
Debate Round No. 1
belle

Con

Thank you Ryft.

I accept the burden in this debate only insofar as it is my job to show that commonly used justifications for
preserving biodiversity fail, as well as any justifications my opponent may bring up in the next round. There
are many...

The arguments in favor can be broken down into two main categories: diversity (or other species) are valuable
in themselves or it, and they, are valuable to human survival and human goals. I think the first category
can be safely dismissed, as nothing is intrinsically valuable and there is no reason for humans to value
something that does not benefit them in any way. The second category offers several justifications:

-->New drugs are often discovered in nature first. For example, antibiotics derived from fungi. There are at
least 120 substances used therapeutically that began life as plant products{1}

While in the past, we had to depend on plants to produce our chemicals for us, this is no longer the case. In
fact, current chemists, rather than discovering molecules in nature that are bio-active, are simply synthesizing
chemicals at random and testing them for biological applications.{2} There is then no need to depend on nature
or hope that evolution has discovered the molecules we need already; we can produce them ourselves.

-->If life is valuable, we have a responsibility to preserve and protect it. This is especially salient as earth
may be the only place life exists

The question of whether or not we are alone in the universe is for another debate. However, even assuming it
is true, that implies that humans are the only intelligence in the universe. And while there are millions of
other species (our current best estimate is at 10 million){3} we are the only ones who display this quality.
Thus to handicap ourselves for the sake of diversity is actually to deprive the universe of intelligence
even while filling it with life.

-->We depend on nature's bounty for our existence. The extinction of one species in an ecosystem leads to
several others, and so on. All life is interdependent. If we allow some lifeforms to die, others that depend
on them will do so as well, and eventually some species that we depend on as a food source will go extinct.

I believe this to be the strongest argument for preservation of diversity but it is by no means ironclad. First,
the extinction of species could just as likely benefit us rather than harm us; imagine if certain strains of
bacteria simply disappeared altogether? But more importantly, while it is true that we depend on nature for
our survival, the only way we get any benefit from it is by using it. We grow food, leeching nutrients from
soil. We mine the earth for mineral, and the forests for trees, to create the various trappings of modernity.
We must disrupt nature to derive any benefit from it. We cause many species to go extinct through habitat
destruction. In this way we out-compete our rivals for resources. Perhaps an argument can be made that we should
use these resources more slowly, but to say we mustn't disturb nature is to say we mustn't continue to live.

Remember, it is not the diversity itself we depend on here, but certain species that eventually consume. Our
needs could just as easily be provided for by farming or controlled "preserves" where we raise desired species
in a controlled ecosystem created by us and isolated from the rest of the world.

Finally, a note on morality since my opponent seems to take issue with my use of the term. While I think a
full explication of the concept is outside the scope of this debate, I ask my opponent to consider two
assumptions with I consider fully reasonable and in line with my argumentation thus far:

1. The moral value of entities that are not moral agents (ie capable of reasoning about right and wrong){4} is
not equal to that of moral agents. This means that while we may owe *some* moral consideration to non-rational
beings, this consideration is ultimately trumped by the needs of the only true moral agents on earth, human
beings.

2. A moral obligation is an act prescribed by a set of values. {5}

Thus my argument that we do not have a moral obligation to preserve diversity, since the objects of that diversity
are not moral agents and cannot override the interests of humans.

1. http://www.rain-tree.com...
2. http://employees.csbsju.edu...
3. http://www.wri.org...
4. http://en.wikipedia.org...
5. http://en.wikipedia.org...
Ryft

Pro

First of all, I should like to extend my appreciation for Belle's thoughtful response in presenting her argument, and by "thoughtful" I mean to indicate that she seems to have given the issue considerable thought. But while I think she takes the issue seriously, I also think she has failed to recognize the rational weakness of her argument. It is convincing only to the already convinced because unfortunately, and against my hope to the contrary, her argument has indeed begged the question.

Belle had proposed to debate the notion that humans do not have a moral responsibility to preserve biodiversity on earth. Think of that as being her conclusion (for that is what a debate resolution amounts to). Now if that proposition is the conclusion to be reached, then what is the means by which she reached it? After stating her case, how did she go about making her case?

Notice that she seems to be basing her case on the principle of "moral obligation." And also notice that her debate proposition refers to "moral responsibility." I am going to assume for the sake of argument that these two expressions are being used to say the same thing (otherwise she might be guilty of being disingenuous and misleading). According to her argument, whether or not humans have a moral obligation is prescribed by a set of values; [1] that is to say, we have no moral obligation to that which has no value. We must pay attention to that, that her entire argument is based upon a certain set of values, which I had highlighted in Round 1 when I said "her entire argument is built upon a certain ethical stance." [2] As she has implicitly demonstrated in her argument, she holds to a 'strong' anthropocentric (human-centered) instrumental value system; i.e., if something is not instrumentally valuable to human benefit and well-being, then it has no value [3] (an astonishing medieval arrogance, that since only humans really matter on Earth they may utilize and consume everything else to their advantage with impunity, [4] a mindset we still combat to this very day).

If her entire argument is based on the idea that we have no moral obligation to that which has no value, then she cannot simply assume that nonhuman entities of Earth's ecosystem have no intrinsic value because—by her own argument—the truth or falsehood of that is the very question upon which the issue rests! Consider: if nonhuman entities of Earth's ecosystem do have intrinsic value, then her entire argument collapses. Yet simply assuming that "nothing is intrinsically valuable" is precisely what she has done. She did nothing toward proving that; she simply assumed that 'intrinsic value' is false, dismissing it with a wave of her hand while proceeding to her conclusion on a question-begging premise.

That will not do. I am willing to grant her that moral obligation is determined by a set of values, but if that is the basis upon which her argument rests, then it is illegitimate [5] for her to presuppose the falsehood of a specific set of values which compete against hers. With moral obligation being tied so inextricably to values, sound reasoning requires that she prove, not assume, the falsehood of 'intrinsic value' before attempting to employ 'instrumental value' in drawing her conclusion about moral obligation.

==== REFERENCES ====

1. See the last item near the close of her argument. See also: Diane Jeske. "Special obligations." Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 19 May 2008. Web. (http://plato.stanford.edu...).

2. 'Ethics' is that branch of philosophy dealing with the study of values and morals, which her argument itself recognizes when she posits that morals are determined by values. See also: James Fieser. "Ethics." The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 10 May 2009. Web. (http://www.iep.utm.edu...).

3. See where she said, "There is no reason for humans to value something that does not benefit them in any way," that our moral obligation to non-rational beings "is ultimately trumped by the needs of the only true moral agents on earth, human beings," a view reflected in Kant's essay "Duties to Animals and Spirits" in Louis Infield's (trans.) Lectures on Ethics (New York: Harper & Row, 1963). See also: Andrew Brennan and Yeuk-Sze Lo. "Environmental Ethics." Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 3 Jan 2008. Web. (http://plato.stanford.edu...).

4. Lynn White Jr. "The Historical Roots of Our Ecological Crisis." Science, 55:1203-1207, 1967; reprinted in D. Schmidtz and E. Willott (eds.) Environmental Ethics: What Really Matters, What Really Works. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002. Print. This human arrogance is still relevant even in our time, e.g., as explored in films like James Cameron's epic film Avatar, or the Wachowski Brothers' film The Matrix in which Agent Smith said to Morpheus, "Every mammal on this planet instinctively develops a natural equilibrium with the surrounding environment, but you humans do not. You move to an area and you multiply and multiply until every natural resource is consumed, and the only way you can survive is to spread to another area. There is another organism on this planet that follows the same pattern. Do you know what it is? A virus. Human beings are a disease, a cancer of this planet. You're a plague. And we are the cure."

5. I am using the term 'illegitimate' here in the logic sense, viz. "not in accordance with the principles of valid inference," Dictionary.com Unabridged. Random House, Inc. (http://dictionary.reference.com...).
Debate Round No. 2
belle

Con

I would like to start off by apologizing for using the terms "moral obligation" and "moral responsibility"
interchangeably. You are correct in assuming I meant the same thing by both phrases.

Now, if I understand properly, my opponent's argument hinges on the idea that I have assumed biodiversity has no intrinsic value without proving it. I believe that this assumption is justified in that I have no more reason to believe biodiversity intrinsically valuable than I do my television set or my dead skin cells; I have been given no reason to assent to it.

This is not begging the question, because my argument is not that biodiversity is not intrinsically valuable, it
is that we do not have a moral obligation to preserve it. Biodiversity need not be intrinsically valuable for this obligation to hold. Consider the following argument:

If A, then B or C
not B
not C
therefore not A

It is perfectly valid, and indeed, the form of my argument here.

"If we have an obligation to preserve biodiversity, then it is intrinsically valuable, or it is valuable for some other reason
It is not intrinsically valuable
It is not valuable for any other reason
therefore we do not have an obligation to preserve biodiversity"

If my opponent wishes to provide argumentation to challenge this premise I invite him to do so, but simply saying it is unjustified and leaving it at that is no disproof of it.

However, as he has called it into question, I will defend it the best I can.

val�ue (vly)
n.
1. An amount, as of goods, services, or money, considered to be a fair and suitable equivalent for something
else; a fair price or return.
2. Monetary or material worth: the fluctuating value of gold and silver.
3. Worth in usefulness or importance to the possessor; utility or merit: the value of an education.
4. A principle, standard, or quality considered worthwhile or desirable: "The speech was a summons back to the patrician values of restraint and responsibility" (Jonathan Alter).
5. Precise meaning or import, as of a word.
6. Mathematics An assigned or calculated numerical quantity.
7. Music The relative duration of a tone or rest.
8. The relative darkness or lightness of a color. See Table at color.
9. Linguistics The sound quality of a letter or diphthong.
10. One of a series of specified values: issued a stamp of new value.
tr.v. val�ued, val�u�ing, val�ues
1. To determine or estimate the worth or value of; appraise.
2. To regard highly; esteem. See Synonyms at appreciate.
3. To rate according to relative estimate of worth or desirability; evaluate: valued health above money.
4. To assign a value to (a unit of currency, for example).

(from http://www.thefreedictionary.com...)

Note that in every case, value is defined in relation to either another entity, or a scale of measure.

in�trin�sic (n-trnzk, -sk)
adj.
1. Of or relating to the essential nature of a thing; inherent.
2. Anatomy Situated within or belonging solely to the organ or body part on which it acts. Used of certain nerves and muscles.

(http://www.thefreedictionary.com...)

If to define the value of an object one must refer to an external entity, value cannot be intrinsic by definition.

There can be no "value" without someone (or something I suppose) which values.

As for the ethical concept of "intrinsic value", SEP defines it thusly:

"That which is intrinsically good is nonderivatively good; it is good for its own sake. That which is not
intrinsically good but extrinsically good is derivatively good; it is good, not (insofar as its extrinsic value
is concerned) for its own sake, but for the sake of something else that is good and to which it is related in
some way. Intrinsic value thus has a certain priority over extrinsic value. The latter is derivative from or
reflective of the former and is to be explained in terms of the former. It is for this reason that philosophers
have tended to focus on intrinsic value in particular."

(http://plato.stanford.edu...)

Intrinsic values are desirable "in themselves", or "for their own sake". The same SEP article references a thought experiment by G.E Moore:

"He advises us to consider what things are such that, if they existed by themselves “in absolute isolation,” we would judge their existence to be good; in this way, we will be better able to see what really accounts for the value that there is in our world. For example, if such a thought-experiment led you to conclude that all and only pleasure would be good in isolation, and all and only pain bad, you would be a hedonist.[13] Moore himself deems it incredible that anyone, thinking clearly, would reach this conclusion. He says that it involves our saying that a world in which only pleasure existed — a world without any knowledge, love, enjoyment of beauty, or moral qualities — is better than a world that contained all these things but in which there existed slightly less pleasure.[14] Such a view he finds absurd."

I challenge my opponent to defend the goodness of absolute biodiversity at the cost of everything else. Under this conception a world populated by billions of difference species of bacteria would be "better" than the world that we have now. As said bacteria cannot experience happiness, love, knowledge, wisdom, justice, or any of the other myriad of virtues commonly considered valuable by human beings this is a highly counterintuitive conclusion.

I have presented a clear case against the contention that humans have a responsibility to preserve biodiversity. Ryft has not challenged this proposition at all, but only falsely accused me of begging the question. His challenge to the premise that biodiversity isn't intrinsically valuable is nothing but a "brute assertion" as he himself would put it. I accepted the burden in this debate to refute the most common arguments against biodiversity in addition to any my opponent might come up with and have done so. Consider the resolution negated.
Ryft

Pro

As this will be my closing argument, I wish to take the time to thank Belle for this debate and her pleasant conduct throughout. It is always refreshing, in my opinion, to experience a civil and intelligent debate without gratuitous invective and insulting tone. This was enjoyable for me, so thank you, Belle.

CLOSING ARGUMENT:

The central issue in this debate was the proposition that human beings do not have a moral obligation to preserve biodiversity on Earth. In essence, that is the conclusion Belle had set out to prove or argue in support of. And she chose to tie moral obligation inextricably to values, such that the very question of moral obligation is determined by a set of values; if we have no moral obligation to that which has no value, then whether or not nonhuman entities have value lies at the very heart of the question.

So, given this stance she presented, we realize that if we assume a particular set of values, then a particular set of moral obligations will follow necessarily. That means making such assumptions ends up begging the very question. Consider: if nonhuman entities have 'intrinsic value', then we do have a moral obligation toward them. Unfortunately, Belle did not even attempt to interact with the notion of their possessing 'instrinsic value'. She simply assumed it was false, asserting that "nothing is intrinsically valuable" with a dismissive wave of her hand. But the standards of sound reasoning expects her to prove—not just assume—the falsehood of 'intrinsic value' before attempting to employ 'instrumental value' in drawing her conclusion about moral obligation.

As she presented quite clearly in her final round, there are two types of value: intrinsic and extrinsic. Intrinsic refers to the value a thing possesses in itself, while extrinsic refers to the value a thing possesses in virtue of its relation to something else (e.g., instrumentality). And since the issue of moral obligation was tied inextricably to values, the set of values one employs determines the whole case. So the question of intrinsic vs. extrinsic is fundamentally crucial. When it comes to forming her own views, she is at liberty to simply assume one thing in favour of another. But when it comes to competing in the marketplace of ideas, assuming the very point at issue will not do.

She could have chosen to do one of two things: either she could have demonstrated the weakness of the 'intrinsic' view, or she could have demonstrated the strength of the 'extrinisic' view. But she never bothered to do either one. She simply assumed the falsehood of the 'intrinsic' view—even going so far as to assert that it was false—and assumed the truth of a particular 'extrinsic' view. And having done so, with a set of values in hand her conclusion followed quite naturally, because values determine moral obligation, as she said. It should not surprise anyone that her conclusion was inevitable, because the determining set of values was in place all along, and (despite my attempts) never questioned. As Dr. Carroll points out, "If one's premises entail one's conclusion, and one's premises are questionable, one is said to beg the question." [1]

MISCELLANEOUS RESPONSES:

With respect to the fact that she begged the question, Belle countered by saying, "I believe that this assumption is justified, in that I have no more reason to believe biodiversity intrinsically valuable than I do my television set or my dead skin cells; I have been given no reason to assent to it." There are two things I wish to say about this.

First, whether or not she has reason to believe that nonhuman entities have instrinisic value is irrelevant. The truth or falsehood thereof was at issue, not its believability for her. And as demonstrated, she at once both assumed and asserted its falsehood, and with no reason given. Second, to hold that something is false because it has not been proven true is a logical fallacy known as 'argumentum ad ignorantiam' (argument from ignorance). [2]

She also said, "My argument is not that biodiversity is not intrinsically valuable; it is that we do not have a moral obligation to preserve it." This statement seems to forget that Belle had tied moral obligation inextricably to values. We do have a moral obligation to preserve Earth's biodiversity if it has intrinsic value. So does it? Belle says no, which we are supposed to take on her word alone—because she never bothered to demonstrate the weakness of the 'intrinsic' view nor the strength of her 'extrinsic' view. She simply assumed in favour of one against the other and presented the inevitable conclusion that follows from doing so.

With regard to the modus tollens syllogism she presented, Belle said, "If my opponent wishes to provide argumentation to challenge this premise I invite him to do so." I accept the challenge. Her modus tollens syllogism was:

1. If we have an obligation to X, then X is intrinsically valuable.
2. X is not intrinsically valuable.
3. Therefore, we do not have an obligation to X.

There is a serious problem with the first premise (and therefore the entire argument). The first premise is actually an inversion of her argument, which held that moral obligation is determined by values, not vice versa. She did not say that values is determined by moral obligation. She said the exact opposite, that moral obligation is determined by values. In other words, her argument was, "If X has value, then we have an obligation to X." Therefore, her syllogism must be restructured as follows:

1'. If X is instrinsically valuable, then we have an obligation to X.
2'. X is not intrinsically valuable.
3'. Therefore, we have no obligation to X.

And this, of course, is no longer a modus tollens argument. It is, in fact, a formal fallacy known as denying the antecedent: [3]

1'. If P, then Q.
2'. �P.
3'. Therefore, �Q.

She also said, "I challenge my opponent to defend the goodness of absolute biodiversity at the cost of everything else." There is a certain confusion here, insofar as that wasn't my task in this debate. I did not instigate this debate for arguing in favour of the proposition; Belle instigated this debate for arguing against the proposition, which means it was my task "to uphold the proposition against her critical attempts to defeat it, or at least undercut it. In other words, as the Con side of the debate she has proposed, she has shouldered the burden of proving that humans do not have a moral responsibility to preserve biodiversity on earth." [4]

And finally, it is true that Belle "presented a clear case against the contention that humans have a responsibility to preserve biodiversity." However, it is also true that she did so by committing two fallacies: denying the antecedent as regards the argument overall, and begging the question as regards the second premise specifically. While she claims that I have not presented any real challenge to her argument, I am at a loss to explain how she could think that.

==== REFERENCES ====

1. Robert Carroll "Begging the question." The Skeptic's Dictionary. Web. (http://www.skepdic.com...)

2. Robert Carroll. "Argument to ignorance." The Skeptic's Dictionary. Web. (http://www.skepdic.com...). See also: Lee Archie. "Appeal to ignorance." Lander University Philosophy Pages. Web. (http://philosophy.lander.edu...). "Argument from ignorance." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Web. (http://en.wikipedia.org...)

3. Gary Curtis. "Denying the antecedent." FallacyFiles.org. Web. (http://www.fallacyfiles.org...); "Denying the antecedent." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Web. (http://en.wikipedia.org...)

4. Taken from my opening remarks in Round 1.
Debate Round No. 3
16 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Aesius 7 years ago
Aesius
I do not like to use the term "Moral" but I do not think many would disagree with the fact that the human species, as a whole, wishes or it's own long term survival.

A great biodiversity, where there are species in every habitable niche, is a benefit to the ecology of the earth, which humans are a part of.

Take, for example, the Florida everglades. Humans were unconcerned, thinking it a wasteland to be improved upon. We drained the wetlands to farm them, but the farming was terrible. There were water shortages, and there is now a program costing billions of dollars to restore the original wetlands.
Posted by Kinesis 7 years ago
Kinesis
Well it's no professional debating site, that's for sure.
Posted by Ryft 7 years ago
Ryft
RoyLatham - In Belle's R1 opening, she said it would be her argument that "it is not the case" that we have a moral obligation. In my R1 response, I confirmed that she has the burden of making her case. In her R2 reply, she concured on the burden, and that she would make her case by showing that arguments FOR moral obligation fail. The remainder of the debate adhered to what was established and agreed upon. Would it have been clearer if she had phrased the resolution as "do not have" and taken the Pro side? Maybe; yet that is exactly what she was debating.

-----

I cited (six Ph.D.s, one B.Phil.) from (two peer-reviewed sources, one university, two academic sources) plus (two common web sites). Belle cited (two Ph.D.s, one naturopath, one Unknown) from (one peer-reviewed source, one university, one lobby think-tank, one corporate web site) plus (two common web sites).

And we are TIED for "Used the most reliable sources"...?

Fascinating. I am learning very quickly what Debate.org is like.
Posted by RoyLatham 7 years ago
RoyLatham
Kinesis, "Otherwise, it varies from case to case." How does it vary? If the debaters agree before accepting a challenge, then, sure, no problem. Pro wants to do something, so to me the burden is proving that what is advocated is worth doing. Some people say that the Instigator ought to have the burden. If so, the Instigator ought to put in a "not" and become Pro. How else could the burden of proof vary?
Posted by RoyLatham 7 years ago
RoyLatham
In this debate there was no statement of who had the burden of proof in Con's challenge. Pro succeeded in getting Con to accept part of the burden of proof retroactively, and will negotiation after acceptance is poor form, Con can agree. Con followed through and argued against the conventional biodiversity claims successfully, I think, although the intended subject othe debate was not much discussed. If there is agreement between the debaters at the outset, before the challenge is accepted, then I have no objection at all to whatever is agreed, so long as somebody has the burden of proof.

I think that debate.org wold be much improved by eliminating the option to propose a debate as Con. The only virtue is for debating the same academic topic repeatedly, where Con wants to prepare for a variety of Pro cases. That's not worth all the confusion over definitions and burden of proof.
Posted by ChizzleLeFizzle 7 years ago
ChizzleLeFizzle
this debate strayed very quickly from the actually question, i think the pro side of the argument spent more time arguing over definitions or lack thereof rather than presenting any additional points of his own. though, i think id rather witness a debate on this matter regarding more precisely what importance biodiversity holds to humans or whether or not its important rather than an extensive discussion on how well someone stated their argument or the holes in their logic. i do understand that this (the logical side) is a integral part of debate but i prefer the more factual side supported by the logic, i think that was more so what i expected before reading this.
Posted by Ryft 7 years ago
Ryft
There is no need to call me a liar, Belle (smiley emoticons or not). I am well aware of what your R3 post said, and my R3 post responded to it. You made your arguments, I made mine. You may think I failed to make my case, but that doesn't mean I am a liar—any more than someone who thinks you failed to make your case means you're a liar.
Posted by Kinesis 7 years ago
Kinesis
I don't think Roy is correct. Or at least, if he is it would lead to arbitrary and pointless burdens of proof. One could simply include a 'not' in the resolution, switch sides, and the burden of proof would be completely reversed. I agree with Ryft: if participants agree on how the burden is to be allocated, that's how it should be allocated. Otherwise, it varies from case to case.
Posted by belle 7 years ago
belle
no need to lie. most of my R3 was dedicated to explaining why biodiversity, as an "inherently valuable" thing, leads to absurd conclusions. which you conveniently ignored :P
Posted by Ryft 7 years ago
Ryft
RoyLatham - Belle said, "I accept the burden in this debate only insofar as it is my job to show that commonly used justifications for preserving biodiversity fail." Despite what any observers personally think about who shouldered the burden of proving what, the fact remains that both debate participants agreed on what the task for Con was going to be and proceeded accordingly. It is my understanding that a debate proceeds according to what the participants say it is, not the observers. And I demonstrated that Belle did NOT "show" that commonly used justifications for preserving biodiversity fail; rather, she assumed in favour of 'extrinsic' value while dismissing 'intrinsic' value and, with a set of values in hand, proceeded to her conclusion quite naturally—because values determine moral obligation, as she said. "It should not surprise anyone that her conclusion was inevitable, because the determining set of values was in place all along, and (despite my attempts) never questioned."
6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by Cliff.Stamp 6 years ago
Cliff.Stamp
belleRyftTied
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Vote Placed by Aesius 7 years ago
Aesius
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Vote Placed by gbpacker 7 years ago
gbpacker
belleRyftTied
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Vote Placed by Amethystisagem 7 years ago
Amethystisagem
belleRyftTied
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Vote Placed by ChizzleLeFizzle 7 years ago
ChizzleLeFizzle
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Vote Placed by RoyLatham 7 years ago
RoyLatham
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