The Instigator
themightyindividual
Pro (for)
Winning
4 Points
The Contender
AlwaysRight12345
Con (against)
Losing
3 Points

Humans are better than animals

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
themightyindividual
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/22/2014 Category: People
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,369 times Debate No: 67463
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (4)
Votes (1)

 

themightyindividual

Pro

Clarification: This debate is on the basis of whether or not humans are better than animals in respect to development and utilization of the environment, i.e. the mastering of life.

Humans are a species that has adapted to their environment very well in the last 100,000 years. This means that as much as nature has thrown at us during ice ages, floods, famine, disease, heat, cold, and all other kinds of disasters, humans have come out on top every time. We have evolved to be much more intelligent in respect to language, conceptual thinking, perceptual thinking, insight, and mathematics. Rational thinking is strictly human, all other animals have varying levels of instinct and lower levels of perception. Even gorillas, whose brain patterns and development is close to humans, have not been able to construct most anything. Gorillas have not linked their logical side to their instinctual side, thus any similarity to humans is unpractical.

All other animals are even lower in development and utilization of the environment than humans. Both objectively and subjectively, humans own this planet. The term "best" can be defined by the most utilized, practical talents among the creatures of the animal kingdom. For example, it doesn't matter in the slightest that dolphins are able to communicate well, because, in this moment in time they have failed to construct walls, housing, tools, or any other useful piece. This is why "man-made" is a term used for pretty much anything that is "made" by a living organism. Of course, ants, termites, and bees are close to humans in their social skills and developmental skills and thus could be said to be closer to humans than apes. However, our immense size (relative to smart insects) enables us to construct irrigation systems, mining and drilling operations, controlled fire, and most importantly, agriculture. These examples of utilization of the environment are absolutely impossible for creatures of insect size. Thus, the most important things in human life are strictly human.

The breaking free of "need" is an achievement of humanity. As humans, we do not live on the brink of starvation, fighting predators to survive just another day. We are more profoundly adapt to our environment than other animals. With such ancient inventions as knives, wheels, clothing, fire, farming, and buildings, we are able to set aside the limited time in the day for "play". However, as smart beings, we use this extra time to reinvest in our welfare. We invent, capitalize, work, and trade as much as we can. With higher and higher returns in the standard of living, human beings have lifted from the mud and are the sole creature to have reached the stars.
AlwaysRight12345

Con

I would first like to thank my opponent for bringing up this debate. This is a very interesting topic.

First off I will refute my opponent's points and then present my own.

My opponent has said that Earth has thrown so much at the human race and we have survived. Well, obviously, tons of other species have too. Humans have been on Earth a fraction of the time so many other species have. He also said that we have the power of rational thinking and advancement. But the question here is: Are the human's advancements actually good to the common good? No, actually, if you look at the facts a lot of them aren't. The human race may only have another couple decades or so until the Earth crumbles to global warming. [1] Is it good that we single handedly DESTROYED billions of years of progress to produce life forms as they are today? Is the iPhone 6 really better than the commonwealth of everything on Earth? My opponent was even arrogant enough to say that we own this planet. Like I said earlier, we've only been around a couple million years and using that time, we've destroyed this planet. He said that it doesn't matter that dolphins have higher thinking skills because they haven't been able to build houses. News flash: Dolphins are underwater. They don't actually need to build houses. He finally said that "we do not live on the brink of starvation, fighting predators to survive just another day." Well, look at the news, my friend. Many humans do. "We invent, capitalize, work and trade as much as we can." Many other species are actually very advanced. Take the komodo dragon. They hunt their prey in such an advanced way, they have an animal lying around to munch on for months. They chase after it for a little bit, bite it, and then simply wait. Their saliva contains more than 50 different types of bacteria. [2] You do NOT want to get that stuff into your bloodstream. After so little, they come home with a massive hunk of meat that, like I said earlier, covers their food needs for months.

Now I would like to present my arguments:

1-Humans don't know when to stop:
Like I said earlier, humans have pretty much screwed everything up. Even though humans created new stuff we DON'T KNOW WHEN TO STOP! All these other species have survived and thrived for twice or three times the time we have. Yet, they haven't destroyed the Earth in every possible way. Additionally, we didn't even realize what was going on until the 1970s. [3]

2-Humans are the most death-obsessed race:
True, life is not all butterflies and rainbows. But humans have taken this to the next level. We have definitely invented one thing: war. Have you ever heard of a war between two groups of animals? Of course not. That's because they are not as obsessed with death and destruction as the human race. In fact, no animal has ever killed another animal of its own species for reasons other than cannibalism on purpose. Additionally, no other species constructs such elaborate ways to create mass genocide. I did mention the advanced tactics of the Komodo dragon earlier, but does this compare to the myriad of work done on creating nuclear missiles, or mastering the idea of radioactivity so that we can use it to destroy a city?

Sources:
1-http://www.usnews.com...
2-http://animals.nationalgeographic.com...
3-http://www.aip.org...
Debate Round No. 1
themightyindividual

Pro

themightyindividual forfeited this round.
AlwaysRight12345

Con

All my arguments above still apply here, as my opponent has forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
themightyindividual

Pro

Sorry for late delivery of this argument: I flew to New York to visit family during Christmas.

To correct my opponents reasoning, "humans' advanced thinking does not benefit the common good." Whether humans' ability to think clearly and rationally is objectively great, there is no "common good" when it comes to inter-species contact. If you have ever watched the PBS program "Nature", you know that it is usually a zero-sum game when it comes to survival. Our skills are good for US and that is what matters. My opponent also said, "the Earth will crumble to global warming in a couple decades", which is completely null and void because global warming is a natural phenomenon that has been occurring since the end of the last ice age 14,000 years ago. I will not debate whether global warming is a real threat (or as real as eco-freaks make it out to be), nor if it is humans' fault- that is not the purpose of this debate (however, for the record, human beings are innocent in the climate change theory). My opponent then went further, "we single handedly destroyed billions of years of progress to produce life forms as they are today". Now, the term "progress" was used very, very loosely here. Progress as in "the evolution and random turn of events that resulted in the current state of things"? If that is what you mean, then what "we" have done is merely played our part in evolution- the weak are trampled and the strong go on to victory. It may seem wrong to justify it like that but be REALISTIC, human beings are a species like all others that is fighting against all odds for survival, we just happened to be WINNING, sorry about that.

Environmentalists and the irrationalists like them enjoy weighing the benefit of one INDIVIDUAL thing against the burden of the entire COLLECTIVE thing (as in, "is the iPhone 6 really better than the commonwealth of everything?"). This can get annoying to rational people, so allow me to turn the tables. Is the entire production of everything that supports BILLIONS of people all over the world that has lasted throughout human history and has benefited countless people just like your self better than preserving a certain sub-species of cheetahs?

Also, my opponent said that "in a couple million years, we've destroyed this planet" as a rebuttal to my statement that "we own this planet". I was speaking metaphorically, as in our immense power over the planet, and my opponent took this literally and came up with an even DUMBER statement: "we've destroyed the planet". Really? We've destroyed it? Because when I look around, I see people shopping at supermarkets and living in heated, lighted homes and working with easy tasks instead of hunting for buffalo. I see barren land (objectively, of course) being transformed into neighborhoods that help families and individuals live lives that the kings of 500 years ago (before mass pollution) could never dream of.

Then my opponent said something so hypocritical, and really gave his debate away: "Many humans do live on the brink of starvation, fighting predators to survive another day". My opponent advocates environmentalism, which supports only those who live in such a way; you outlined a global tragedy that can only be solved by human beings who do NOT support environmentalism. When mining and manufacturing companies move into impoverished villages, they pay off the landowners and villagers and often build houses worth much more in order to give the villagers a place to live. Environmentalists constantly try to stop this with lawsuits. By your logic, all people should live like that.

You said that humans invented war. In a strong sense of the word, yes, you are correct. Yet, does this not stem from a purpose? Ideas. People have ideas, sometimes political or religious. These ideas have gotten us very far, indeed. Sometimes, however, people have conflicting ideas and one of them wants to force his ideas on the other. This results in a war. You have proven yourself wrong, by admitting that humans are the only species that have ideas to fight about.

Most bad things that have been done by humans (such as genocide) have been done by irrationalists (like yourself). Collectivism, communism, subjectivism, environmentalism, nationalism, racism, are all things that cause wars and devalue man. All of these things fall under the category of irrationalism, they are forms of philosophy that the Nazis follow.

The bad deeds of a few should not reflect poorly on the good done by everyone else. However, you are a collectivist and believe that humans, plants, animals, sand, and communists are all the same in terms of rights. There is no debating here.
AlwaysRight12345

Con

My opponent started off by refuting my point that humans' advanced thinking does not benefit the common good. However, this argument still stands. According to him, if we are doing good for the short term life of our country, we are doing good for the world. This is the kind of thinking that humans use that HAS destroyed the world. If he will "not debate whether global warming is a real threat," then I will first put in a last reason to prove climate change is a real issue, and then provide another example. Global warming may have been going on since the dawn of time, but (I am not going to provide a source for this one, if you oppose it then you need to be educated,) we have been greatly helping this along through the mass releases of carbon in every little activity that we do. Take my next example, extinction. Here we have yet another example of the "Great Expansion" of the human race. According to my opponent we are winning in the fight for survival, but to defend my point that we are the creators of war, (which my opponent supports, as I will later prove,) humans have taken this "fight" way too far. Do other species kill other tons of their own species to prove an idea? No! His refutation to this point was very weak. Its only purpose was to advocate war. He implied evolution was not progress, but completely missed the point. He asked if "the entire production of everything that supports BILLIONS of people all over the world that has lasted throughout human history and has benefited countless people just like your self better than preserving a certain sub-species of cheetahs?" but we can have a common ground here. Mass production of things we don't need stands in the way of preservation, but we don't have to become animals to help them. Do we need the iPhone 6, or the countless things a needless as it? No. But ignoring other beings because they are not vital to our own survival is different. You feel compassion for a dying animal on the side of the road, but not a broken phone. Then he went on to rant and call me a genocidal Nazi communist. He said that "most bad things that have been done by humans have been done by irrationalists." Well, yes, but he only proved me right here. The human race has so many problems and so do other species. We are equal. True, not everything is equal, but a criminal is not better than a cat, is it? A cat may not have ever done anything bad, but a criminal sure has. That's why he's a criminal. The cat is better than the criminal.

I will go out of this round providing some extra reasons to vote for my side. First, humans are the only mammal incapable of making their own vitamin C, which actually caused Ebola in Africa. Ebola circled around animals such as monkeys in Africa for a long time without harming them, but a human got it and started this whole Ebola epidemic. Finally, humans are animals too. We belong to the Animalia Kingdom.

I have indisputably won this debate.
Debate Round No. 3
themightyindividual

Pro

My opponent clearly doesn't understand what the term "destroyed" refers to when he uses it. In the context "humans have destroyed the world" he overlooks that in this situation there is a beneficiary. Therefore, it depends on the perspective. If I cut down 100 trees in order to build a farm that feeds a small town, is it destruction? This is the question that my opponent cannot ask.

When I said that I will not debate global warming, I meant right here, right now. In a separate debate, I would debate that. I do not "support" war, but I (unlike my opponent) understand that it is the bad side of something inherently good, ideas. My opponent also keeps bringing up the iPhone 6, as if that is a major source of environmental pollution. Maybe you should ask, "do we need electricity?" not "do we need the iPhone 6?". I realize that humans ARE apart of the animal kingdom, this debate's topic (as I specified) is whether humans are the BEST in the animal kingdom.

Obviously, my opponent sees human beings as the sole source of win-lose environmental change; this would mean that other species do not run each other "out of business". I am clearly the rationalist in this debate.
AlwaysRight12345

Con

"If I cut down 100 trees in order to build a farm that feeds a small town, is it destruction?" The answer, in fact, is yes. The "innovators" such as my opponent ignore the fact that other living beings exist. 100 trees could house millions of different life forms! If genocide such as this is required to do something as simple as build a farm, then yes. It is destruction. I am using the iPhone 6 as one of countless examples of needless products mass produced for no reason. He said that other species do run each other "out of business," but he didn't really help his side. He just made a vague metaphor that I believe meant that other species kill each other too. This is true, but my opponent has yet again missed my point, that humans have taken this fight and warped it into something that spawns genocide, nuclear weaponry, even just guns.
My opponent has not responded to many of my points and I have responded effectively to all of his. I have clearly and inevitably won this debate.
Debate Round No. 4
themightyindividual

Pro

David Graber, an environmentalist at the National Parks Dept. once said, "Until human beings can rejoin nature, we can only hope for the right virus to come along..". That is a little unnerving, however it is the basic consensus of the leaders of the environmental movement. My opponent implies that humans are not apart of nature, only a force against it. This means that you and I, if he is right, must be a plague upon the earth, and that we must be wiped out.

I know for sure that my opponent will next ride over that statement, saying that it is "foolish" and "absurd". All environmentalists do. However, I ask you this: if my opponent considers building a farm a form of net destruction (as he stated), he must consider trees and "the millions of different life forms inside them" vastly more important than human beings like you and me.

This kind of thinking- that humans are equal to all life forms- engenders questions of the limits of "rights". In other words, does the ebola virus have the same right to exist as a human being? Obviously, common sense would dictate not. But, if you follow my opponent's reason to it's logical conclusion, a human has no right to murder a virus! This kind of nonsense is what happens if you take environmentalism too far; but honestly, name something in history that wasn't taken too far. This line of thinking is evil, it implies that we are not more evolved than the lower animals, ad thus have no right to act as a dominant species.

My opponent keeps bringing up guns, murder, genocide, and war. Obviously, he is preoccupied with the bad parts of human life (as if the possession of reason has proved to be a net loss). If you consider how he points to the evils done by a few men, and blames them on the entire species, you can tell he has no chance of being correct in his argument. He skipped over my point that "the iPhone 6 is not a main source of pollution", clearly to avoid questioning our need for energy and food and shelter and paper and all other things we use everyday. If my opponent questioned our need for those most essential things, he would most definitely lose this lose this debate. Of course, the fifth amendment does protect you from admitting self-incriminating evidence!
AlwaysRight12345

Con

My opponent started with a quote from an environmentalist basically saying that humans have to be wiped out. This is a very extreme measure of what I am trying to say. My opponent has earlier said, "the bad deeds of a few should not reflect poorly on the good done by everyone else," which proves my point and makes the quote entirely null and void. He said I "must consider trees and "the millions of different life forms inside them" vastly more important than human beings like you and me," but he is merely and desperately trying to incriminate me. Millions, if not billions of organisms, in my opponent's thinking are nothing compared to, in the scenario he described, at most 100 people. This is the sort of idea that sparks one of humans's creations: genocide. Then he began going very extremely into this ideal, but viruses such as Ebola are not actually organisms, and therefore cannot feel. "Murdering" Ebola would have the same effect on Ebola as kicking a rock would on the rock. Can the rock feel? No, and neither can viruses and the other examples my opponent was implying. Then he went on to call me evil. He, all throughout this debate, has been attacking me personally, calling me a evil genocidal Nazi communist. This only proves he has realized that I have already won this debate, and is just angry with me. I am, in his opinion, "preoccupied with the bad parts of human life." Well, as I have proven, most of the "advances" of the human race have resulted in problems for the last couple hundred years. I didn't skip over his point that "the iPhone 6 is not a main source of pollution," I proved it was wrong. I have been using the iPhone 6 as an EXAMPLE, not the sole reason against humanity. In the above round, I talk more about this, so I did respond to his point. "Mass production of things we don't need stands in the way of preservation, but we don't have to become animals to help them. Do we need the iPhone 6, or the countless things a needless as it? No. But ignoring other beings because they are not vital to our own survival is different. You feel compassion for a dying animal on the side of the road, but not a broken phone," to quote myself. In the final debate, I will provide again my two main arguments used in the first round:

1-Humans don't know when to stop:
My opponent has mainly focused on this argument, but still has not proven it wrong. As you will see if you scroll through this page, humans have, yes, destroyed the Earth. My opponent "refuses to debate global warming," but that's OK, because there are so many other examples I've shown throughout this debate: extinction, deforestation, and so on.

2-Humans are the most death-obsessed race:
My opponent mentioned this once to partially agree with it. He used a weak refutation that war was about ideas, but there are other ways to prove an idea, and if you can kill more people than the other guy, that doesn't mean you're right. No other species has killed another of its own species purposefully for reasons other than cannibalism.

Now, a couple more reasons I have provided throughout:
Humans are the only mammal incapable of making their own vitamin C, the cat vs. criminal example (a criminal is not better than a cat, is it? A cat may not have ever done anything bad, but a criminal sure has. That's why he's a criminal. The cat is better than the criminal), and weighing on scope (more animals than humans).

My opponent has failed to refute any of my points while I have effectively refuted all of his. I have obviously and indisputably won this debate.
Debate Round No. 5
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by Brittany99 8 months ago
Brittany99
Hi, new to the site. This debate got me to sign up. I'm doing a school report on human superiority, and you debate is a resource I am using. I was wondering, so long as its not any trouble, if I can get your general opinions on the topic through messages?
Posted by ShadowWolfe 2 years ago
ShadowWolfe
We as mere humans have far less influence on the earth than we think. the opinion that we as humans have caused global warming or will cause it is bunk. we merely pressed fast forward on a naturally occuring cycle that will melt the caps, bring in the sun, evaporate the seas, block out the sun, plunge us into an ice age, then start all over again. its happened countless times before and will continue to happen. we have even found evidence of at least four other instances such as this.
Volcanic eruptions like Mount St. Helens does more global warming effects than we assume we do.
by this arguement i am saying that global warming is real, though not in the light of world ending disaster that some like to say.
Also, it is true that other animals endured the cruelty of nature and i think its all equal. humans are animals as well. we can hide behind logic and technological achievement, as well as the comfort of civilized manner, but ultimately we all act upon the same instinct and emotion that drives many animals.
we simply hit the evolutionary jackpot with bipedal balance and extremely articulate fingers and a pose able thumb on each hand. it gave us the ability to make and use tools.

well guess what. we're not the only ones who build. the most obvious and interesting observation i like making is the wonderful ingenuity of beavers to make sturdy dams.
Posted by TheNamesFizzy 2 years ago
TheNamesFizzy
Alpact, I'll debate you on global warming if you wish.
Posted by Alpacthulhu 2 years ago
Alpacthulhu
Con, you wot m8?

In recent years, so many leaked emails have come out that much global warming data is actually manipulated.
The alarmists took their readings in places that they knew had abnormally high temperatures, and even their data shows a decline in recent years.

And all of con's arguments can be invalidated by the simple fact that the 'common good' to which you refer is a construct of humanity, and without humanity, there could be no good.

#JustSaying

I'll leave now. I hate to debate somebody in a debate in the comments, but I believe my brainpan was starting to melt in pain.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Hanspete 2 years ago
Hanspete
themightyindividualAlwaysRight12345Tied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 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:43 
Reasons for voting decision: Conduct goes to Con, because Pro Forfeited a round, but I found Pro's arguments to be better and more thoughtful than Cons, so Arguments to Pro. I saw A few Grammar Mistakes by Con so S and P to Pro, and since I believe only Con used sources so Sources to Con.