The Instigator
Pro (for)
0 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
3 Points

I believe that bad has to exist.

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
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 1 vote the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/3/2013 Category: People
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 537 times Debate No: 38430
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (3)
Votes (1)




In this world that is so chaotic, bad, evil has to exist so people in society can point the finger and state that, that is the bad person, they are the ones that need to be punished because everyone knows that whatever they are doing, its evil.

If anyone disagrees with my statement, lets have a friendly debate over the matter.
First round accept and argue, last round conclude. please and thank you.


I accept. It looks like you are newer than me so welcome to! Friendly isn't always my strong suit in the middle of a debate but I'll use this as an opportunity to work on that. Looking forward to your arguments.
Debate Round No. 1


Let's get it on. :-) hahaha


This is a good topic and I have heard comments like this a lot. I’m going to have to of guess where you are going with this since you have the burden of proof: meaning you need to build a case to prove your point and I could simply refute your arguments and not build a case of my own.

Bad must exist

This is essentially an argument from ignorance, which is in no way saying that you are ignorant. You are not aware of a complex society of animals like our own without a concept of, or a bad type of behavior. Based on this you conclude that no such society could exist. It’s possible that there is an advanced society somewhere in the universe that does not have anything like a bad. A society with a hive mind for example and if there is not such a society it is still possible.

You do refer to people but I do not see that you were speaking of anything unique to humans other than a complex society. Even dealing strictly with humans we may make moral and societal discoveries that effectively eliminate bad behavior. That we are not aware of these changes does not mean that they do not exist.

You are essentially arguing that without concepts of moral evil we could not cooperate in society

It’s likely that morality evolved over time in social animals [1]. Morality is just one way to facilitate cooperative behavior among animals. You are basically claiming that our version of morality is the only way to facilitate this cooperation due to the chaos in our world.

There are other ways, for instance ants cooperate to form bridges [2], find food and protect the hive but do not appear to have any empathy, fairness or compassion which are common measures of morality in animals [3]. The same is true of schools of fish that move together to avoid predators and birds that migrate together in formation (some birds do demonstrate moral behavior).

Based on what we know about the evolution of morality or anything complex it arrives slowly over time with incremental changes over time. Here on earth we have many simple examples of cooperation without concepts of bad. It’s likely that more complex versions of cooperation could arise without bad as well. There is no reason to leap to the idea that the bad idea is necessary to promote cooperation for complex societies of animals.

Without moral evil we would not know what the good looks like

I’ve heard this one before and it sounds like you are implying something like this so here’s an argument up front. If there were no theft, murder or violence to compare more commendable actions to we could still compare them to a neutral state. Cooperation is still better than working alone and fairness makes more sense among groups to encourage reciprocation. Empathy and compassion are useful tools to build effective communities on their own.

Neutral could not become ‘the new bad’ since bad implies harm and is not just one side of the scale.

Standards of bad/evil change between societies

Standards of moral behavior change from society to society. I could ask you what type of bad you are referring to. If all standards of bad are equal then why do they contradict each other? If you are referring to one type of bad then why is it necessary for that form of bad to exist? What about the alternate versions of bad from cultures that have gone extinct? Which bad is necessary?

If morality is Objective it is still dependent on people and other social animals

I think that bad is objective in the colloquial sense but the previous problem still applies since no moral Albert Einstein has emerged to clarify many issues we’ve had defining it. Morality may be ultimately objective but there is no consensus on what ‘bad’ is.

Bad does not need to exist because people do not need to exist. I do not see that life must exist at all and since morality is completely dependent on life I do not see that bad must have existed. For 3.5 billion years no bad existed on earth because there were only single celled versions of life. There is no bad for inanimate matter and it has not been established that life has to exist.


You see now the general problems I had with your set up. By saying that bad must exist you have a difficult position to represent. A softer claim like, ‘bad is useful in our society to encourage cooperation,’ would be more focused and not leave room some of the objections I brought up. Looking forward to your arguments!




Debate Round No. 2


I thank you for pointing out the ignorant flaws in my opening statement.

I will begin by stating my specific position.....

Society nowadays is bent on neglecting self-improvement, people in the U.S rely on ' bad people, evil' ( humans who do things that are considered bad in the U.S society) to be able to say there're the reason why we have so much evil in the world. good examples of Bad... Gang member, drug dealers, pimps, robbers, ect.
These type of lifestyles are consider bad for the most part to the regular human being living in the U.S. now I ask you, if you we're to point the finger at someone to express that they are bad, would you be able to take a look at your life and ask yourself, could I be the one saying he's bad? Am i doing everything I'm supposed to be doing to be what people in society consider good? Most people never self-judge before judging someone else,therefore bad in this concept must exist for the majority of the people that never self-judge in order for them to be more ok with they're personal problem.


Ok now it’s clearer that this is about people and our current society. Remember that you need to present a rebuttal to my objections and present a strong case for your position since you have the burden of proof. Without the burden of proof my position is essentially, “I’m not convinced and here’s why.”

Argument from personal incredulity [4]

That criminals and other bad behavior must exist means that these are vitally important and cannot be replaced. All you have indicated is that bad behavior may be useful, not that it is significantly useful or vital.

Even if you were able to prove that bad behavior is vitally important it does not mean that it must exist as you indicate in your resolution. You cannot imagine a solution that could replace bad behavior so you assume there is nothing to replace it. If bad behavior were currently vital we may make a social advancement that could eliminate the need for evil. Just because we are not aware of it does not mean that the solution doesn’t exist.

Without moral evil we would not know what the good looks like

It still sounds like you are making a form of this argument. You indicate that the majority of people never self judge without an example of bad behavior. I don’t see that this is true or why this would make bad necessary. I can look at someone who is fairly neutral morally and realize that there are much better lifestyles.

For instance you could compare your motivation, interpersonal skills and work life balance with someone much more skilled than you. This would inspire the same sort of self-reflection and I think there is a strong argument that this is more effective.

Your argument does not match common self-improvement strategies

If you’re familiar with self-improvement books and blogs it’s the common advice to surround yourself with good people that are skilled in that area that you want to excel in. People tend to emulate the behavior of those around you so make sure they are the type of people that you want to become like [5]. An old proverb says, “Show me your friends and I’ll tell you who you are.”

Comparing yourself with criminals could just as easily lead to apathy or bad behavior

If you constantly compare yourself with those that are much worse off than this is always a favorable comparison. I don’t see that this would tend to encourage people to improve when they can always say to themselves, “well at least I’m way better off than that guy,” leading to apathy when it comes to personal improvement.

If your main frame of reference for you personal behavior is the most evil it’s likely that you would get lax in your personal behavior. If you are comparing yourself to grand larcenists and violent offenders it is easier to rationalize negative behavior. Lifting batteries from Walmart or lying to friends and coworkers doesn’t seem too bad next to hardened criminals.


I do not see that bad behavior must exist and can just as easily lead to negative changes in behavior. There are more effective strategies to encourage self-improvement and if bad were vital there may be other alternatives.



Debate Round No. 3


That is where you are wrong my friend, there can never be a society without ' bad'. At least a functioning society without it. In a sence ' ying and yang' there has to be a balance of good and evil in order for our society to work properly. Without good there is no evil. [1]

As believers of god would see it....evil was put on this world to give man the ability of free will, whether man misuses his free will or not, its all depending on man himself. Where the problem resides is that human beings nowadays are bent on neglecting self-improvement, therefore neglecting self-judgement and continue to point out why that person who is misusing his power of free will or in your words demonstrating bad behavior is the ' bad Pearson'.[2]

You should read my debate of purpose of the human being in the world to further understand what I mean when I refer to self-improvement. [1] [2]


You have continued to clarify your position but you have not really offered evidence or a logical argument. You also still need to address my objections to your position.

There has to be a balance of good and evil in order for our society to work properly

You have simply asserted that this is true. Your link looks like an article on St. Augustine’s opinion. I don’t see that he is an authority on the topic since we are not arguing about religious dogma or the bible, so this is essentially an appeal to a false authority. If your link brings up a logical argument or presents evidence you can explain this in the text of your argument.

Evil was put on this world to give man the ability of free will

There are around 41,000 denominations of Christianity [6] and free will is a controversial topic that could take up an entire debate. For instance, Calvinists believe all of our actions are predetermined [7] which is not consistent with freewill. Modern cognitive science is having a drastic effect on our common sense understanding of freewill, “Free will does exist, but it’s a perception, not a power or a driving force” [8].

This is all kind of beside the point because I do not see that evil is necessary for freewill. I can freely choose between several good options or choose not to act. Why is evil necessary for free will?

Bad people help with self-judgment and self-improvement

I am passionate about self-improvement so I am curious to know why bad people are relevant to the topic. I have never heard anyone suggest that meditating on the actions of the most evil would help and this is counterintuitive. Last round I explained why I think this is a bad strategy and I will expand on that idea if you can present an argument along these lines.

You posted a link to the problem of evil. This is simply an argument that an omniscient, omnipotent Omni benevolent God could not exist in our world where so much evil and pain exists. I have agreed with you that evil currently exists in our society. We disagree that evil must exist and is vitally important for our society.




Debate Round No. 4


Well this is where I have to ask if you indeed believe that bad isn't vital for our society, the defense for my position is too detailed for me to explain,therefore I resign this debate strictly for not having empirical evidence of my position. My position is based on phsycological individualism bias of reality, in other words, me and you are two completely different people in society who view the world in different ways, you believe that bad doesn't have to exist because without an example of good we wouldn't know what bad looks like, and I believe that bad must exist for our society to function the right way,and reality has no empirical evidence. Thank you for an amazing debate. :)


Ok, well I would have enjoyed hearing your position. I have heard a few religious arguments for your position, usually to respond to the problem of evil as you indicated. Thanks for the debate.
Debate Round No. 5
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by Abysato 3 years ago
@ 2-D OK cool I just post a general comment.
@ slin yes. But not for anything. Ull understand better when we finish the debate.
Posted by 2-D 3 years ago
Just realized that I hadn't accepted because I was supposed to post an argument. You can expand on your position or just post a general comment and wait for my argument in round 2.
Posted by slin2678 3 years ago
Can you clarify? So your position is bad has to exist so there is someone to blame for anything that goes wrong?
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by KroneckerDelta 3 years ago
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 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: Pro never addressed Con's arguments and Con rebutted all of Pro's arguments by showing them to be logical fallacies.