The Instigator
Evan_MacIan
Pro (for)
Losing
6 Points
The Contender
killa_connor
Con (against)
Winning
27 Points

I hate Kant.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/1/2008 Category: Education
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 4,963 times Debate No: 1236
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (13)
Votes (11)

 

Evan_MacIan

Pro

Try to read some of his writings and you'll find out why. I tried, I failed, and now I hate him. Ugh.
killa_connor

Con

Hey Evan - interesting debate that sort of lends itself to the Pro, but I'll do my best.

You hate Immanuel Kant.

Hate - To dislike intensely or passionately; feel extreme aversion for or extreme hostility toward.

You have yet to demonstrate this hate. You merely insist that it exists but have provided no substantial proof for its existence. How do you hate him? Why do you hate him?

Define Kant.

Do you mean the physical person?

If so, it is impossible for you to have hated him because you never knew him. You can assume you knew the kind of person he was through his writings but is this an accurate gauge? Take George Bush for example. I dislike many of his policies and I find some of his political maneuvering to be deceitful and underhanded. Do I hate him as a person? No. Probably not. Thats the point. I've never had a meaningful exchange with George Bush and gotten to know what kind of person he is. Certainly his policies and politics are telling of his personality but they are not definitive and are certainly not enough to base this kind of judgment on. And if I can prove to the voters that your hate is without any substance or misguided then I have undermined the whole basis for which hate exists which would suggest that your hate never existed in the first place.

Do you mean his writings?

If so, I would submit that it stems from a misunderstanding of his writing style (which you partially admit to). Whereas other contemporary philosophers were writing for a broad general audience with works that are relatively accessible to educated readers, Kant wrote in an academic style that is notoriously difficult to follow. Regardless of the inaccessibility of his writings it doesn't change the fact that he developed a philosophical analysis of morality without evoking a God or divine deity. The "nature of morality" is something that Kant is still the leading authority on and his writings are still referenced and taught (not that this matters but I think its important that regardless of your personal feelings towards him he still should be respected for his contributions). If you do hate his writing you need to explain which writings you hate and why they prompt such extreme hostility from you. Failing to do this would lead us to assume that you are hateful and Kant is just caught in the cross-fire. Not that you have a directed hatred for Kant. This is an important distinction. Does that make sense?

I'll continue once you have directed your hate a little bit more appropriately. But let me just say, for the sake of this debate, that although your reasons to hate Kant are your own you must still provide reasons that can be debated. My point being that if this debate becomes, "I hate him just because." Then really what has been demonstrated is not a tangible hate for Kant but instead that hate exists arbitrarily and in no way is linked to Kant. The origin of the hate and motivation for the hate are integral because without them hate cannot really exist. It becomes meaningless.

I have a feeling that convincing you out of an emotion is going to be an uphill battle but lets not forget that emotions are still subservient to our reason. If I can counter your reason or rationale fueling the hate then I have effectively undermined the hate.

-connor
Debate Round No. 1
Evan_MacIan

Pro

I hate the idea of Kant. He's dead, so I don't have to bother hating him personally. I do hate his writings, which contributes to my hatred of him, but it goes beyond that. Because he's dead and I don't have to deal with him personally, he has been associated with any number of things that I find disgusting. He lead the modern day charge of philosophy into nonsense. He represents subjectivism, which I abhor. He was in my (admittedly ill-informed) opinion, an arrogant prick. Plus, if I understood half of what my intro to philosophy teacher was saying about him, he was full of it.

Now, you have admitted the difficulty of hate. It is an emotion, and while I admit the dominance of the intellect over emotions, I don't see any practical reason for my intellect to intervene here. Kant is dead, I really don't see any cause to be fair to him as long as I can be fair to his philosophy (assuming one day I understand it). However, to offer some small justification for my hatred, I offer Nietzsche's (who was also a prick) opinion of Kant:

WARNING: Nietzsche is a meany-head. Read at own risk.
"It strikes me that nowadays people everywhere are trying to direct their gaze away from the real influence which Kant exercised on German philosophy, that is, cleverly to slip away from the value which he ascribed to himself. Above everything else, Kant was first and foremost proud of his table of categories. With this table in hand, he said, "That is the most difficult thing that ever could be undertaken on behalf of metaphysics."—But people should understand this "could be"! He was proud of the fact that he had discovered a new faculty in human beings, the ability to make synthetic judgments a priori. Suppose that he deceived himself here. But the development and quick blood of German philosophy depend on this pride and on the competition among all his followers to discover, if possible, something even prouder—at all events a "new faculties"!

But let's think this over. It's time we did. "How are synthetic judgments a priori possible?" Kant asked himself. And what did his answer amount to? Thanks to a faculty. Unfortunately he didn't answer in four words, but so laboriously, venerably, and with such an expenditure of German profundity and curlicues that people failed to hear the comical niaiserie allemande [German stupidity] inherent in such an answer. People even got really excited about this new faculty, and the rejoicing reached its height when Kant discovered yet another additional faculty—a moral faculty—in human beings, for then the Germans were still moral and not yet at all "political realists."

That was the honeymoon of German philosophy. All the young theologians of the Tubingen seminary went off right away into the bushes, all looking for "faculties." And what didn't they find—in that innocent, rich, still youthful time of the German spirit, in which Romanticism, that malicious fairy, played her pipes and sang, a time when people did not know how to distinguish between "finding" and "inventing"! Above all, a faculty for the "super-sensory." Schelling christened this intellectual contemplation and, in so doing, complied with the most heart-felt yearnings of his Germans whose cravings were basically pious.*—

The most unfair thing we can do to this entire rapturously enthusiastic movement, which was adolescent, no matter how much it boldly dressed itself up in gray and antique ideas, is to take it seriously and deal with it with something like moral indignation. Enough—people grew older—the dream flew away. There came a time when people rubbed their foreheads. People are still rubbing them today. They had dreamed: first and foremost—the old Kant. "By means of a faculty," he had said, or at least meant. But is that an answer? An explanation? Or is it not rather a repetition of the question? How does opium make people sleep? "By means of a faculty," namely, the virtus dormitiva [sleeping virtue], answered that doctor in Moliere.

Because it has the sleeping virtue
whose nature makes the senses sleep.*

But answers like that belong in comedy, and the time has finally come to replace the Kantian question "How are synthetic judgments a priori possible?" with another question, "Why is the belief in such judgments necessary?"—that is, to understand that for the purposes of preserving beings of our type we must believe that such judgments are true, although, of course, they could still be false judgments! Or to speak more clearly, crudely, and fundamentally: synthetic judgments a priori should not "be possible" at all: we have no right to them. In our mouths they are nothing but false judgments. Of course, it's true that a belief in their truth is necessary as a foreground belief and appearance which belong in the perspective optics of living.

In order finally to recall the immense influence which "German philosophy"—you understand, I hope, its right to quotation marks?—has exercised throughout Europe, there should be no doubt that a certain virtus dormitiva [virtue of making people sleep] was a part of that: people—among them noble loafers, the virtuous, the mystics, artists, three-quarter Christians, and political obscurantists of all nations—were delighted to have, thanks to German philosophy, an antidote to the still overpowering sensuality which flowed over from the previous century into this one, in short—to have a "sensus assoupire" [way of putting the senses to sleep]."

*******************************************************************************
Anyway, I mostly posted this topic to see if anyone would actually take it. Good luck refuting my subjective emotion, though.
killa_connor

Con

Nice post Evan. Lets start at the top.

"I hate the idea of Kant. He's dead, so I don't have to bother hating him personally."

I take this as a concession that you don't hate Kant the person which is half the battle. Whether or not you 'hate' his writings is going to depend on your ability to produce specific writings that generate a strong emotional response from you. Until you have done so I'm sort of forced to assume that no such source for the hatred exists and that it is indeed a form of the "hatred crossfire" I described in round 1. Once these sources have been described and presented (which I'm assuming you'll do with the third round) we'll have to assess the emotional reaction itself to ensure that you haven't mischaracterized the emotion. Keep in mind the definition of hate that I presented.

"He was in my (admittedly ill-informed) opinion, an arrogant prick. Plus, if I understood half of what my intro to philosophy teacher was saying about him, he was full of it."

You have yet to present any real justification for this kind of judgment of Kant. You offer Nietzsche's condemnation (beyond good and evil?) of Kant but after reading it I think it's more of a disapproval with how it has been used and sometimes distorted to serve the interests of Christian theologians and also his "laborious and venerable" writing style. But is Nietzsche's discontent for Kant justify your own? You even point out that you find Nietzsche to be a prick as well, what is to make me assume that you agree with his assessment of Kant? If anything your referencing Nietzsche instead of offering your own reason for having a severe and passionate dislike for Kant suggests that no such reason really exists! I think you know what your talking about but that doesn't necessarily mean that you have exposed yourself enough to Kant and his ideas to develop the kind of passionate dislike that the sentence, "I hate Kant" implies. I think this is a cultural phenomenon where the verb 'hate' has become watered down. We shouldn't forget that true hate is a dangerous thing that can manifest itself in a destructive manner and has fueled some of the most heinous of human acts in history. Really you have the burden of proof of this debate to generate the kind of reasons that could possibly contribute to such a strong negative reaction. If you really pick through your answer you have yet to do so.

"He lead the modern day charge of philosophy into nonsense."

Explanation please. Many would disagree.

"He represents subjectivism, which I abhor."

Subjectivism in it's simplest sense is the belief that subjective experience is fundamental to all measure and law. I have yet to see how this in itself is enough to prompt such a strong reaction from you. Is there an implication of subjectivism that is particularly troubling to you? Do you disagree? Is this in itself justify your hatred? If so, I would contend that hatred cannot be based exclusively on the presence of disagreement. It's healthy to disagree and reasonable counter points should be encouraged and debated.

"I admit the dominance of the intellect over emotions, I don't see any practical reason for my intellect to intervene here."

In the first round I questions the origins of the hate and the intellect that supports it. Here you appear to be admitting that your hate is purely emotional and is in no way directed by your intellect or rationale. This again suggests that the motivation for the hate is fundamentally flawed and inherently misguided which would also refute your contention. It wouldn't have to prove that no hate exists but instead that the hate is misguided and in no way represents a tangible direct distaste for Kant.

"Anyway, I mostly posted this topic to see if anyone would actually take it. Good luck refuting my subjective emotion, though."

Seemed like fun to me. Check out some of my other debates. I like debating points that seem sort of indefensible. I'm not terribly concerned with winning, this kind of stuff is fun for me. See you in the third round!

-connor
Debate Round No. 2
13 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Ragnar_Rahl 9 years ago
Ragnar_Rahl
How'd you manage that one? Kant is the only reason your religion stayed alive.

I hate kant too, nice to meet you :D

Nietzsche I don't hate quite so much, he's just Kant's most prominent victim. He properly condemned Kant's ethics while missing the main point, the epistemology and metaphysics that made such distortions as Nietzsche's own ethics possible. I think this contradiction drove Nietzsche insane more than the brain tumor :D
Posted by Tatarize 9 years ago
Tatarize
"I hate the idea of Kant. He's dead, so I don't have to bother hating him personally"

I was going to vote for pro regardless on the grounds that saying that they hate Kant is enough of a reason to assume they did. However, yeah, that's a concession in my book.

Vote Con.
Posted by brittwaller 9 years ago
brittwaller
Not much, it seems. But sure, I'd love a debate. I'm not sure on what... we disagree on police profiling, that could be an idea.

As we're both done on the avatar thing, I'm open wide. It'll be nice to debate in a civil manner: I'm like you, I don't pretend to be a great debater or a "prophet." But since neither of us are sophists (or at the very least refrain from that method) like our mutual friend, at least we can be sure that some rational conclusion will be reached:)
Posted by Evan_MacIan 9 years ago
Evan_MacIan
Good debate. Though I would contest that I assumed my logic was infallible. I'm not sure that much of what I presented would be logic at all.
Posted by brittwaller 9 years ago
brittwaller
to connor only: "can I get that in prophet-size? i have to feed not only myself and my ego, but my 12 children by my 5 wives. But don't worry, i'll feel bad for everyone suffering while i'm eating." lmfao!

sorry to cross-post a comment, but still no internal messenger here. just so funny that i had to.

Peace man
britt
Posted by killa_connor 9 years ago
killa_connor
Yeah I hate it when people create debates that lends themselves to a win for them. The worst part is then they always proceed by just assuming the logic is infallible and doesn't need to be argued or defended. I don't pretend to be a great debater or an enlightened prophet for that matter =) but I'll attack points and argue claims as long as I have space to do so.

britt. When are we going to debate? And over what? Do we disagree about anything?
Posted by brittwaller 9 years ago
brittwaller
Good job once again, connor. "Spoof debates," as Evan put it, are not very much to my liking, but I think you tore him up on every "point" he made.

And if you "abhor subjectivism" like you claim, why not attack Descartes before Kant? Or do you simply dislike all continental philosophy?
Posted by killa_connor 9 years ago
killa_connor
Whoops! I thought that this was 3 rounds! Oh well. Good debate. Throw me a challenge anytime.

-connor
Posted by Korezaan 9 years ago
Korezaan
Yeah. Which is why I didn't, lol.
Posted by Evan_MacIan 9 years ago
Evan_MacIan
You don't negate this. It's just a spoof arguement.

You could try abuse, but I'd just say that you shouldn't have accepted the debate in the first place. At that point I think it's a toss up depending on the personality of who reads the debate.
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