The Instigator
Illegalcombatant
Pro (for)
Losing
10 Points
The Contender
Atheism
Con (against)
Winning
17 Points

Is it right for God to punish anyone for their thoughts/beliefs/values etc ?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 7 votes the winner is...
Atheism
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/29/2010 Category: Religion
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,421 times Debate No: 13831
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (10)
Votes (7)

 

Illegalcombatant

Pro

Notes: If you have a problem with definitions,rules, etc please post in comments section first

Rule 1: No posting of links like you tube

I wish to have a debate on the common objection of how its wrong for God to punish people for "thought crimes" eg thoughts, beliefs, values, conceptualizations etc

Definition of God - Its existence is uncaused, morally good, all powerful, all knowing, personal, the prime/first mover

As the Pro, I will be arguing that it is right for God to punish for thought crimes

As the Con, My opponent will be arguing that is is wrong for God to punish for thought crimes

Note* It is assumed for this debate that God exists

My opening argument

People would not object for instance if God punished someone for murder, or baby rape or listening to Justin Bieber music, but yet at the same time object that God could or would punish for anyone of their thoughts, beliefs, values, conceptualizations etc.

My argument is as follows

1) God punishes moral wrongs
2) Morals wrongs can exist in thought
3) Therefore God can punish someone because of their thought
Atheism

Con

I accept the debate challenge.

Let's define some stuff.
Moral: Of or concerned with the judgment of the goodness or badness of human action and character
http://www.thefreedictionary.com...

Wrong: 2.
a. Contrary to conscience, morality, or law; immoral or wicked.
http://www.thefreedictionary.com...

My opponent's only argument is as follows:

1)God punishes moral wrongs. (Given)
2)Moral wrongs can exist in thought. (Given)
Conclusion:Therefore, God can punish someone because of their thoughts. (From P1 & P2)

My opponent's argument hinges on two separate assumptions.
1)That there are objective moral standards.
2)Moral wrongs can exist in thought.

My opponent must prove both of these concepts for his sole argument to have any validity whatsoever. If he cannot do that, then he has failed to meet his burden of proof, and thus loses the debate, negating the resolution.

I look forward to my opponent's attempts to prove his assumptions.
I now turn over the debate to my opponent. Good luck.
Debate Round No. 1
Illegalcombatant

Pro

Con says:

"My opponent must prove both of these concepts for his sole argument to have any validity whatsoever. If he cannot do that, then he has failed to meet his burden of proof, and thus loses the debate, negating the resolution."

I remind my opponent of what was posted in the first round.........

As the Pro, I will be arguing that it is right for God to punish for thought crimes

As the Con, My opponent will be arguing that is is wrong for God to punish for thought crimes

You have a burden of proof too as stated at the start, if you didn't accept that, then you didn't accept this debate, so do you or do you not agree that you too have a burden of proof ?

Con Says

"If he cannot do that, then he has failed to meet his burden of proof, and thus loses the debate, negating the resolution."

What resolution ? the topic was in the form of a question "Is it right for God to punish anyone for their thoughts/beliefs/values etc ?"

At this point, I will see if Con understands what the debate actually is, also, he has not made his case that "As the Con, My opponent will be arguing that is wrong for God to punish for thought crimes"

At this point my argument still is

1) God punishes moral wrongs
2) Morals wrongs can exist in thought
3) Therefore God can punish someone because of their thought
Atheism

Con

My opponent has failed to prove how his syllogism is still valid after I debunked it.
Furthermore, my opponent is declaring that I prove that it is wrong for God to punish for thought crimes. However, using the law of excluded middle, you can very easily see that since there are only two answers to the question asked. One answer is, 'It is right for god to punish people for thought crimes.' The other is, 'It is wrong for god to punish people for thought crimes.'
As such, as long as I can prove that it is not right for god to punish people for thought crimes, the law of excluded middle dictates that it MUST be wrong for god to punish people for thought crimes.

As I have refuted my opponent's flawed syllogism, and he has failed to rebut, Con automatically meets his burden, and thus wins the debate.

//What resolution ? the topic was in the form of a question "Is it right for God to punish anyone for their thoughts/beliefs/values etc ?//

My opponent obviously does not know what a resolution is.
In a debate, the topic is supposed to be phrased as a statement, which is then termed the resolution. After the resolution is posted, and the debate started, Pro will do everything in his power to affirm the resolution. Con will do everything in his power to negate the resolution, and holding his burden of proof if necessary.

To be technical, I could've just gone for semantics, because my opponent didn't actually set a proper resolution, and just won via wordplay, but that was unnecessary as I can easily win this without it.

Anyways, my opponent still has to rebut my refutation of his syllogism in order to win the debate.

I look forward to his attempts.
Debate Round No. 2
Illegalcombatant

Pro

I thank Con for replying,

I especially thank Con for acknowledging that he accepts his part of the burden of proof as stated in round 1

Con says "As such, as long as I can prove that it is not right for god to punish people for thought crimes, the law of excluded middle dictates that it MUST be wrong for god to punish people for thought crimes."

Con says "My opponent has failed to prove how his syllogism is still valid after I debunked it."

My argument is valid, and Con hasn't shown other wise

According to wikipedia "An argument is formally valid if its form is one such that for each interpretation under which the premises are all true, the conclusion is also true" http://en.wikipedia.org...

Con says "My opponent has failed to prove how his syllogism is still valid after I debunked it."

By debunk I assume you mean you have proved false ?

But where did Con prove my argument false ?

"Con says My opponent's argument hinges on two separate assumptions.
1)That there are objective moral standards.
2)Moral wrongs can exist in thought.

My opponent must prove both of these concepts for his sole argument to have any validity whatsoever"

As stated before the argument is valid, and you didn't "prove" anything, you raised an objection, objection doesn't equal proof

So where does that leave us ?

1) Has con proved my argument false ? no
2) Has con proved his side of the argument "As the Con, My opponent will be arguing that is wrong for God to punish for thought crimes" ? no

My argument still is

1) God punishes moral wrongs
2) Morals wrongs can exist in thought
3) Therefore God can punish someone because of their thought
Atheism

Con

My opponent seems to think that the assertion that one's argument is valid unless proved otherwise is true. It is not. One most prove one's premises in order for it to BE valid. And, even if that is not the case, I exposed two glaring flaws in his argument.
I have shown that he has assumed that there are objective moral standards, and that moral wrongs can exist in thought. I have said this before, and I will say it again, 'My opponent must prove both of these concepts for his sole argument to have any validity whatsoever.'
I do not think my opponent understands this. He seems to think that it is my duty to prove a negative (even when I do not have to). I accepted the original burden, which was to prove that it is morally wrong for God to punish thought crimes. I already sourced the law of excluded middle, which states that in certain situations, like this one, there are only yes or no answers. Since this is one of those situations, if my opponent does not prove his syllogism FIRST, then I am right by default, and therefore win. He doesn't understand that he needs to PROVE HIS ARGUMENT VALID FIRST. Until he has done this, I am automatically right, and therefore I win.

I reiterate, my opponent needs to PROVE HIS ARGUMENT VALID FIRST. I have already shown two flaws, and he needs to respond to those, or he automatically loses.

I am sorry for a so far wasted debate from my opponent.

Vote Con.
Debate Round No. 3
Illegalcombatant

Pro

I thank Con for his response

Con keeps repeating that my argument is not valid, I reject this claim.

According to the Website of the Standford Encyclopedia of Philosophy "A valid argument is one in which the conclusion must be true, if all of the premises are" http://plato.stanford.edu...

1) God punishes moral wrongs
2) Morals wrongs can exist in thought
3) Therefore God can punish someone because of their thought

Con says "I do not think my opponent understands this. He seems to think that it is my duty to prove a negative (even when I do not have to). I accepted the original burden, which was to prove that it is morally wrong for God to punish thought crimes"

I thank Con for his self reminder that he does indeed have a burden. The burden being "As the Con, My opponent will be arguing that is is wrong for God to punish for thought crimes"

I haven't seen much arguing for this claim but, have you ?

Con says "Since this is one of those situations, if my opponent does not prove his syllogism FIRST, then I am right by default, and therefore win"

This is clearly false and I shall prove why

1) Con has a red bike
2) I can not prove Con has a red bike
3) Therefore Con does not have a red bike (the negation of Con having a red bike)

But it doesn't follow, just because I can't prove that Con has a red bike, does NOT Prove the negation (that Con does not have a red bike)

Absence of proof is not enough to prove the negation, you need to PROVE the claim is false, in order to prove its negation.

Has con proved my argument false and therefore by negation proven their claim true ? no they have not

Has con given any reason to believe that his burden of proof claim is true ? no they have not

Will Con actually get around to making any arguments for their side or just keep trying to shift the burden of the proof ?
I am guessing the latter.
Atheism

Con

Pro still has not fulfilled his burden, and I do not need to define mine according to the law of excluded middle, as my opponent keeps ignoring.
He needs to PROVE that his claims are true. Standford itself claims that the conclusion is only true if the premises are.
He needs to PROVE his premises are true. He can NOT assert said premises without any proof for them, and then think the conclusion is true. If he can not do this, I automatically win according to the law of excluded middle. http://en.wikipedia.org...

In other words, if my opponent does no come up with an argument in his remaining round, then I win by default, and all points go to Con.

His syllogism is, as stated previously, invalid.
He has the given, which is fine.
(P1) God punishes moral wrongs. (Given.)
He can do that.
But he cannot assert that moral wrongs exist in thought without proof. Furthermore, there is also the burden of proving that moral wrongs exist in the first place.
(P2)Moral wrongs can exist in thought. (Unsubstantiated claim. He needs to prove this.)

I accept the conclusion IF AND ONLY IF moral wrongs can exist in thought. He needs to PROVE HIS ASSERTION.

To the voters, I again apologize, and urge you to vote Con.
To my opponent, I suggest he read upon his laws of logic.
Debate Round No. 4
Illegalcombatant

Pro

The first thing posted in round 1 was "Notes: If you have a problem with definitions,rules, etc please post in comments section first"

Clearly my opponent has problems with the nature of this debate, so why didn't my opponent then post in the comments section first ?

Con says "Such as "My opponent obviously does not know what a resolution is.
In a debate, the topic is supposed to be phrased as a statement,"

If my opponent had a problem with a lack of resolution, why didn't they post in the comments section first ?

My opponents first argument was a burden of proof argument.

Con says "My opponent must prove both of these concepts for his sole argument to have any validity whatsoever. If he cannot do that, then he has failed to meet his burden of proof, and thus loses the debate, negating the resolution"

Con also states "As such, as long as I can prove that it is not right for god to punish people for thought crimes, the law of excluded middle dictates that it MUST be wrong for god to punish people for thought crimes."

Con hasn't proven anything.

Con has spent the entire debate trying to change the nature of the debate

Would Con like to use the last round to issue an apology for Con wasting peoples time ?

Con says "He needs to PROVE HIS ASSERTION"

Con implies that its wrong to make an assertion and not prove it (and rebukes me for it), but I wonder if Con will rebuke himself for making the assertion that's its wrong to make assertions

Which leads me into a moral argument.

In moral relativity, no moral claim/belief/conduct is any better than any other moral claim/belief/conduct

The rape of a child is neither morally better or worse than the non raping of that child. In other words all morality is morally equal.

Now Con demands such proof of moral objectivity, and hence if there is morality that is objective, proves that morality being all relative is false.

"Con says "He needs to PROVE HIS ASSERTION"

Now this is an interesting comment by Con, as he is saying that their is some behavior on my part that I need to do. In other words I am obliged to some kind of "ought"

Now it seems to me that Con has a view that his morality should be adhered to, cause it is morally superior, but how can this be the case if all morality is equal ?

So Con asks, give me proof of objective morality.

How about your own actions, testifying that you adhere to a moral objective view.

My closing remarks

The topic of this debate was

As the Pro, I will be arguing that it is right for God to punish for thought crimes

As the Con, My opponent will be arguing that is is wrong for God to punish for thought crimes

Has Con proved my burden of proof claim as the pro false ? no
Has Con given any reason to accept his burden of proof claim true ? no

Vote Pro

My last remarks are, due to my opponents constantly trying to change the nature of the debate, I invite Con to use the last round to issue an apology for wasting everyone's time.
Atheism

Con

My gosh, I think my opponent is illiterate. He has either ignored my arguments, or strawmanned them.

//Con says "Such as "My opponent obviously does not know what a resolution is.
In a debate, the topic is supposed to be phrased as a statement,"

If my opponent had a problem with a lack of resolution, why didn't they post in the comments section first ?//

Pro says that I had a problem with the resolution. I did not. I was ready to debate this topic, but Pro made an argument (now invalid) that claimed that I am not fulfilling my burden of proof, even though I have by pointing out the law of excluded middle, which Pro STILL has not addressed whatsoever. I do not need to give an argument for the Con side, all I need to do is debase Pro's. I would meet my burden of proof anyways via the law of excluded middle. He does not seem to understand this.

He then tries to make my statement into a moral argument, saying that my statement that claimed his unproved assertions needed proof itself. It does not. If my opponent had any grasp upon the laws of logic or philosophy in general, he would not even attempt to make this claim.

He then tries to imply that need = should not, which it does not at all.

In conclusion, Pro has not fulfilled his burdens, thus make me right, and consequentially make me fulfill my burden.

In short, I apologize to the voters to the wasted debate from Pro. I also advise my opponent to read the actual arguments I made, as he completely skipped over the law of excluded middle.

Vote Con if you have even one iota of intelligence in you.
Debate Round No. 5
10 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Illegalcombatant 6 years ago
Illegalcombatant
But this wasn't a debate tournament, thank you for your righteous indignation. Meaning wasn't the issue, it was a burden of proof issue, my opponent knew the setup, they try to changed it, wasn't going to let that happen :)
Posted by mageist24 6 years ago
mageist24
If I were at a tournament and the Pro told me before the debate that I have to debate on what he sees as the debate's meaning, I would say that Pro is a piece of crap debater and needs to learn how to debate what they don't want to hear as well as what they do want to hear. It is different since the challenge must be accepted on DDO, but the concept still carries over to some degree. Shame to both of you for not putting in the effort however. The con loses slightly less than the pro.
Posted by RoyLatham 6 years ago
RoyLatham
It's fair to set conditions to a debate as part of the challenge. If an opponent doesn't want to comply with the conditions, then he declines the challenge. For example, if an opponent felt banning YouTube embedding was unacceptable, then he wouldn't take he debate. Pro made it clear that a condition of the debate was that it be judged based upon a preponderance of evidence rather than Pro meeting a burden of proof. Con accepted that condition by taking the debate.

Pro failed to define "God." At least ten thousand gods have been described, so it would have been appropriate to say which one. From the context of the opening case, the best we can deduce is that Pro is talking about the classic Christian God who is omnipotent, omniscient, and good, or something close to that concept. Pro implies that the God knows what people are thinking, judges what is moral, and is able to punish. Thus once the existence of the God is accepted, the ability to know what is moral is implied.

Con took the wrong approach by claiming that absolute morality had to be proved. The resolution only requires that there be one immoral act that qualifies for punishment by God. The punishment for an evil thought is not specified, so it might be minor -- just a shot across the bow, as it were. I think Con should have attacked the existence of God, a clear premise of the resolution, or focused on thought crimes as not being worth punishing. The burden of proof arguments were wrong.

If both debaters don't mend their ways, they may grow up to be lawyers.
Posted by Hound 6 years ago
Hound
This whole debate was based on "lol prove this, i'm not putting any more input till u prove this, trololool." You could have atleast not killed my brain by doing semantics over and over.

"The rape of a child is neither morally better or worse than the non raping of that child. In other words all morality is morally equal."
So you're saying that you could do one or the other and still be burdened with the same "moral crime." So, if I think about killing my teacher because I'm mad at them (for about five mins) then I'm doomed to hell because thinking about killing someone is obviously just as bad as actually killing someone.
Posted by rogue 6 years ago
rogue
wow guys. this was a wasted debate but I have to say con wins. pro hasn't backed up his arguments he has just assumed they are true as they are his own thoughts. pro, you are ignoring the principle of the excluded middle rule. just because the debate isn't what you wanted it to be doesn't make con wrong.
Posted by Illegalcombatant 6 years ago
Illegalcombatant
seriously your now trying to debate in the comments section before the debate is over ?
Posted by Atheism 6 years ago
Atheism
@m93Sammon
I think the type of moral wrong he was looking for was actually committing a moral crime in thought. I.E. by thinking dirty thoughts, you are committing a moral wrong. I am asking him if he can prove this. He still needs to prove that there is an objective moral standard by which god punishes.
Posted by m93samman 6 years ago
m93samman
@Atheism:
"(P2)Moral wrongs can exist in thought. (Unsubstantiated claim. He needs to prove this.)"

Okay... I think that there are moral wrongs. Therefore, moral wrongs exist in my thoughts; if they exist in my thought, they CAN exist in thought. I don't know what you're looking for... a mathematical proof? Something showing that the brain becomes more dense and slightly heavier when it creates thoughts about morality?
Posted by Atheism 6 years ago
Atheism
Too, too, TOO easy.
Posted by Warturtle 6 years ago
Warturtle
"Its existence is uncaused, morally good, all powerful, all knowing, personal, the prime/first mover"
I would really like to see a negative argument against that, it's going to be difficult to come up with anything. I'll be watching this one for sure.
7 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Vote Placed by rogue 6 years ago
rogue
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