The Instigator
Pro (for)
The Contender
Con (against)

Liberalism is an epidemic of stupidity:

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Debate Round Forfeited
harrytruman has forfeited round #4.
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/12/2016 Category: Politics
Updated: 3 months ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 304 times Debate No: 93625
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (6)
Votes (0)




I will argue that Liberalism is both stupid and immoral


Challenge accepted. Looking forward to seeing Pro's arguments on this.
Debate Round No. 1


Alright, I must argue that liberalism is "an epidemic of stupidity," here are the definitions:
epidemic: a widespread occurrence of an infectious disease in a community at a particular time.
stupidity: behavior that shows a lack of good sense or judgment.
So I must prove that liberalism is a widespread occurence of poor judgement and/or a lack of common sense.

First of all is gay marriage, a key proponent of liberalsm which is both widespread and showing a lack of common sense, since when does the goveronment get to define a religious rite? Whatever happened to the sepration of church and state? These being the same liberals which whine about the sepration of church and state, clearly demonstrating that they don't know what the hell they're talking about.

Gun rights are another example, liberals think that if you ban guns criminals won't be able to kill people, even though a. they could just go steal a gun from a police officer, they're criminals remember, that means they have no regard for the law. Second of all they could just go kill someone with a knife or a club or a spear or a rock or a crossbow, or even just put draino in their coffee. Preventing law abiding citizens from being able to defend themselves doesn't somehow protect them from criminals. It is already illegal for felons to own a gun, so nothing woyld really change if you banned law abiding citrizens from owning guns also, at best you would put them on the same level as them, but eoither way, felons who commit gun violence ha to have had a way to get a gun dispite it being illegal bfor them to own a gun, so nothing has changed for them, exept now you have a massive unarmed population and felons with guns, which isn't going to turn out well.

Then there is universal healthcare, liberals think that we need to expand Obamacare and add more socialism to healthcare to solve the high costs, but the issue is that socialism is exactl the reason why healthcare is so damn expensive these days that it costs 100$ to get an asprin, before medicare, you could pay out of pocket, you didn't need insurance,m but whenever you subsidize something its cost rises, so now we're in the sh*t hole we are in today, thank you Lyndon B Johnson.



Thanks to harrytruman for an intriguing argument.

Now, since my opponent started off the debate with definitions, I'll be spending some time framing the debate myself. Before I get into burdens, let's finish out those definitions. Clearly, Pro doesn't want to argue immorality anymore, as he doesn't wish to take on that extra burden. That's fine, but he neglected to define a rather important term:

Liberalism: a political philosophy or worldview founded on ideas of liberty and equality.

Note that word: philosophy. It matters, particularly in this context. Pro is correct in his definitions of both epidemic and stupidity, but he fails to examine what those definitions mean in the context of this word. He's talking about a philosophy, an idea, something abstract. An epidemic isn't abstract - it's a spreading infectious disease, something that takes on physical form and actively moves between hosts. While stupidity has some abstraction to it, Pro does define it as a behavior. Last I checked, philosophies don't have behaviors. A philosophy may lead some to take certain actions, but it cannot itself engage in any activity, let alone have that activity be judged "stupid" or be characterized as an "epidemic."

Pro also doesn't quite go far enough in understanding the terms he's defined. An infectious disease has physical form and spreads against the will of its hosts. You don't see anyone out there supporting the spread of malaria or tuberculosis, yet there are clear adherents to liberalism. People actually choose to become liberals, hence the idea that it is an infectious disease forced upon them by some unknown agent (is there a liberalism bacteria I don't know about?) is more than a little absurd.

All of these inform Pro's burdens. He has to show that liberalism takes a physical form that can be judged based on its own "good sense or judgment" and that liberalism is actively forced upon its adherents. Pro may be inclined to argue that liberalism is forced upon others, but if he wishes to do so, he'll have to explain how it's actively infecting a population that remains clearly not liberal (if they weren't, it wouldn't be forced), and still prove that it's the liberalism itself that's doing the forcing and not individuals.

But let's focus on the other major burden Pro incurs, and this has to do with his other definition: stupidity. Establishing a lack of good sense or judgment requires an objective evaluation, i.e. it must be factual. If Pro is using his own opinion and not an objective measure to evaluate why a given act is stupid, then he has not met his burden.

Meanwhile, all I have to do to meet my burdens is show why Pro hasn't met his. Pro hasn't met any of these. All 3 of his contentions stem from personal opinion without any clear, objective harms being caused by liberalism. He fails to explain how liberalism itself is causing any of these supposed harms, choosing instead to focus on the harms caused by what he perceives as liberal members of society, and he fails to establish liberalism as something that spreads or takes on physical form of any sort.

But he wanted a debate on this, so I'll focus on the arguments he's made and explain the problems individually.

He starts off on gay marriage, arguing that it's widespread and presents as a lack of common sense. He's correct on the latter, chiefly due to the USSC ruling, but that doesn't establish liberalism as an epidemic, as I've shown. As for a lack of common sense, Pro doesn't explain what the common sense is or why this particular common sense is "good sense." He states that this is government defining a religious "rite", but he has this backwards. That's what government did beforehand. In fact, 31 states had constitutional amendments banning legal recognition of same-sex marriage.[] Note the word "legal." This was the government of each of these states making a clear statement that they would enforce the law based on the views of many who were anti-gay marriage. That is clearly destroying the line between church and state " it's literally the state codifying a religious view as law.

Now, let's compare that with today. Today, the government of the U.S. has effectively stated that it will no longer allow such laws to be enforced. In other words, the U.S. is no longer legally taking action to support any religious view. As for separation of church and state, Pro seems to be under the impression that the U.S. government is now forcing pastors and rabbis to marry gay people. That's never happened, nor is it ever likely to happen. Religious leaders have always been able to choose whether or not they wish to marry any given couple for any reason. Making gay marriage legal doesn't alter that capacity.

However, let's assume that making gay marriage legal has fundamentally altered the way religion interacts with government, and that it represents government intervention in religion. Even if that's the case, Pro hasn't established any objective harm that results. A lack of common sense is not a harm. Separation of church and state is not inherently beneficial; if anything, it allows for some clear, objective harms in the form of things like Christian conversion therapy, which has been shown to "lead to depression, anxiety, drug use, homelessness and suicide." [] Intervention has its benefits. Even if it is harmful, though, Pro hasn't shown that liberalism itself is perpetrating the harms. What liberals and libertarians in the U.S. do does not embody liberalism itself.

Onto gun rights. Pro hasn't shown that the prevaling view of liberals is that guns should be banned, or that liberalism itself, which promotes liberty and equality (ideas that support wide availability of guns), supports such a ban by default. He argues that a gun ban would be ineffective, though his "evidence" for this is a couple of claims, neither of which holds up to scrutiny. Stealing a gun off of a police officer requires getting close to a trained official who knows how to subdue assailants and can clearly defend themselves. If criminals are willing to put themselves at that kind of risk simply because guns are banned, then a gun ban would be extremely effective at removing criminals from the streets. As for the usage of other weapons, as I think we can agree that a knife is generally more dangerous than a club or spear, I'll just address them. Studies have shown that, after a 1 to 1 comparison, the use of guns in crimes is 5 times more deadly than the usage of knives.[] Crossbows are rather difficult to come by and are a far cry from being as deadly as a gun, and poison deaths require planning, whereas most homicides are unplanned.[]

It's never established as part of this argument where the harm is. Having a gun isn't inherently beneficial (accidental shootings account for hundreds of deaths a year, and suicides are made a hell of a lot easier []), and Pro hasn't shown that not having a gun causes more violence. He insinuates that something terrible would happen, but never explains why law enforcement wouldn't be enough. Pro also doesn't show that liberals want a complete gun ban, and as much of the support behind gun bans is for assault weapon bans or other partial measures, it seems even liberals support many people having guns, which means the scenario Pro puts out is not at all likely. Even if it is harmful, though, Pro has failed to explain how liberalism itself is causing this to happen, and as I've explained, liberalism would be against such measures if it did exist as a corporeal being.

Finally, we get to universal health care. Pro really doesn't add any substance with this point, claiming that liberals support universal health care without evidence, claiming that this is generally liberalism (socialism and liberalism are not the same), and claiming that universal health care has increased the costs of aspirin, which is a strange accusation since universal health care doesn't exist in this country. Pro appears to be arguing against Obamacare, but he hasn't explained why that represents liberalism (it was originally a conservative plan []), how Obamacare has caused these harms (prices have been going up since long before it was implemented []), or how implementing universal health care would increase those harms (it leads to negotiating prices with the pharmaceutical industry, something we don't do now, which should reduce prices []). Pro makes the same basic claims about Medicare, but once again fails to establish that any of these supposed harms are real.

Even if they are, they're not objective. More expensive pharmaceuticals aren't inherently bad, especially given how often they're abused.[] We could stand to have a little less access. Once again, Pro has not established that this is the result of liberalism (which, again, would support availability if it had a physical body), nor has he established any sort of epidemic traits.

Alright, back to you, Pro.
Debate Round No. 2


This debate was about liberalism the political ideology, which does consist of everything I mentioned before. Also, “equality” is never protected in the constitution, and the pursuit of equality is incredibly stupid because some people work harder than others and are entitled to more. You are not entitled to anything just because, except liberties but these are the ability to do something, not an actual thing.

Liberalism isn’t abstract, it is a set of beliefs which are spreading like a disease and are idiotic and immoral. This is what I must prove to win; I also have to prove that liberalism, the ideology, consists of beliefs which would make any liberal’s good sense or judgment questionable.

Under the separation of church and state, marriage, which is a religious rite, should be left to the church. It isn’t the government’s job to decide whether or not marriage can be between a man and a man. This is how liberalism comes in; they believe that equality is a right, and that gay marriage is equal to real marriage, so they decide that it is discrimination to say otherwise, and that men can marry men. But hold on, they don’t get to decide that gay marriage is equal to real marriage, that’s like passing a law saying that we all have to pretend that fiat money is real money, it is completely unconstitutional!

And just like fiat currencies, if gay marriage ever could be any form of valid marriage institution, the government wouldn’t need to mandate that it is, and force us to play along. This is stupid because they are exercising a massive misuse of power, acting like tyrants, and then turning around and saying they are for liberty- it is heavily hypocritical. It is also heavily hypocritical to whine about the separation of church and state, and then warp the definition of a rite whose proper definitions belong to the church.

It also just so happens to be that Rabbis and Pastors are being forced to marry gay perverts {1} {2} {3}. I do not need to prove that this harms anything, though it does, because we are judging liberalism according to its good sense and judgment like you said earlier, not what harm it causes, though it undoubtedly has resulted in disaster.

It ids a prevailing belief in liberalism to ban guns or to heavily regulate them, just look at these quotes:

“I do not believe that citizens should be able to own guns.” – Barrack Obama

“I will get the NRA shut down for good if I become president. If we can ban handguns, we will do it,” – Hillary Clinton

“If I could have gotten 51 votes in the Senate of the United States for an outright ban, picking up every one of them . . . ‘Mr. and Mrs. America, turn ‘em all in,’ I would have done it.” – Diane Feinstein

Like I said, stupid, and immoral, it is stupid to think that disarming innocent people will somehow protect innocent people, it is already illegal for felons to own guns, so whatever felons do have guns are doing so illegally, and a gun ban won’t affect them very much. So felons are just as armed as before, except maybe more because when you ban something you create a whole new market for it, while law abiding citizens are disarmed. This is supposed to reduce crime how?

Liberals would point to Brittan having fewer homicides than we do, about 4 times less proportional to their population. But correlation is not causation, just because I can find a place where guns are illegal that has a lower crime rate than one where they are legal doesn’t prove anything because hat nation where guns are illegal might otherwise have a lower crime rate. You are also picking up the nation with the highest crime rate of those nations where guns are legal and comparing it to the nation with the lowest crime rate of those nations where guns are illegal.

You have to compare very nation where guns are legal to those where they are illegal, and compare times with higher gun ownership to those with less gun ownership in the same nation. Which gives you the following statistics,

I was referring to socialized healthcare, which existed since the liberal Lyndon Johnson established Medicare, followed by the liberal Barrack Obama expanding it, while another liberal, Bernie Sanders wants to socialize it completely. George Bush devised the initial Obama care plan, who, by the way, is a relative of the Clintons, more liberals.

Healthcare being so expensive that it costs you 100$ to get an aspirin and 10,000$ to get an MRI while you could get one in South Africa for only 50$ is definitely bad. And like Ron Paul said, whenever the government destroys something, it doubles down, hence the reason Bernie wants universal healthcare, a complete communist takeover of the healthcare system.







Alright, let's start by noting that Pro is basically unresponsive to any of my burdens or definition analysis. He makes a bunch of claims as to what his burdens are, but he fails to support any of them. He starts by going off on equality, stating that it's never protected by the Constitution. He's, of course, wrong about this, ignoring that the 14th amendment literally guarantees “equal protection of the laws” to all people.[] He aso ignores the famous line from the Declaration of Independence: “all Men are created equal”. I think this clearly sets up a rights system for ensuring equality, and yes, entitling people to it. But none of this is responsive to my arguments regarding his burdens.

Liberalism is abstract because a set of beliefs is inherently an abstract concept. They are thoughts – a set of strongly held thoughts, mind you, but thoughts have no physical form. That is unlike a disease, which does have a verifiable physical form. Pro didn't set up the debate as “Liberalism is akin to an epidemic, spreading stupidity”; it's very literal, requiring that liberalism be an epidemic, not like an epidemic. Pro has still failed to establish that liberalism has any physical form, much less that people can “catch” it.

The same holds true for proving its idiocy. He can't get away with proving that some liberlas have made policies that he views as stupid. He has to show that liberalism itself engaged in behaviors that made those policies possible. So far, all he's done is state that the ideology informed the decisions of some liberals to take certain actions. That's not enough, and even if it was, the voter still has to show that these policies were solely the result of adherence to liberalism as an ideology. He hasn't done that, either, nor has he stated anything about objective harm. In order to establish “good sense” one needs to establish what's good and what's not good. The only way to do that is through objective harms and benefits, something he says he doesn't have to do. He doesn't get to pretend one of his major burdens doesn't exist.

But also note that Pro himself states that he must prove that liberalism is also immoral. So now, he's required to prove that the behaviors of liberalism are objectively both stupid and immoral. He still hasn't done that for either one, nor has he even established what is moral so as to define what is not. Immorality requires that we understand the standards of morality, and yet he hasn't presented a single one.

So, let's get on to what he does do.

1. Gay Marriage

Pro basically just re-iterates his points to start. He does nothing to state why equality is a bad thing to pursue, only that it's not a right. I've shown that it is a right, but even if it wasn't, Pro has presented no harm to pushing equality. All he's done is state that it's not the government's job to decide what marriage should be, though he hasn't stated whose job it is, or why the government's making this decision is necessarily harmful. Hell, he hasn't even explained why doing something that's unconstitutional (and there's no reason to believe that this is unconstitutional) is harmful.

I showed in the previous round that governments were deciding the equality or lack thereof of gay marriage well before the supreme court ruling. Pro hasn't explained why the decision to allow gay marriage is a transgression, whereas the many decisions not to allow it are valid. Both decide the status of a large subset of couples. In fact, I'd argue that the former is less of a transgression because it means that government doesn't alter the status of a couple based on the genders involved. Only in the latter case does the government arbitrarily decide to award rights to some, but not others, and only in that case are religious leaders denied the capacity to marry two consenting adults.

Pro's links are absurdly hilarious. His first link actually goes to the trouble of explaining why this was not a case of forcing anyone to marry anyone, pointing out that the city has “'never threatened to jail them, or take legal action of any kind' against them.” It also points to a city ordinance that clearly exempts them from having to perform same-sex marriages. The second link is from the NewsExaminer, a fake-news, urban legends site that cites several individuals involved in a case, none of whom actually exist.[] The third link doesn't even cite a case, just parsing Obama's words without providing any examples whatsoever.

Pro drops my analysis on separation of church and state. This is important because it's the major harm he tries to establish. If you buy that this puts government in the way of church decisions, I've explained how that's beneficial with the case of Christian conversion therapy. That's the only objective harm on this point, and therefore the only means to vote on this, and since it's a harm for Pro's side, it establishes the good sense of liberalism as an ideology, and thus a reason to vote against him.

2. Gun bans

Pro starts by cherry-picking quotes without establishing how these represent liberalism as a whole. Individual lines stated by a few elected officials are not enough to establish that they are representative of an ideology. Pro also hasn't established why citizens being able to own guns is a net benefit, so he can't establish that not being able to own them is either stupid or immoral. He's stated multiple times that disarming citizens is bad, but has never stated why. As for the idea that a gun ban wouldn't be effective, he a) hasn't shown that to be the case, b) is wrong, since it ended mass killings in Australia [], c) is wrong, since gun buyback programs would reduce availability and, by consequence, increase the price of guns, and d) is wrong, since police no longer have to guess as to whether someone carrying a gun is doing so illegally. Britain is a great example as well, as the differences in homicide rates that Pro cites are based on population.

Even if you don't buy that gun bans resulted in the benefits seen in Australia and Britain, Pro is the one claiming it's obviously harmful. This shows that it's not at all obvious, and therefore neither stupid nor immoral. All Pro has to prove it is a correlation between number of firearms and homicide rates, which was chiefly the result of declines in incarceration and crime rates,[], and a scatter plot that showcases just how many countries with low access to firearms have low homicide rates (note that most of those black boxes are below the line). None of this proves his point, and the latter graph just shows that correlating gun ownership with homicide rates is complete BS.

Once again, Pro never showcases that liberalism is to blame and he never points to a clear, objective harm. He does drop my arguments showcasing that alternative means of homicide are far less effective, and that banning guns would clearly reduce accidental shootings and suicides. Again, an objective harm that functions as a unique voting point against his case.

3. Universal healthcare

Pro keeps jumping around on this. Which is it? It is universal health care, is it Medicare, or is it Obamacare? Which of these is liberalism forcing on the population? They're all extremely different policies – they can't all be liberalism incarnate. Pro seems to want to establish that they are, but points to yet another conservative, George Bush (can't be sure if that's senior or junior) who “devised the initial Obama care plan”. If even Pro can't determine what liberalism is in this context, no one should even bother with this point.

And the harms continue to be non-objective. Pro continues to pull numbers out of thin air, for some reason comparing U.S. healthcare costs to South Africa's without any citations or reasons whatsoever to believe his numbers. None of this establishes a clear harm, nor is any of it responsive to any of my arguments. I explained how universal health care would clearly reduce pharmaceutical prices through negotiating power, and that extends to medical device manufacturers as well. Taking the “for profit” out of health care will also reduce costs because doctors will not have incentives given to them by these companies to use their machines and drugs more often. That means fewer people will be overmedicated and overdose, and lower medical costs all around. This is yet another objective harm that functions as a reason to vote against him. And remember, any single one of these is enough to deprive Pro of his burden – if it's not objectively clear that liberalism as a whole is spreading stupidity (i.e. if it's clear that it's doing something objectively good), then that's the end of the debate.

It doesn't matter what Ron Paul said, nor what Pro's view of Bernie Sanders is. He has to establish a clear, objective harm to liberalism. He hasn't even established a clear objective harm coming from any single liberal (if you're going to cherry-pick, at least do something substantial with your examples), let alone from the whole political philosophy. Recall that this debate is about liberalism and its behaviors, not the views or behaviors of any individual liberal. He hasn't even gotten close to affirming the resolution at this stage.

And he has one more round to try, so make it count.
Debate Round No. 3
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Debate Round No. 4
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Debate Round No. 5
6 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Posted by whiteflame 2 months ago
Nothing? Alright, well... thanks for the abbreviated debate, I guess.
Posted by whiteflame 2 months ago
So... any particular reason for the forfeit? You were on several times over the 3 days you had.
Posted by whiteflame 3 months ago
Much as I'm not a big fan of the way this debate is set up, it is specifically referring to liberalism as an idea and not liberals as a people.
Posted by migmag 3 months ago
just because you don't agree doesn't give you the right to insult, degrade, or namecall, I've reported you
Posted by whiteflame 3 months ago
Alright, though the term "epidemic" also incurs a burden.
Posted by whiteflame 3 months ago
I'd be willing to take you up on this in a few days, but if we are going to do this, a couple of things.

First off, please spell "epitome" correctly. "Epidemy" isn't a word.

Second, realize that if you are arguing under that resolution, you're setting your burden higher than proving that liberalism is stupid. If you're the epitome of stupid, that means you are far more stupid than anyone else. If you want to make that your argument, you're welcome to do so, but you should know what that entails.

Third, the resolution doesn't require you to argue that liberalism is immoral, yet you've taken on that burden in your first round. Again, not necessary, but if you'd like to do it, by all means.
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