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The Contender
Con (against)

Objectivity promotes demonization.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/3/2017 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 10 months ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 484 times Debate No: 100539
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (3)
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Thank you for participating in this debate. I will be arguing in favor of the view that the concept of (detectable) objectivity promotes demonization.

Detectable - Able to be discovered or identified either directly or indirectly.

Objectivity - Utterly free of and existing independently from any possible subjective feelings, opinions and/or any prejudice; indisputable and seen identically by all possible observers; not subject to variation, change or interpretation.

Promotes - Lends support or actively encourages.

Demonization - Characterization of individuals or groups as irredeemably and purely evil, disingenuous, "fundamentally and incurably stupid and/or evil", or intellectually deaf and blind. A "black and white" "my way or the highway" point of view that casts all possible human participants as either "the good guys" or "the bad guys".

The rather bizarre Orwellian concept of "objectivity" has somehow managed to worm its way into our language. Practically everyone falsely believes (with unjustifiable confidence) that "objectivity" exists and is an unquestionable ideal-high-goal and more so that their own beliefs are "more objective" or "fair and balanced" than their detractors, and beyond that, all their detractors are either being disingenuous, "are fundamentally and incurably stupid and/or evil", or intellectually deaf and blind. Case closed. Let's all go back to our bubbles.

This premise about "objectivity" detailed above, allows people to pretend great atrocities are justified against "non believers" because "they deserve what they get". Side note: In order to properly justify such a hypothesis (like "they deserve what they get") would require significant and detailed philosophical exploration and conveniently, Wittgenstein has given the unstudied and others a glib excuse to categorically dismiss the entire pursuit of "philosophy" because it has been deemed "useless" (by one man). In other words, if you believe in a black and white world and "philosophy" muddies the waters, then "philosophy" is a "problem" and must be wrong, ex post-facto. This is an example of "affirming the consequent" (a logical fallacy) which basically means you are "closed minded" and only seek serious exploration of ideas that you believe are likely to reinforce your own pre-conceived ideas, technically known as prejudices.

And before you think I'm trying to single out one particular group of people, "godless secular liberal progressives" are just as guilty of this type of thinking as the other more obvious religious and political targets.

The simple fact that people (Trumpies are just one example) are able to very effectively dismiss and deflect all criticism by characterizing their detractors as "biased" proves how pervasive and insidious and anti-intellectual this ideal-high-goal of "objectivity" is. This specific technique is a combination of "false choice" and indirect "ad hominem" attack. In formal logic it is widely recognized as an illegitimate form of argument (logical fallacy). And yet, by all accounts "millions of people" think this qualifies as a plausible line of reasoning.

Now before you dismiss me as "a crack pot", I would like to point out that I do believe "a broad consensus" is a very good standard for "truth". And even Karl Popper admits, when pressed, that science isn't based on "objectivity" but rather on "a broad consensus" of "well qualified individuals", which in a lot of ways is nearly functionally identical, but with the key difference being that "a broad consensus" doesn't necessarily categorize detractors as either being disingenuous, "fundamentally and incurably stupid and/or evil", or intellectually deaf and blind. It at least leaves the door open to the idea that there may be some legitimate disagreement based on contrary evidence or other logical considerations without an automatic reflexive leap to pure demonization (terrorism is another good example of this).

Feel free to expand upon and/or challenge any of the arguments described above or add your own. I look forward to having a civil conversation regarding the topic at hand.


you lead to demonization n demonizing at the arrival of this word "objectivity"

im not sure what to tell ya. try being more objective like i am. you see this is undebateable matter otherwise my action prove your magick trap there. im not gonna demonize or even conclude.
Debate Round No. 1


Thank you for joining this debate. I'm not sure exactly what your argument is, so I will be paraphrasing you in order to attempt to clarify your approach. Please add your own notes in the next round if you believe I have misunderstood your intent.

You might be trying to say that I am demonizing "objectivity"(?) and that (may or may not be true, but) really does nothing to dispute the fact that "objectivity" promotes demonization. Your round 1 response appears to be an attempt to use the logical fallacy of "tu quoque" to derail the topic.

"Objectivity" is not the only possible justification for demonization. It is simply not adequate logical justification. I even address this concern directly in my round 1 argument by stating quite clearly that "...In order to properly justify such a hypothesis (like "they deserve what they get") would require significant and detailed philosophical exploration..." which your response seems to be lacking.

Additionally, your bald assertion that you are somehow "more objective" and that this is somehow "undebateable" would seem to be begging for any shred of rational support if it was not also utterly and obviously beside the point of this discussion.

Regardless of how "objective" you think you are, the topic demands logical refutation. Nobody demands that you be "objective" here and I make no claims to "objectivity" myself.

Think about the idea "objectivity promotes demonization" and decide if you agree or disagree and then write down your reasons.

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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by glommypediment 10 months ago
If we speak plainly, what most people mean by objectivity, is agreement about facts. In the political sense: one "can have their own opinion, but not their own facts." So, you seem to say, by calling this agreement about the facts, "objective", they raise it beyond the human, in a way that leads to a kind of exaggerated certainty in what is the group understanding of an epoch.

I suppose you would agree, also, that the "objectivity" you are repudiating is a claim that says, what we see are the things-completely-on-their-own. For the reason that "we", in scientism, don"t exist, we are an "epiphenomenon". It"s the reverse of Kant"s idea of things as they are "in themselves". Only the phenomena, more there is not...

Well, I suppose that you are right. But, it is hard to find a follower of scientism that would understand something that is against their religion! People these days are not serious enough to understand anything that is against their interest to understand. SO, likely, no one will debate you! And at the same time they will go on claiming they know all about "their", i.e., the objective fantastic fact of objectivity.
Posted by 3RU7AL 10 months ago
I appreciate your approach to the subject.

(1) "A broad consensus" is a very useful concept that does not reject the integral subjectivity that humans cannot logically deny. Saying that anything is "objective" suggests that it is viewed identically by all people at all times and anyone who dares offer an alternative interpretation is necessarily dismissed as disingenuous (or worse).

Plato's Forms and Kant's noumenon may or may not "exist". However, even if they do, we have no way of observing them because they are defined as "un-observable" by their very nature.

Which really is the point. Anything truly and purely "objective" would be so free of subjective interpretation and description that we (as humans) could never hope to detect it at all, nevermind attaching any level of "meaning" to it. The closest thing I can imagine would be something like "Ein Sof" which is simply a place holder name for "something" that is truly and literally incomprehensible.

(2) Yes. Anytime someone claims their view is "objective" it will inherently lead to problems.
Posted by glommypediment 10 months ago
I feel like the title "Objectivity promotes demonization" is misleading. Are you saying that the misuse of the concept of objectivity is the same thing as "demonetization"? I mean because in solving some purely technical problem, that does not involve people or politics, that may be a useful concept.

It's hard to tackle two issues at once: One, is objectivity a valid concept? I.e., is a strict objectivity concept, rather than a good sense agreement, e.g., that fire is hot, or that there is more surface water than land, something that names a real attribute of the world?

Two: Is that concept, of strict objectivity, inherently likely to lead to problems?
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