The Instigator
I-am-a-panda
Pro (for)
Winning
25 Points
The Contender
vorxxox
Con (against)
Losing
21 Points

"One death is a tragedy. A million deaths is a statistic"

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/23/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 7,661 times Debate No: 6323
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (4)
Votes (7)

 

I-am-a-panda

Pro

In this debate, the topic is a famous quote made by Joseph Stalin. He says "One death is a tragedy. A million deaths is a statistic". What we will be debating is if this saying is right or wrong.

I will adopt the pro stance for this debate. What I stand for doesn't mean that I'm saying exactly a million, but a huge amount of ,say, over 100,000 being a statistic.

I will base my argument of proof and examples:

Example #1 - American Civil War:

During a war which is recognised and portrayed as a war between the pro-slavery Confederacy and the abolitionist United States. During the war , a total of 360,000 were killed during the war. Odds are, the average American wouldn't be able to name 5 people. But there is one person who would crop up on all of those lists; Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln was assassinated at the end of the war. He was seen as a martyr due to his status. I see this proof as Hundreds of thousands of deaths of regular soldiers being a mere statistic, but Lincoln's assassination being a tragedy.
http://en.wikipedia.org...

Example #2 - The Year 2006:

During the year 2006, it is estimated by Jan Egeland a U.N. humanitarian chief 200,000 people were killed in the Genocides of Darfur. People largely turned a blind eye with the on going wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Also, what caught people's attention was the death of Saddam Huessein. His death and trial garnered far more attention than the killings in Darfur.
http://www.sudantribune.com...

Example #3 - World War 1:

In World War 1 40 million lives were taken. Over the course of 4 years these men were slaughtered in the battlefield. But who is given the most recognition even before the war started? Archduke Franz Ferdinand, who was assassinated in JUne, 1914 which sparked the war in itself. The countless number of civilians and soldiers are a mere statistic, but Franz Ferdinand has his name set in stone.
http://en.wikipedia.org...
http://en.wikipedia.org...

Example #4 - World War 2:

During World War 2, more lives in any battle seen before were taken. An estimate of 72 million has been made, making it the deadliest war so far in history. These include those who were killed in the London Blitz, D-day and the Nuclear bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. However, one man claims the fame for his death, and you may have heard of him, Adolf Hitler. His suicide at the end of the war gained far more recognition than the millions killed during the course of the war.
http://en.wikipedia.org...
http://en.wikipedia.org...

As seen in all the above examples, one figure is seen as a tragedy and is widely reported. It is fondled over and given attention when it stands beside thousands upon thousands of deaths. You can see that 1 person dying is a tragedy and may be given multiple reports in a newspaper, but those killed in Darfur may only be called a number and are nameless to the media.

I wish my opponent good luck.
vorxxox

Con

Hello my dear opponent, and sorry for such a late response

Now, for the debate.

I negate the resolution that "One death is a tragedy. A million deaths is a statistic".

A large sum of people dying is just as tragic as one death. It's actually more tragic.

For example, 9/11. There's no way in the world that you can tell me that the people of the United States viewed those deaths as a mere statistic. It was all over the news, and there are memorials all over the place honoring each anniversary of 9/11. It was a tragedy.

http://en.wikipedia.org...

Another example is the holocaust. I don't think the killing of 6 million people of 1 ethnicity is something to laugh at. People don't view that as a statistic. There are memorials all over the place dedicated to those deaths.

http://en.wikipedia.org...

I urge a con ballot
Debate Round No. 1
I-am-a-panda

Pro

I would like to thank my opponent for taking this debate.

My opponent has presented 2 example's, 9/11 and the Holocaust. He claims people don't view it as a statistic. However, on the memorials of the both the holocaust, 9/11 or any memorial of a tragic event, they don't read out every names, they read out a statistic. A priest might say 'we remember the 3,000 who died in the September 11th attacks', or 'the 6 million who died during the holocaust'. The truth is, if a great figure dies, such as Pope John Paul II the second, the priest would say ' We remember Pope John Paul the II' and so on.

The truth is when a collective group of people die in the same event, they are remembered together, but as a statistic. They may be individuals to the family that lost them, but ultimately they turn into a statistic.

What my opponent has debated is that a million death's is as tragic as one death. But what we are really debating is how the victims are remembered. People in both 9/11 and the Holocaust are remembered as statistics. A single murder is a tragedy.

Simply look at these articles:

Let's take an example of 5 men who were stabbed to death in New York this September: http://www.nydailynews.com....
By reading the article, we see that not one of the men's names are mentioned. They are mere statistics in the tragedy. If only one of those men were stabbed his name would be everywhere. Even on such a small scale, it is clear, One death is a tragedy, a million deaths is a statistic.

Now let's examine a stabbing where only one man was killed. It occurred only 1 week before the aforementioned stabbing: http://gangsinlondon.blogspot.com...
The victims name is mentioned 4 times, at least, in the report. The article is roughly the same length, and involves the same type of crime, only with less people. Again it is quite clear, One death is a tragedy, a million Death's is a statistic.
vorxxox

Con

vorxxox forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
I-am-a-panda

Pro

My argument stands until my opponent rebuts it.
vorxxox

Con

Ok then. Sorry for the forfeited round.

"However, on the memorials of the both the holocaust, 9/11 or any memorial of a tragic event, they don't read out every names, they read out a statistic."

- What about the Vietnam Memorial? Every known name of fighting soldiers are remembered there.

"What my opponent has debated is that a million death's is as tragic as one death. But what we are really debating is how the victims are remembered. People in both 9/11 and the Holocaust are remembered as statistics. A single murder is a tragedy."

-Ehhhhh, no. I'm simply arguing against the resolution. The way it's stated is basically like an analogy.

one death : tragedy :: a million deaths : statistic

That statement basically declares that a million deaths is not a tragedy, but a statistic.

The definition of statistic is basically a number or a measurement
http://en.wikipedia.org...

So therefore according to that statement, a million deaths is not a tragedy as one death would be, but simply a number. On that note, the statement is completely untrue.

"You can see that 1 person dying is a tragedy and may be given multiple reports in a newspaper, but those killed in Darfur may only be called a number and are nameless to the media." - There are all kinds of things wrong with that statement

When you say "but" that's like saying as opposed to. Are you saying that events where large amounts of people die aren't given "multiple" reports in a newspaper? I'm sure an event like 9/11 was all over the newspaper.

Nameless statistic? No. Tragedies involving a massive amount of people aren't nameless. Lets once again take the holocaust for example. It's not known as " The event of six million killed Jews which has no name." Its known as "the holocaust"

Also, does giving the name of a single person that died as opposed to giving a single name to a large amount of people that died make either tragic event more or less properly honored? No! I don't have the dang memory bank to hold 6 million names of people, so I remember them by naming the tragedy.

Besides, a single death isn't necessarily always a "tragedy". Individual people die on the news every day, and chances are neither of us is going to remember or even care. To compare that with mass deaths. Mass deaths are NEVER forgotten, almost like their a part of history. By history I don't mean any timespace nonsense, but just events that will be remembered and known by every average Joe. The only individual deaths that are remembered enough to compete on a scale with mass deaths is FAMOUS people. Even so, it's pretty hard to find someone who could say the death of an individual historical figure was more "tragic than 9/11, or the holocaust"

My opponent is unable to state how "One death is a tragedy. A million deaths is a statistic" is:

1) True
2) Logical
3) Comparable

My contentions stand undefeated, and I urge a CON ballot.
Debate Round No. 3
I-am-a-panda

Pro

I would like to thank my opponent for this debate.

Due to a request from my opponent, I will state how "One death is a tragedy. A million deaths is a statistic" is:

1) True
2) Logical
3) Comparable

1) True:

I have presented numerous examples to back up this up. The holocaust, 9/11, and even stabbings are simple proof that
in a large event, people are remembered as part of the group, as part of the statistic. Someone who is killed in the first week of January is likely to have his/her name all over the newspaper, and their picture on the front page. A group of dead people, will only be remembered as 'they', 'them', etc. There is no other way to prove this than through examples, and because I have presented examples and my opponent has not, this is true.

2) Logical:

Something that is logical is something that makes sense. It is usually something that has extensive proof to back it up. For example, saying gravity doesn't exist is illogical as there is extensive proof that gravity does indeed exist. So, logically, "One death is a tragedy. A million deaths is a statistic" because
A) It has the proof to back it up
B) It cannot disproven to the same extent (i.e. CON does not have the same amount of proof to disprove the quote)

3) Comparable:

I am unsure what my opponent means by 'comparable'. If anything, they can't be compared as I contend one is a statistic, whereas one is a tragedy.

I will now rebut my opponent:

'What about the Vietnam Memorial? Every known name of fighting soldiers are remembered there.'
- What I mean is when they hold a service they won't sit down and read out every dead persons name, they will announce collectively who died as a number. They may be a part of that number, but they are still part of the statistic.

'So therefore according to that statement, a million deaths is not a tragedy as one death would be, but simply a number. On that note, the statement is completely untrue.'
- We are not arguing how tragic two events are as it varies between the events. What the debate is really about is how one death on it's own is seen as a huge tragedy, whereas when that person is absorbed into a report of people who have been murdered that year, they are absorbed into a statistic.

' Nameless statistic? No. Tragedies involving a massive amount of people aren't nameless. Lets once again take the holocaust for example. It's not known as " The event of six million killed Jews which has no name." Its known as "the holocaust" '
- I contend that the person turn into a nameless statistic, not the event turns into a nameless statistic.

'Also, does giving the name of a single person that died as opposed to giving a single name to a large amount of people that died make either tragic event more or less properly honored? No! I don't have the dang memory bank to hold 6 million names of people, so I remember them by naming the tragedy.'
- This is just further proof you in fact believe that one person dying is a tragedy and 6 million people dying is a statistic. You have just argued against yourself.

' Besides, a single death isn't necessarily always a "tragedy". Individual people die on the news every day, and chances are neither of us is going to remember or even care. To compare that with mass deaths. Mass deaths are NEVER forgotten, almost like their a part of history. By history I don't mean any timespace nonsense, but just events that will be remembered and known by every average Joe. The only individual deaths that are remembered enough to compete on a scale with mass deaths is FAMOUS people. Even so, it's pretty hard to find someone who could say the death of an individual historical figure was more "tragic than 9/11, or the holocaust" '
- My opponent is trying to slip through this debate by arguing the tragedy levels, not how it is remembered. In memory, the people of 9/11 disintegrate into a statistic, and so do the people in the holocaust. Can you remember the name of one person who died in the holocaust other than Anne Frank? Can you name a single person who died in the Napoleonic wars?

My opponent has not, in the form of in memory, proved how "One death is a tragedy. A million deaths is a statistic" is:

1) True
2) Logical
3) Comparable
vorxxox

Con

vorxxox forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by PoeJoe 8 years ago
PoeJoe
Really? I thought Marilyn Manson came up with it... I feel stoopid now.
Posted by I-am-a-panda 8 years ago
I-am-a-panda
Don't mind if you do. Good luck!
Posted by vorxxox 8 years ago
vorxxox
I know. Just want to practice sum if you dont mind
Posted by I-am-a-panda 8 years ago
I-am-a-panda
That was a quick acceptance!
7 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Vote Placed by Danielle 7 years ago
Danielle
I-am-a-pandavorxxoxTied
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Vote Placed by The_Booner 8 years ago
The_Booner
I-am-a-pandavorxxoxTied
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Vote Placed by Zeratul 8 years ago
Zeratul
I-am-a-pandavorxxoxTied
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Vote Placed by JBlake 8 years ago
JBlake
I-am-a-pandavorxxoxTied
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Vote Placed by SaraMarie 8 years ago
SaraMarie
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Vote Placed by vorxxox 8 years ago
vorxxox
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Vote Placed by paramore102 8 years ago
paramore102
I-am-a-pandavorxxoxTied
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