The Instigator
RoyLatham
Pro (for)
Losing
7 Points
The Contender
Lexicaholic
Con (against)
Winning
21 Points

Patriotism should be taught and encouraged

Do you like this debate?NoYes+3
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 6 votes the winner is...
Lexicaholic
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/23/2009 Category: Society
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 10,102 times Debate No: 8395
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (21)
Votes (6)

 

RoyLatham

Pro

Patriotism is "love for or devotion to one's country" http://www.merriam-webster.com... Love is "a strong positive emotion of regard and affection" http://www.google.com... In the context of patriotism, love implies concern and caring for the status and future of one's country. The alternatives are various levels of indifference or, in the extreme, hatred. It is best for society if each citizen of a country takes a positive interest in the status and future of his country rather than indifference or hatred. Therefore patriotism should be taught and encouraged.
Lexicaholic

Con

My thanks to my opponent for initiating this debate.

Contrary to my opponent, I assert that patriotism should be encouraged but not taught. This is not merely a matter of semantics. Encouraging citizens to understand, support and respect their country by displaying national pride and the benefits of civic involvement could do much to improve the activity of our citizenry within the process of our nation's governance. Teaching patriotism, on the other hand, can only lead to divisiveness because people will differ on what activities show proper deference to exhibit true love for or devotion to one's country. We need only examine the modern political environment to see the effects of such an approach, as liberals may claim that exercising their right to free speech to criticize their country is an act of patriotism, while conservatives may claim that the criticism itself is unpatriotic. [1][2] Creating an pedagogical approach to patriotism would only lead to societal fragmentation or fascism. Therefore patriotism should be encouraged but not taught.

[1] http://www.democraticunderground.com...
[2] http://www.huffingtonpost.com...
Debate Round No. 1
RoyLatham

Pro

The main way that patriotism is and ought to be taught is by parents teaching their children. The main way that parents teach patriotism is a combination of direct instruction and encouragement by example. This is the same method used by parents for teaching honesty, kindness, neatness, respect, politeness, and any number of other value-laden beliefs and practices.

The resolution is worded as "taught and encouraged" mainly to distinguish the primary responsibility of parents to teach it, and the continuing responsibility of social institutions, including schools, to encourage it. Encouraging patriotism without anyone ever initially positively advocating patriotism makes no sense. It would be akin to attempting to encourage honesty and kindness without parents ever teaching the values in the first place.

Con claims that a "pedagogical approach" would be divisive. "The term [pedagogy] generally refers to strategies of instruction, or a style of instruction. ... Pedagogy is also sometimes referred to as the correct use of teaching strategies " http://en.wikipedia.org... I concede that there is technically a pedagogical approach in parents teaching children with a combination of instruction and example, but it is odd notion to apply to so basic a technique. The proposal does not require or suggest implementing a formal curriculum or a course with exams and grades. The resolution is in opposition to parents not teaching values on the grounds that children should be somehow left valueless until they are "old enough to make their own decisions." Since Con asserts that patriotism should be encouraged, he is not opposed the value being instilled. Wanting the value to be instilled but not allowing it to be taught by parents is contradictory.

Con claims that teaching patriotism would be decisive because Liberals and Conservatives may disagree on what patriotism implies in terms of behaviors. But encouraging patriotism has the same problem. For example, some think that wearing a flag pin is a sign of patriotism, others claim it is not. Encouraging patriotism is every bit as divisive as teaching it.

Incidentally, the example Con gave of a McCain spokesperson attacking Obama's patriotism is bogus. The clip and quotation show Carly Fiorina attacking Obama's judgment for criticizing the U.S. in foreign lands. Before Obama, there was a longstanding tradition for American leaders not. Huffington Post writer Jason Linkins falsely headlined the article an attack on Obama's patriotism. Nonetheless, I don't doubt that someone has falsely attacked Obama's patriotism. The other example Con provided was correct, the author called anyone supporting Bush policies unpatriotic.

The examples do not demonstrate that patriotism should not be taught because many shared values have implications construed differently. For example, many people would agree we should teach and encourage justice -- but some say justice demands a death penalty while others say justice forbids a dead penalty. There are many conflicting viewpoints on what justice implies. With patriotism, as with justice, there is a core common consensus that is agreed upon and which can be encouraged and even taught by public institutions. For example, it is the consensus that schools can conduct the Pledge of Allegiance, providing students are allowed to opt out. I believe that a consensus could be reached on there being patriotic duty to be informed on the important issues and to vote.

A core consensus does not mean absolute agreement. In a democracy, a majority vote and, in the U.S., the Constitution, determine the patriotic observances government institutions may present. Private organization are free to espouse whatever they think love of country implies.

Patriotism is love of country expressed with the attitude of concern for the country's future and wanting the country to succeed. Patriotism should be taught and encouraged.
Lexicaholic

Con

I thank my opponent for presenting his first argument and shall endeavor to explore the same and show why it does not succeed in upholding the resolution.

"Patriotism is love of country expressed with the attitude of concern for the country's future and wanting the country to succeed." I agree with this definition and intend to work from it to show why patriotism should not be taught.

"Private organization[s] are free to espouse whatever they think love of country implies."
No one has argued to the contrary. I am merely stating that patriotism should not be taught, not that it must not be taught. My opponent's argument is invalid.

"… many people would agree we should teach … justice – but … there are many conflicting viewpoints on what justice implies." Perhaps there are many who would do so, but I at least hold justice to be a conceit, a justification for why one should choose not to exercise compassion in the most trying of circumstances. I do not think this approach is less valid than one that considers justice a valid construct. This merely shows that common ground in the definition of a concept is not enough to determine the validity of a concept or the best expressions thereof. Arguments of consensus about patriotism therefore do little to determine the actual propriety of the expression of it. Value is determined by observation of the concept in action and the extent to which those actions achieve the stated goal, not through agreement. My opponent's argument is refuted.

"Con claims that teaching patriotism would be [divisive] because Liberals and Conservatives may disagree … But encouraging patriotism has the same problem. … some think that wearing a flag pin is a sign of patriotism, others [do] not. Encouraging patriotism is … as divisive as teaching it." Actually, this is an argument over the propriety of display, which is a behavior. No one is arguing that patriotism, as a concept, is bad, just that some displays may or may not be tactful. I personally thought that choosing to wear the pins, or not, was fine. My opponent's argument is refuted.

"In a democracy, a majority vote and, in the U.S., the Constitution, determine the patriotic observances government institutions may present." Patriotism is not an issue for government regulation, and therefore has nothing to do with majority votes or the U.S. Constitution. There is no amendment to or article of the Constitution saying "patriotism shall be understood to be this definition expressed in the following manner…" [1] It is inappropriate to utilize principles of government in evaluation of morals because it is the argumentative equivalent of using a tool to build its maker. I would like to believe that the idea of democratic government grew out of the principles of freedom and patriotism, not that government is free to decide the principle.[2] Patriotism must exist as an ideal separate and apart from the institution it supports. This understanding is why liberals feel that criticism of the government is patriotic and conservatives do not. Liberals (the sane ones anyway) feel that their country's value is in its ideals as represented in government, and that government must be chastised when it does not live up to its ideals. Conservatives (most that I've met anyway) believe that the government and the ideals it represents are one in the same (or that the ideals emanate from democratic governance.) This basic difference is only one of many that exist and make it impossible to properly ‘teach' patriotism. [3] My opponent's argument is refuted.

"… the example Con gave … is bogus[.] … Carly Fiorina [attacked] Obama's judgment for criticizing the U.S. in foreign lands [because] [b]efore Obama, there was a longstanding tradition for American leaders not [to do so]." My opponent fails to recognize that his argument stands as an example of the very divisiveness of which I speak. I fail to see how criticizing the actions of one's country's leadership on matters of foreign affairs would amount to "talking down about America." His argument is that such actions go against tradition. I fail to see what tradition has to do with loving and being concerned for one's country. Surely my opponent wouldn't argue that one can not attack one's patriotism without using the word patriotism. That would be like refusing to recognize a tree as a tree without a sign that says ‘tree' pinned on it. My opponent has defined patriotism as love for one's country expressed as concern for it. Certainly he can see how a claim that one is "talking down about" one's country calls one's patriotism into question. Had Fiorina merely stated that she felt it was an unwise decision and provided her more objective reasons for so believing, it likely would not have amounted to an attack on Obama's patriotism. But she did not, and it does. My opponent's argument is refuted.

"The main way that patriotism … ought to be taught is by parents teaching their children [through a] … combination of direct instruction and encouragement by example." Now we broach the primary thrust of my opponent's argument. I am not arguing against encouragement by example, but rather direct instruction. I believe that direct instruction interferes with the development of an individual's own conception of patriotism and creates a construct that limits the acceptable displays thereof. This does not mean that "[t]he resolution [opposes] … parents … teaching values on the grounds that children should be … left valueless until they are "old enough to make their own decisions."" It means that society should be encouraging of displays of patriotism and laud the accomplishments of patriots, which, interestingly enough, people do already. [4] Patriotism already exists as an ideal within our society, which means that people can learn from the displays thereof, and need not be taught to value such displays. While my opponent is correct that "[e]ncouraging patriotism without anyone ever initially positively advocating patriotism makes no sense" patriotism already has been initially positively advocated and does not require subsequent advocates to ensure its existence. What it needs are practitioners.

"Since Con asserts that patriotism should be encouraged, he is not opposed [to] the value being instilled. Wanting the value to be instilled but not allowing it to be taught by parents is contradictory." I have already shown how the value can be learned without being "instilled." I was not taught to value people above my personal success (my father actually argued with me against it) but I do. This is only one personal example. Many people develop values that are significantly at odds with those people attempt to ‘instill' in them. [5] Learning and appreciating principles through experience is inherent in being human. It is not necessary to ensure that others appreciate a principle if the merit of the principle speaks for itself. I believe that it is the same for patriotism. As such, I must continue to refute my opponent's assertion. Patriotism should not be taught.

[1] It's not in there: http://www.law.cornell.edu...
[2] See http://en.wikipedia.org... for one patriot who is inclined to agree.
[3] For a great example of ‘taught patriotism' please see: http://www.historylearningsite.co.uk...
[4] http://www.usa-patriotism.com...
[5] Which results in changes like this: http://changingminds.org...
Debate Round No. 2
RoyLatham

Pro

Con and I agree that "Encouraging citizens to understand, support and respect their country by displaying national pride and the benefits of civic involvement could do much to improve the activity of our citizenry within the process of our nation's governance." Thus, Con places a positive value upon patriotism. However, Con goes on to argue that patriotism should be encouraged by not taught, because "Teaching patriotism, on the other hand, can only lead to divisiveness ..." Con's argument fails because it is not possible to separate teaching from encouraging, and because a democracy should not place suppressing divisiveness above determining and supporting what is good.

I included both "taught and encouraged" in the resolution so as to include parents initiating the subject of patriotism with children. However, most of the teaching of values to children is by example. If parents pay attention to the issues of the day, take pains to vote conscientiously, and to include patriotic observances when appropriate, children are likely to learn from the examples. Similarly, parents are likely to say "be honest," but children are far more likely to learn honesty from observing parents practice it.

The same is true of institutions teaching and encouraging patriotism. A small element is formal instruction, but the most of the instruction is by example. 90% of the time it is impossible to distinguish teaching from encouraging. For example, a news clip on Memorial Day showed Boy Scouts placing flowers on the graves of soldiers at a national cemetery. Were the Scout leaders doing impermissible teaching, or just permissible encouragement?

Suppose a parent says to a young child, "When the Star Spangled Banner is played, you must stop talking and face the flag." Is that unacceptable, because it is teaching? Suppose the parent faces the flag and salutes, and the child mimics the action, after which the parent says, "Good." Is that acceptable, because it is encouraging, not teaching? Suppose the child does not mimic the action, can the parent say what should be done? Does that cross the line between encouraging and teaching? Clearly, Con's distinction is pointless.

I suppose some definition could be drafted that could draw the distinction, but what would the point be in attempting to make a ruling? If patriotism is a good thing, as Con asserted, it should be fostered by a combination of teaching and encouragement. I challenge Con to produce a definition that reliably determines what is teaching and what is encouragement, and then using my examples to show how teaching leads to divisiveness while encouragement does not.

Con argues that teaching leads to divisiveness, whereas encouragement does not. I used similarity to other values like "justice" to show that anything laden with values is likely to be divisive. Con replied only that justice should not be taught either, but did not respond to my broad premise that in a free society application of values inevitably leads to controversy. How about the long list of other values: honesty, kindness, mercy, and so forth. Does Con think that nothing should be taught for fear of engendering controversy?

I deny Con's premise that avoiding divisiveness should be valued more highly than teaching patriotism. Placing a high value on "avoiding divisiveness" is contrary to the principle of democracy. If avoiding divisiveness where a high value, then we should try to avoid elections altogether, because they clearly divide people. Or perhaps, after an election we should all fall in behind the entire platform of the winning candidate, so as to avoid being divided on the issues. Such notions are nonsense. Democracies require debate upon issues, and "let's avoid divisiveness" is most often argued when the majority wants to steamroll the minority. Debating the issues should be valued more highly.

I addressed the issue as to whether patriotism can be taught in public schools. I argued that while the primary responsibility is with parents and social institutions, it is allowed in schools in the U.S. according to the decisions of a democratic majority consistent with the Constitution. Con argues that "Patriotism must exist as an ideal separate and apart from the institution it supports." If Con's argument were correct then we ought not teach the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the system of checks and balances, or even that democracy has advantages over monarchy. But as a democracy we ought to do the best we can in explaining the principles of our society. An informed citizenry is necessary.

Con then goes off on a wild tangent, asserting "This understanding is why liberals feel that criticism of the government is patriotic and conservatives do not." I have never known a time (since the 1950's) when Conservatives were not criticizing some aspect of government, not even under Reagan. During the Bush Administration, Conservatives were critical of Bush expansion of government in education, agriculture, and entitlements. None ever suggested that such criticism was unpatriotic. There is an isolationist faction of Conservatism opposing the Iraq War, including Ron Paul http://www.lewrockwell.com... and Pat Buchanan http://www.amconmag.com.... There was never to my knowledge a suggestion that such opposition was unpatriotic. Conservatives do not think opposition to Obama's policies is unpatriotic. In the Leftist universe, being a victim is a claim to moral superiority, so there is a tendency to invent victimization. They claim they are being accused of being unpatriotic, when they are mainly criticized for being wrong.

Patriotism is wanting your country to succeed. What constitutes "success" and how it ought to be achieved are always properly debatable. Fiorini's comments about Obama referenced only the wisdom of criticizing the US on an international tour. It is debatable whether it is wise or unwise, but it was not an attack on Obama's patriotism. The article claimed it was such an attack, but there was nothing in the clip going beyond criticizing it as unwise. (My opinion is that it was inconsequential.) However, the Leftist article used "unpatriotic" specifically to describe opponents.

Con cites the Constitution as having no mandate to teach patriotism. The idea of the Constitution is to define limits on what government is allowed to do, not to mandate what it must do. If it isn't forbidden, it is left to state laws. Con cited a Wikipedia article on Paine to support the idea that patriotism ought not be taught. I could find nothing in the article supporting the notion.

In citing Nazi indoctrination, Con is confusing a form of blind nationalism with patriotism. If Germans had more patriotic concern with the future of Germany they might have avoided Nazism. If Con wanted to dispute my definition of patriotism in favor of one that advocated blind nationalism, that should have been done directly in the first round. I have consistently advocated teaching patriotism solely, as Con phrased it, "to understand, support and respect their country by displaying national pride and the benefits of civic involvement."

I think Con failed to appreciate the definition of patriotism stated in my debate challenge. Con wanted to argue against public schools indoctrinating students to always obey the government. That would have been an easy debate to win, but it was not what was posed. Patriotism was defined in terms of "love of country" not obedience to country. The main teaching of patriotism is, and should continue to be, by parents and social institutions, not schools. Love of country is a positive value that should be taught and encouraged.

The resolution is affirmed.
Lexicaholic

Con

Pro attempts to argue that taught and encouraged should be retroactively construed to mean one and the same thing for the purposes of his resolution. If this is true, then the use of both taught and encouraged in the resolution is an example of superfluous verbiage. It is a standard rule of logical construction that there are no superfluous words. [1] Therefore, even if "90% of the time it is impossible to distinguish teaching from encouraging" this is one time that falls within the 10%. "Taught" can not equal "encouraged" for the purposes of this resolution.

When determining the different meaning of similar words, one must turn to the differences between the words to define them. [2] In this case, the difference between teach and encourage is that one word suggests instructed action and the other suggests recommended action. [3] It is the difference between a command and a request. My opponent has even admitted as much by stating the need to "instill" patriotism. Therefore, in this debate, Pro has posited that one should both instruct in and recommend concern and caring for the status and future of one's country.

To instruct in patriotism, one must define patriotic actions. One can not beam one's values magically into another person. My opponent argues that most of the "teaching of values to children is by example." No. Most children are not instructed by example, but learn from example. [4] Learning can take place separate from instruction. If I observe an apple falling enough times after I toss it into the air, I can learn that, with rare exception, ‘what goes up must come down.' The apple doesn't teach me that, I comprehend it on my own. If I observe that the actions of patriots prevent my family from being subjected to tyranny, I can learn the value of patriotism. Nothing is directing me towards that end other than a rational evaluation of my experience.

Because some actions must be expected of others to conform to an outward display of patriotism that is instructive, teaching of patriotism, as it must be understood in this debate, is a form of "indoctrination." One must provide others a ‘proper' display of behavior that they can emulate, and inform them that they must follow it, in order to "teach", because for "teaching" to not be "encouraging" it must be instructive.

In order to instruct others in patriotism, you must direct them towards actions that are right and, by inverse implication, determine for them actions that are wrong. To do anything less would only be encouraging. If "love of country" is instructed/"instilled"/taught collectively rather than developed individually the result can be nationalism, or jingoism rather than patriotism, which can be either divisive or fascist. Therefore, within a reasonable construction of the resolution, teaching patriotism may lead to divisiveness or fascism.

My opponent argues that I should not be concerned over divisiveness where such concerns keep people from valuing patriotism. I have already shown how people are not kept from valuing patriotism even if they are not taught patriotism. They can still learn to appreciate patriotism by experience and application of reason. Therefore, my opponent is urging me to risk divisiveness and fascism where a better option exists. It is not a virtue to take the bad with the good when the good alone could be had. It is foolishness. Vote Con.

To briefly address some other points made by my opponent:

My opponent agrees with me that "[t]he idea of the Constitution is to define limits on what government is allowed to do, not to mandate what it must do." I am glad I have convinced him that he was wrong in stating "in the U.S., the Constitution, determine[s] the patriotic observances government institutions may present." Unless he was discussing limitations, in which case, why even bring the Constitution up, seeing as how the Constitution poses no limitations on patriotism? If he means limitations on governmental action that is akin to arguing that an atmosphere keeps me from flying to the moon. I can only fly in the first place because the existence of the atmosphere allows lift to take place. The government only has power to any extent because its powers are enumerated in the Constitution and allowed by the people. What nonsense is this that a thing may act without that which allows the action to exist?

My opponent argues that "[i]f Con's argument were correct then we ought not teach the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the system of checks and balances, or even that democracy has advantages over monarchy." Because the first three items cited are tools of maintaining law and order in a democratic society, feel free to instruct them in the use of such tools by society. Similarly, I would readily instruct my nephew in how a hammer may be used to pound in a nail. I would do this because there is an obvious right way of a hammer hitting a nail, as there are obvious limitations on proper government action, by virtue of the instrument used in either case. As for the advantages of democracy over monarchy, you need merely show examples of what democracy provides relative to monarchy in a historical context. They'll get the picture. There is no need to instill in them democratic ideals.

I cited the Wikipedia article on Paine to illustrate how a patriot can believe that ideals exist outside of governance and give rise to its necessity, rather than to believe that ideals are allowed at the caprice of government, or promoted by it. I never said that Paine said that patriotism should not be taught. You've taken this entirely out of context.

"… the Leftist article used "unpatriotic" specifically to describe opponents." Apparently I do need to go around pinning a sign that reads ‘tree' on trees for my opponent to recognize them. Using a symbol (the word patriotic) is unnecessary if the content you are describing (love for one's country, or, in this case, a lack thereof) is understood in context.

I don't care about whether a "democratic majority" allows something or not. A democratic majority isn't always right. We're discussing whether or not someone ought to teach and encourage patriotism, not whether or not people can do it legally or in keeping with tradition. This is an argument for whether or not the consequences of the resolution lead to better or worse results, not whether or not we can get away with it.

I would get into the debate about my wild tangent, but my tendency to play the victim might not be conducive to a rational response. (Please catch the irony).

[1] http://books.google.com...
And
[2]
http://www.isi.edu...
Though this debate wasn't merely semantics, a basic understanding of word choice in sentence construction is necessary to argue any resolution without indefiniteness. We can't run on each others' differing definitions of 'taught' forever.
[3] http://www.merriam-webster.com... vs http://www.merriam-webster.com... remove all references to encouragement from teach, and all structures similar or related to encouragement, such as stimulate, which negates experience (experiential development is a consequence of stimulation). You are left with guide or instruct or impart knowledge, (direct knowledge, not by example, as that is experiential)
[4] http://www.merriam-webster.com... excluding instruction. Note one can learn by being taught, but that is irrelevant to this debate, because the other forms of learning are being used as alternatives to instruction that take place under a system of encouragement, not as an exclusion of instruction as a definitional form conducive to learning.
Debate Round No. 3
21 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Lexicaholic 7 years ago
Lexicaholic
Thanks bluefreedom!
Posted by bluefreedom23 7 years ago
bluefreedom23
I also found the line between encouraging and teaching to fairly ambiguous in this debate. Also, I have to say this topic struck me as a very American one... at least from the point of view of this observer north of the border. :-)

The dilemma here was that "patriotism" is a subjective concept... a point that both sides recognized. At first glance the idea of patriotism is lovely, but only of course if you're walking with the prevailing political or social winds at your back. If you're against the majority's version of national "success" then to be patriotic would be to strive against the wishes of the majority of your population. I'm always uneasy with patriotism because it is a close cousin to nationalism, a point I believe Roy may have dismissed too quickly. As for the idea of "love of country", again I think on the surface this sounds great... how could anyone be against that? You can say "love of country" does not equate to "blind obedience", but I feel many times history has shown that to be the case.

Ultimately the debate could have been improved with better prior definitions... something I have been guilty of myself before. Without the teaching vs. encouragement controversy the debate could have been more stimulating. I agreed with Con before and after. Conduct: equal. Spelling: Con. Arguments: Con. Sources: Equal.
Posted by Lexicaholic 7 years ago
Lexicaholic
Thanks for commenting Alto!
Posted by alto2osu 7 years ago
alto2osu
RFD: decent debate, gentlemen :) There was a bit of "ships passing in the night" syndrome, which shadowed the debate's key arguments. I think that the gist of the problem was that Pro didn't establish who was doing the teaching in the first round. Either assumption is equally plausible (parents vs. schools), hence that distinction should have been made in RD 1. Otherwise, it's Con's pick. I think Con should have focused strongly on this issue, as it really makes or breaks the debate.

As for that central argument, I think that the key for Con is distinguishing teaching and encouraging (they really can be, connotatively, different things) & then pointing out why teaching patriotism, in any capacity, is bad. Funnily enough, as Pro, I would have answered this argument with parental rights. We can teach our kids to be bigots, but not patriots, etc. I wish that this central argument had been debated more.

As for my vote:
Before: Con
After: Tied (I find that neither side has a smoking gun, here)
Conduct: Tied
Sp/Gr: Tied
Arguments: Pro (only because Con has some lack of clarity at times...places where I have to read sentences a few times over to figure out what he's trying to say :) )
Sources: Tied

Nicely done.
Posted by Lexicaholic 7 years ago
Lexicaholic
If you hate the country and are capable of leaving, then you should do so. Then you will be happier and the people who love the country will be happier as well.

Agreed.

"North Koreans, for example, should want their country to be improved by getting rid of Kim."

They should, but they've had it beaten into them since school age that they need to love their country, and that loving their country means loving their government. That's essentially the gist of my final argument. What starts off as patriotism, if instilled instead of developed by experience, can become nationalism. Not that patriotism = nationalism from the get go. Because a possibly very detrimental effect would occur if we instilled patriotism (the development of nationalism), I argued that patriotism should be learned through experience and reinforcement rather than taught (because this does not lead to nationalism). If you look through the final argument, you'll see that reflected in "my good with the bad" point. It's not that patriotism is bad or nationalism, but that one crazy person's idea of patriotism could become the basis of a new nationalism for the next generation.
Posted by Lexicaholic 7 years ago
Lexicaholic
"Lex, There is no rule or convention I know of on voting for oneself. Sometimes foreign debaters cannot vote due to the cell phone verification thing, so I wouldn't vote in those. I suggest you go ahead and vote for yourself according to how you evaluated your performance. For example, I thought "references" was a tie."

Fair enough. I'm still rating myself as winning, but obviously not by much. Good debate.
Posted by RoyLatham 7 years ago
RoyLatham
I made the definition of patriotism clearly distinct from nationalism. That definition was accepted, yet in the comments and later arguments, the common claim is that they the same thing. It expected that to be argued in the debate, but it was not.

People start out in some country without any choice about the country. Their initial choice is to care about the country, be indifferent, or hate their country. We are better off caring about their country. North Koreans, for example, should want their country to be improved by getting rid of Kim. They shouldn't be indifferent, nor should they want China to take over.

If you hate the country and are capable of leaving, then you should do so. Then you will be happier and the people who love the country will be happier as well.
Posted by RoyLatham 7 years ago
RoyLatham
Lex, There is no rule or convention I know of on voting for oneself. Sometimes foreign debaters cannot vote due to the cell phone verification thing, so I wouldn't vote in those. I suggest you go ahead and vote for yourself according to how you evaluated your performance. For example, I thought "references" was a tie.
Posted by Lexicaholic 7 years ago
Lexicaholic
@ Jagnatz I kind of agree with you, in that I think a country is as much its ideals and its institutions, and that where its institutions fail to meet its ideals the institutions (the country's government, in the case of the US) deserves to be taken to task. That's not to say you can't love your nation and still not support your government at the same time. I'm a proud American, but sometimes Americans leading other Americans do stupid things.
Posted by Jagnatz 7 years ago
Jagnatz
Patriotism for one's country is not something which is supposed to automatic, but it is something which is supposed to be earned. A country which is not a good country deserves no respect or appreciation whatsoever.
6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by bluefreedom23 7 years ago
bluefreedom23
RoyLathamLexicaholicTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Vote Placed by Rayne_DiFiore 7 years ago
Rayne_DiFiore
RoyLathamLexicaholicTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Vote Placed by alto2osu 7 years ago
alto2osu
RoyLathamLexicaholicTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:30 
Vote Placed by JBlake 7 years ago
JBlake
RoyLathamLexicaholicTied
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:-Vote Checkmark-2 points
Total points awarded:07 
Vote Placed by Lexicaholic 7 years ago
Lexicaholic
RoyLathamLexicaholicTied
Agreed with before the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Agreed with after the debate:-Vote Checkmark-0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Vote Placed by RoyLatham 7 years ago
RoyLatham
RoyLathamLexicaholicTied
Agreed with before the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Agreed with after the debate:Vote Checkmark--0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:Vote Checkmark--3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:40