The Instigator
a-little-in-the-middle
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
thenewkid
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

People are predisposed to be followers by nature.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/28/2015 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 549 times Debate No: 70828
Debate Rounds (4)
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a-little-in-the-middle

Pro

Hello! I am new to debating on this website and have been reading through many fantastic debates.
This particular topic is one I have been intrigued to debate.

There are many opinions out there that humans by nature were born to lead. I am on the contending end as I believe that we as individuals are predisposed to be followers. My opponent should be arguing the contrary.

I am not choosy about how my debates are conducted....all I ask for is....

a) Please allow round one to be for acceptance and clarifications ONLY!!

b) Be witty and smart by all means; but keep conduct professional or forfeit your conduct point!
thenewkid

Con

Ah yes, this is a very interesting topic and I look forward to debating it. I accept the challenge. I do however need some clarification as to the scope of your claim. When claiming human beings are by nature predisposed to be followers, does this include all human beings, or just most? In other words, is your claim that ALL human beings are predisposed to be followers and not leaders?
Debate Round No. 1
a-little-in-the-middle

Pro

I apologize for any confusion. I am going to be debating the point that in ALL cases, humans are predisposed to be followers. However, you are more than welcome to introduce any ideas that will add to the validity of the debate. Thank you for asking for the clarification! Good luck.

Humans by nature are programmed to be followers. Being a leader is something an individual must strive to achieve. Like many other abilities, leadership may come easy to some and hard for others but never is leadership abilities installed from birth.

POINT 1: From birth many of us have been following our parents religiously. Many of us catch ourselves doing things we remember our parents doing as a child such as crossing your arms a certain way or saying a certain line you picked up from them. This is seldom done on purpose but is more often than not, science. Babies are programmed to copy their parents movements and lifestyles for survival. This is how humans learn to walk, speak, and write. This is evidence that even from early childhood, humans are predisposed to be followers.

POINT 2: There are many examples through-out history (Ex. Nazi Germany, Japanese Internment Camps) where a large number of people committed heinous crimes and tormented their very own human brotherhood, simply because someone ordered them to. There is such thing as Stockholm syndrome where isolation and other factors cause people to become brainwashed by their captors; but this wasn't the case of Nazi Germany, considering thousands of casual citizens signed on to commit terrible atrocities without much incentive or threat of punishment at all. (Not saying this didn't happen of course!)

POINT 3: I would also like to point out two experiments that many people are aware of.

EXPERIMENT 1: The Milgrim experiment, conducted in 1963, demonstrated how people will go against their better judgement, regardless if it inflicted pain on another person, simply because an authority figure ordered it.

EXPERIMENT 2: Another experiment known as the Asch conformity experiment was conducted to show that habitual nature of humans to conform. A group of young gentlemen were gathered together in a room. They were presented with a poster of which a set of lines were drawn of different lengths. All but one of the test subjects were in on the experiment and were told to give a wrong answer when asked a question. When the test administrator asked each individual which of the lines were the longest, each one would intentionally give a wrong answer. Many times, once the administrator asked the real test subject, he would choose the wrong line (knowing it was wrong) to avoid being differentiated or socially out-casted from the group.

Humans by nature are indeed created to follow each other. Whether we like to admit it or not being a leader isn't something any person is born with. It is instead something that is learned through experiences.
thenewkid

Con

Thank you for the clarification! This is a very interesting question as I sated in round one. However, it is important to point out that the claim "Humans by nature are programmed to be followers," presents the relationship as dichotomous, when in fact it is not, the premise is actually a false dichotomy, when asserting a relationship between two variables as mutually exclusive. It simply cannot be the case that either human beings are pre programmed to be followers OR leaders. Conceptually, either one of these cases present very abstract and illogical. Take the first possibility; if all human beings were pre programmed to lead absolutely, we are presented with very perplexing ideas, contradicting not only themselves, but also conceptions in modern day science, economics, business, politics ect. Now in the second case, and my opponents argument; human beings are pre programmed to be followers absolutely, we again are left with very perplexing ideas on all the same issues above, but on the opposite extreme. Now i certainly do not want to misconstrue my opponents argument, as she states in her opening argument " Being a leader is something an individual must strive to achieve." My opponent is clearly aware of the possibility of one to become a leader in experience; however, in the very next sentence claims "Like many other abilities, leadership may come easy to some and hard for others but never is leadership abilities installed from birth," clearly distinguishing that one, and never the other may happen a priori (again, I am aware that this may not be the claim, but I felt it was necessary to display the chaos that a claim such as this would produce). This is where the false dichotomy appears, and which the three points listed as examples are supposed to profess. Rather than object to each point individually, I will argue that they are irrelevant to the argument based upon the fallacious premise they are asserted to prove.

All three examples provided suffer from the same deficiency; that is, in both cases of the binary option, it is not only conceivable to imagine both limits of the choice, but more importantly, there is now very strong evidence linking the genetic makeup a child receives to their tendency, or likelihood to be able to achieve what society defines as "leadership" traits. ""We have identified a genotype, called rs4950, which appears to be associated with the passing of leadership ability down through generations," said lead author Dr Jan-Emmanuel De Neve (UCL School of Public Policy). "The conventional wisdom " that leadership is a skill " remains largely true, but we show it is also, in part, a genetic trait" (http://www.ucl.ac.uk...). If you examine the article, it asserts that just because an individual receives the genotype "rs4950," their ability to take advantage of that skill by way of experience is of more importance.

After asserting the prominent scientific doubt surrounding old perceptions on the root of leadership tendencies, I will also present the unequal proportion of "resources" to these leadership skills. Just as a child that is bore to a wealthy family gains significant advantages in a variety of life domains, so too does a child that is born to a mother and a father who are at the top of their respective fields and its "leaders." The two may in fact be strongly correlated, with the total "resources" of the family one is born into being the independent variable, and the resulting leadership "exposure" being the dependent variable. If what I say is true, which I believe it is, then it may make less of a difference what an individuals genetic predisposition to follow or lead, but instead the "resources" he is exposed to. Either way, it appears that the moment a child is born, they have very little to say about how easy or hard one may have it, and thus making it a prior rather than a posteriori.

I look forward to my opponents objections to my observations so I can continue this inspection.
Debate Round No. 2
a-little-in-the-middle

Pro

a-little-in-the-middle forfeited this round.
thenewkid

Con

I rest my case.
Debate Round No. 3
a-little-in-the-middle

Pro

a-little-in-the-middle forfeited this round.
thenewkid

Con

thenewkid forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
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