The Instigator
monitor
Pro (for)
The Contender
dsjpk5
Con (against)

Political correctness is a good thing

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Debate Round Forfeited
monitor has forfeited round #3.
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Voting Style: Open Point System: Select Winner
Started: 3/25/2017 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 9 months ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 848 times Debate No: 101379
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (15)
Votes (0)

 

monitor

Pro

Voting

In this debate, I don't care about points. I only care that the person I'm debating is saying what they really feel. So, I am automatically forfeiting this debate, and all voters should VOTE CON unless they feel strongly that Con did not say what they really felt.

Rules

There are no special rules in this debate, other than saying what you really feel. It's first-come-first-serve for entering the debate. No rounds for acceptance. If there's a dispute about definitions we can work it out as we go. Oh, also, it's:
-5 rounds
-72 hours to argue
-10,000 characters max
-10 day voting period
-Select Winner voting

Debate Structure

Below I will put forward my R1 argument. Con can start their round how they want, either explaining why what they thought I said was wrong, or putting forward something else which they think is more convincing. Whatever they feel's best.

And thank you

to Con for the debate, and to any voters who vote.

R1: PRO's argument

  1. 1. When you want to buy something, 3 things should factor in to whether you buy it:
    1. 1. How much you want it
    2. 2. How much it costs
    3. 3. How much you want the person you're buying it from to have your money.
  2. 2. The person-you're-buying-it-from's beliefs should factor in to how much you want them to have your money.
  3. 3. This should inevitably lead to a PC culture, because:
    1. 1. People who have non-PC beliefs and are honest about them will suffer economically, and so their influence will be marginalized
    2. 2. People who lie about their non-PC beliefs may succeed economically, but whatever influence they attain will not spread their non-PC beliefs. It will spread their lies.
That's it. Hopefully the rounds will get longer as the sources of disagreement are narrowed in on.


dsjpk5

Con

I would like to thank Pro for creating this debate. This topic is very timely, and deserves to be discussed. I checked my opponent's profile, and was unable to determine his or her gender, so I will assume Pro is male since most members of this website are male. My apologies if I am mistaken in my assumption.

As my opponent mentioned, it's my choice how I want to proceed. As such, I've decided to make my own argument:

Political correctness is a bad thing and should be discouraged. This is the case for two main reasons:

1. It keeps us from building trust among those with whom we disagree. How can we ever trust someone who is hiding their honest opinions on a subject for fear of being labeled politically incorrect? [1]

2. Political correctness limits our ability to gain knowledge and ideas. If we're overly concerned how what we say or do will be perceived, we will tend to not speak freely, and therefore any discussion won't be advanced as far as it could be. This will lead to our ability to gain knowledge being limited. [2]

Finally, I accept my opponent's concession. I now turn it back over to Pro.

Sources:

1. http://www.huffingtonpost.com...

2. http://thelala.com...
Debate Round No. 1
monitor

Pro

R2: PRO
  1. 0. Summary of R2: PRO:
    1. In this round, I admit that there are many unpleasant outcomes with political correctness, such as the ones Con stated in R1. However, I state that I believe that these unpleasant outcomes are necessary outcomes of the principles I put forth in R1, which I don't think either should be or probably could be undone.
      1. (For ease of access, here they are copy-and-pasted below):
        1. 1. When you want to buy something, 3 things should factor in to whether you buy it:
          1. 1. How much you want it
          2. 2. How much it costs
          3. 3. How much you want the person you're buying it from to have your money.
        2. 2. The person-you're-buying-it-from's beliefs should factor in to how much you want them to have your money.
        3. 3. This should inevitably lead to a PC culture, because:
          1. 1. People who have non-PC beliefs and are honest about them will suffer economically, and so their influence will be marginalized
          2. 2. People who lie about their non-PC beliefs may succeed economically, but whatever influence they attain will not spread their non-PC beliefs. It will spread their lies.
  2. 1. The main argument
    1. Firstly, I completely agree with both of Con's points from R1.
      1. 1. ...That is, I completely agree that both:
        1. 1. trust and
        2. 2. intellectual diversity
      2. ...are stifled in a PC culture.
      3. 2. In addition to that, I believe that there are further problems with a PC culture, such as:
        1. 1. It creates a climate of fear
        2. 2. It makes speech more artificial
        3. 3. It allows less qualified people to advance and less qualified people to fall behind.
        4. 4. It creates a market for a thought police
        5. 5. It helps enforce an intellectual orthodoxy which deters any moral or scientific progress friom challenging it
        6. 6. It makes people have to waste time learning what is PC and what isn't, rather than spending their time trying to figure out what they think is right or true.
        7. 7. There will be fewer funny jokes in a PC culture
      1. ...plus I imagine a lot of other problems that I'm not thinking of.
      2. 3. However, despite all of these problems (including any I can't think of right now), I believe that they are a necessary consequence of the first 2 parts of my R1 argument, namely:
        1. 1. That whether you decide to buy something should include the consideration of who you're buying it from, and
        2. 2. A person's beliefs should factor in to whether you want to buy something from them.
      1. ...and that these 2 things are more important and more difficult to get rid of than any of the other problems alluded to above.
  3. 2. So, consider the 1st part, that:
    1. Who you buy something from should weigh in to your decision of whether you should buy something from them.
      1. 1. This seems to me like the biggest obstacle that someone who wants a non-PC culture has to overcome.
      2. 2. As I said in my R1:
        1. 1. When you want to buy something, 3 things should factor in to whether you buy it:
          1. 1. How much you want it
          2. 2. How much it costs
          3. 3. How much you want the person you're buying it from to have your money.
      3. 3. No one disagrees with the first 2 I think, and I don't think anybody would disagree with the 3rd if they really sat down and thought about it. For instance,
        1. 1. Most people imagine that they "lose money" when they "don't get their money's worth." For example,
          1. 1. If they "lose money" at a casino
          2. 2. If they get a defective product that they can't return
          3. 3. If they buy something that they thought they would like but it turns out they don't.
        2. 2. In all of these cases, however, I would argue that the money isn't really "lost," it's just "given" to somebody else. For example, suppose:
          1. 1. The casino that you lose money at is owned by Native Americans
          2. 2. The defective product that is bought but can't be returned is made by an impoverished tribe in Africa
          3. 3. The thing that you buy and think you will like but end up not liking is lemonade from a lemonade stand run by little kids
        3. 3. Now in all of these cases, someone might still be annoyed that they've given their money to someone and received little in return. That notwithstanding however, I don't think that in these circumstances they would say that their money had truly been "lost," just as they wouldn't say that it had been lost if they had given these people their money purely out of charity. Additionally, I don't think that they would say that it would have been an irrelevant consideration to factor in who would be getting their "lost" money in the event that things did not work out as they had intended, which is further confirmation that they agree with the principle in question, even if they aren't aware of it.
        4. 4. On top of this, I think that most people, myself included, wish that people in society paid more attention to who it is that they buy their products from, and that information about these people was more easily available. For example, I think most people (myself included on some of them) wish that people in society would give more consideration to:
          1. 1. Buying things made in America as opposed to made in China or elsewhere
          2. 2. Not buying things made from sweatshops or child labor.
          3. 3. Buying things made from their own community
          4. 4. Not buying things where animals are treated poorly (e.g. factory farms)
          5. 5. Not buying things from oppressive governments (e.g. the BDS movement for Israel)
          6. 6. Not buying things from people who don't engage in sustainable practices.
      4. 4. In summary of this section, I feel that this thing about:
        1. 1. Taking into consideration who it is you buy stuff from
      5. ...is the biggest obstacle for someone opposed to a PC culture to overcome, and that if people really think about it, that they would prefer that people in general paid more not less attention to who it is that they were getting their products from. On top of that, I think that they would further prefer that more information about the business practices and lifestyles of people selling stuff was more widely available, so that they could take in to consideration who it is that's selling whatever even more than they are now able to.
  4. 3. Now, consider the 2nd part, that is:
    1. You should consider a person's beliefs if you're considering whether you're going to buy something from them.
      1. 1. I think this point is much less controversial than the 1st part, and that once you accept that:
        1. 1. You should take into account who it is you buy stuff from,
      2. ...that the 2nd part, that:
        1. 2. A person's beliefs should be taken into account when you take into account who it is you're buying stuff from,
      3. ...follows naturally.
      4. 2. However, to try to diminish any controversy that still remains, I think there are 3 and only 3 good reasons for factoring someone's beliefs into your decision to buy from them, namely, because giving them money will greater enable them to either:
        1. 1. Spread their beliefs
        2. 2. Act out their beliefs or
        3. 3. Act out their character, which their beliefs are somewhat reflective of.
      5. 3. Now, obviously, minor disagreements about things with very little:
        1. 1. real-world application or
        2. 2. evidence of character
      6. ...should bear very little weight in determining whether you buy something from someone or not.
      7. 4. However, I think it's perfectly reasonable if someone disagrees with, for example:
        1. 1. Racists
        2. 2. Homophobes
        3. 3. Transphobes
        4. 4. Fundamentalists
        5. 5. Sociopaths
        6. 6. Sexists
        7. 7. Climate change deniers
        8. 8. Holocaust deniers
      8. ...to be hesitant about doing business with them, and that that hesitancy is based on 1 of the 3 things listed above, namely, because either you think that by doing business with them, you will will help them either:
        1. 1. spread their beliefs
        2. 2. act out their beliefs
        3. 3. act out the character which their beliefs are partially reflective of.
      9. 5. Once again, in summary of this section, I feel that once you accept the 1st part, that:
        1. 1. We should base our decision of what to buy on who it is that is selling what,
      10. ...that the second part of:
        1. 2. Factoring someone's beliefs into that
      11. ...is a reasonable thing to do, because of the 1 or more of the 3 reasons I gave above, namely, because buying something from someone better enables them to either:
        1. 1. Spread their beliefs
        2. 2. Act out their beliefs
        3. 3. Act out the character that the person's beliefs are partially reflective of.
  5. 4. Finally, as I stated in my R1, I think these 2 things inevitably lead to a PC culture, because:
    1. 1. People who have non-PC beliefs and are honest about them will suffer economically, and so their influence will be marginalized
    2. 2. People who lie about their non-PC beliefs may succeed economically, but whatever influence they attain will not spread their non-PC beliefs. It will spread their lies.
      1. 1. Once again, I admit that a PC culture has many undesirable features.
      2. 2. However, I can't see how someone can get rid of these features without getting rid of:
        1. 1. People factoring in who it is they're buying stuff from into their decision of what to buy, or
        2. 2. People factoring in people's beliefs into their decision of who it is that is most worthy of their spending money.
      3. 3. These 2 things I think are:
        1. 1. More fundamental
        2. 2. More important
        3. 3. More desirable and
        4. 4. Harder to get rid of
      4. ...than any list of negative consequences of a PC culture that can be put together.
      5. 4. For this reason and this reason alone, I think that a PC culture, despite all of its bad qualities, is the best we can hope for, given that I think that the more fundamental economic principles that I've put forth inevitably lead to those bad qualities.
  6. 5. Last last thing:
    1. It is on this point, namely, that:
      1. 1. You can't have a non-PC culture without violating the more fundamental principles of:
        1. 1. Being able to factor in to your decision of what to buy, who it is you're buying whatever from, and
        2. 2. Being able to use a person's beliefs in determining who you want to buy something from
    2. ...that I think this whole debate rests, and I hope in the next round, Con will either try to show:
      1. 1. That you can have a non-PC culture without violating the more fundamental principles listed above, or
      2. 2. That this whole debate does not rest on the above-stated point.
Thanks to dsjpk5 for accepting this debate.
dsjpk5

Con

I want to thank my opponent for his response.

After presenting my main arguments last round, I will now take this opportunity to rebut my opponent's arguments.

REBUTTALS

First, with all due respect, I want to remind my opponent that he's supposed to be arguing why he believes being politically correct (PC) "is a good thing"." So far, he seems to be arguing mainly that being PC is inevitable." That's not the same thing." Whether or not some phenomenon is inevitable is irrelevant to the question "Is it good?"" In my opinion, when he argues from this line of reasoning, he's getting off track.

"Unpleasant Outcomes"

In my opponent's most recent round he unexpectedly conceded that political correctness results in "unpleasant outcomes"." Not only did he agree with my arguments, he added a few more- creates a climate of fear, allows less qualified people to advance past more qualified people, etc." With this in mind, I have to ask, does a "good thing" bring about unpleasant outcomes, or pleasant outcomes?" I submit to anyone reading this that if being PC was "a good thing", it would produce pleasant outcomes, not a bunch of unpleasant ones.

Lost vs. Given Away

Pro tries to argue that when you regret buying something, you haven't really lost money if it went to certain individuals (Native Americans for example), but rather have simply given it away (like a charitable contribution)." There's only one problem with this argument, Pro didn't provide any argument why losing money to certain people is ok." Why should we take solace into losing money to Native American store owners??? My opponent doesn't explain why, so I suggest we reject his notion as the baseless claim that it is." Comparing it to charity is fallacious because charitable contributions are done on purpose." If the money is not given away intentionally, that's not charity, it's confiscation.

With this in mind, I assert there's no reason why one should consider the seller's beliefs when making a purchase." The only thing I recommend considering when making a purchase is how does this purchase affect me?" Let the sweatshop kids fend for themselves." This philosophical approach is called Rational Egoism.

Rational Egoism

This approach to life was first described by acclaimed author Ayn Rand." She held it was both immoral and irrational not to work only in one's best interest." In her own words, "Do not hide behind such superficialities as whether you should or should not give a dime to a beggar. This is not the issue. The issue is whether you do or do not have the right to exist without giving him that dime. The issue is whether you must keep buying your life, dime by dime, from any beggar who might choose to approach you. The issue is whether the need of others is the first mortgage on your life and the moral purpose of your existence. The issue is whether man is to be regarded as a sacrificial animal. Any man of self-esteem will answer: No." [3]

So, according to this approach, being politically correct is a waste of time at best, and an irrational, immoral act at worst." I would submit to anyone reading this that it's the best worldview to employ, especially when it comes to spending your money.

List of People

Finally, Pro argues he thinks it's perfectly fine to refuse to buy products and services from certain groups of people." He listed people like racists, Nazis, fundamentalists, etc, but he never offered an argument as to why." Again, I suggest we reject this argument as the baseless claim that it is, and only consider how the purchase affects oneself because it's the only rational approach." Any other approach eventually makes you a slave to the whims of others.

Back over to you, Pro!

Sources:

3. Ayn Rand, "Faith and Force: Destroyers of the Modern World," Philosophy: Who Needs it, 1982, New American Library, p. 74.
Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
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Debate Round No. 4
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Debate Round No. 5
15 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by dsjpk5 9 months ago
dsjpk5
Well, it was fun while it lasted.
Posted by dsjpk5 9 months ago
dsjpk5
After re-reading my argument, I noticed all the random quotation marks. I didn't do that on purpose, and don't know how they got there. My apologies.
Posted by monitor 9 months ago
monitor
@dsjpk5: I anxiously await hearing why.
Posted by dsjpk5 9 months ago
dsjpk5
I just read your argument. It's a very interesting read, however I do disagree with some of your principles.
Posted by dsjpk5 9 months ago
dsjpk5
There's no real hurry. As long as you post it before the deadline, you're fine. I was just curious how it was progressing. I'm glad to hear it's coming right along. I look forward to reading it!
Posted by monitor 9 months ago
monitor
@dsjpk5: I can post it now if you want. I was planning on trying to improve the format of it over the next couple days, but if you want it now in a slightly clunkier form, it's ready.
Posted by dsjpk5 9 months ago
dsjpk5
I see you're online. How your next argument coming?
Posted by monitor 9 months ago
monitor
@Canis:

Do you believe that any words can be understood without a definition?
Posted by canis 9 months ago
canis
You have no definitions of anything...So nobody can realy know what you are talking about..Even you..Think about it.
Posted by monitor 9 months ago
monitor
@Canis:

...Not if you believe that some words can be understood without a definition, as I do.
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