The Instigator
slayer54321
Pro (for)
Losing
36 Points
The Contender
beem0r
Con (against)
Winning
37 Points

Pro has a Heavier Burden Than Con When Debating on Debate.org if Pro Goes First in a Debate.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/7/2008 Category: Society
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,571 times Debate No: 4362
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (11)
Votes (19)

 

slayer54321

Pro

First I would like to clarify on two things

1.By "Heavier Burden", I mean more to argue
2.I realize I am Pro and that according to myself I will have to argue more than Con to prove myself

Now for my opening argument. Pro and Con have two different responsibilities as Pro and Con. Pro's duty is to prove his/her point by any means necessary. Con's duty is to Refute Pro's points, this does not mean proving the opposite of what Pro thinks/feels. Con has the ability to do this, but when only doing its duty and nothing more has a lighter burden than Pro. Pro also must refute Con's refutions in order not to render his/her own points obsolete and make it a point for Con.

This brings up a question. What if Pro decides to take the round off? Wouldn't that ease his/her burden? The answer to this question is no. It doesn't matter if Pro takes a round off or not, that does not change what Pro must do in order to win. If Pro takes a round off, chances are Pro will probably lose the debate. And the same goes for Con. Con is no different than Pro when both decide to skip a round. Neither' s burdens are eased nor made greater. This means that Pro's burden will stay the same, so will Con's, and so Pro still carries a heavier burden than Con.

I believe that this is all I can argue for now but that doesn't change the fact that I will refute my opponents refutions, as it is my duty as Pro in this debate.

Vote Pro
beem0r

Con

My burden is not solely to refute my opponent's points. Consider the following:

Resolution: Carrots are delicious
PRO: Carrots are delicious because the sky often appears to be blue.
CON: PRO's argument is a non sequitur: he has not shown why a blue sky means carrots are delicious, nor is there an apparent connection.

True enough, CON has refuted PRO's point above. However, he has failed to make any argument negating the resolution. Thus, if these were the ONLY arguments in a round, neither should win, since no one has convinced the audience as to the truth or falsehood of the statement "Carrots are delicious."

I agree that CON doesn't have to argue for the 'opposite' of the resolution, but he does have to argue for the 'negative' of it. Consider this very debate: I don not have to show that CON's burden is heavier than PRO's. I could very well simply argue for their burdens being equal, and the resolution would still be negated. However, at least on debate.org, each debater has his own position - CON has to do more than simply refute PRO's points, he also has to make points negating the resolution, just as PRO must affirm the resolution.

Let us first consider whether debate wording gives PRO an heavier burden. It would seem that based on this criteria alone, PRO has a heavier burden in THIS debate, since CON can argue that they're equal burdens as well as arguing that CON's is greater. However, every resolution has an equal and negative resolution. What I mean by this is as follows:

The resolution could be switched to make PRO stance the same as CON's currently is. For this debate, the resolution would be as follows:
"PRO's burden is less than or equal to CON's burden when debating on debate.org if PRO goes first."

That's what MY position right now is, but that position could just as easily be a PRO position. In this case, PRO has more ground to argue, since he can argue either less burden for PRO or equal burden for PRO and CON.

Therefore, the wording of the resolution cannot be said to cause PRO's burden to be heavier than CON's, since they are conceptually equal on this front.

Now, let us consider the actual format of a debate.org debate. This is the only other thing that could make PRO's burden heavier than CON's. We'll pretend we're talking about a 3-round debate here, since that's standard.

Round 1 PRO: PRO gets 8000 characters to make his own arguments.

Round 1 CON: CON must split 8000 characters between refuting PRO's points and making any points of his own.

Round 2 PRO: PRO Gets 8000 characters to refute CON's points and make new arguments.

Round 2 CON: CON gets 8000 characters to refute PRO's new points and make new points.

Round 3 PRO: PRO gets 8000 characters to either make new points, make new refutations, or simply make concluding statements.

Round 3 CON: CON must rebut any new points of PRO's [If pro made any], and can also make concluding statements in his 8000 characters.

So as we see, from round 1, PRO has the advantage, since he got a whole 8000 characters to make arguments for his side.

In round 2, their burdens are equal.

In round 3, PRO can choose to simply make no new arguments if his previous arguments suffice. This makes R3 nothing but concluding statements, which is equal for both sides. PRO can also make new arguments, in which case CON will have to rebut them, which is also an equal burden for both sides.

So as we see, if anyone has the advantage due to the debate structure, it's PRO. Which means a lighter burden for PRO.

And now, for a semantics argument. My opponent defines a heavier burden as "More to argue"

However, as we saw above, each member has 8,000 characters per round.
However, let's look at it in terms of how many things they each have to argue.

PRO makes as many points as he wishes in R1.
CON must argue against all these points in R1, as well as make new points to support his position.

So far, CON has argued more, since he's argued both his own points and PRO's points.

PRO must rebut CON's points in R2, and make any other new points.
CON must rebut all of the above that PRO gave, and possibly make even more points.

CON has still argued more.

PRO must either make no new points or make some new points/rebuttals in R3.
CON must argue against any new R3 points/rebuttals from PRO.

In R3, they argued the same amount of stuff. However, in the previous 2 rounds, CON argued more than PRO. And thus, CON is the one with the heavier burden than PRO, given that PRO goes first.

And obviously, as my opponent suggests, a forfeited round is irrelevant to what we're talking about, since forfeiture does not really meet the burdens each debater is supposed to have.

Ergo, I will allow my opponent to respond now.
Debate Round No. 1
slayer54321

Pro

Beem, i wanted to debate anyone but you (no offense).You sure have lots of examples in that argument, so i'll give you some of mine.

Here is how the rounds work in a standard 3 round argument when Pro goes first.
1A-Pro
1B-Con
2A-Pro
2B-Con
3A-Pro
3B-Con
I will give two scenarios that prove Pro has a bigger burden.

Scenario #1: Pro sets basic parameters of the debate during round 1A, and so loses a chance to give an opening point to support their position in the argument. This makes Pro's burden greater because it gives Con 3 chances to argue while Pro only gets 2.

Scenario #2: Pro goes first, which always happens (in the terms of this debate), and Con goes last. This means that Pro is not able to refute any of Con's final points, therefore making Pro's burden greater.

The second scenario, which always happens when Pro goes first (which is what we are debating about...) is always true in the terms of this debate. People reading this debate will feel more obliged to vote for Con because this is Pro's final argument, but not Con's. Therefore You don't have to sweat knowing that i have absolutely no chance of refuting your final points. So all Con has to do the last round is refute Pro's points, since Pro cannot make any more points after his last round (which is not the final round). This leaves Con with an advantage, making Pro's burden even bigger when he knows that the people are more likely to vote for Con than Pro.
----------------------------------------------------
Furthermore, Con does not have to make new points. Let me give you an example of why this is true.

Standard 3 Round Argument:
1A-Pro states his/her points for the topic
1B-Con refutes them
2A-Pro states more
2B-Con refutes them
3A-Pro states yet more
3B-Con refutes them

Meanwhile, Pro has to state more points, while all Con has to do is refute them, making Pro's burden heavier than Con's. In this debate, Con would win because all of Pro's points are refuted, making the Pro position on the topic obsolete and therefore the better choice would be Con.
-------------------------------------------------------

When Pro has to argue two things, like "Pizza is Lovable and delicious", this obviously gives Pro a far greater burden than Con because Con only has to refute Pro's points, as stated in the example above. Even if the debate is changed to "Pizza is not Lovable nor delicious", the scenario is still the same. Pro says something like "In a recent study shown here,(insert link to wikipedia.com), more than half the population does not find pizza to be delicious". Con would then say something like "Wikipedia is an unreliable source, rendering your point obsolete.". According to the example above, Con has won that round, and this kind of thing will go on until the final round when Con wins. And according to the example, this would raise the burden on Pro.
-------------------------------------------------------

For all who bothered to read all of that, I salute you. I urge you to vote for Pro, even though Con has the final word therefore raising my burden. Thank you for your time.
beem0r

Con

RE: Scenario #1:

That is PRO's choice, just as forfeiting a round is PRO's choice. You canbnot say PRO has a bigger burden simply because "PRO might decide to put a bigger burden on himself." Not that your example constituted a heavier burden, but I'll get to that later.

RE: Scenario #2:

My opponent argues that since CON gets the last word, this makes PRO have a heavier burden. This does not constitute a heavier burden [defined as "more to argue" in this debate, see PRO R1, as I pointed out last round].

Now let's look at this very debate more carefully, and show why it doesn't even follow this supposed rule.

My opponent made points in R1.
I responded to his R1 points, then made my own in my R1.
My opponent decided not to respond to the majority of my points, and simply went on making new points.
I am now responding to all his new points.

At the end of this, we'll have argued the same amount of stuff... except I've argued my R1 points, while my opponent hasn't. Thus, I've in fact argued MORE than my opponent in this debate, though it was by his own choice to not address my R1 arguments.

RE: "Con doesn't have to make new arguments"
In that debate, it's true enough that there is no reason to vote affirmative. There is also no reason to vote negative. No one in that hypothetical debate presented anything that should convince people one way or another. Let's look at a familiar scenario of mine to show this [twas in my R1, which wasn't addressed].

Resolution: Ice cream is good
PRO: Ice cream is good because lizards are reptiles
CON: That is faulty logic

In that debate, it is CON's job to NEGATE the resolution. That is to say, he must argue for the negative of it, in this case, "Ice cream is not good." Since the audience has no reason to be swayed to either side of the resolution, no one should bother voting.

CON must argue FOR the negative of the resolution. CON does not JUST have to address PRO's points. As shown above, refutation is not enough for negation, as CON still leaves plenty of room for ice cream to be good, making no argumesnts to show otherwise.

Next, my opponent makes the point that "What if the resolution tries to prove two things?"

Resolution: "Pizza is lovable AND delicious"
First, I'll say this was a poor example, since if a food is delicious, it's lovable.

Anyway, the negative position would be "Pizza is either not lovable, not delicious, or both."

Now let's return to a R1 point of mine.

Now we should consider the opposite and negative debate.

Resolution: "Pizza is either not lovable, not delicious, or both."
Now PRO's arguing for the exact same thing CON was, so we cannot say that PRO as a general rule has tougher wording to argue. Especially since PRO chooses the wording.

My opponent consistently attempted to argue that CON doesn't have to actually make any arguments. However, this is simply not true. The burden of proof lies on both individuals - whoever proves their side of the resolution will win.

Also, keep in mind the semantics argument from last round. Even if the debate was just PRO makes some points/CON refutes them, neither of them has more to argue, since CON must argue all of PRO's points. Even in this case, they argue the same amount of stuff. And my opponent himself defines a heavier burden as "more to argue."

I have indeed negated the resolution. My opponent failed to address the bulk of my R1. In this very debate, I have argued more points than my opponent. To prevent great injustice, vote CON.
Debate Round No. 2
11 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Protagoras 8 years ago
Protagoras
It is quite upsetting that the weaker argument wasn't proven stronger. Very upsetting. But I must admit that CON argued with an excellent sense of skepticism, impressive.
Posted by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
Looks like great injustice wasn't prevented.
Posted by KommanderWill 8 years ago
KommanderWill
Given the fact pro starts the debate, they should have an easier time. However, they must introduce the first arguement, which can be hard if you dont have any of your opponents points to counter.

Though pro introduces the arguements, con still can introduce counter-points.
Posted by bthr004 8 years ago
bthr004
I think the instigator in this debate was trying to use THIS debate to relay a point.
And I am saying that it makes no difference about the burden of pro or con,.. it depends on the topic and which stance pro or con are behind that will get the votes. The burden lies on whomever will be behind the most "shaky" subject.
Posted by beem0r 8 years ago
beem0r
That's usually only the case for debates people feel strongly about, i.e. abortion, etc. Not sure if people really feel all that strongly about PRO having a higher burden than CON on debate.org.
Posted by bthr004 8 years ago
bthr004
Whats the point nobody actually reads the debates anyway,... they already have their minds made up when they read the topic of debate!!
Posted by slayer54321 8 years ago
slayer54321
Name:Slayer

Status:Pwning
Posted by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
WHOA! I must be losing my eye sight. How did I miss that? :O
Posted by beem0r 8 years ago
beem0r
_if_ PRO goes first in the debate
Posted by Logical-Master 8 years ago
Logical-Master
Technically, the burden if about equal, but given the way votes are on this site, it is usually the contender (which by the way, is gonna make it easy for your opponent since you've merely said PRO and CON despite that the contender can be either) who has it easy given that the last word is the clincher for a lot of people.
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