The Instigator
thp078
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
TolerantSpirit
Con (against)
Winning
8 Points

Raising children with religious beliefs violates the idea of religious freedom.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
TolerantSpirit
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/17/2013 Category: Society
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,254 times Debate No: 30352
Debate Rounds (1)
Comments (1)
Votes (2)

 

thp078

Pro

For the majority of parents, raising a child to share the parents' religious beliefs is something that they feel compelled to do. However, because most children are very impressionable and are easily swayed into believing things, it is an unfair tactic in converting someone to one's religion.

Furthermore, because parents have the freedom to punish their children for not believing in what they were told to, the choice in the matter is eliminated, thus taking out the freedom from religious freedom.

It has commonly been argued that taking one's child to one's place of worship is "exposure" rather than "brainwashing." However, it is actually the inverse that is true the majority of the time because many parents will take their children to only their place of worship. This would be comparable to a parent offering his or her child any flavor of ice cream displayed on a table, but only having chocolate displayed. The child in this situation is forced into the only choice displayed, but not the only choice available as there is a myriad of other ice cream flavors in existence. The parents simply chose not to put them out because he or she only likes chocolate and wants his or her daughter to like only chocolate. This analogy clearly demonstrates how introducing a child to only one religion is not exposure, it is a method of brainwashing chosen by the parent as a means of forcing the child to believe what they want the child to believe.

Children are very impressionable and are easily led astray into believing what they want to be real, rather than what is real. It is for this reason that the belief in Santa Claus has grown into an international, cultural phenomenon. Taking advantage of this piece of child psychology in order to have the child become a believer in the religion that the parent wishes their child to support does not present a choice to the child, as the child will spend far less, if any, judging what they were told as being true or false. Because this does not present a choice, it does not allow for religious freedom to be exercised.

Because children often learn about religion earlier than they learn about science and how to determine if something is physically possible or not, the parents plants a seed of religious belief in the child's mind that is not tested by science until the child learns of how to utilize it properly. But despite the child eventually gaining access to the knowledge of science and how logic works, it is because the religious beliefs are taught first that make the person so resistant to questioning the beliefs they were taught as children. This is an unfair tactic as science is the more accurate tool is discovering how the world functions. If the child were taught science first, and then the religious beliefs, he or she would most likely not believe the religion that they were told to believe is true. Because the parents attempt to eliminate the possibility for the child to doubt the religion, they also attempt to eliminate the possibility for the child to change the child's religious affiliation. The lack of possibility to change is the lack to choose. I lack the possibility to change whether or not it rains tomorrow therefore I lack the ability to choose as to whether or not it will rain tomorrow or not. Because the parents attempt to eliminate the choice, they attempt to eliminate the child's freedom in choosing his or religious beliefs, or even lack thereof.
TolerantSpirit

Con

First of all, one must ask themselves "what is religious freedom?" The answer actually lies in the question itself. It is the freedom to question any and all religion freely, regardless of whether or not one has one. Another point to realise is that is largely applies to those over the age of consent in the first place, as does the freedom to drink, smoke, have pre-marital sex and many other responsibilities that have an age which generally varies from 15-21 depending on country.

Until this age of a person's life, they (in the society that they exist) are essentially children (ironically an 18 year old who has sex with a 17 year old the day before their 18th birthday is an official pedophile). In the same way, until this age the right to true freedom of religion isn't valid. Whilst there are laws, in many nations, preventing and restricting the extent of punishment and abuse a child can receive for breaking family values, within these restrictions one can indeed deliver punishment so unjust to any atheist. Nonetheless, these extremist people are the problem themselves, they are not simply raising their children with religion but instead raising them with fear and abuse, which is wrong even for an atheist parent to commit. Thus, the nature of upbringing and the fact that it is religious are clearly two completely separated matters, don't forget that by abusing one's child there is a clear violation of the very principle of all religions; morality. There is clear immorality in beating one's child and if one is too delusional to see this then they are no better than the suicide bombers of London who squealed "Allah!" while acting against the very book supposed to be his word, whereby it is clearly stated that suicide, as well as murder, are sins and all sins lead to hell.

The line of attack that by raising a child with a story of someone such as Santa Claus one is subjecting them to brainwashing is ridiculous. Not ridiculous because it's inherently flawed logically but rather that almost all works of fantasy will remain instilled in a child's mind, whether it's the fairy tales they are read to by their mother as they sleep, or the cartoons that we so willingly let them view on television. Children are sponges to any and all ideas and sources of information and one could just as easily raise a militant anti theist as much as a militant Muslim but this is why it is important to realise that up until the official age of consent (globally considered to be 18) one is not fully ready to 'choose' anything (consent is the full capability of one to choose something).

It is thus irrefutable that the freedom of a parent to raise their child with a code of morality, whether by religion or by secular humanism, is inevitably the exact same act theoretically and that both an atheist and a theistic parent can raise their child in an abusive manner, meaning religion clearly is independent of this matter.

This leaves one with the final question: Is it right to raise a child with any religion at all? Clearly if one disagrees, they'd be opposing the view of religious freedom and clearly the right to raise a child religion and religious freedom itself indefinitely coincide.
Debate Round No. 1
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by WellingtonThomas 4 years ago
WellingtonThomas
Pssst, pro: Everyone can discipline. And anyone can present their child with information. Religious folk and atheists alike generally can be pretty easily accused of upraising their children in a biased fashion. That said, it's easier to give an unbiased upbringing from an appropriate viewpoint (Buddhism, a portion of the atheist community, etc). Also, first few years of a kids life are the most influential on the rest of their life, irregardless of what age religious freedom is appropriate.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Milliarde 4 years ago
Milliarde
thp078TolerantSpiritTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro never actually showed how raising children with religious beliefs violates anything. Instead, he made lots of circular arguments and various anti-religion statements as if science and religion are incompatible, which was completely irrelevant to the debate at hand.
Vote Placed by wolfman4711 4 years ago
wolfman4711
thp078TolerantSpiritTied
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Cons argument was much better than his opponent due to the fact tha pro never managed to prove how teaching religion violates religious freedoms.