The Instigator
beem0r
Pro (for)
Losing
26 Points
The Contender
dvhoose
Con (against)
Winning
33 Points

Resolved: Affirmative action should be practiced in college admissions.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 3/9/2009 Category: Education
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,336 times Debate No: 7316
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (14)
Votes (9)

 

beem0r

Pro

I stand in affirmation of the resolution. Resolved: Affirmative action should be practiced in college admissions.

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DEFINITIONS
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D1: Affirmative action (heretoforth referred to as AA): action favouring those who tend to suffer from discrimination. [1]

[1]Oxford Dictionary, http://www.askoxford.com...

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OBSERVATIONS
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O1: To affirm the resolution, PRO need not show that AA should be practiced in ALL college admissions. If it should be practiced in any considerable group of college admissions, then the resolution is affirmed.

O2: To affirm the resolution, PRO need not support a specific implementation of AA - PRO is free to choose to support any implementation that fulfills the resolution.

O3: AA does not refer to any specific groups of people, it simply refers to people who tend to suffer from discrimination. If a person does not suffer from discrimination, AA cannot be given to that person.

O4: If by the end of this debate there is at least one resolutional advocacy that has not been negated, then the resolution is affirmed. CON's burden will be to negate every resolutional contention PRO brings up, where PRO is required merely to have one undefeated argument that affirms the resolution.

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CONTENTIONS
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C1: AA PROMOTES EQUALITY OF OPPORTUNITY. As noted in D1, affirmative action applies only to those who "tend to suffer from discrimination." People who "tend to be discriminated against" tend to have opportunities taken from them. Therefore, in the interest of everyone having equal opportunities, AA seems like a balancing factor.
In fact, the extent to which this implementation of AA gives extra opportunities can be directly balanced against the amount of opportunity that person has had unfairly taken from them due to discrimination. In this sense, it is like a type of 'reverse' discrimination, the equal and opposite force necessary to put a person's opportunity equation back into equilibrium.

=
I reserve the right to add another contention or two next round. This is not an abusive tactic, since I have not and will not be flooding my opponent with more arguments than he can realistically argue against in 8000 characters.

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I look forward to the debate, and I wish my opponent good luck.
dvhoose

Con

I stand in negation of the resolution. Resolved: Affirmative action should be practiced in college admissions.

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DEFINITIONS
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I'll agree with the definition presented, however I'd like the focus to be more on racial affirmative action...

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OBSERVATIONS
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O1: To negate the resolution, CON need not show that AA should be practiced in ALL college admissions. If it should not be practiced in a majority of college admission, then the resolution is negated.

O2: I'll agree with O2 adding that PRO cannot simply support an implementation that would allow a negligible number of students in college... In other words, no comparative advantage cases.

O3: I'll agree with O3 as well.

O4: I completely disagree with O4. I ask that the judges look at the round as a whole and if need be, actually create a flow. PRO has to prove AA should be practiced, CON has to prove that AA shouldn't be practiced, and dropped arguments should be irrelevant as far as your decision. I assume that the points made by both sides will be substantial and thus dropping one would concede a very important point, but to auto-loss CON for dropping one argument is irrational (however I don't plan on dropping an argument...)

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CONTENTIONS (re: means refutation)
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re: C1: "An eye for an eye leaves the whole world blind." And that's essentially what AA does. AA actually worsens discrimination because it devalues the meaning of being at college for a minority. Imagine, if you will, a little scenario. Two minorities (just because racial is the most obvious form of AA) are talking to each other on a college campus. Person one got into said college because they graduated with a 4.2 GPA, got a 36 on their ACT, was throughly involved in their school and community, and they were an all around good citizen. Person 2, however, got into said college simply because they were a minority... now because this is true, those on campus think all the people of this race got into said college simply because of skin color and discrimination increases, not decreases

C2: AA HURTS THOSE IT AIMS TO HELP. If a school practiced AA, that fact would, without fail, reach the ears of the public. Those who are accepted simply because they qualify for AA help would lose all value of their degree, regardless of actual ability. Sticking with the minority theme, say a minority decides they want to be a doctor. They apply at a college, where they're accepted under an AA policy. They make it through college, maybe not with flying colors, but well enough to get through. Now, this person is in debt from student loans and thus doesn't have the money to open a practice. They decide to join a practice with someone, but no one will hire them. Why? Well, they only got into medical school because they qualified for AA benefits. Otherwise, they'd have never been in medical school and consequently never would have become a doctor.

C3: ACCEPTING PEOPLE FOR THE SAKE OF ACCEPTING PEOPLE IS WRONG. America is a country based on ingenuity. Take away that ingenuity, and you've got another subservient country. Each college can only accept so many people. When we start reserving spots for those who may not be worthy, at the expense of those who are worthy, we detract from American ingenuity and become a country that simply manufactures the products others designed. What happens when those products become worthless? That's right... unemployment, which worsens the economy. We need those ingenious people to create new ideas and products to ensure our country prospers for generations to come.
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I'm fine with new contentions and I agree it's not abusive as long as you don't at an overwhelming number of contentions. As long as it realistically fits in my character limit, it's fine.

I, as well, look forward to the debate, and my best regards to my opponent as well.
Debate Round No. 1
beem0r

Pro

beem0r forfeited this round.
dvhoose

Con

Go ahead and extend case. I have nothing further to add at this point, so i'll use this round to reiterate my arguments.

C1: AA is just reverse discrimination. It's not just to attempt to correct the past by punishing the present. Minorities have faced discrimination in the past, I don't think anyone can deny that, but it's against America to favor anyone over anyone. This makes it against America to practice AA. "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal." When you value minorities over the majority, you destroy that equal creation. We need to stop living in the past. Yes, we've all done some bad things in the past, but reversing the roles today won't help anything, and as later contentions prove, it makes things worse.

C2: By practicing AA, you destroy any meaning of its accomplishments. Instead of bringing to the publics eye just how competent minorities are, you create the image that they aren't good enough to get into college on their own, and they need government assistance. You essentially build yet another barrier to those who face discrimination.

C3: When you practice AA, you undoubtedly exclude some definitely worthy students. Colleges can only accept so many people, and when they have to reserve spots, you take up some of those spots. America is a country that has (since WWII) been recognized as a superpower. Slowly, we've been losing this spot, and having ingenuity is a huge factor. By excluding these ingenious people out of the college of their choice, you destroy this ingenuity and the whole country suffers as a result.

As I said in the comments section, I don't mind if my opponent posts a new argument or two in the final round. Once again, as long as it realistically fits in the character limit, it's cool.

I look forward to the response from my opponent and wish them the best of luck
Debate Round No. 2
beem0r

Pro

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OBSERVATIONS
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Re: CON's 01: If we are to take the resolution as meaning what it says it does, then PRO must only show that it is should be practiced at all, and con must show that it should not be practiced at all.

Compare this to saying "Scientists should research a cure for AIDS" or "Scientists should not research a cure for AIDS"
In the first statement, it's obvious that we're not talking saying that every scientist should research AIDS, or even that the majority should. IT simply means that some subset of 'scientists' should research a cure for AIDS, whether that is two scientists or a thousand.
And the second statement obviously means that no scientists should research a cure for AIDS.

In this same vein, PRO in this debate only need show that SOME college admissions should practice affirmative action, while CON must show that none should.

Not that it matters at all, since both myself and my opponent are using wide-scale arguments rather than targeting only a few specific colleges.

Re: CON's O4: I concede here. My opponent has pointed out that it does not matter how many points we drop, it only matters who has done a better job of convincing you that their side is correct.

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CONTENTIONS:
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I _CONCEDE_ a point my opponent has brought up - that AA in its current form is reverse discrimination, since it favors minorities over majorities. Instead of treating people equally, it discriminates against those who never used to be discriminated against in order to help those who did.

Allow me then to create the final contention of this debate.

C4: Given that AA in its current form is discrimination against majorities, removing this system would itself be a different implementation of AA.
From D1, AA is an action that favors those who tend to be discriminated against. In the status quo at colleges, majorities tend to be discriminated against, and removing this system would certainly be an act which favors those majorities with respect to the status quo. ("favors" as a verb means to work to the advantage of, and removing AA clearly works to majority groups' advantage, albeit much more fairly)

Let me explain just how significant this is.
With regard to the current implementation of AA, there are really only two ways to go.
First, we could keep it, meaning colleges would continue practicing the AA they currently practice.
Second, we could get rid of it or change it so it doesn't put majority groups at a relative disadvantage anymore, meaning colleges should practice AA in abolishing the current system.

And in fact, of the two main choices above, I'm not even going to tell you which one colleges should do - it doesn't matter. I have proven that colleges should, in one way or another, practice AA in college admissions. As far as this debate is concerned, ONE of the implementations I have given for AA MUST be what should happen. Thus, I have successfully affirmed the resolution - to negate it, my opponent would have to show that neither of these implementations of AA is what should happen, and something else should happen instead that cannot be classified as AA.

I'm not going to bother arguing against my opponent's contentions, since they're all arguments in favor of one of my own advocacies - stopping the current discriminatory system of AA.
dvhoose

Con

I thank my opponent for a quick response, and some good points. With that said, lets get to my final responses.

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OBSERVATIONS
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Re: O1- I'll agree with my opponent, this contention has been irrelevant because we both have debated the big picture

*All other observations were agreed upon by both, my opponent and I*

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CONTENTIONS
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My opponent concedes all three of my contentions, so flow those to the CON side.

Re: Contention 4- My opponent asserts that removing AA would be a form of AA in and of itself. This, however, is a flawed idea. We're simply returning to a system that's fair and balanced and offers everyone an equal shot. I assume my opponent thinks that by removing AA means the demographics of college campuses would change drastically. The are many, many competent people in every sector of our world. Throughout all races, classes, socio-economic levels, political affiliation, religious views, etc.

AA shouldn't exist at all. When you look at my answer to C1 and my C2 and C3, it's easily apparent that AA actually has a negative effect on our entire country. Getting rid of AA doesn't enforce any form of AA at all, and changing it is a bad idea because it still leads to the effects of C2 (de-valuing the worth of the degree earned by one favored under an AA policy) because someone still has to be favored. Anytime you favor someone, you exclude someone who might've gotten in without the AA policy, and this destroys ingenuity. Fixing it is not a option, and getting rid of AA would lead to several benefits (the avoidance of all the negative effects of all 3 contentions my opponent conceded).

To comply with my opponents requests ("...to negate it, my opponent would have to show that neither of these implementations of AA is what should happen, and something else should happen instead that cannot be classified as AA.") I've shown that abolition of AA should happen, and that it doesn't spark a different kind of AA, and that fixing it is an impossibility. To answer the third part, showing something else that should happen instead, I think a plan like the following should be implemented.

On college admissions forms, remove the race box. That should be irrelevant. Next, keep names secret (not trying to be stereotypical, but some names have obvious ethnic backgrounds, especially last names) and have a college admissions board choose, truly unbiased, based only on accomplishments, and in no way on race.

With that, I'll conclude my speech, and thus, this debate.

Thanks to my opponent, beem0r, for the debate, and a thanks in advance to the judges.
Debate Round No. 3
14 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by Sieben 6 years ago
Sieben
Yeah I didn't vote because of abuse. I voted off of the arguments you couldn't respond to. CON might be technically wrong that "race blindness" isn't AA, but he still says it, and you don't rebut it (because you can't, its in the last round).
Posted by beem0r 6 years ago
beem0r
CON should cry abuse about definitions even though PRO made the definitions clear before CON even accepted the debate?

Given that he accepted the definitions, shouldn't those definitions be used to judge the debate? And you seem to be saying that those definitions, while abusive, indicate a win for PRO. At least I think that's what you're saying. If they're abusive definitions in PRO's favor, how would CON's case be more convincing under those definitions?

I actually don't remember this debate at all, because it was over a year ago. And I didn't reread it, so I'm basically just going off what you said in your comment. I could be completely talking ex rectum here. Honestly, I'd probably refuse to vote PRO due to the round forfeiture.
Posted by Sieben 6 years ago
Sieben
Oh, but I didn't vote off abuse because CON didn't call it. You have to tell me how to vote.
Posted by Sieben 6 years ago
Sieben
First, let me say what should have happened:

Con needs to cry abuse. So loud. Pro has defined AA in a way that everything is AA, even going to a race-blind system. A system of entirely RANDOM ADMISSIONS would be AA for unqualified people. Etc... So there's no ground to argue the CON case, at which point CON needs to argue for linguistic pragmatism (we don't bother asserting tautologies, especially if they are confusing and don't imply anything, as in the case here).

What did happen:

Con weakly pointed out that race-blindness couldn't be AA because it was fair. Pro probably would have responded with his "advantage" definition of AA. If Pro had done this, I would have voted Pro since Con probably would not have cried abuse. But since Pro shoots himself in the foot by bringing up a new argument in his last round after forfeiting R2, any Pro strategy is out the window, and I vote con because there are arguments from con that pro did not respond to (since he couldn't... its the last round...)

I can also vote con on abuse, not only because of the overly broad definition of AA, but because he just dropped his whole damn opening case, which is abusive because it forces the opponent to waste time and energy on a bunch of frivolous arguments that he might not even be able to respond to in the first place. Its a "hit em with everything and see what works" strategy.

Its even more abusive still because it forces the opponent to commit to a certain tactical position, which can be used against them later. A real clear example might be what if you use utilitarian arguments in the opening, then turn around and use justice arguments later after your opponent commits to utilitarianism by trying to out-utility your arguments.
Posted by Amphibian 7 years ago
Amphibian
Affirmative Action is looting the public.
Posted by beem0r 7 years ago
beem0r
Mickey - both myself and my opponent ended up agreeing that whichever side did a better job convincing the judges that their side of the resolution is correct wins, no matter how many arguments we drop, etc.

And DV, as far as your point about all your arguments I dropped 'flowing' to your side: that's only true if the judges believe your counterargument to my C4. If they instead believe my C4, then all your other arguments actually advocate FOR AA, hence not 'flowing' to your side at all.
Posted by Mickeyrocks 7 years ago
Mickeyrocks
"One resolutional advocacy = affirmative ballot"

lolwut, hey let's be abusive, shall we? Con pointed that out, and asked us to flow the round.

exciting :D
Posted by beem0r 7 years ago
beem0r
Oh, didn't notice you already used it ;]
Posted by beem0r 7 years ago
beem0r
Logical - I tend to hold both debaters to the same standard, so if CON only has two rounds to introduce new arguments for his side, then so should PRO.

Maybe I'll violate that principle and let the judges decide how they feel about it, though.

Use this round how you see fit, dv.
Posted by dvhoose 7 years ago
dvhoose
yeah, if you wanna make a new argument in the last round it's fine... I might ask a couple questions in the comments section, though...
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Vote Placed by Sieben 6 years ago
Sieben
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