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Samurai are better than Pirates

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/20/2011 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,227 times Debate No: 16055
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (10)
Votes (2)




Well you heard me, I said it. Samurai are better than swashbuckling pirates.

Alright then this is a debate exercise on whether or not Samurai or better than Pirates.

I will wait for my opponent to answer and rebuttal accordingly.


I thank Pro for putting forth this rather interesting debate.

Since Pro did not specify directly which areas we were debating whether or not Samurai were better than pirates I'm going to have to assume he meant in every reasonalbe aspect concievable.

I will argue that pirates are superior to samurai for these following reasons

1. Pirates are far superior to Samurai due to the fact that they have had significantly more felt impact in the world we live in throughout history.

Pirates have been around for nearly as long as the sea trade and have always been causing trouble around the globe whether it be in the Carribean, South America, North Africa, Somalia, the Indian Ocean, Eastern Asia, etc
One infamous Pirate group, the Barbary Pirates are infamous for their actions and achievements
From the 1500's to the 1700's the Barbary pirates raided and pillaged various towns and villages including, Ischia, Lipari, the Island of Gozo, Vieste, Bastia, Granada, Baltimore, and hundreds of other such villages and towns all over Portugal, Spain, and the Italian Peninsual

After the U.S. gained their independence from England, U.S. shipping became frequently attacked by these pirates.
The problem got so urgent that the U.S. ended using a large percentage of their expenditures on paying the Barbary pirates off, and that's where we get to the U.S. Navy.
The United States Navy is the most powerful navy in the world and the most powerful navy in the history of mankind.
The reason the U.S. Navy was initially created was to specifically eliminate the pirate threat. The birth of one of the most poweful military forces ever known, was due to pirates.

Francis Drake, a pirate, undermined the Spanish Empire while the Spanish Empire was colonizing the Carribean and South America and extracting large amounts of gold and silver.
Francis Drake plundered a number of Spanish merchant vessels making off with large sums of money that kings dream of possesing.
During his escapades he was able to become one of the first men to circumnavigate the globe after Magellan.
After returning to England with his treasures he was knighted Sir Francis Drage
Sir Francis Drake then gained the rank of Admiral under Queen Elizabeth and aided his country in the destruction of the Spanish Armada, the most powerful navy at the time in arguably the most important naval battle in history.

I ask Pro to name a Samurai whose accomplishments are equal or greater.

Pirates are still around today in Somalia and still affect the world more so than Samurai.
Pirates in Somalia frequently capture small ships and yachts and occasionally large freighters of oil and in one instance several Russian built tanks.

For futher examples here is a list of all of the ships pirates have had confrontations with.

Pirates were found around the globe back then and are found around the globe now while Samurai were only in Japan...hundreds of years ago.

2. Pirates managed to survive the test of time and still exist to this day while Samurai do not.

Pirates are still around today and are still very active. Samurai no longer exist.

3. Pirates can beat Samurai in a physical confrontation.

Throughout history pirates have been a serious threat to trade on the high seas. Countries of the world have realized this and have repeatedly sent navies and armies out to quash this threat.

Since then several battles battles have erupted between proffesional naval forces of powerful and wealthy nations, and pirates.

In Edward Teach's (Blackbeard's) Final battle with Lieutenant Maynard, 5-6 pirates were killed or wounded including BlackBeard while as many as 20 British seaman were killed or wounded. Pirates killed and wounded proffessional soldiers of a the world's superpower at the time multiple times over.

Pirates managed to go toe to toe with proffesional modern armies and inflict considerable casualties on them. This is not a feat accomplished by the Samurai who had even casualties with other samurai armies, not armies that were more advanced in terms of training, tactics and weaponry.

Pirates today are armed with automatic weapons, anti-tank rockets, rifles, semi-automatic pistols, etc. Pirates throughout history have been frequently armed with pistols, rifles, cannons, bluderbusses, sabres, cutlasses, and now more modern weapons used by modern military forces.

Samurai throughout history have been armed usually with swords, spears, bows and arrows, and sometimes, primitive rifles such as wheellock and matchlock muskets.

If you were to take 1000 pirates, and arm them with every widely used weapon they were armed with from their rise during the Renaissance up to now in 2011 and match them up against 1000+ Samurai armed with every widely used weapon the Samurai have been equipped with from their creation to their end, the Pirates, with their superior firepower due to their possesion of several Machine guns, assault rifles, anti-tank rockets, rifles, and various other fire arms from the Renaissance to now alone would be more than enough to outmatch the Samurai with the various weapons they were equipped with despite their training and discipline.

History proves that the side with superior technology regarding weaponry, often, if not always inflicts higher casualties on their enemy.
The Pirates are largely equipped with firearms and heavy weapons as well as modern machine guns.
The Samurai are equipped with traditional Samurai weaponry.
The Pirates would obviously win.

In just about every reasonable aspect concievable, Pirates are better than Samurai
Debate Round No. 1


Delirious forfeited this round.


I'm dissapointed that my opponent forfeited.

Extend my arguments.
Debate Round No. 2


Delirious forfeited this round.


My opponent has yet forfeited a second time.

Extend my arguments which still stand unchallenged and unaddressed.
Debate Round No. 3


I leave to two days for a some business and now I feel like an idiot.... Anyways onto the debate.

First I would like to apologize for my absence.

I would agree that in your case of the argument, pirates do have higher impact on current life of society. But unfortunately, what I meant as pirates were of course your Victorian circa.1500 sense of the word pirate, and I would like apologize again for not making that clearer in my introductory statement.

When it comes to the case of battle, Samurai clearly dominated. When it came to sword fighting which is a Victorian pirates favored weapon. Samurai again have the upperhand. Japan had at the time (and arguably still does have) the greatest forging and smithing techniques in the world. Their blades were made out of incredibly strong carbon-steel while the pirates had usually had cutlasses (which more often than not was overused and in terrible condition). Though one must admit that among pirates, some might have had comparatively advanced dueling skills. But the samurai spent a lifetime training in swordplay. Forget Henry Morgan, Panama was considered unsackable because of its geography, not because of the inhabitant army. The Titanic was considered "unsinkable," but we all know how exaggerated claims tend to be.

Even in the case of Armor, Samurai armor was easily defensible against the pirates, as they clearly had none. To further prove the excellence of Samurai armor, it made out of many miniature plates that provided maneuverability not normally found in any armor.

In the case of discipline Samurai openly ruled, while pirates in many cases were failed merchants or ingrates and rejects various armies. The Samurai were always studying, practicing and training. He would never let a day pass without spending several hours practicing his martial arts, studying the Sutras of Zen Buddhism and doing a zazen meditation. The Samurai understood that in order to be perfect one needed to devote constant attention to studying and training in one's art without ever giving up or losing enthusiasm. "Study strategy over the years and achieve the spirit of the warrior. Today is victory over yourself of yesterday; tomorrow is your victory over lesser men." – Miyamoto Musashi. This of course is not the case for pirates which are notorious for there lack of discipline and dedication.

Samurai are better than Pirates.


I would like to thank you for responding

My opponent states, "I would agree that in your case of the argument, pirates do have higher impact on current life of society. But unfortunately, what I meant as pirates were of course your Victorian circa.1500 sense of the word pirate, and I would like apologize again for not making that clearer in my introductory statement."

The claim he is making is that he meant to be clearer in his argument when he realized my argument.

Sorry Pro, you can't change the terms now when you leave them so vague. You must provide parameters and conditions if you wish to specify which pirates you were talking about because by simply saying "swashbuckling pirates", which means flamboyantly adventurous individuals who rob and attack at sea means that modern day pirates fit that definition perfectly making my arguments and points perfectly legitimate and making it bad conduct on your part to verify after the fact I accepted your debate and made legitimate arguments.

Therefore my arguments still stand since the pirates I mentioned fit criteria of your topic and your wording of "swashbuckling pirates".

I agree that Samurai were superior in sword fighting, but however since you did not specify that you intended the debate to be about Victorian pirates you cannot change the specifications now at the final round. For all I or the audience know is that you did intend the debate to be between Samurai and Somalian pirates and you simply changed the specifications when you realized my arguments were too good.

Sword fighting is obsolete. I'd rather have 100 Somalian pirates with modern day assault rifles, which they frequently use and favor, than 1000 Samurai with expert swordsman experiance.

The Samurai may be very well trained with swords, but hand to hand combat and especially sword fighting as been rendered obsolete in the face of advanced weaponry, which various pirates posses.

Regarding armor, any armor the Samurai would have possesed over the age of the Samurai, would have easily been penetrated by the weapons some pirates posses by quite a ways away, making battle armour obsolete.

Discipline would have been obsolete as well, again a small group of pirates with automatic weapons can easily defeat sword welding soldiers weighed down by battle armor.

In conclusion.

1. My opponent did not specify in which areas Samurai would compete with Pirates, so it was legitimate of me to assume that they would compete in a number of reasonable aspects. He has conceeded that Samurai no longer exist while pirates do and that Pirates have had a much greater impact on the world than Samurai.

2. My opponent was not specific and very vague when he initially meant "swashbuckling pirates

By my sources swashbuckling pirates would mean flamboyantly adventurous individuals at sea who rob and plunder others, meaning modern day pirates fit the initial defintion set by the instigator

He cannot change his criteria for pirates after forfeiting half of the rounds.

All in all

I had better conduct as I responded for every round whereas my opponents missed rounds 2 and 3
The pirates I pitched against Samurai fit the defintion of "swashbuckling pirates" set by my opponent who failed to be more specific.
I had legitimate sources

Vote Con
Debate Round No. 4
10 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by sing_along 5 years ago
quaterexchange clearly does not understand the fact that the only job of a samurai is to obey his master, and in doing so, if his master is a pirate, then the samurai can be a pirate. Samurai are FAR more disciplined than any pirate, due to their strict code of Bushido, and unlike pirates samurai never surrender.

On countless occassions in history Samurai have fought against pirates to defend their masters. Samurai wield a fine crafted weapons, of far higher quality than the blades any pirate can obtain, unless he steals them from a Samurai of course.

Honestly, the terms Samurai and pirate are not opposing terms, and samurais can be pirates, and pirates are so vastly different in the world. Let's see, there's Chinese pirates, Japanese Pirates, English pirates / privateers, pirates of the Carribean (the actual ones), Spanish Pirates, each pirating faction has something new to bring to the table, whether its ferocity, mass numbers, high technology.

Moreover, there are successful pirates, like the ones lead by Blackbeard, or Francis Drake, are far superior than the ones lead by low-level pirates. Whereas for Samurai is like special forces in the military, you can always expect a samurai to be tougher and braver than an average soldier.

So you can't just "brand" pirates as one whole thing all together...
Posted by GeorgeCarlinWorshipper 5 years ago
Ah, okay. Never mind, then. Different definitions and such.
Posted by quarterexchange 5 years ago
Nobody would call Somalian pirates "flamboyantly adventurous" or "flamboyantly wreckless"?

Swashbuckling does not mean or necessarily imply a certain period.
It's simply an adjective that means "flamboyantly adventurous", which is what I would call someone who gets in a motor boat with machine guns and RPG's and attacks cruiseships and shipping frieghters and sometimes modern naval vessels.
Posted by GeorgeCarlinWorshipper 5 years ago
Hahaha that clip was great
Posted by tvellalott 5 years ago
Anyone seen the episode of South Park where Cartman travels to Somalia to become a pirate? LULZ!
Posted by GeorgeCarlinWorshipper 5 years ago
Hahaha. That was clever trickery by Con, but they missed one part:
"Samurai are better than SWASHBUCKLING pirates"
The term swashbuckling implies the pirate to be of a certain time period. Nobody would call a Somalian pirate "swashbuckling".
Posted by quarterexchange 5 years ago
My opponent said Pirates against Samurai period.
Not Pirates and Samurai during 1669.
Posted by NarutoArsenal 5 years ago
Pretty unfair, they should both be in the same timeline otherwise it is a unfair battle.
Posted by Delirious 5 years ago
Posted by GeorgeCarlinWorshipper 5 years ago
Absolute win. There's really no way for pirates to stand up against the much more heavily trained, armed, disciplined Samurai.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by liljohnny818 5 years ago
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Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: Yeah pro... can't really just pop up later and specify what kind of pirates.
Vote Placed by detachment345 5 years ago
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: Con had good reason the believe modern day pirates were fine since pro did not specify. Con forfeited a couple rounds and tried to change the specifications and pro had better arguments and had a lot of sources while pro had none.