The Instigator
nyfan57
Pro (for)
Winning
15 Points
The Contender
jsac9
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

Should athletes Professional and collegiate be able to express thier religion without Scrutiny?

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 4 votes the winner is...
nyfan57
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/24/2012 Category: Religion
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,843 times Debate No: 20632
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (3)
Votes (4)

 

nyfan57

Pro

Within the last decade religion has become increasingly controversial in the realm of sports; athletes Like Tim Tebow are getting scrutinized by the media for expressing their religion. Tebowing and writing bible versus on ones eye paint should not be frowned on by the media. Expressing ones religion even if in front of a large audience should not be seen as problematic or controversial!
jsac9

Con

I would have to disagree, as I see these acts as unsportsmanlike and disgracing to the sport of football. First of all, not every athlete or viewer at home is of the same religions as the athletes who show these actions. I do not have a problem with religion or prayer, but the way these actions are presented to a live audience is something I do have a problem with. I hope that within the next few rounds of debate we can explore our inner beliefs and challenge the realms of possibility.
Debate Round No. 1
nyfan57

Pro

Thank you for accepting my offer to debate this issue. The opening statements have been presented and I see we have conflicting views on this issue. Let the Debate begin!

Firstly, the first amendment of the United States constitution gives its people the right to express their religion freely.
. It also states that congress should make no law respecting an establishment of religion. So when you stated "but the way these actions are presented to a live audience is something I do have a problem with". Nothing can be done unless by an organization itself which is still questionably a disputable act.

The NFL and any other pro athlete organization such as NHL NBA and MLB are simply organizations. Most of us in our lifetime will work for an organization unless we are fortunate enough to become a owner or CEO. In the average American workplace citizens express their religion all the time, Examples beings Catholics coming into work with ashes on their heads for Ashe Wednesday, Muslims fasting for the Ramadan, and almost every religious group taking time out of their day to pray to their god who ever that may be. The point I am trying to portray is how is this any different from Tebow praying during or after a game? The people in the office dont get blasphemy.

http://www.archives.gov...- First amendment link.
jsac9

Con

Although you make a solid arguement, have you ever thought about the athletes who may be offended by this action. While playing a sport every student athlete or professional athlete makes a pact that they will play by the rules and one of the rules is sportsmanship. When have you seen such a polarizing figure like Tim Tebow ever bow down and pray to the lord after he throws an interception(or many interceptions I might add)? The answer is never. Or when a baseball player strike out, does he beat his chest and point to the sky. I dont think so, and you know why? At these moments of weakness, these athletes would never think that they were chosen ones, but when they win the game or hit a walk-off homerun, they find the cameras and pray longer than most people want to watch. Like a bad friend, they only want religion when they choose, instead of thanking god for every moment. These actions lead to many players being offended or even second guessing the truth to these so called religious actions. Sportsmanship is about being respectful to the other players, win or lose, and I think pointing to the sky and beating your chest, or bowing down to pray in front of the other team is just downright disrespectful to them and to everyone around the globe. I'll leave this round with a closing arguement, stating a fact that arose on me by a dear friend. Pastor Brett Russo of The Holy Church of Elizabeth described to me that Tim Tebow has hos beliefs and everyone else has their own beliefs and told me thatTim recently said that everyone who does not believe in God will go to hell. Now I reference your First Ammendment arguement and say that if everyone has the freedom of religion and the freedom of speech, that also means they can think to themselves whatever they choose. What if someone believed that their was no God to believe in? Would they therefore go to hell? Athiests do no believe in a God, and they have the right to not believe in god, given the first ammendment. Therefore one religion believes that another religion is going to hell, and what kind of message does that send I ask you?
Debate Round No. 2
nyfan57

Pro

First of all Tim Tebow was specifically used as an example. Other athletes such as Reggie Bush , Terrell Pryor, Brian Dawkins, and Ray Lewis are just some of the other athletes who openly express their faith and this is just in the NFL.
you claim that this athletes call themselves the the "chosen ones" I do not understand what you mean by stating this. You also stated that the athletes only pray in front of the camera when they win. There is plenty of evidence showing athletes praying as a team after a tough loss with teammates or another team. I dont believe the athletes intend to be cocky when praying and using a prayer as a sign of "showboating".

Religions in general tend to be very humble and self reflective which is why ego is not seen as a problem with religion. I'm sure if the players had a say they wouldn't want the camera zooming in on them while performing religious acts which involves self reflection. Remember watching anything on television is a lot different from actually witnessing anything first hand. The only reason why Athletes are even seen praying or performing other religious acts on television is simply because the media chooses to show it. Also as humans in a country with an excellent human rights record as well as civil rights unlike North Korea we have the ability to not watch something if we choose to or not participate in something if we choose to.

It looks like once again the first amendment was brought up. I concur with you that all United States citizens have the freedom of religion and the freedom of speech, that also means they can think to themselves whatever they choose. So if someone is able to think for themselves whatever they choose why do athletes get scrutinized for expressing their religion? Just because their athletes does not make them lose their first amendment rights.

When Tebow wrote John 3:16 on his eye black why was it banned? The answer is people didn't want to see it. People can think what they want but why cant Tim Tebow who believes in showing his faith god cant show his faith to god. When you brought up the statement that said Tim Tebow thinks all who dont believe in god will go to hell you are contradicting yourself by referencing the first amendment.
jsac9

Con

How am I contradicting myself I clearly stated that Tim Tebow said that if a person does not believe in God they will go to hell. The First Ammendment states that people have a choice and what if someone doesnt want to believe in god. Tebow is in a sense forcing everyone to believe, or in other words telling them to go to hell. And I do believe that when an athlete wins a game and happens to be religious and wants to bow down in the middle of the field that it is showboating because the team on the other side of the field just lost, and some people like myself would be offended by that. What someone does behind closed doors is their own buisness. You dont see a muslim after they score sitting in the middle of the field and praying to their god through their rituals. Or you dont hear an athiest running up to the cameras and saying that God is Fake and don't believe in him? Imagine what would happen to sports if every man or woman decided to make the public event a national forum for his or her religion. The point of sports is to compete against each other in a game, and then shake hands and leave like most athletes do respectfully and graciously. When an athlete leaves the field or hits the showers they can do whatever they please. Basketball or football or baseball were not created so that we could showcase our religions or our beliefs. As a matter of fact referencing the first ammendment. These athletes sign contracts, which oblige them to follow rules and laws of the sports and games that they play. They technically do not have the right to say whatever they want. When an athlete curses at a referee, they get a penalty, and if they continue they get thrown out of the game. Take it further and they get suspended and lose pay. Think about it, would you tell your boss to f off? no or you would get fired, so how is the first ammendment really protecting you? You can't just say or do whatever you want, there is a time and place for everything, thats why churches and temples were built.
Debate Round No. 3
nyfan57

Pro

I stated that you were contradiction yourself because you said Tebow should not be allowed to show his religion or expression. But then you referenced the first amendment which gives Tebow the right to show his religion. This is what I meant by saying you contradicted yourself.

If there was a Muslim football player they could go into the middle of the field and start praying if they feel like it. Once again I dont think when athletes are trying to express their religion they are trying to create a national forum as you put it. Once again religion is self reflective and humble by nature.

Contracts do limit what an athlete can do our say but it varies by team. For an example some teams forbid players from tweeting inside the locker room. But no team cant put a limit on someones religion because of the first amendment. When Tebow was asked to remove the bible versus from his face as well as the baseball player last year the league believed they were advertising their religion. The league respectively told them to remove it and they listened. The league could not say they couldn't pray if they did the league would be violating the law. So its still hard to understand why players like Tebow are getting hated on simply because he is a very religious person.The idea of being biased to a person just because they prefer to live an open lifestyle about there religion is horrible though.
jsac9

Con

I dont care what a players contract says, if they go out on the field posing gang signs or flipping someone the bird, theyre gonna get in trouble. What if I score a touchdown and then proceed to sit in the middle of the field and hail hitler for ten minutes and then get flagged for it. I cant say I believe in hitlerism now can I. You have the freedom of limited speech in this country because you can only say things that people wanna hear. Speaking to overthrow your government is a crime and you cant plead first ammendment because they dont care. Whether they want to or not, these players are under the national spotlight, every action gets put under the microscope. They are being seen all over the world and by many different people. I dont care if you think they are being humble and even if they are thats not what everyone is seeing with their own eyes. We see men and women who are taking this way too far. If they wanna pray thats fine, go over to the sideline behind the benches kneel down and pray. I dont wanna see the baseball player stand on homeplate pound his chest and then point up to the sky while looking right at the pitcher because thats what athletes do. They try and rub it in the face of the other team. Maybe not all athletes do it, but there are too many times where a baseball player will take their sweet time standing at home dancing around praying looking like a fool. What happened to the days of respect, if you hit a homerun or score a touchdown, why do you have to rub it in on the spot? Take your points kindly exit the field and then thank your lord. Nobody wants to see the batter behind him get hit in the head, or the two teams get in a fight because tebow was kneeling in the endzone right after he scored thanking the lord he didnt throw an interception when he threw the ball with his eyes closed. I dont pay to see some cocky idiot trot around the bases kissing his hand every second and pointing up as if the lord himself was coming down upon earth. When God comes down from heaven and throws the touchdown for you, thats when tebow should be thankful. There needs to be a set of rules and guidelines just like everything else in sports. I do not see why these actions dont draw penalties, as they clearly slow down the game and are clearly excessive celebrating. I wanna see flags thrown whistles blown and fines thrown out because thats ahell of a lot more distracting than teammates celebrating together for something that they did and not god. It doesnt matter because when God doesnt show up to save the day, noones praying then, everyone wants to pray for all the good stuff but noone wants to do the hardwork to get it. All these athletes are lucky to be getting away with something that is criminal to the sport and an injustice to all, and the day God comes down and throws a touchdown then i'll let you pray to him for as long as you want because your the one on that field that has to play.
Debate Round No. 4
nyfan57

Pro

There is a difference between government and religion my friend Its called the separation of church from state check out the trial Everson vs the board of education. Government can be described in many ways so lets first go into what makes up a government. sovereignty, people, boundaries, make a government a government. Every government that ever existed either served to protect its people or protect the governments self interest.

The reason why I defined government is religion and government are two totally different ball fields. For the most part in modern days a government for the most part is created to protect peoples rights. Religion for the most is supposed to give a person guidelines on how to behave spiritually and help a person on deciding what is ethical or unethical.

When you mention hitlerism which isn't actually the politically correct term, this is an idea on how a country should be ran which is both supported physically and emotionally. Religions such as Tebows roman catholic religion a very popular religion focuses on doing the right thing, what is ethical and unethical and etc... Summed up, do what Jesus would do.

Not yet has anyone got into a fight because of expression their religion on any athletic field.By human nature no one is going to attack some one else if their performing any type of religious act except for any type of human or animal sacrifice.

Praying by no means is a distraction of any type it shouldn't be fined or frowned upon by anyone else. Praying in public schools is banned but not really as long as a teacher or someone with authority doesn't engage the students in prayer it is perfectly legal. Even for the person praying its not a distraction your asking god for help or thanking clearing your mind and starting a new cycle.

People can do whatever they want if they wanted to they can even disobey the law. Surely consequences will be pinned on this person for breaking the law but in other cases like Tim Tebow tebowing were just going to have to sit back and watch. We can disapprove of what he is doing but why make something such as religion which is humble is to such a big deal. Its not a big deal unless you make it one. Plus maybe religion is actually helping Tebow unlike many other players he isn't going around doing drugs and acting like hes on top of the world. Hes living a very modest life and becoming a great roll model for children across America. It seems like every other day a young NFL star is getting bailed out of jail for doing something wrong. Why discourage something that's making you into a better overall person, this being Tebows religion. Once again its not a big deal unless you make it one.
jsac9

Con

"And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words".

Matthew 6:5-7
Debate Round No. 5
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by ConservativePolitico 5 years ago
ConservativePolitico
First Amendment... Instant victory.
Posted by THEBOMB 5 years ago
THEBOMB
Pro actually argued a point...Con just said he doesn't like something...
Posted by gr33k_fr33k5 5 years ago
gr33k_fr33k5
@ jsac9 . . . I barely made it through round 2. . . your argument is weak and pointless. Making a broad generalization about religious acts on the field does not in any way argue whether it should be allowed or not. . . saying that people "might" do something doesnt make it wrong in any way. . .
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by gr33k_fr33k5 5 years ago
gr33k_fr33k5
nyfan57jsac9Tied
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Total points awarded:50 
Reasons for voting decision: con was offensive and made no real points. . .
Vote Placed by imabench 5 years ago
imabench
nyfan57jsac9Tied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: pro argued it was freedom of speech which was a solid argument, con kind of argued how it is offensive to others but that argument didnt compare to the pro's
Vote Placed by ConservativePolitico 5 years ago
ConservativePolitico
nyfan57jsac9Tied
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Reasons for voting decision: First Amendment is in Pro's favor.
Vote Placed by THEBOMB 5 years ago
THEBOMB
nyfan57jsac9Tied
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Total points awarded:40 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro's argument was the first amendment protects their right to pray...Con's argument: Another player may or may not be offended by their actions. Pro was definitive, Con was not. Pro gets conduct to because of Cons generalization of players who are religious.