The Instigator
Kilk1
Con (against)
Winning
38 Points
The Contender
TyroneShelton
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points

The Confederate flag always represents racism.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 7 votes the winner is...
Kilk1
Voting Style: Judge Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/21/2015 Category: Politics
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,078 times Debate No: 77921
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (29)
Votes (7)

 

Kilk1

Con

Hello. Below further specifies about the rules of this debate and the proposition that I'm contending against:

1. The first round is for acceptance.
2. The BOP will be on Pro to show that the Confederate flag always represents racism.
3. The proposition I'm contending against is not that the Confederate flag can represent racism. If a KKK member is waving the Confederate flag, we both can agree on what is meant.
4. By "represents," I mean that if one flies or otherwise approves of the Confederate flag, they are supporting racism.
5. By "always," I simply mean that there is objectivity to the proposition; if someone else would disagree with the proposition, for example, believing it does not have to be supporting racism but instead supporting Southern pride, Pro would say they are wrong, that the flag still promotes racism either way.
6. By "racism," I mean slavery or anything else that would favor one race over another.
7. Basically, I mean that in order for the proposition to be correct, anyone who supports the Confederate flag is supporting (knowingly or unknowingly) racism.
8. (Amendment) If this debate cannot begin by Thursday, July 23 (in other words, if Round 2 doesn't begin by Friday, July 24), then the debate will be canceled.

If you have any questions, please let me know. May the one who's right win!
TyroneShelton

Pro

The Confederacy openly accepted and supported slave owners. This means a symbol that represents the Confederacy also represents the Confederacy's values.

Each Declaration of Cause from the Confederate states says that the defense of slavery is a clear objective, as well as makes attacks on anti-slavery.

However it can be argued that states rights is the main cause of the secession. I do not believe it. But it is possible for an organization to have more than one principle. The Confederacy can stand for both States rights and slavery. Just because the main reason was states rights doesn't make eclipse the fact that they enslaved black people.

No matter how you slice it, an organization that openly supports the institutional enslavement and oppression of people based on race is racist. Any representation of this organization is representing that racism that the organization stood for.
Debate Round No. 1
Kilk1

Con

Thank you for participating. Round 1 actually was to be for acceptance, so you were supposed to wait before giving arguments. It's okay, though.

To summarize your argument, here is this syllogism:

1. If a symbol represnts an organization, then it also represents what it stood for.
2. The Confederate flag represents the Confederation, one of the things it stood for being the institutional enslavement and oppression of people based on race.
3. Therefore, one of the things the Confederate flag represents is the institutional enslavement and oppression of people based on race.

This is sound. But notice the minor premise (Point two); it says that "one of the things it stood for" is racism, causing the conclusion (Point 3) to be that only "one of the things the Confederate flag represents is" racism. This is because, like you mentioned, the Civil War was also caused by other factors, such as the North's desire for supremacy(1) and the argument as to whether it was the right of the states to decide on racism or the right of the federal government.(2) The latter is similar to those today who say, "I disagree with [this], but I believe it's the states' right to decide on whether or not it should be legal." Again, the Confederation stands for more than just racism.

Does the origin of a symbol dictate a fixed meaning for it, or can new meanings exist as time goes on? Here is another symbol associated with racism from a different war: the swastika. While it is strongly associated with white supremacy today in Western areas, it was used at least 5,000 years before Adolf Hitler and originally represented (and in some countries still represents) peace and good fortune.(3) In order to be consistent, are you going to argue that when the Nazis used the swastika they were promoting peace and good fortune?

Of course, there needs to be those who think the Confederate flag doesn't necessarily represent racism for the symbol's meaning to change. Of course there are, or we wouldn't be having this debate and polls wouldn't have to be given. Even blacks such as Byron Thomas(4) and Arlene Barnum(5) support the Confederate flag.

In conclusion, I will remind ourselves that the BOP (burden of proof) is on Pro to show that "The Confederate flag always represents racism." Considering that 1) there are multiple, alternative reasons one may support the Confederation; 2) the origin of a symbol is not necessarily its one, sole, fixed meaning; and 3) non-racists support the Confederate flag, can this proposition really be true?

References
(1)http://www.historytoday.com...
(2)http://www.civilwar.org...
(3)http://www.ushmm.org...
(4)https://www.washingtonpost.com...
(5)http://rightwingnews.com...

TyroneShelton

Pro

An organization can stand for many things. Because of this, a symbol of the organization can stand for multiple things. The difference is that it stands for all those things. The Confederacy can stand for both Slavery and States rights. It can be debated if it mainly stood for slavery or not. But nobody can say the Confederacy did not support slavery.

P1: The Confederate flag represents the Confederacy

P2: The Confederacy supported slavery

P3: Slavery is Racist

C1: The Confederacy supports Racism (Based on P2 & P3)

C2: The Confederate flag represents the support of racism (Based on P1 & C1)

Are those points flawed?
Debate Round No. 2
Kilk1

Con

At the end of my last argument, I made three points:

1. There are multiple, alternative reasons one may support the Confederation.
2. The origin of a symbol is not necessarily its one, sole, fixed meaning.
3. Non-racists support the Confederate flag.

Of these three points, Pro only responded to the first one by also making three points, the final conclusion being that "The Confederate flag represents the support of racism." I agree. It has already been established that "The proposition I'm contending against is not that the Confederate flag can represent racism. If a KKK member is waving the Confederate flag, we both can agree on what is meant."(1) The proposition is that the Confederate flag always represents racism. "Basically, I mean that in order for the proposition to be correct, anyone who supports the Confederate flag is supporting (knowingly or unknowingly) racism."(2)

However, you did say one thing that may defend the propostion, depending on the meaning:

An organization can stand for many things. Because of this, a symbol of the organization can stand for multiple things. The difference is that it stands for all those things.

From what I understand—and correct me if I'm wrong—you're arguing that since the Confederate flag represents the Confederation, if you support the Confederate flag (and thus the Confederation), you're supporting all of the Confederation's views; there's no picking or choosing. I'll assume that this is what you're saying, but if it's not, let me know in the next post.

First of all, this seems to ignore the second point of my last post, that the origin of a symbol is not its sole, fixed meaning. Again, wouldn't denying this imply that the Nazis' use of the swastika represented goodwill and good fortune, since that was it's original meaning?

Also, if your belief (I'm assuming it's your belief, anyway) is true, that if you support a symbol, you support all it represents—no picking or choosing—then wouldn't this mean that the Nazis using the swastika represented peace, genocide, and goodwill all at the same time? Do all US soldiers who fight under their president (thus supporting him) agree with all the issues that he stands for? These false conclusions imply that the beliefs which implied them are false; in other words, if a conclusion is false, statements implying it to be true are also false.

So in conclusion, I will restate my conclusion from the last post, this time adding an extra point. I will remind ourselves that the BOP (burden of proof) is on Pro to show that "The Confederate flag always represents racism." Considering that 1) there are multiple, alternative reasons one may support the Confederation; 2) you can pick and choose these reasons, at least to an extent; 3) the origin of a symbol is not necessarily its one, sole, fixed meaning; and 4) non-racists support the Confederate flag, can this proposition really be true?

References
(1) Rule 3 of my Round 1 post
(2) Rule 7 of my Round 1 post
TyroneShelton

Pro

TyroneShelton forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
Kilk1

Con

For my conclusion, I will further speak about my four points:

There
are multiple, alternative reasons one may support the Confederation. I know someone who used to own a Confederate flag. During this time, his best friend was black, so he clearly was not racist; also, he did not live in the South, so it wasn't Southern pride either. His reason for having it was that back then, he had more of a "rebellious" spirit and referred to the fact that the Confederates rebelled against the North. Whether this is a good reason to support the Confederate flag or not I'll leave up to you, but it is a good example of my point—that there are many reasons one may support the Confederation, not just racism. Other examples, the ones I mentioned before, for the Civil War's existence was the North's desire for power and disagreement on whether or not slavery was decided by the state or the federal government.

You can pick and choose these reasons, at least to an extent. Like I've already argued, if this statement is false, would we not have to say that the swastika during World War II represented good fortune, genocide, and goodwill all at the same time? If a US citizen votes for someone to be president, does this necessarily mean the voter agrees with the votee on every situation? Does it even mean that they for the most part agree with each other? No! Just for example, I noticed that one user here on DDO, tajshar2k, says that he supports Barack Obama "not because he is better, but because he is the lesser of 2 evils."(1) Since these false conclusions are implied by denying it, my position then must be true.

The origin of a symbol is not necessarily its one, sole, fixed meaning. Otherwise, would this not mean that the swastika represented good fortune and goodwill even during World War II? No, meanings can change.

Non-racists support the Confederate flag. Another one I was going to mention (but space limitations prevented me) was Anthony Hervey.(2) Are these people mistaken in what they have done or not?

In light of these points, can the proposition really be true? In conclusion, I'd like to say that I've really enjoyed this debate. You might find this surprising, but I'm not militantly against the proposition. I'm new to DDO, and I'm trying to debate on what I deem less important subjects in order to practice. (See my previous debate, and you'll know what I mean; the only risk that losing would bring was that more people would eat beef than chicken.) I definitely disagree with the proposition, but if there are a lot of people who are offended by the Confederate flag, then I won't get depressed if it gets taken down. I personally think Confederate flag controversies are the result of political correctness getting out of hand. Thank you.


References
(1) http://www.debate.org...
(2) http://www.nbcnews.com...
TyroneShelton

Pro

For my conclusion, I will do another logic string.

P1 If A supports racism, then A is racist.

P2 The confederacy supports racism

P3 Having a Confederate flag indicates support of the confederacy

C1 The confederacy was racist. P1 & P2

C2 Having a Confederate flag is racist. C1 & P3

To address the Swastika analogy, sure you can pick and choose what organization you want a symbol to represent, but if you are using it to refer to what it most commonly refers to (in this case the Nazis) then it would represent the things the Nazis did. Likewise the Confederate flag represents what the Confederacy did, and the Banner of the X represents what the X did/does.

The Confederacy was Racist. I do not think that is in question. Supporting slaveowners is racist, so most people in the Confederacy were racist.

A Confederate flag (outside of special circumstances) represents the Confederacy. The Confederacy was racist. The Confederate flag represents that racism. It's like saying the Swastika (when used to represent the Nazi's ie regular circumstances.) is not representing the genocide of the Jews but instead the Anti-smoking campaigns done by the Nazis. You are cherry picking a large amount.

As for the Non-racists support the Confederate flag, I don't know what you mean by non-racist. Racist is a relative term, but is there some council of the most non-racist people out there. People can have different reasons to support the confederate flag, but that doesnt mean the confederate flag only represents those specific reasons.
Debate Round No. 4
29 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by whiteflame 1 year ago
whiteflame
YoungLawyer, I am not going through every debate where a vote is reported, going over every single vote, and determining whether they meet the standard. If I had to do that, I'd be on DDO for half the day every day, reading through both reported votes and unreported votes. The only votes I cover are the ones that get reported. If you feel that other votes are deserving of removal, then report them. It's a simple system, and one that you can use just as effectively as anyone.

Any person that has a vote removed gets the same general message with a few specifics changed on the basis of why the vote was removed. Again, if you want me to assess these votes, send the reports. If not, you can keep arguing with me here in the comments that they should, and get nowhere.

I'm not sure why you think you can "just vote and not provide RDF," as most debates do require that you post an RFD. If you want to find the few like this one that allow votes without explanation, feel free to search for them.
Posted by YoungLawyer 1 year ago
YoungLawyer
I think you should address the other two voting I pointed out because I'm still needing clarity as to how they did all as you explained for your reason of removing my vote.

(1) Conduct is completely unexplained by this voter. (2) Source points cannot be awarded by virtue of one side having more than the other. The voter needs to justify why the sources given by Con warrant the point allocation, i.e. how those sources bolstered his case. (3) The justification for arguments needs to be unique to the debate. Merely saying that you didn't find one side's arguments strong or that one side lacked rebuttals isn't good enough " you need to point to actual arguments made in the debate and explain how they helped the voter determine who won.
Posted by YoungLawyer 1 year ago
YoungLawyer
I'm concerned about that because it's just that I find it stupid that my vote was taken down because it did not reach "minimum standard", but two other votes are just alike mine. Did you handpicked or was it reported to you? If it was reported to you, and you happened to see two others that looked alike mine, are you waiting until someone report them before removing them as well? Because from what I'm seeing, those two are no different from mine, and therefore, should be removed, since they did not reached the "minimum standard."

I am wondering...will the other two be provided with specifics as to how they could improve their voting and a link to the voting standards for the site? Because like I said, all three of our votes look the same, although only mine got removed. On that same note, I will not be needing the specifics and the link, because from now on I will just vote and not provide RDF, so as not to get into this kind of dispute again.

I will play a more active role in reporting votes RDF that are not sufficient, as it seems to me that it is right that I do so.

By the way, I spent far more time analyzing them for you because it seems that you couldn't, although they were right in your face. In that vein, just like the two others who I analyzed for you, I did not spent quite enough time writing my vote itself.
Posted by whiteflame 1 year ago
whiteflame
So, first off, I find it interesting that you're so concerned about this that you've spent far more time analyzing the other votes on this debate than you did writing the vote itself.

Second, bladerunner either has or will be contacting you with more specifics as to why your vote was removed, explaining how you could improve your vote and providing a link to the voting standards for the site. It will explain the level of specificity that is required of votes on this site.

Third, the debaters decided that it was fine to allow votes without RFDs, and therefore you're allowed to give one without an RFD, as you have. The reasoning isn't required. Just because that's the case doesn't mean that actual RFDs posted on this debate aren't going to be subject to the same moderation as on any other.

Fourth, focusing on other votes is not going to help your case here. Yes, there are other votes on the site that warrant removal. I haven't read through these votes, but if there is an issue, you can feel free to report them and I will read over them later today. Contrary to your belief, I am not reading through random debates across the site arbitrarily picking votes to read and remove. I receive reports from members of the site that may or may not give reasons why a given vote is problematic, then I analyze the vote and determine whether it's met the standards of the site. So, again, if you have a problem with certain votes that you feel the standards should be applied to in order to be fair, then report them. Complaining about unequal treatment when the means by which votes are removed is being clearly followed without bias is just an attempt to distract from the fact that your RFD was simply insufficient.

And, for the record, simply saying that a debater forfeited doesn't mean you've explained conduct. You have to state directly that the forfeit resulted in the conduct point, not just that the forfeit happened.
Posted by YoungLawyer 1 year ago
YoungLawyer
lanna: "Con was the only one with sources," LostintheEcho1498: Con was the only one with sources, me: I "did not see any source from Pro." Tell me how exactly are our comments different?

You stated: "The voter needs to justify why the sources given by Con warrant the point allocation, i.e. how those sources bolstered his case. " Did you see that from lanna and LostintheEcho1498? Other then lanna saying: "Con was the only one with sources, so those points go to him. " Isn't he/she violating the comment you made: "Source points cannot be awarded by virtue of one side having more than the other"? He clearly said that con is the only one with sources therefore, points go to con. Again, LostintheEcho1498 only said this of his justifying in point allocation, "Con was the only one with sources and the forfeit by pro lost him conduct. " I said: I did not see any source from Pro," and I also said "he forfeited once." We're all repeating the same thing that con is the only one with sources and that pro forfeited once. Why am I the only one wrong???

You stated: "The justification for arguments needs to be unique to the debate. Merely saying that you didn't find one side's arguments strong or that one side lacked rebuttals isn't good enough " you need to point to actual arguments made in the debate and explain how they helped the voter determine who won."

Echo1498: "The arguments were stronger on con's side with pro's arguments/rebuttals being much weaker" lanna: "Conduct to Con due to Pro's forfeiture which hurted him more than you may realized as that cut back his rebuttals and we could easily see that his rebuttals cost Pro the debate due to his droppage of some of Con's points. " and me: I do not find his arguments strong. Furthermore, his rebuttals were not strong, Matter of fact, he lacked them.

Re-read lanna and LostintheEcho1498 RDF and tell me if they pointed to actual arguments made in the debate and if they explain how they helped the voter determine who
Posted by YoungLawyer 1 year ago
YoungLawyer
By the way, did you realized that LostintheEcho1498 and lanna13 comments are no different from mine?

LostintheEcho1498 said, "Con was the only one with sources," I said "I did not see any source from Pro," LostintheEcho1498 said "and the forfeit by pro lost him conduct," and I said, "he forfeited once." By me saying he forfeited once wasn't enough to see that a bad conduct on his part? Finally, LostintheEcho1498 said "The arguments were stronger on con's side with pro's arguments/rebuttals being much weaker." He provides no textual evidence, rather stated a point. I did the same by saying, "Although I was on his side from the beginning, I do not find his arguments strong." What makes mine different from LostintheEcho1498? I also said, "his rebuttals were not strong." LostintheEcho1498 said "pro's arguments/rebuttals being much weaker." How exactly are both of our comments different?

lanna13 RDF: Con was the only one with sources, so those points go to him. Conduct to Con due to Pro's forfeiture which hurted him more than you may realized as that cut back his rebuttals and we could easily see that his rebuttals cost Pro the debate due to his droppage of some of Con's points. Thus I have no choice but to give Con the debate. If this RFD isn't specific enough please PM me." Again, like LostintheEcho1498 and I, we said Con was the only one with sources, lanna13 is saying the same. We all mentioned Pro's forfeiting, which gives point to Con. Or was I supposed to say, for pro forfeiting, "conduct goes to con!" and for con having stronger argument "that point goes to con!" Was it not enough that I voted and stated in simple fact that one had a stronger argument, the other no no sources and forfeited?

You stated that conduct is completely unexplained but I said he forfeited and so did lanna and Echo1498. You stated " "Source points cannot be awarded by virtue of one side having more than the other" but lanna, Echo1498, and I did it. To continue...
Posted by YoungLawyer 1 year ago
YoungLawyer
So in all my voting, I should be very specific in how I vote? How come this had not come up before. If this is the case, we ought to go through every voting that has happened and make sure that all those who voted present fully clarified response. I think I was straightforward in my voting and that deemed it be upheld instead of removed. I read it and saw that his arguments and his rebuttal were not strong; while Con on the other hand had stronger arguments,etc. Now if the website wants me to be specific in my voting, by going through the 7 point system and explaining why I allotted point to one side, while also explaining providing "text" evidence from the debate, it ought to be a remainder in the voting.

And I find it rather contrary that if I vote and provide reason for decisions, I should provide a well response, but I'm allowed to vote without even having to present a reason for my voting. What if then I voted based on personal bias? Would you know then that I voted based on personal bias? What if then I voted simply because one of the debater sent me a message to vote for him/her and I did without providing reasons for decisions, would you know then? What if I voted because I don't like the other guy/girl, but don't provide reason for my decisions, would you know then? If one of these has the potential to happen, I think everyone should be compelled to provide reasons for decisions, instead of making it optional to not provide one, because if this is the case, then my vote should had remained, because it qualifies as not a "reason" in itself.

Because my reason for voting wasn't good enough, I voted without providing one. Now how to you know that I even had a reason for decisions?
Posted by whiteflame 1 year ago
whiteflame
http://www.debate.org...

It's basically just setting a minimum standard for reasons for decisions (RFDs).
Posted by Kilk1 1 year ago
Kilk1
Thanks in advanced for the link. To be honest, I don't even know what RFD stands for. Ha ha! Anyway, if his vote was invalid, I'll respect that. It still seems strange, though, that you don't have to explain your vote, but if you do explain it, it must clearly state why you voted the way you did. Again, though, I'll respect the rules if that's what they are.
Posted by whiteflame 1 year ago
whiteflame
It doesn't meet the basic standards for voting on this site. I understand that you appreciate the RFD and he wasn't required to give one, but nonetheless, his RFD should meet those standards. If you'd like, I can link them for your perusal.
7 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 7 records.
Vote Placed by daley 1 year ago
daley
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Vote Placed by YoungLawyer 1 year ago
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Vote Placed by Blade-of-Truth 1 year ago
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Reasons for voting decision: RFD in comments.
Vote Placed by lannan13 1 year ago
lannan13
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Reasons for voting decision: Con was the only one with sources, so those points go to him. Conduct to Con due to Pro's forfeiture which hurted him more than you may realized as that cut back his rebuttals and we could easily see that his rebuttals cost Pro the debate due to his droppage of some of Con's points. Thus I have no choice but to give Con the debate. If this RFD isn't specific enough please PM me.
Vote Placed by LostintheEcho1498 1 year ago
LostintheEcho1498
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Reasons for voting decision: Con was the only one with sources and the forfeit by pro lost him conduct. The arguments were stronger on con's side with pro's arguments/rebuttals being much weaker
Vote Placed by whiteflame 1 year ago
whiteflame
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Reasons for voting decision: Given in comments. Conduct to Con because of both the forfeit and the disregard of the "first round for acceptance" rule.
Vote Placed by 1Historygenius 1 year ago
1Historygenius
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro's forfeit hurt him over all and he used no evidence to back up his sources. These both hurt his case, especially since Con pointed that there's more that one reason for someone to put up the Confederate flag for multiple reasons. Although I still think it's in bad taste to raise a flag that supported a belligerent power that was originally part of the United States. As a country, the Confederacy had more policies than slavery, even if slavery was the origin. For these reasons, Con proved that it was more complex that saying someone is supporting racism.