The Instigator
FunkeeMonk91
Pro (for)
Losing
16 Points
The Contender
SolaGratia
Con (against)
Winning
45 Points

The "Impossibility" of A New American Revolution

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/15/2007 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 1,548 times Debate No: 474
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
Votes (17)

 

FunkeeMonk91

Pro

First of all, I'm not saying I want to overthrow the government or that we need to. I just read an article, and concluded that it is fact "impossible" to have a legit revolt in this country. Whether this is good or bad is beside the point. But I'll wait for a challenge to get more in depth.

I put impossible in quotes because I previously started a debate with someone and they went all philosophical on me and said, "you can't know that anything is impossible." So don't take the topic literally.
SolaGratia

Con

Well, I'm sure you have good reasoning to back this up. However, I don't know what your arguments are right now, so I can't try to refute them.

On the face of it, however, I disagree with you. I think that revolution is always possible. Perhaps less so in America because we are, despite whatever the drive-by media tells us, a stable nation. All that is needed is a keg of powder--take your pick: Iraq, Abortion, Immigration, Nukes; and a fuse; someone or some movement that sets the keg on fire. See what I'm saying?
Debate Round No. 1
FunkeeMonk91

Pro

Yes, I do. But listen. Let's say that something happens, take your pick. What are you going to do? You might loose faith in democracy and then put some Rage Against the Machine on your iPod. There is nothing you can do. Our country if far too large and the institutions that make up our society are too complex. There is nothing anyone can really do to overthrow our government. Again, whether that is a good or bad thing is a whole other debate all together.
SolaGratia

Con

I disagree. Revolution is ALWAYS possible. I stand by that. It would only take one event. A nuclear attack, say, or perhaps Bush was revealed to be a, well, whatever the Dems are calling him these days. Perhaps not, perhaps something else. But it could happen. You think we've become too complacent, too centralized. You say our society is too complex for it to be fall down. I'm sure the Romans thought the same way you do. In many ways, they were like us--strong, arrogant, civilized. But they toppled. And when they toppled, Europe was thrown into the dark ages. It didn't really recover for more than a thousand years. That could happen in the United States. Common sense has it that there is no lock that is unbreakable. No secret that can't be found. And no country that can't be toppled. As Archimedes said, "Give me a lever big enough and I can move the world."
Debate Round No. 2
FunkeeMonk91

Pro

First of all, it's a little presumptuous to compare modern day America to ancient Rome. In Roman times, there was one ruler who was responsible for almost every aspect of society. If someone wanted change, there was an obvious target. Today, there are hundreds of people who make decisions. Even if you managed to get to, say the president, there would be more that not only would replace him, but also have the same ideals and beliefs as the person you just assasinated.

Also, theres one thing that we have that Romans didn't: a middle class. In Rome, you were either poor/lower class or an aristocrat. The peasants had nothing to loose. We do. We (middle class citizens) have enough money to afford luxuries and stuff, but not enough to have places of power. If one of us revolted, we would risk our jobs, our houses, and our way of life. Imagine if you have a wife, kids, a nice house, nice job, good friends, you know all that stuff. What would it take for you to risk all of that for a revolution? I can't imagine that it would be an easy decision.

Third, people these days are complacent, no matter what you may think. I know it's just a movie, but theres a scene in "Fight Club" where they have an assignment to start a fight with one person. But, it turns out to be very difficult. Most are willing to avoid conflict at all costs. In the article I read, the author said that there are two types of people: rock throwers and (I forget the other) not-rock throwers. Think about it. If someone started throwing rocks, who would follow him? Say he lives in AZ, like me. He's 3,000 miles away from Washington D.C. So even if he gained support. What is he supposed to do? Would anyone want to join forces with a "rock thrower" type?

Since this is the last round, the name of the article that inspired this debate was called, "So You Want a Revolution?" by Chuck Klosterman. You should read it. Even if you don't agree, it's really funny and a good read.
SolaGratia

Con

Washington DC, 2013.

White Supremacists destroyed Washington and its vicinity with a dirty bomb. The government, which is very centralized in the Maryland-Virginia-DC area, is decapitated. They have successfully launched a revolution.

That's all it takes.

What I think you're failing to grasp here is how fragile our society is. We are the greatest society in the world. The most stable, and the strongest. But one event could end that forever. Civilization, especially a particular one, rests on a knife's edge. The only thing I can think of to compare it with is the distance between the Earth and the sun. That distance is precise, and doesn't change more than a tiny fraction of the distance. But if it were to change any more than that--ANY more, the results would be disastrous. Now, that might never happen (I hope) but can you see where I'm going? Heck, it could just be a stock market crash.

Rome was not, in my opinion, the best analogy. But the comparison is still valid. The Romans were mightier in the world in their time than we are now, but they were toppled. The point that they had an empire, and not an bureaucracy, is a fair one, but does not contradict my original point. Just think: you could take out the emperor of Rome, but it wouldn't be a revolution. The power would probably pass to someone of the same ilk, and little would change. It would be a power grab, not a good-old revolution. On the other hand, if you decapitated the government with the aforementioned dirty bomb or something like it, it would lead to anarchy because our government is so centralized.

Perhaps people would be complacent at first, but they would harden. They would harden or die. If something that cataclysmic happened, it would be survival of the fittest.

I might read that article. It does sound interesting. However, I think my original point still stands: no government, no bureaucracy, is big or strong enough that even something as comparatively small as a stock market crash can't topple it.
Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by FunkeeMonk91 8 years ago
FunkeeMonk91
So it looks like I lost. But I invite everyone to read the article that got me thinking about this. It's about a page or so, so it's not too long. But it is a really good read. I'm sure he can better defend our view than I.

"So, You Say You Want A Revolution?" by Chuck Klosterman.
Posted by mrmatt505 8 years ago
mrmatt505
I myself may not make a "fuse" or be the "key of power" and therefore I will not be the starter of the revolution and won't start anything, but I know that if there is enough civil discontent and there is someone able to lead the "mob" (which is America) then a revolution is very likely.
Posted by iloveher666 8 years ago
iloveher666
i can see what both sides are saying.but also think if somone overthrows the government it will all happen agian.their ARE to many people in the world and you cant keep them all happy.equallity is the best bet.but yeah
Posted by FunkeeMonk91 8 years ago
FunkeeMonk91
Sorry, I made a mistake. I just realized that ancient Rome had an emperor and a Senate. My bad. But it really doesn't take away from my argument. Just substitute pre-revolution France. They had one king that could be target by revolutionaries.
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Vote Placed by SolaGratia 8 years ago
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