The Instigator
bigtree
Con (against)
Losing
83 Points
The Contender
XimenBao
Pro (for)
Winning
93 Points

The chicken comes before the egg

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/22/2010 Category: Entertainment
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 8,941 times Debate No: 10929
Debate Rounds (2)
Comments (69)
Votes (31)

 

bigtree

Con

Rules:
No getting anal over definitions of chicken and egg, and this applies only to the folowing classic problem:

What came first, the chicken or the egg?

And also, we're talking sctrictly non-religious.

Since whoever will be pro has the burden of proof, he can go first. Good luck!
XimenBao

Pro

Con has asked that we 'not get anal over definitions'. I agree and plan to hold Con to that, using only common dictionary provided definitions for the terms without trying to redefine terms or split hairs with definitions from odd sources.

The classic formulation clearly implies the choice between a chicken or a chicken's egg. Eggs are defined by the animal they come from, not the animal they develop into [1].

A chicken's egg is an egg which comes from a chicken, therefore there must be a chicken to produce a chicken egg, therefore the chicken must come first.

However, a chicken does not necessarily have to come from a chicken's egg. Whatever was the earliest ancestor of the chicken species that we are willing to call not-a-Chicken (possibly a hybrid of the red junglefowl and the grey junglefowl [2]) at some point laid an egg with enough mutations that it grew into the animal we are willing to call a chicken. Thus the sequence goes Hybrid Junglefowl -> Hybrid Junglefowl Egg -> Chicken -> Chicken Egg.

So we see that the chicken comes first.

[1]http://www.merriam-webster.com...
[2]http://www.plosgenetics.org...
Debate Round No. 1
bigtree

Con

I must contradict you in that. You seem to imply that the chicken would hatch from a Hybrid Junglefowl Egg. However technically, the egg from which the chicken is born is actually a chicken egg.

Let me explain. Evolution is caused by random genetic mutations which happen to change the structure or function of sections of the organism. Now, in the egg from which the first animal we are willing to call a chicken, the genetic code for the chicken is already there. It is a mutant egg. Since a chicken is a mutant Hybrid Junglefowl, and the egg is a mutant Hybrid Junglefowl egg, the egg is actually a chicken egg.

Now to my arguments:

I believe that there are many ways of interpreting this quote. I will prove my point as CON for each of these interpretations.

1. Regarding meals. In typical diets, eggs are more commonly eaten at breakfast than chicken, and chicken is more commonly eaten at dinner than eggs. Since breakfast normally comes before dinner, the egg comes before the chicken.

2. Regarding the animal and it's origins. I have two views on this:

-Evolution is caused by genetic mutations in the gametes or zygotes of an organism, which would be the unfertilized egg and the fertilized egg, respectively, when talking about chickens. Therefore, the first chicken's zygote/gamete, or egg, is already coded to be a chicken. So, it came first.

-Some say the chicken has to lay the egg, but the chicken actually first comes from the egg, as I previously demonstrated.

Sources:

http://en.wikipedia.org...
http://evolution.berkeley.edu...
http://www.conservapedia.com...
http://en.wikipedia.org...
http://en.wikipedia.org...
XimenBao

Pro

In the rules for the debate, Con stated that definitional games were not allowed. I stated I would hold him to that, and it appears I will need to do so.

First, Con argues genetics. It is important to note that he does not refute that according to the dictionary, the definition of an egg depends on parentage. This makes the argumentation irrelevant. The genetics of the situation isn't in dispute. The terminology is.

According to con, "Since a chicken is a mutant Hybrid Junglefowl, and the egg is a mutant Hybrid Junglefowl egg, the egg is actually a chicken egg."

This argument wins Con the point that the mutant-Hybrid-egg is the genetic equivalent of a chicken egg.

However, the debate hinges on whether that egg should be described in relation to the Hybrid Junglefowl or the Chicken.

If the egg in question should be described as a chicken egg that came from a Hybrid Junglefowl, the debate should go to Con.
If the egg in question should be described as a Hybrid Junglefowl egg that grows into a chicken, the debate should go to Pro.

Con did not dispute the fact that eggs are described in terms of the animal that produces them, instead choosing to argue that eggs are the genetic equivalent of the animal they grow into. This is true, but not a point under contention.

Regardless of whether an egg will hatch and be considered a different species, regardless of whether it's genetically equivalent to a different species than the parent, the parent's species, by definition, determines how the egg is described and this was not disputed by Con. You must accept Pro's definition argument since Con passed his chance to challenge it.

Thus, the egg of a Hybrid Junglefowl is still a Hybrid Junglefowl egg, even if it's genetically equivalent to a chicken. It was a dropped point that the descriptor is determined by parentage, not genetic makeup, thus the progression is still Hybrid Junglefowl -> Hybrid Junglefowl Egg -> Chicken -> Chicken Egg and the Chicken still comes before the chicken egg.

To address Con's 2 arguments: the first is a perversion of the classic problem and should be dismissed under Con's own rules he stipulated in the OP.

The second is simply a rehash of the above discussion, that the descriptor of an egg, whether it is a chicken egg or a hybrid junglefowl egg, is defined by parentage, not genetics.

In summary:
Con did not dispute that the definition of an egg depends on parentage not genetics, thus a chicken egg can only exist when a chicken has laid it, thus the chicken comes first.

Con did not use in-line citations and so it is impossible to ascertain which of his links support which of his arguments. Please vote sources for Pro.
Debate Round No. 2
69 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by 1dustpelt 4 years ago
1dustpelt
Nevermind, I read the entire debate.
Posted by 1dustpelt 4 years ago
1dustpelt
But isn't the Junglefowl egg the chicken egg?
Posted by MarquisX 6 years ago
MarquisX
Its the old answer isn't it? A circle has no beginning.
Posted by XimenBao 6 years ago
XimenBao
IMO, that wasn't disputed so much as what defines a chicken.
Posted by tBoonePickens 6 years ago
tBoonePickens
Doesn't the chicken come before the egg? A chicken is an actual chicken and an egg a potential chicken and actuality precedes potentiality. Assuming of course we are talking about chicken & chicken eggs.
Posted by bigtree 7 years ago
bigtree
Also, I think that my mealtime argument is still valid, but maybe that's just me ;)
Posted by bigtree 7 years ago
bigtree
I think it was a really close debate is all. I sort of see where my perversion was now. So, good work, XimenBao!
Posted by XimenBao 7 years ago
XimenBao
Yeah, I agree that a creator would come before the chicken or the egg, but remember the topic.
Posted by dollydo 7 years ago
dollydo
Like I stated in my conclusion. Electrons (creators) create creation. Therefore, the creator comes before the creation or chicken before the egg. Until, of course, we find out what is smaller than an electron. Until then it still stands that the creator creates creation.
Posted by XimenBao 7 years ago
XimenBao
I considered doing what you suggested, dolly, but I didn't see how it would relate to the question of which came first.
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