The Instigator
SitaraPorDios
Pro (for)
Losing
0 Points
The Contender
bsh1
Con (against)
Winning
4 Points

This is a good decision.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 1 vote the winner is...
bsh1
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 8/22/2013 Category: News
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 606 times Debate No: 36931
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (0)
Votes (1)

 

bsh1

Con

Hi! I accept this debate. I am very much a pro-LGBTQ rights individual. Therefore, it is a topic that is very important to me. Personally, I think that instead of boycotting Russian products or events, the best way to combat these laws is through active civil disobedience in Russia. Consequently, the decision to refuse to attend the festival was not a good decision. I will present my opening arguments in round two.

I suggest that we define "good" as "producing greatest utility; beneficial." I look forward to an interesting debate.
Debate Round No. 1
SitaraPorDios

Pro

Pro-lgbtqi but against the decision? I am the b in lgbtqi, and I would definately refuse an event that was against my rights.
bsh1

Con

Let me begin by declaring right now that what is going on in Russia is a travesty, and cannot be condoned. This debate is not about whether or not the deprivation of the LGBTQ community"s rights is wrong or not"because it is categorically and undeniable repugnant"but rather, this debate revolves around the question of how to handle our response to this crisis.

Observation: Pro drops my definition of "good."

Contention One: Refusing to go to Russia is unhelpful.

Protesting by absentia instead of in person is like sending a letter when you could show up in person, the former carries much less weight than the latter. Ultimately, by staying far away, Wentworth remains inherently apart from the conflict, when he should be on the ground and embroiled in it. It is far more impactful for individuals, especially celebrities and world leaders, who wish to protest Russia"s homophobia to actually go to Russia and speak out as a form of civil disobedience. It not only gives them more visibility in Russia, but by being their physically, they lend greater gravitas to their message of tolerance. It shows that they are willing to undergo personal risk in order to speak out on behalf and in support of the LGBTQ diaspora.

Contention Two: Civil disobedience is effective and appropriate.

Civil disobedience can be explained as when someone conscientiously objects to legislation based on moral or ethical grounds, and, as a result, engages in noncompliance with that law, and peaceably accepts the consequences of that noncompliance. In other words, someone breaks an immoral law to protest that law. This is what I advocate well-known individuals to engage in, as it would be efficacious. Civil disobedience has a clear trackrecord of success that warrants my assertion here. In India, Gandhis stayagraha movement successfully ended British colonial oppression; in South Africa, apartheid was ended; in the U.S., Dr. King made huge inroads into the inequalities of the system. There are even more examples I could cite to illustrate how Civil disobedience could be a powerful tool in the fight against tyranny in Russia. (Source: 2) Ultimately, "power itself is not derived through violence, though in governmental form it is usually violent in nature. Governmental power is often maintained through oppression and the tacit compliance of the majority of the governed"Struggle and conflict are often necessary to correct injustice." (Source: 1) In this case, the struggle must be fought largely within Russia, not without. This requires the well-known to go to Russia, and "propagandize" in violation of Russia"s laws, like Lady Gaga and Madonna did. (Sources: 3 and 4)

Thus, I maintain Wentworth"s decision was not a good one. He needed to go to Russia, and then protest there. I await Pro's response.

Sources:
1. http://www.actupny.org...
2. http://www.newworldencyclopedia.org...
3. http://www.bbc.co.uk...
4. http://www.lgbtqnation.com...
Debate Round No. 2
SitaraPorDios

Pro

You do know that the Russians are famous for torture and police brutality, right? Someone without training should not have to risk that.
bsh1

Con

I shall be extending parts of my case and then addressing Pro's remarks.

Pro drops the argument that civil disobedience is effective. Give the historical evidence to support this as well, the argument goes Con. So, once we accept that civil disobedience works, all we have to ask is, is it appropriate in this case? I think it is. Con's only response to my analysis was to suggest that Wentworth may be brutalized and tortured by the Russian authorities if he had done what I advocate.

However, Con's rebuttal falls utterly short when we consider that neither Lady Gaga nor Madonna, nor the countless other stars or world leaders that have protested in Russia, have been assaulted. In fact, if Pro references the sources I provided earlier, she will see that Russia took the fairly tame step of filing charges over violating the terms of their visas. I hardly think we can call this "brutalization." In other words, Wentworth's celebrity would protect him, because Russia is unlikely to assail such a high profile individual. And even so, an element of mild risk adds to the powerfulness of the protest.

Furthermore, Con also drops the argument that someone with celebrity would be even more effective at protesting, because they draw media attention more easily. Finally, Con also drops the point that comparatively, civil disobedience within Russia would actually be more potent that simply boycotting Russian event of products as Wentworth did.

So, when we ask was his decision a good one, I think the answer was no. Going to Russia would have been the correct thing to do; it would have been more personally impactful and would have garnered great attention in the press. Ultimately, Russia could use some more bad press--then it might back off it's cruel policies.
Debate Round No. 3
SitaraPorDios

Pro

SitaraPorDios forfeited this round.
bsh1

Con

Extend my arguments.
Debate Round No. 4
SitaraPorDios

Pro

SitaraPorDios forfeited this round.
bsh1

Con

Pro forfeits. Extend my points. Vote Con!

Thanks!
Debate Round No. 5
No comments have been posted on this debate.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Ragnar 4 years ago
Ragnar
SitaraPorDiosbsh1Tied
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: FF.