The Instigator
gahbage
Pro (for)
Winning
13 Points
The Contender
CJ
Con (against)
Losing
0 Points

To be revealed.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 7/29/2008 Category: Politics
Updated: 8 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 599 times Debate No: 4827
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (3)
Votes (3)

 

gahbage

Pro

As you can see, this debate is 5 rounds. In the contender's round 1, he/she will propose 3 different topics of debate that COVER VARIOUS FIELDS. (I don't want 3 debates about abortion but worded differently, for example.)

Then in my round 2, I will choose one of the resolutions. The contender will then, in his/her round 2, choose PRO or CON and whether to go first or second. If he/she goes first, to keep the number of arguments per person equal, he/she must include the opening argument in the response, and cannot post an argument in the final round. (Forfeit, spam, etc.) However, if I am forced to go first, the debate will proceed as normal. Either way, we will both have the normal 3 rounds to debate.
CJ

Con

I accept this debate and propose the following topics:
-God exists
-Abortion should be outlawed (except in the cases of rape or when the mother's life is in danger)
-We should not have a progressive tax.
For whatever chosen topic, I will take an affirmative position.
Debate Round No. 1
gahbage

Pro

Thank you for accepting. I choose "Abortion should be outlawed (except in the cases of rape or when the mother's life is in danger)", and since you are affirmative I am CON. If you would like to go first, go right ahead; if not, spam the round and I will post my opening argument.
CJ

Con

I will simply repost my argument from a previous debate on the same topic.
My argument is simple:
(1) A fetus, or embryo, is an individual human being
(2) Abortion kills this innocent human being.
(3) Abortion should be banned.

The main contention that needs to argued for is (1). In support of this, I will use an objective way to show that fetuses are individual, human beings: DNA. William Lane Craig, Professor of Philosophy at Biola University, has said, "Already in that moment of conception, that individual is either male or female, depending on whether he or she received an X or Y chromosome from the sperm. The later developments of sexual organs and other secondary sexual characteristics is only evidence of a difference in sexuality that has been there from the very beginning. Moreover, all of the individual's traits, such as body type, ey and hair color, facial characteristics, and so forth, are determined at the moment of conception and are just waiting to unfold. From the moment of conception we have a genetically complete and unique human being; in effect, you began at the moment of your conception." From the moment of conception, the fetus has DNA that tells us that it is human (obviously) and that it is an individual (in that no one else has that DNA). What do we call an individual human? A human being. This is why Professor Matthews-Roth of Harvard University Medical School has said, "It is scientifically correct to say that an individual human life begins at conception."

My second point follows the simple definition of abortion. Merriam-Webster's Dictionary defines abortion as "the termination of a pregnancy after, accompanied by, resulting in, or closely followed by the death of the embryo or fetus". Abortion kills the fetus.

My conclusion follows logically. The killing of innocent human beings, no matter how large or small, should be banned.
Debate Round No. 2
gahbage

Pro

My opponent presents his argument in a syllogistic form:

p (abortion) -> (implies) q (killing)
q -> r (wrong)
Therefore, p -> r, and abortion should be banned.

I will disprove this theory with similar logic: by proving p -> ~q (not killing).

I negate my opponent's first point by challenging the quote. "From the moment of conception, the fetus has DNA that tells us that it is human (obviously) and that it is an individual (in that no one else has that DNA). What do we call an individual human? A human being."

Merriam-Webster's definition of "human being" redirects to the noun "human", which reads: "a bipedal primate mammal". Now, at the moment of conception, a fetus is not a human. Why? Because how can you say two sex cells make a human? At the moment of conception, can this fetus do what any human can do? Of course not. Can this two-celled zygote maintain a stable living condition (homeostasis) and get the capacity to grow (metabolism) on its own? No. Two cells do not make a human being just because they have human DNA. So, life does not begin at conception. If life does not begin at conception, then an abortion at some point during the pregnancy but before the fetus' life would be alright, since the mother is not killing anything alive.

So, to sum my argument up in syllogistic form:

p (abortion) -> (implies) ~q (not killing)
~q -> ~r (not wrong; right)
Therefore, p -> ~r, and abortion should NOT be banned.

Vote gahbage.
CJ

Con

My opponent attempted to negate my claim that a fetus is a human being, thereby showing that abortion does not kill human beings. My opponent's logic involved citing things that fetuses can't do (the assumption seems to be that true humans should be able to do such things):
"Now, at the moment of conception, a fetus is not a human. Why? Because how can you say two sex cells make a human? At the moment of conception, can this fetus do what any human can do? Of course not. Can this two-celled zygote maintain a stable living condition (homeostasis) and get the capacity to grow (metabolism) on its own? No."

The problem with this logic is that, well, we don't use it. For example, there are multiple diseases that prevent people from maintaining stable living conditions or having the capacity to grow correctly without medicine or treatment. Do we say that people with these diseases aren't humans? No. We still classify them as humans even if they can't do things that most humans can do. In the same way we should classify a fetus as a human being even if it has not yet developed the abilities that most humans possess. The reason we should do so can be summed up by Dr. Bongioanna, professor of obstetrics at the University of Pennsylvania, who has said, while speaking on the early stages of development in the womb, "I am no more prepared to say that these early stages represent an incomplete human being than I would say that the child prior to the dramatic effects of puberty is not a human being. This is human life at every stage." In the same way that a newborn child, who still has many changes and developments to go through in life, is considered a human being. A fetus, with many more changes to come, should be considered one too.

From his previous claim (which we have shown to be incorrect), my opponent argued that the conclusion that we would reach would be "life does not begin at conception." However, this goes in complete contrast with modern science. In addition to my previous quote by Professor Matthews-Roth, Dr. Jerome LeJeune, genetics professor at the University of Descartes in Paris, has said, "After fertilization takes place a new human being has come into being." Even Aileen Klass, owner of Oregon's largest abortion clinic, has said under oath in the Lovejoy Surgicenter vs. Advocates for Life Ministries case: "Of course human life begins at conception."

Vote Affirmative
Debate Round No. 3
gahbage

Pro

"The problem with this logic is that, well, we don't use it. For example, there are multiple diseases that prevent people from maintaining stable living conditions or having the capacity to grow correctly without medicine or treatment. Do we say that people with these diseases aren't humans? No. We still classify them as humans even if they can't do things that most humans can do. In the same way we should classify a fetus as a human being even if it has not yet developed the abilities that most humans possess."

Of course they are humans - there was merely a genetic error that caused the disease. If you sampled their DNA you would still find human DNA. That is not the point I was making, however. I was saying that a fetus is not human at conception, because two cells do not make a human.

Think about it: When I was conceived, I had the very same DNA as I do right now in my fingernail. Is my fingernail a human? It is by your reasoning. But any reasonable person could see that my fingernail is not a human, by logic or by definition.

Furthermore, I am made up of billions (if not trillions) of cells. How could I be human if I was TWO cells? You can't even see two cells; they're microscopic! How can you possibly expect that to be a human?

"A fetus, with many more changes to come, should be considered one too."

No, because it has yet to become a human in the first place, not change into a new stage of humanity.

Now, I will not supply quotes from scientists on my position, because it would just turn into a large battle of "who can get more quotes". I will simply address my opponent's quotes.

"After fertilization takes place a new human being has come into being."

" . . . being has come into being"? And see my earlier point.

"Of course human life begins at conception."

So it's true because he said it under oath? It would be, "he said it under oath because it's true", and not because he was in a court of law.

Now let's looks at the logical aspect of my opponent's reasoning. In addition to the points I suggested earlier, he believes that fetuses will become humans, so they should have rights.

I negate; just because a fetus may have rights in the future, does not mean it should have rights NOW. It will get the rights when it is proven to be a living human; that is, when it is born. Much like a criminal. You cannot punish the criminal for a crime he may commit in the future. And you cannot give a fetus rights it may have in the future.

My opponent's reasoning is, well... unreasonable, and I have successfully defended my position. At this point you vote gahbage.
CJ

Con

CJ forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4
gahbage

Pro

Extend my points across...

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CJ

Con

CJ forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by Im_always_right 8 years ago
Im_always_right
This looks interesting, I can't wait to see what CJ says...probably more quotes to make his point.
Posted by gahbage 8 years ago
gahbage
I think I accidentally corrected his syllogism >.<
Posted by Puck 8 years ago
Puck
CJ, your syllogism is still flawed. Your premises do not include "banned" only the conclusion. This is a logical fallacy (illicit distribution of end terms) that renders your syllogism useless.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by gahbage 8 years ago
gahbage
gahbageCJTied
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Vote Placed by JakeRoss 8 years ago
JakeRoss
gahbageCJTied
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Vote Placed by Puck 8 years ago
Puck
gahbageCJTied
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