The Instigator
GaryBacon
Pro (for)
Losing
42 Points
The Contender
Yraelz
Con (against)
Winning
43 Points

Vegetarianism is wrong. Eating meat is the way to live.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/20/2008 Category: Society
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 2,405 times Debate No: 2008
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (19)
Votes (21)

 

GaryBacon

Pro

There are many reasons that people have for becoming a vegetarian. I believe I have heard all of them, but none of them have seemed to hold up against logical scrutiny. From health issues to ethical issues, all of the arguments that have been attempted have some major flaw. In this forum, I will attempt to point out the fallacies in all of these arguments. My challenge is for someone to give me a logical reason to become a vegetarian. I, in turn, will review the reason and give a refutation.
Yraelz

Con

Yeah, I will take this on as many levels as I possibly can. I've been waiting for a debate like this to show up.

So first I am going to bring you personally into the round from what I have gathered through your profile. That being that you are agnostic and that you believe in saving endangered species. Therefor I will be avoiding god throughout this entire debate, I have no desire to go there.

But I do need to ask you a couple questions and I'm going to use this round purely as cross-ex (considering this is a 5 round debate).

1. "Eating meat is the way to live." Specify this one for me a little. Does eating human meat count to you? Do you have a problem with that?

2. I see a minute contradiction between saving endangered species and eating meat as sometimes eating meat has been the result of endangered species. Notice the word "sometimes" in my sentence. Can you explain your justification to me?

3. What is your rationale behind "eating meat is the way to live"? Do you mean that literally in a "you can only live if you eat meat" way?

Answers these three and I will give you my first speech. Thanks.
Debate Round No. 1
GaryBacon

Pro

For starters, you've taken the time to notice that I am in favour of saving endangered species. I give you credit for that. In that same vein, I am not arguing for the consumption of ALL meat. Not every animal on this planet is meant to be consumed by humans. One such animal that is not on our food chain is other humans. When people go against nature (e.g. eating other humans or squirrel brains) they develop pathogenic proteins known as prions in their system. This results in something known as Couetzfeldt-Jakob Syndrome. It is the human equivalent of Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (mad cow disease). Therefore, I do not believe in eating humans or many other animals. Endangered species should be left alone as well as anything that would not naturally be on a human's food chain, such as shark. "Eating meat" should not be construed as eating every form of meat one could think of. It simply means that everyone should consume at least some form of meat.
As far as the second question goes, some of it has already been taken care of in my first response. If I do not believe in consuming endangered species, then species would not go extinct due to human consumption. But I will take it further than that. I have done field studies in which I would travel to various parts of New York State and Pennsylvania to map the migration patterns of deer mice (Peromyscus maniculatus). During this study I noticed many forests with no under story. The reason was that deer were overpopulated in that area, and as a result of their eating habits, nothing new would grow (except ferns which for some reason they don't like). Now there are two reasons for the overpopulation of deer. The first is that their natural predators such as wolves and coyote are being killed by humans in the area. Despite the fact that I eat meat, I am against killing these animals as they are not on our food chain, and killing for sport is something with which I have issues. The second reason for the overpopulation is that one of the deer's natural predators (humans) are not consuming them in the normal numbers. So in this scenario, eating venison would actually save many species. The chain being that deer consume plants that other animals feed on, those animals in turn will dwindle in number, then the predators of those animals dwindle, et cetera. So I will say that some people will hunt animals to extinction (the Japanese whaling vessels may soon accomplish something like this) but this is not something I am speaking in favour of. As stated before, I against refraining from all meat products. This does not mean that one should consume anything and everything. So if you mention people that eat humans, pandas, endangered whales or anything similar I would probably agree with your point of view. I'm arguing against vegetarianism in general, and so one can still refrain from such meat (like myself) and still not be anywhere close to being a vegetarian.
For the third question, it should be obvious that I am far from your casual anti-vegetarian moron. I do not believe that one cannot survive without meat. There are many countless vegetarians that survive to a healthy age. I meant it in a more philosophical sense. Being a vegetarian imposes serious limits on one's lifestyle. When others wish to go out to eat, there must always be a vegetarian option on the menu if a vegetarian wishes to join. There can also be some health issues.
I believe that I have answered these questions sufficiently. If you feel otherwise let me know. Otherwise, we can now begin the debate. State your reasons in favour of vegetarianism.
Yraelz

Con

Okay here goes, my arguments will become more clear as time goes on but I will try to make them as clear as possible at this point. Thanks for this topic, this is something I have been waiting for.

First off I am attacking your rationale that leads you away from eating human meat. You tell me that they are not naturally a part of our food chain. But I find myself in a disagreement with you. I do not believe you can naturally define any animals food chain. Especially under the theory of evolution. Unless you claim a divine classification of what is natural. It is my conclusion that each animal chooses its own food chain. There are obviously factors that make eating certain things more desirable than others. For instance the eagle will search out the lazy sun bathing snake as opposed to the quick ferret. One prey is an easier catch.

From this conclusion I leap to my next one. Humans no longer need to eat meat. This you admit in your final sentences when you tell me, "I do not believe that one cannot survive without meat. There are many countless vegetarians that survive to a healthy age." At one point I will agree that meat was an essential part of our diet for lack of advanced sciences or cultivation techniques. Yet I no longer believe this to be true.

So now that I have established eating meat is not a necessary part of human life I will establish why it is unnecessary, immoral, and wrong. Thus with eating meat being wrong I will conclude with vegetarianism being right (being a fine alternative).

First and foremost I would like to point to Darwin's theory and how we came to be. Did we not evolve from less complex and less complex creatures, organisms, cells?

Keeping this in mind, ask yourself as a voter/ as my opponent why humans typically believe murder to be wrong? I can list reasons personally: It destroys an intelligent form of life, destroys potential for subjective good, destroys potential for growth. Perhaps you are one of those people that believes we should not kill humans for the mere reason that they are humans, if this be the case please tell me. I will attack such a point.

Now to draw from my evolution and murder points in the last two paragraphs. What would have happened if another form of life had come along and killed one of the key creatures we had evolved from? What if something had killed that creature that had the mutation that lead to a slightly more sophisticated brain power? By the killing of such a creature the potential for the human race to not exist today dramatically increases. Therefor would we consider such a killing to be wrong? Indeed, to destroy the potential for a great intelligent race would be more than wrong (and all the subjective good / growth of life in general that goes along with such a killing).

So what are we as humans doing everyday when we eat creatures? Can you prove to me that we have never eaten a creature that had a favorable gene mutation? I would contest with the amount of creatures humans have devoured that there is no chance we have not killed such a creature. To slow or even halt the intelligent development of any race is wrong.

Next once again stemming from my murder point. We as humans seems to naturally define our race as superior to every other. We consider ourselves more intelligent, sophisticated, capable of greater good, and overall the dominant species. I consider such logic to be flawed.

Think about every time you have considered yourself a member of a privileged sub-group. Perhaps you feel your country is superior to others, perhaps it be your ethnicity; I say you are wrong and your conclusions lead you to create greater wrongs. Look at examples of times when people have considered themselves to be greater than other forms of humans. Slavery, exploitation, abuse, sexism, racism. Look to the greatest example of man-kind thinking himself greater than others, Hitler.

Is thinking our species greater any different than thinking our race greater, our country, our city? Whatever it may be. Does it not all stem from the same lack of logic? Can you prove to me that a dolphin does not have the potential to do good? Can you prove the dolphin cannot grow and teach others with it? Can you prove the dolphin is not intelligent in its own light? Does a dolphin not have the potential to evolve and become just as intelligent as human life? Is human's subjectively defining other forms of life somehow justified?

I contest that any form of animal life can be just as important as any other. No perhaps not to you as a human but does that make a mice helping 5 other mice any less important? We as humans define ourselves as the center of the universe but I disagree. Humans are just another form of life. Humans are in the greater group that I refer to as "life". Any animal has the potential to benefit "life".

Next. To put things in perspective. This earth has existed according to modern day scientists for billions of years. Humans? Couple thousand years. Do you realize during what insignificant portion of this earth we have existed? There were many species that came before us and doubtlessly many that will come after (providing the world is not destroyed). Are those species any less or more important because of what time they lived during? Am I more important than Socrates, Plato, Aristotle because I live now and they lived in the past? Doubtlessly not.

In accordance to how long the world has existed and will exist humans are not the center of the universe. Obviously we consider ourselves to be the most important but that does not make it true. Objectively we are no more important than any other creature that has or will walk the face of this earth. I will argue that a creatures actions in my subjective view can make it important to me. For instance I would say that a lion that eats my sister is more important than the bum on the street. Or the dolphin that saves me from a shark attack more important than an acquaintance or even perhaps a good friend. However I do not consider any form of life to have a pre-defined less or more important status. Any creature can become important or unimportant through its actions.

Finally if you would like to stick with the idea that man is the most important greatest form of life please note everything that man has done to this world. Please look to the fact that we have ruined so many things for so many different species and ourselves. Is that greatness? In my personal opinion I consider human actions to have on a whole hurt this earth far more than many other species could ever dream of. If you really want to define life on this earth into categories varying on how important they are then I say there is no way you could possibly put humans on the top rung.

In conclusion: What I'm suggesting is that you as a human belong to a larger group called "life". Humans in the past have defined themselves into sub-groups and called themselves greater than others. What I'm asking is that you don't make the same mistake and take it a step farther. Don't just realize that we are all human beings on this earth but that we are all life on this earth. Each human being is different as each form of life is different but none is pre-determined lesser or greater than another. Therefor since murder is wrong, perhaps you don't agree in which case you can attack my point, I can see no reason why murdering one of another species is any different from murdering one of our own. Thus eating meat is wrong. Vegetarianism is the way to go!

Note: This debate is taken in the perspective of no god existing. If you happen to be one of the god folk please judge as if you were not. Or at the very least see past your bias for the sake of voting on the better argument not on your own feelings.
Debate Round No. 2
GaryBacon

Pro

You begin your argument by attacking my rationale that leads me away from eating human meat. To reiterate, my first claim was that humans are not part of our food chain and, furthermore, anthropophagy can lead to Couetzfeldt-Jakob syndrome. I would first like to point out that Couetzfeldt-Jakob syndrome is an incurable disease caused by pathogenic proteins that first cause insanity followed by death. Perhaps contracting a fatal human version of transmissible spongiform encephalopathy is not a valid reason according to you for avoiding human meat. But it is certainly a valid enough reason for me and most likely a large majority of others.

You never mentioned the Couetzfeldt-Jakob syndrome. You only attacked the food chain. So I guess here is where the debate begins. Your response was "I do not believe you can naturally define any animals food chain. Especially under the theory of evolution." I will now show that just the opposite is true. Evolution is the main reason why there IS a food chain.

The following is an excerpt from Chapter XIV of The Origin Of Species:

"Numerous cases could be given of striking resemblances in quite distinct beings between single parts or organs, which have adapted for the same functions. A good instance is afforded by the close resemblance of the jaws of the dog and Tasmanian wolf or Thylacinus,--animals which are widely sundered in the natural system. But this resemblance is confined to general appearance, as in the prominence of the canines, and in the cutting shape of the molar teeth. For the teeth really differ much: thus the dog has on each side of the upper jaw four pre-molars and only two molars; whilst the Thylacinus has three pre-molars and four molars. The molars also differ much in the two animals in relative size and structure. The adult dentition is preceded by a widely different milk dentition. Any one may of course deny that the teeth in either case have been adapted for tearing flesh, through the natural selection of successive variations; but if this be admitted in the one case, it is unintelligible to me that it should be denied in the other. I am glad to find that so high an authority as Professor Flower has come to this same conclusion."

The gist of this passage is that in at least one of the two species, the teeth have evolved for the purpose of tearing flesh. When animals evolve special adaptations to suit a particular diet, it is clear that there is a natural food source for each individual species. When all of the species living in the same area rely on one another for sustenance (along with the various forms of plants and fungi), an ecosystem develops. To anyone that views the intricate and dynamic relationship in an ecosystem, it is obvious that there is such a thing as a food chain or, more properly, food web.

There are countless other examples of adaptations specifically designed for a particular food source. Many members of the mammalian order Edentata have developed elongated mouths and long sticky tongues for the purpose of feeding on insects.

Dr. Peter Ducey of The State University of New York College at Cortland has done extensive research on the relationship between the toxic skin of amphibians and the evolution of snakes to resist such toxins. I have actually had the pleasure of meeting him and attending one of his lectures on this topic.

For one final example, I will mention the Cnidarians (jellyfish, anemones). The Cnidarians have evolved specialized cells called cnidocytes which contain stinging projections called nematocysts. These are used for stinging and paralyzing prey. Now you have stated "It is my conclusion that each animal chooses its own food chain." Are we really to believe that the reason a jellyfish stings and consumes a fish is because it chooses to do so? Is this really a conscious choice on the part of the jellyfish? Could it choose to eat kelp instead? These questions are obviously rhetorical.

The next argument you make is that humans no longer need to eat meat. This is something that even I have admitted, as you rightly point out. However, becoming a vegetarian simply because you can is not a valid or logical reason. There are many illogical and ridiculous things that someone can do. But just because one CAN do something, that is nowhere near enough justification to say that you SHOULD.

Moving on, you claim that eating meat is immoral and wrong. You mention Darwin, but it is obvious to me, as it should be to the people reading this debate, that you have never read a single thing by Darwin. After mentioning all of the adaptations that animals have developed to consume other animals, I cannot see how evolution can be used to support the claim that it is immoral for one animal species to consume another.

Now we come to your murder arguments. The main reason that murder is wrong is because man is a social species. All social species (with the rare exception of man) refrain from killing members of their own species without reason. The reasons for killing in the animal kingdom vary greatly. From obtaining territory, to obtaining food, to breeding, killing is seen constantly in the animal kingdom. You mention that killing is wrong because it may stop the evolution of another species. In actuality, evolution only occurs because of death. In Chapter VI of The Origin Of Species, at the very beginning of the section entitled "Organs of little apparent Importance, as affected by Natural Selection" it states:

"...natural selection acts by life and death,-- by the survival of the fittest, and by the destruction of the less well-fitted individuals--"

From here you dedicate several paragraphs to refute a claim that I NEVER MADE! (i.e. that humans are better than every other species) On this, there are only a few points that I would like to make. First off, you use Hitler as an example of mankind thinking himself greater than others. I find this extremely ironic since the general consensus among historians is that Hitler became a vegetarian on the advice of one of his doctors.

The second point is that your last eight paragraphs are nothing more than a glorified version of the slogan "Meat is murder."

Finally, it is wrong to spend so much time refuting a claim that I never made. You've made statements such as "Finally if you would like to stick with the idea that man is the most important greatest form of life..." How can I possibly stick with an idea that I never put forth? This is an obvious attempt to deceive the readers of this debate into thinking that I have made such claims, and I consider it very unsportsmanlike. I hope the readers will note this and read through everything I've written to see that you have put words in my mouth. Perhaps this underhanded tactic is how you win debates.
Yraelz

Con

Yraelz forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
GaryBacon

Pro

Starting out, you refer briefly to the Couetzfeldt-Jakob syndrome. My only point in rementioning it was due to your statement "First off I am attacking your rationale that leads you away from eating human meat." It served to show that my rationale was valid, and those that must refresh themselves should reread the arguments.

From here you seem to create your own theory of evolution. You insist "that every species can define its own food chain if it so wanted." But this is not how evolution operates. The rare exceptions where evolution does occur by choice (such as sympatric speciation) are few and far between. I do concede that IF all humans at the same time suddenly decided to eat other humans, a few may survive that would be resistant to prions. However, such ridiculous hypotheticals are not worthy of speculation and have no relevance to the way in which evolution operates in the real world. Similar speculations you've made, such as all dogs abstaining from meat, are equally irrelevant and have no bearing on the way in which evolution actually operates.

In response to my example of the jellyfish, you ask if I deny such a creature any intelligence. While a jellyfish may have some intelligence, one must remember that this is a creature without a brain. To claim that it chooses a fish because it knows how its digestive system works is giving that jellyfish a lot more credit than it deserves. Furthermore, if both fish and kelp are to be considered prey for the jellyfish, I cannot consider the fish the "easiest prey." I have seen live fish and live kelp, and I assure you that the fish is the far more elusive of the two.

Now in my argument, I gave several examples of animals that have evolved features clearly used to consume other animals. I then stated "After mentioning all of the adaptations that animals have developed to consume other animals, I cannot see how evolution can be used to support the claim that it is immoral for one animal species to consume another." Your entire response to this was as follows: "Just did, notice you didn't actually attack any of my points specifically. Extend."

Before I expand my argument, something must be mentioned. Most of your specific points in the "murder" arguments are based on attacking the notion that humans are the greatest species. Since I do not contend that humans are better than every other species, many of your points are things I would not attack. If I share your belief that humans are not the greatest species, I will not debate you on this issue just for the sake of arguing.

Now to expand on why I do not believe eating meat is immoral.

Your first question in Round 2 was "Did we not evolve from less complex and less complex creatures, organisms, cells?" From there you infer that it is wrong to kill something less complex than us, as we may interfere with the evolution of a species by killing off one of those "less complex creatures, organisms, cells."

To think that killing one of these less complex organisms for food is wrong, would imply that a large portion of the animal kingdom is immoral. The bear would be immoral every time it catches the salmon according to this logic. Some further examples: The lion would be immoral for killing the zebra, the meerkat would be immoral for killing the scorpion, and the shark would be immoral for killing the seal.

Also if it is wrong to kill any less complex creature that we have evolved from, then I have one final question. Is your body committing an immoral act every time it uses the leukocytes of the immune system to kill off a bacterium? We evolved from those as well.

But this isn't the only problem with your logic. As far as the evolution of species goes, one individual never makes a difference. Even when the genetic traits of that individual are superior to all of the others in that species, it still does not affect evolution. The trait becomes diluted and lost, and this is explained in The Origin of Species. Therefore our consumption of another species will not have a bearing on that species as a whole, regardless of that individual's potential.
Furthermore, the struggle for life is most severe between species that are closely related (i.e. at the generic level or less). Since we are not closely related to the species we consume, we are not the cause of a severe struggle for life at this level.

(* The terrible things we do to the environment with pollution, destruction of habitat, consumption of natural resources, etc. does not reflect on the above statement. We can still cause extinction or severe population drops by these means. But simple consumption only takes the role we would take in the ecosystem and cannot cause such horrible outcomes.)

You've stated in Round 2 "What I'm suggesting is that you as a human belong to a larger group called 'life.'" I also believe this to be true. And as such, we should not distinguish ourselves by separating from the dynamic ecosystem by denying our omnivorous nature. This should be especially true when it comes to eating venison. With the consumption of venison, a slight reduction in the deer population can take place. In areas where the deer are overpopulated, this would be better for the environment as a whole. It is time to stop focusing on the individual animal and start seeing the bigger picture.

Now I will refer back to your view on evolution, which you believe takes place by choice. I cannot reproduce here all of the evolutionary literature that I own to show that your views on evolution are wrong. Such a project would fill thousands of pages and besides the extreme time consumption, this site would not allow me to type that much.

However, there is one point I can make to show at least one major flaw in your arguments. This evolution by choice that you've created does not account for instinct. Instinct is a major part of evolution and The Origin of Species devotes an entire chapter to the subject (Chapter 8). Some animals grab prey based solely on instinct. They are not making a conscious choice. They are not choosing their own food chain.

I just wish to make that point. I don't want to continually debate you on the merits of your dreamed up version of evolution vs. the theory of natural selection. You will obviously feel that your version is right, and me and the rest of the scientific community will continue to stick with natural selection.

You finally end by quoting my last statement from the last round and respond:

"This interests me. Especially the fact that while you say all of this you give no advocacy for what you do believe. If you would like me to attack something then give it to me. Remember this quotation from your first speech?

'My challege is for someone to give me a logical reason to become a vegetarian. I, in turn, will review the reason and give a refutation.'

These are my reasons based on what the average person seems to believe. If you want to hand me your own personal reason for not eating meat do so. I will continue this debate by attacking such."

Well I will say this to you now. Not only do I remember that quotation, but furthermore, it states the basis and the terms for this debate. I will not cater to your desires to suddenly change the format or the subject of this debate mid-stream. If the best reason you can come up with to become a vegetarian is to claim that all other diets are murder, that is not my problem.
Yraelz

Con

Had to reread the entire debate. This is getting long.

For starters you once again bring up the Couetzfeldt-Jakob syndrome, and I do not deny your logic behind this claim. However I was not attacking Humans eating other humans I was attacking your logic saying that every species has a naturally defined food chain. No where in this have I attacked your claim that it would be bad for humans to eat humans (or squirrel brains).

However you did concede me a small point here when you said, "I do concede that IF all humans at the same time suddenly decided to eat other humans, a few may survive that would be resistant to prions."

Next you bring back your jellyfish example asking, "why wouldn't jellyfish eat Kelp since it is easier". My logic would say that the jellyfish are either a. adapting towards kelp, before this point they had an even tougher prey than their current fish. or b. Did not realize the kelp when first adapting, or considered it as a possibility. Notice you said they are not very intelligent. Also this is where your human-prion argument comes back in. It would be bad for jellyfish right now to try to eat kelp because their current system could not digest such. However if their current prey went away they would be forced to adapt in the way you listed above (human-prion argument).

Next you straw-man me by saying that you gave ways in which Animals evolved to
eat specific types of animals and I didn't answer at all. Yet I did, I argued that choice precedes adaption. I am saying that creatures will adapt to survive in their environment. For instance if we had white and black butterflies and the butterflies hid on black trees, the black butterflies would survive as a whole.

"For instance if dogs stopped eating meat it would be the dogs most adapted to eating plants that would evolve(survive)."

Next you offer me this:

"Before I expand my argument, something must be mentioned. Most of your specific points in the "murder" arguments are based on attacking the notion that humans are the greatest species. Since I do not contend that humans are better than every other species, many of your points are things I would not attack. If I share your belief that humans are not the greatest species, I will not debate you on this issue just for the sake of arguing."

>>Yet you said in your first argument, "My challenge is for someone to give me a logical reason to become a vegetarian."

This was one of the three reasons I offered you:

1. Humans don't naturally eat meat/can choose their own food chain.

2. Killing animals kills potential intelligence.

3. All life is equal. Murder is immoral.

You spend your 3rd speech telling me that you never argued murder was not wrong and I was simply using an underhanded tactic. Then you say in your 4th speech, right above, "Since I do not contend that humans are better than every other species, many of your points are things I would not attack."

Thus you concede my entire 3rd point. You don't argue that murder part. You don't argue the equal part. If you can't see humans as being better than other species how can you see humans murdering other species?

Now you give me your rational for not believing eating meat is immoral, being:

"To think that killing one of these less complex organisms for food is wrong, would imply that a large portion of the animal kingdom is immoral. The bear would be immoral every time it catches the salmon according to this logic. Some further examples: The lion would be immoral for killing the zebra, the meerkat would be immoral for killing the scorpion, and the shark would be immoral for killing the seal."

>>And I agree, I do not believe it is any more moral for the lion to kill the zebra than it us for us to kill any other species. The difference between humans and those animals though is this website. We sit around and discuss whether the action is moral or not, and we can decide for ourselves. Many of the species you mention are still just trying to survive.

Then you say:

"Also if it is wrong to kill any less complex creature that we have evolved from, then I have one final question. Is your body committing an immoral act every time it uses the leukocytes of the immune system to kill off a bacterium? We evolved from those as well."

>>Yes in a way I would say it is, it makes me feel like a big parasite. However this is something that I can actively control, where as I can actively control what foods I eat from a day to day basis. Your point holds no bearing in this round.

And then we have this point you make, which is what a lot of my argument has hinged around:

"But this isn't the only problem with your logic. As far as the evolution of species goes, one individual never makes a difference. Even when the genetic traits of that individual are superior to all of the others in that species, it still does not affect evolution. The trait becomes diluted and lost, and this is explained in The Origin of Species. Therefore our consumption of another species will not have a bearing on that species as a whole, regardless of that individual's potential.
Furthermore, the struggle for life is most severe between species that are closely related (i.e. at the generic level or less). Since we are not closely related to the species we consume, we are not the cause of a severe struggle for life at this level."

>>The individual will add the gene to the gene pool. Even if it does become diluted it is in the gene pool and it has the potential to resurface. Then you prove my points from my 2nd speech by stating the second paragraph. Struggle for life is the most severe between closely related species I agree. That is why we should not be killing animals for food, because when we do such there is very little struggle, we are so evolved/advanced that we can take whatever we want. Even the particularly intelligent forms of our prey stand very little to no chance against us. This is why we should not kill these species, as we do not further evolution in anyway, we actually decrease such.

Next you bring in the deer point from your second round. However I would like to notice that we are not the sole predator of deer. The better idea would be to bring in wolves which would stimulate evolution instead of us simply destroying the deer.

Next, the point on evolution that you do argue.

"However, there is one point I can make to show at least one major flaw in your arguments. This evolution by choice that you've created does not account for instinct. Instinct is a major part of evolution and The Origin of Species devotes an entire chapter to the subject (Chapter 8). Some animals grab prey based solely on instinct. They are not making a conscious choice. They are not choosing their own food chain."

>>Great.... Humans have instincts also. We have the instinct to sexual reproduce however this doesn't result in rape. We may even have instincts to eat certain animals, however this does not prevent of the choice of doing so. The difference between humans and the animals you mention is the fact that we can better stop ourselves. Instinct does not equal truth or good.

Bring me a way in which evolution as applied to humans in my interpretation fails. =)

Your finals statement is in response to mine re-stating what your challenge was. I have fulfilled your challenge, despite obvious flaw in your resolution title. I attacked it on three main points.

"1. Humans don't naturally eat meat/can choose their own food chain.

2. Killing animals kills potential intelligence.

3. All life is equal. Murder is immoral."

You have yet to refute any of my reasons, and even agreed with the 3rd. Thank you. =)
Debate Round No. 4
GaryBacon

Pro

In your first paragraph, you state "No where in this have I attacked your claim that it would be bad for humans to eat humans (or squirrel brains)." In response to this, I will refer you to the beginning of your rebuttal in Round 2. This is a direct quote from you "First off I am attacking your rationale that leads you away from eating human meat." So whether or not you admit it, you have attacked this claim.

You also claim that I concede you a small point in admitting that humans would become resistant to prions in the unlikely scenario of all humans suddenly deciding to feed on other humans. Perhaps this is true, but it misses the main point. Your unlikely scenarios of all humans becoming cannibals and all dogs eating nothing but plant life have no pertinence in the real world. At best, these arguments may speak in favour of vegetarianism in this hypothetical and unrealistic world (though even here, it may not be enough justification).
We are living in the real world where hardly anyone practices anthropophagy, dogs are not herbivores, and most importantly EVOLUTION DOES NOT OCCUR BY CHOICE! Your fictional and hypothetical worlds support nothing.

With the jellyfish example, I never asked "why wouldn't jellyfish eat Kelp since it is easier." I did make a very similar point, but you should refrain from using the quotation marks unless it is a true quote. Those that wish to reread the arguments can see that it was a refutation to your claim that jellyfish eat fish because they are the easier prey. You then state: "My logic would say that the jellyfish are either a. adapting towards kelp, before this point they had an even tougher prey than their current fish or b. Did not realize the kelp when first adapting, or considered it as a possibility."

On the first point, there is absolutely ZERO evidence that jellyfish are adapting towards kelp. Predators do not evolve to eat easier and easier prey. They actually evolve further adaptations to catch prey that has evolved. I have already given an example of this with the snakes becoming more and more resistant to amphibian toxins. This is how a true predator/prey relationship evolves. The predators do not evolve to eventually eat plants.

On the second point, the claim that they may not have realized any other food source refutes YOUR arguments and not mine. If any animal realizes only one food source, then it cannot possibly choose its own food chain as you claim. This is a huge inconsistency in your arguments.

You then give three reasons for becoming a vegetarian. I will deal with each one in order. Point 1. "Humans don't naturally eat meat/can choose their own food chain."
I will first point out that humans are omnivores and as such, humans DO naturally eat meat. Our digestive system was designed to digest both plant life and meat. True herbivores have systems different from ours. Their stomachs contain symbiotic microorganisms to help breakdown cellulose and obtain the maximum amount of nutrients from plants. For us, part of the health of plants is that we cannot break down cellulose, and this helps to clear our intestines. Despite the choices you've made, people are naturally omnivores.
Also in the first point, you say we can choose our own food chain. In my previous arguments, I have already touched on this point. It is true that humans can choose to be vegetarians. But just because you have the ability to do something, it doesn't mean you should. There is no logic that states that the ability to perform an action should result in executing such action.

Your second point was "2. Killing animals kills potential intelligence." Reread my post in Round 4. I've already shown that killing one individual of a species does not stop the evolution of that species.

The third point was "3. All life is equal. Murder is immoral." The first point of "All life is equal" provokes my curiosity. I wonder what it is that you eat to sustain yourself if not some lifeform. You are truly a miraculous being if you are able to survive on inanimate objects.
On the second half stating "Murder is immoral," it comes down to your views versus mine.
To demonize eating all meat and claiming that it is all a form of murder is a very extreme point of view. Such extremes on almost any issue are usually wrong and oftentimes dangerous. Eating meat is not murder. It is simply nature. Despite your view when you claim "I do not believe it is any more moral for the lion to kill the zebra than it [is] for us to kill any other species," nature itself is not immoral. Life feeds on life, and in many ecosystems, predators are necessary to keep other animal populations in check.

When you throw back to my mentioning your underhanded tactic, anyone that reads it can plainly see that I was not referring to your claim that meat is murder. It was in reference to all of the sentences in which you lead others to believe that I've made claims that I haven't.

But this is off on a tangent. My claim is that following nature is not immoral. When I question your viewpoints on the morality of other animals, you say that it is immoral as well. But you also state "The difference between humans and those animals though is this website. We sit around and discuss whether the action is moral or not, and we can decide for ourselves." But this is something I find very strange. You now give us some element of being above eating meat because of the fact that we can discuss it. Yet in Round 2 you pontificated and elaborated ad nauseum that humans are not better than any other species. In fact, you spent a ridiculous amount of time on that one argument. And now, in one fell swoop, you wish to separate humans from the rest of the animal kingdom. This is inconsistent to say the least.

When you claim that your body does in a way commit an immoral act for killing off an invading bacterium with its immune system, this takes your view to such a ridiculous extreme that I find it hard to give any credence to. To say that your immune system makes you "feel like a big parasite" has crossed the line into such a radical point of view, that I will not even bother to say anything against it. I will simply leave it to the readers.

You then go back to the individual with a special gene that we may have killed. I already stated that this would not affect evolution, and I actually know about evolution. You say the the individual will add it to the gene pool, and can become diluted and resurface. This is simply not how it works. There are many individuals in a population, each with some variability. Those with better genes for the current environment are more likely to survive. It does not now, never has, and never will be the result of one individual.

Furthermore, despite your claims, I do not prove any of your points. The fact that we are advanced enough to take whatever we want may be used in arguments against overfishing, destroying habitats, and putting species on the brink of extinction. However, it does not mean that we should not eat any meat.

I continually refer to deer, because it is this animal that we can eat and actually help the environment by doing so. You state that we are not the sole predator of deer. If you look through the debate, you will see that I was actually the first to point this out in Round 2. Nevertheless, you say that it is better to just bring in wolves. Now, I agree that we should stop killing the wolves, and allow their numbers to regrow in these areas. But whenever a natural predator of a species disappears, that species can grow unchecked. Although humans would not disappear, it would virtually be that way if we all refrained from venison.

As far as instincts, I don't condone rape because, as stated before, humans are a social species. Rape does not fit in well with social species or societies.

I'd like to elaborate, but ran out of space.
Yraelz

Con

As the final round I will simply use this to refute your arguments and summarize.

You start out by attacking my phrase, "First off I am attacking your rationale that leads you away from eating human meat." I realize what my second round said however once again I wasn't attacking the idea that we shouldn't eat other humans I was attacking the idea of a predetermined food chain.

Then you once again discredit my ideas by saying -while this could work in a hypothetical world but not in this world as dogs do not eat vegetables-. However I would once again like to point out that species change over time and not all of the precursors of dogs ate meat. In fact, you'd be hard pressed to prove that dogs have always ate meat.

Then you tell me that evolution doesn't occur by choice. I agree, I wasn't saying it was. I was saying we can choose our own food chain, and if we didn't eat meat, then us having canines would become useless and babies would slowly begin to evolve accordingly.

Next you bring the jellyfish argument back into this by telling me that their is no evidence jellyfish are adapting towards eating kelp. First and foremost the jellyfish point is entirely irrelevant, we're talking about humans here, not jellyfish. Secondly, there is no evidence, but there is no evidence on the contrary either. Thus perhaps we can assume that the jellyfish is content with how easy it is to catch its current prey.

and then on my second point:

"On the second point, the claim that they may not have realized any other food source refutes YOUR arguments and not mine. If any animal realizes only one food source, then it cannot possibly choose its own food chain as you claim. This is a huge inconsistency in your arguments."

>>It doesn't refute my argument at all. And is especially doesn't refute the human argument seeing as we realize multiple food sources. Just because an animal doesn't realize it has another food source doesn't prove that it has a pre-determined food source.

Next on my three points. The first one was simply that we can choose our own food chain, I have already covered that.

Second:

"Your second point was "2. Killing animals kills potential intelligence." Reread my post in Round 4. I've already shown that killing one individual of a species does not stop the evolution of that species."

>>And I've already shown you how killing one individual could potentially stop a gene from being added to the gene pool. However your point once again doesn't prove mine as we as humans kill not one but multiple individuals everyday. How many cows are slaughtered every day? Deer? Sheep?

Onto my third point. Which could have been better stated as "all animals are equal" considering that is what we are arguing about. You have this to say.

"The third point was "3. All life is equal. Murder is immoral." The first point of "All life is equal" provokes my curiosity. I wonder what it is that you eat to sustain yourself if not some lifeform. You are truly a miraculous being if you are able to survive on inanimate objects.
On the second half stating "Murder is immoral," it comes down to your views versus mine.
To demonize eating all meat and claiming that it is all a form of murder is a very extreme point of view. Such extremes on almost any issue are usually wrong and oftentimes dangerous. Eating meat is not murder. It is simply nature. Despite your view when you claim "I do not believe it is any more moral for the lion to kill the zebra than it [is] for us to kill any other species," nature itself is not immoral. Life feeds on life, and in many ecosystems, predators are necessary to keep other animal populations in check."

>>So no, I don't consider all life to be equal. I do not consider plants to be the same as other forms of life. However even if I did you don't actually disprove my point all you do is attempt to call me a hypocrite.

On the second half of that you once again don't bother refuting my point, you even agreed that murder is immoral.

Then you have this:

"In fact, you spent a ridiculous amount of time on that one argument. And now, in one fell swoop, you wish to separate humans from the rest of the animal kingdom. This is inconsistent to say the least."

>> Thus claiming that I am making the point that we are different than animals. I do make this point, but I would also like to make the point that every species is different. This does not mean lesser or greater.

Finally to once again refute your rape point I would like to point out that I was using that point simply to prove that we don't act solely on impulse. Once again if you could prove to me that every other species did do this I can still prove that we don't. Thus we still have the choice to pick our own food chain. Your challenge to me was to present you with reasons, which I did, three. Thus I can only see where all three stand but especially the second one as you do not refute this at all. Killing animals decreases their chances of evolving, you attempt to argue that killing one animal does not. Even if the voters would like to buy this argument I would like to point out that we kill many thousands of animals a day.

Thanks.
Debate Round No. 5
19 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by deathknight1559 8 years ago
deathknight1559
i love steak woo woo i love kidney from a human i love to also drink cow bloodi also love the feeling of human flesh on my teeth with lots of hair and dog penis...and a lot of meat i would like to cook fat people for dinner last night
Posted by GaryBacon 9 years ago
GaryBacon
I'm not going to commit to anything, but it is certainly a possibility.
Posted by Logical-Master 9 years ago
Logical-Master
This debate is really long. :0

I'll come back and read later.
Posted by Yraelz 9 years ago
Yraelz
Sorry my last speech was so terrible, I had to write it rather quickly.

This was very interesting Garybacon, I would be interested in having this debate with you again sometime? In say a month or two?
Posted by Araj 9 years ago
Araj
Human meat is delicious.

Oops, did I say that out loud?

Haha if he went down that road this could have been more fun!

Interesting debate though.
Posted by Yraelz 9 years ago
Yraelz
Thanks =) I'm always happy to hear my arguments are weak.
Posted by Kleptin 9 years ago
Kleptin
I find Con's key argument to be very weak.

Murder is immoral

The act of eating meat is morally related to the act of murder in XYZ way

Therefore, eating meat is immoral.

The argument hinges on Evolution.

Evolutionarily speaking, we're supposed to look out for the evolution of our own species. That's why eating other people is wrong. We're taking out of our gene pool.

But since we can't reproduce effectively with the yummy cows, sheep, chickens, and pigs, they're fair game for eating.
Posted by Yraelz 9 years ago
Yraelz
"The second point is that your last eight paragraphs are nothing more than a glorified version of the slogan "Meat is murder.""

>>Please reread my section. Saying it is a glorified version of "meat is murder" is denying it justice.

"Finally, it is wrong to spend so much time refuting a claim that I never made. You've made statements such as "Finally if you would like to stick with the idea that man is the most important greatest form of life..." How can I possibly stick with an idea that I never put forth? This is an obvious attempt to deceive the readers of this debate into thinking that I have made such claims, and I consider it very unsportsmanlike. I hope the readers will note this and read through everything I've written to see that you have put words in my mouth. Perhaps this underhanded tactic is how you win debates."

>>This interests me. Especially the fact that while you say all of this you give me no advocacy for what you do believe. If you would like me to attack something then give it to me. Remember this quotation from your first speech?

"My challenge is for someone to give me a logical reason to become a vegetarian. I, in turn, will review the reason and give a refutation."

These are my reasons based on what the average person seems to believe. If you want to hand me your own personal reason for not eating meat do so. I will continue this debate by attacking such.
Posted by Yraelz 9 years ago
Yraelz
""...natural selection acts by life and death,-- by the survival of the fittest, and by the destruction of the less well-fitted individuals--""

>>Death serves to weed out the less intelligent of species and the less able to flee. It however still leaves open the unfortunate opportunity for a mutated or slightly adapted form of a species to die. This is what I am saying cannot be excepted. Also when you stake a species of say an IQ of 20 against that with an IQ of 100 even the most intelligent are more than likely to be wiped out. There comes a point where intelligence does not matter in such an ecosystem.

"From here you dedicate several paragraphs to refute a claim that I NEVER MADE! (i.e. that humans are better than every other species) On this, there are only a few points that I would like to make. First off, you use Hitler as an example of mankind thinking himself greater than others. I find this extremely ironic since the general consensus among historians is that Hitler became a vegetarian on the advice of one of his doctors."

>>Most people do make that claim. And I would be interested in hearing your justification for eating meat if not that. But I put it there not only for you but for the interest of the voters. I wanted my entire view on this position to be presented.

As far as your Hitler point goes, pointing out an irony in my case does in no way disprove the correlation between Hitler's intense nationalism and mosts person's intense racialism.
Posted by Yraelz 9 years ago
Yraelz
"For one final example, I will mention the Cnidarians (jellyfish, anemones). The Cnidarians have evolved specialized cells called cnidocytes which contain stinging projections called nematocysts. These are used for stinging and paralyzing prey. Now you have stated "It is my conclusion that each animal chooses its own food chain." Are we really to believe that the reason a jellyfish stings and consumes a fish is because it chooses to do so? Is this really a conscious choice on the part of the jellyfish? Could it choose to eat kelp instead? These questions are obviously rhetorical."

>>Do you deny the jellyfish has no intelligence what-so-ever. Yes it can choose. It will choose based on the fact that they are the easiest prey and currently the easiest for the jellyfish to digest. But it will still choose them. What would happen however if their prey of choice disappeared? They would adapt and change. The fact that species evolve is no proof for a set food chain.

"Moving on, you claim that eating meat is immoral and wrong. You mention Darwin, but it is obvious to me, as it should be to the people reading this debate, that you have never read a single thing by Darwin. After mentioning all of the adaptations that animals have developed to consume other animals, I cannot see how evolution can be used to support the claim that it is immoral for one animal species to consume another."

>>Just did, notice you didn't actually attack any of my points specifically. Extend.
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