The Instigator
Danielle
Pro (for)
Winning
82 Points
The Contender
JustCallMeTarzan
Con (against)
Losing
79 Points

War memorials do more harm than good.

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/15/2008 Category: Society
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Voting Period
Viewed: 9,981 times Debate No: 3640
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (27)
Votes (41)

 

Danielle

Pro

Greetings to my opponent and welcome to Round 2 -- Good luck!

For the purpose of this debate, a war memorial will be defined as a building, monument, statue or other edifice to celebrate a war or victory, or (predominating in modern times) to commemorate those who died or were injured in war (Source: Wikipedia). If my opponent disagrees with the definition, I ask that he provide another relavent to the resolution as soon as possible. So without further ado (or is it adieu?), let's begin!

--

Jimmy Carter once said, "War may sometimes be a necessary evil. But no matter how necessary, it is always an evil, never a good." The word war itself is practically synonomous with violence and death, or at least severe conflict. Since when are these things that are to be celebrated or glorified? Surely my opponent will note that war memorials are meant to REMEMBER the lives lost during times of war and not celebrate them. However that is not necesarilly the case. For instance, consider the obelisks that are scattered around the cities of Rome. Each of them tells a story, usually one regarding an important battle or victory for the Romans. Do you think the stories were illustrated to depict the heroism embraced by soldiers on both sides of the battle? Or were they glorified tales of destruction and conquer on Rome's behalf? Obviously they were the latter; the very concept of the obelisk as a war memorial was stolen from Alexandria (the Greeks) in 30 BC after Rome had defeated them in battle. This example proves that some war memorials do in fact glorify and celebrate war itself. Obviously the applause for such an atrocity would be harmful toward society (promoting violence, ignoring the magnitude of war's consequence, etc.).

We know the effects that war memorials can have on individuals. Many of us become emotional and experience intense feelings of patriotism and in turn nationalism. But nationalism is not always a good thing. Ironically, history shows us how nationalism could even be attributed to the cause of a major war (i.e. WWI). It can also promote racism and xenophobia (fear of foreigners). In this day and age, we should be embracing diversity and rejecting notions of superiority over other nations. It is those types of feelings that emulate a negative impression of us throughout the world, and can even make us a target of terror. "For three decades the twin towers of New York's World Trade Center stood as the symbol of American economic might, as powerful an icon for capitalism as the Statue of Liberty is for freedom" (Source: http://www.washingtonpost.com...). Thus we can see how a symbol that is supposed to be celebrated can actually lead to turmoil and destruction. If such a tragedy could be imposed upon tall office buildings, think of what people could do to a symbol of war -- war is always controversial.

From the time we are impressionable children, society teaches us that war memorials are things to be embraced and shown reverence to. Often they stand tall and architecturally sound right in the town square or in a prominent city relavent to the memorial's purpose. We are told that we should appreciate what those monuments stand for and the achievements or courage exemplified by the soliders who fought for a purpose. But speaking of those very soldiers, what type of say do they have in all this? Little to none. Many memorials are constructed and dedicated to fallen military personnel. But what if these fallen patriots do not wish to celebrate their own deaths? What if their families don't? What if these former soldiers do not deem it respectful to celebrate something that caused others (the opposing side) sorrow, heartbreak, bankruptcy and/or death? Truly there is never a 'winner' in any war. Why honor something so destructive, especially if those honored do not deem it appropriate?

Indeed not all veterans support the construction of certain war memorials, especially when they infringe upon the environment or aim to disturb an already tranquil setting. This CNN source cites an example of veterans themselves in opposition -- "'I think I have as much right to talk about things like this as most of the people who are advocating destroying this Mall,' Navy veteran John Floberg told Reuters. 'I'd like to think I did a good job ... but I'm not arrogant enough to think that any one of us has the same right to be memorialized on this Mall as George Washington or Abraham Lincoln.'" Another veteran notes, "'I protest what is being done in my name. I am so sorry that my legacy may include the desecration of the Mall" (Source: http://archives.cnn.com...).

Additionally, many soldiers unfortunately suffer from PTSD or Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Certain prominent symbols - especially war memorials - are bound to trigger an array of emotions from soldiers who have fought in a war and are still haunted by its effects. Thus rather then making a solider feel proud, war memorials have the capacity to negatively effect and even harm veterans who do not wish to be reminded of their endeavors. This is further instigated by celebrations at or around these memorials, such as events that feature military bands playing war-era songs like the one in my previous example (regarding the Mall).

Moving on, I think I have already proved how and why war memorials can be very disrespectful to both the living and deceased on both sides of the conflict. However let's assume for a second that a war memorial was built to honor those lives lost and was very much appreciated and celebrated by soldiers and their families alike. Naturally *someone* is going to be offended by its presence and ultimately seek a way to destroy it or its grandeur. For that reason, people may choose to negatively utilize the area surrounding the memorial, say by using it as a focal point for rallies or other disruption, or more significantly, some people may choose to damage or deface the memorial that was so important and special to others. This would cause great emotional damage to those who placed a certain amount of significance on the memorial.

To solve this potential problem, I forsee my opponent opting for one of two strategies. One, he can point out that people construct fences around their homes which also get defaced (maybe I'm just used to that because I'm from NY)... should we cease to stop building fences? Of course not. But obviously a fence does not represent something of such magnitude such as a war, nor does it draw about such intense emotions. Two, it could be suggested we make the memorial 'impossible' to destroy either by hiring guards or building some sort of protective shield. To counter this, I bring up another good point: Who's paying? It is true that many war memorials are a result of contributions from veterans and other private donors. However most war memorials are in fact government funded. Why should tax payers have to spend money towards something so frivolous (I use the word frivolous due to our current economic crisis) when money could be better spent elsewhere?

I understand the thinking behind the promotion of war memorials. Obviously many brave people have made tremendous sacrifices including their own lives and deserve to be recognized for their contribution. However war memorials simply do more harm than good. There are other ways of attributing proper gratitude and respect for veterans of war without them. Unfortuntately for this round I have run out of characters, however, within the next two I will 1) suggest sufficient alternatives to war memorials, and 2) discuss the various levels of controversy that currently surround them. I welcome the opportunity for my opponent to touch upon these subject matters first if he so chooses. Again, good luck -- I look forward to Con's rebuttal.
JustCallMeTarzan

Con

Greetings to you as well! I find your definition of war memorial to be satisfactory with one caveat. A memorial service about a war is qualitatively no

different than a physical war memorial and shall be included as such - the end is the same in either event, regardless of the means.

Following Pro's excellent quotation format, I too have a quote to begin with. The quote is from the architect who designed the Vietnam Memorial: It was meant

to be "a quiet place, meant for personal reflection and reckoning" (http://home.att.net...). This is the function of war memorials.

The statues my opponent mentions in Rome are indeed war memorials that commemorate a victory. However, my esteemed opponent is incorrect in the analysis that

they are "Obviously... harmful to society." Is it truly harmful to society to instill a sense of nationalism and patriotism? Should not an ancient society be

proud that they triumphed over another in what really amounted to a perpetual state of global war? While some war memorials may glorify war itself, as my

opponent points out in the definition of war memorial, the modern usage is for commemoration and remembrance, not the glorification of slaughter. As such,

the remaining monuments to the glorification of ancient battles are historical artifacts, not functional edifices and should be discounted as a war memorial

in present times.

When monuments like my opponent mentions are erected, the benefit from them is an increased sense of security in a state. Monuments to military victories in

no way promote violence in the state. They may overlook the consequences of war for the loser, but then again, in the societies when these obelisks were

constructed, there was no reason to care about the other state. My opponent is trying to draw an analogy between ancient and modern memorials where none

exists.

The danger my opponent notes in nationalism in no way comes from war memorials. The detriments of nationalism are a result of excessive pride in one's

country that is clearly distinct from support and pride in their military. Nationalism on it's face is not xenophobic or racist. Also, I don't see any

logical connection between pride in one's military and xenophobia. In fact, it could be the exact opposite - "Our military beat all the foreigners - we're

not scared of anyone..."

I was not aware that this resolution focused primarily on the US, but I will address the issue of the twin towers in a debate about war memorials. First of

all the twin towers are not a war memorial - as my opponent noted, the were a monument to capitalism or American success, if you will. The persons who

destroyed the twin towers did it for religious and political reasons, not because it had anything to do with war (except holy war...). I find the inclusion

of the twin towers in this discussion erroneous. Any symbol that should be celebrated can be used as a catalyst for destruction - the cross is a prime

example.

The argument concerning the persons that a monument memorializes, is indeed a compelling one. However, war memorials are not necessarily for the families of

war's dead, or for the dead themselves. They remind the rest of us that someone fought and died for what our nation believes in. That humbling experience is

something that society writ large is generally in need of. My opponent asks why we should "honor something destructive if those honored do not deem it

appropriate." There is a glaring flaw in this statement in that it holds that war memorials honor war (something destructive) as opposed to people. War

memorials honor people that died in service to their country, not war in general.

Of course not all soldiers support the construction of a memorial. My opponent gives the voice of two soldiers out of thousands, voices that are concerned

with the Mall in Washington - not the creation of the memorial itself, but rather the location and design. Not remotely compelling against the construction

of memorials writ large.

The case for the emotional damage to soldiers from a memorial is somewhat erroneous as well... I'm not contesting that they suffer from PTSD or other

"shellshock" syndromes, but the fact of the matter is that it is their CHOICE whether or not to visit these memorials. Is simply knowing they exist enough to

trigger a response? I think not - consider - an average person would have a horrible experience/response watching someone being tortured to death. However,

we all know it happens, and that doesn't provoke anything even remotely similar to the response of the actual event.

Memorials as rallying points for political conflict is inevitable. If not the memorial, than something else that will offend a different group. Introducing

memorials as unnecessary because they are a rallying point uses the same reasoning to say that churches would also be unnecessary as a rallying point if it

offends someone. Simply because "someone" is going to be offended is not a reason to not build memorials - the good of remembering others' sacrifices vastly

outweighs the offense of some reactionaries.

Why build war memorials?

The good of rememberance outweighs the offense of the few.
To NOT remember war and the sacrifices of good men and women devalues their lives.
Often, a memorial is necessary for closure of the family when there is no body to bring home.
Memorials remind us of the consequences of war, not overlook them.

**************

I look forward to the rebuttal.
Debate Round No. 1
Danielle

Pro

Good round, Con.

Let's get right down to it...

I have a serious issue with a memorial service being included in the definition of war memorial and I don't think it should be considered as such. The reason for such strong opposition on my part is due to the fact that memorial services serve as such an integral part of my argument. Thus before I go any further I will prove why a memorial service should NOT be considered a war memorial.

1) A memorial service can pay tribute to anything - not just war.

2) A war memorial suggests a physical entity such as a specific thing or place, whereas a service is also composed of places, things, and most importantly, PEOPLE.

3) A service cannot be built or destroyed, only assembled.

4) Because a service can be assembled, it can also be disassembled. This would be a collective effort of people choosing to leave or not partake, whereas just one person has the capacity to deface/demolish a physical war memorial entity. The people that make up and/or attend the service can or do leave, whereas the war memorial is typically intended to be permanent (or at least last for years or more).

5) I presented the only "official" definition of a war memorial that I found. The definition does not contain the specification of a memorial service. This is because obviously a memorial service is different from what is considered to be a war memorial. Here are the three definitions of memorial services that Wikipedia has provided:

- The term memorial service is often used to describe a funeral. A funeral is a religious service that is held with or without the body of the deceased present. A memorial service is usually a secular service with or without the body present.

- Alternatively, it is used to describe a less formal practice than a traditional funeral, and include such things as eulogies, music and fellowship.

- In the Orthodox church, a memorial service is a liturgy performed in memory of the deceased, three, nine, thirty days, one year and three years since the day of the funeral.

(Source: http://en.wikipedia.org...)

My opponent claims that memorial services be included in the definition of war memorials because "the end is the same in either event, regardless of the means." This may be true, however, unfortunately does not apply to the definition. For instance, if Tarzan and I each wanted to be transported via automobile and I took a car while he took a bus, that does not make a car and a bus the same thing regardless of whether or not both have the same function/result. That said, I feel I have provided sufficient reasoning as to why memorial services should not be included of the definition of war memorial. Moving on...

My opponent opened his argument with an architect's quote stating the Vietnam Memorial was intended to be "a quiet place, meant for personal reflection and reckoning." That may be the case, however, just because that was the designer's intention does not mean that it would have that effect. Take Guillermo Vargas for instance who we all know as the scummy artist who starved a dog to death in a gallery to serve as "art." The designer of the piece himself states that his intention of the exhibit was "stimulating the human senses as well as the human mind" (Source: http://reiskeks-natividad.blogspot.com...). Meanwhile, most people responded with extreme passionate hatred for the presentation. So yes, people's senses were stimulated; however, the response was significantly unfavorable. Similarly, a war memorial can serve as a device for rememberance but the reaction from the public may be extraordinarily unsatisfactory.

Now I would agree that there is a much greater chance people would be upset and offended by Mr. Vargas' presentation than a war memorial. However that doesn't mean that adverse emotions can not and will not occur. For instance at my very own university last year, there was a "Walk Out" in which students who protested the war left class to assemble at our school's War Memorial for fallen Rutgers soldiers. At the same time, a counter-protest was being held on the same terf and inevitably the two groups clashed. The result was appalling; two masses of people arguing and fighting to the point of severe violence and necessary law enforcement on what is SUPPOSED to be considered sacred ground. So I ask -- did the war memorial's presence do more harm than good in this scenario? Absolutely.

Of course my opponent can contest this with the fact that this type of outburst could happen anywhere, however, the likelihood of such an event taking place at such an obvious location verses somewhere more obscure is very much apparent.

Additionally, assuming that it is only a minority of people who feel so strongly against war memorials, since when are minority rights not of importance? Entire congressional movements have taken place in order to ensure just that: minority rights.

I would also like to negate the notion that ancient war memorials be excluded from this debate. The resolution makes no mention of memorials past, present or future, but rather discusses war memorials generally as a whole. I will contest my opponent's rebuttal regarding the purpose of memorials past vs. memorials present by introducing the concept of war memorials in the future. First, memorials in the past were constructed with nationalism in mind - nationalism that in turn led to war (as I've mentioned, there's both good and bad nationalism). On that note, there is no way to prove that future war memorials will not celebrate or glorify war, or promote violence amongst particular groups or nations. Just becase war memorials that currently exist may not blatantly encourage these ideas, does not mean that future memorials won't be more graphic, intense, disrespectful and in turn dangerous or harmful.

Let us now discuss private memorials vs. public memorials. Again the resolution makes no specification regarding that of which we are discussing. Freedom of speech and expression could lead an individual to rectify an extremely uncouth war memorial; in turn it could cause immense controversy which can open up ten cans of worms. This is true about any art, however, the topic of war is particularly disputatious. Now I'm not arguing one's right to create such a piece -- I'm just noting the harm that could come from it... possibly more harm than good.

Moving on, my opponent deems the WTC example irrelevant because it was not a destroyed war memorial. Very well. I will simply cite 2 other recent examples of war memorials that were vandalized or destroyed: Beeville, Texas (5/18/07); Jamestown, Kentucky (2/20/08). The point is the same - some individual(s) ruined these celebratory devices and in turn caused immense pain for veterans, the families of fallen soldiers and the community alike. If those memorials didn't exist, these people would not be so hurt/offended, and the perpetrator may not be a criminal right now.

In conclusion, again I am not arguing (as my opponent wrongfully suggests) that we should not remember the lives of fallen soldiers who have sacrificed their lives in order to protect and/or maintain our freedom or the freedom of others. Their noble endeavors are owed a great deal of recognition and respect. My argument is that war memorials are not the best way to go about that commencement.

Because so much of this round was spent arguing why memorial services should not be included in the definition of war memorial, unfortunately I do not have enough room to include alternatives to war memorials which would indeed include a memorial service (this details why I was in such opposition with the inclusion). I will definitely elaborate on that issue in my final around, along with citing all of the controversy that currently surround war memorials today.
JustCallMeTarzan

Con

JustCallMeTarzan forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
Danielle

Pro

Throughout this debate, I have provided numerous instances and occasions that explain why constructing a war memorial in fact does more harm than good. In his rebuttal, my opponent has deemed my examples somewhat far-fetched. However in this final round, I will - as promised - cite numerous controversial war memorials and describe their effects on society and the globe. If I can demonstrate that their existance/celebration does more harm than good, then I have fulfilled my obligation to the resolution and therefore you should vote Pro.

* In Japan, the Yasukuni Shrine has caused a great amount of political controversy. Chinese and Korean representatives have spoken out against the visit of Japanese politicians to the site which contains the bodies of several WWII war criminals. When Japan's Prime Minister visited the site, the result included severe diplomatic conflicts between the nations, as well as Japanese businesses being attacked in China.

In this case, the result of one man's visitation to the memorial to "commemorate" the fallen soldiers (including criminals of war) led to diplomatic dispute which effected not just one man, but entire nations of people. The fighting amongst prominent Asian countries has an effect on the whole globe, politically and economically. I would like to also point out that this is a perfect example of "misusing" the intention of a war memorial. The PM of Japan was intentionally disregarding international opinion which led to extreme controversy that affected millions in a negative way. Not to mention that the blatant attacks on Chinese business in general are enough to make the shrine "not worth it." This successfully argues my point that regardless of what war memorials are intended to do, they can be exploited to fulfil a purpose that in the end causes more harm than good.

* Another example of controversial war memorials include the Soviet structures that contain quotes from Stalin's texts. These memorials are specifically placed in city centers and therefore are often regarded as symbols for Soviet occupation. Because of this, these memorials are often removed which in turn leads to further conflict.

It is easy to see why the destruction or removal of war memorials is so alarming and upsetting to the people who go there for reflection or to pay their respects. However it is also understandable as to why many people are in strong opposition of what the memorials reprsent. To them, the memorials are a symbol of tyrannical occupation and they do not want them displayed within city parameters. The location of the Bronze Soldier of Tallinn, for instance, caused riots for nights on end as well as the besieging of the Estonian embassy in Moscow for a week. Further, the events sparked international attention and caused a number of political reactions.

* What about the war memorials regarding the Indigenous Australians who had died fighting against British invaders on their land? These tribes fought colinization and were consistently defeated. Yet they faced death without flinching to fight for their rights and their homes. War memorials dedicated to them have been frequently shot at and eventually blown up.

My opponent writes, "The good of rememberance outweighs the offense of the few." How would that be applied in this particular situation? These war memorials DO serve as symbols of rememberance, however, the individuals they commnence and the people who celebrate them ARE "the few." Therefore his argument is void; it would only make sense if he said "The good of rememberance outweighs the offense of the MAJORITY." However, the offense of the majority would mean that the resolution is affirmed: that war memorials do more harm than good. Further, it would instigate a greater chance of opposition, such as the violent and damaging measures taken to destroy these memorials: gun shots and explosives.

So what kind of message are we sending here? That war memorials are only intended/good if the majority of people support its presence? If not, it'll succumb to destruction which downplays the importance it has to the people who actually hold the memorial of significant importance. Either way, it is not only controversial but infringes upon people's rights and emotional well-being.

* Finally I'd like to introduce the controversial matter regarding Christianity and Christian symbols in terms of war memorials being built around the country. Take the memorial in Lafayette, California for example. Some parents who lost children in the war (Iraq) have asked that their crosses be taken down off the memorial - even those who are Christian. This not only brings up the problems regarding secular memorials but also religious controversy as well. For instance, many Christians are against the war, and further, the Catholic Church itself has been in opposition with the Iraqi war since its inception (Pope John Paul II cited the Catechism's "Just War" theory which the war in Iraq does not fall under). This obviously creates an unnecessary political/religious tension.

* In San Diego, a war memorial which proudly displays a Christian cross on top of the edifice (on PUBLIC LAND) has been under scrutiny for decades. An atheist Veteran has been fighting since the 80s to have the cross removed from the memorial site. This issue is not about his own personal religious beleifs, but rather the very important distinction between Church and State. The memorial is on public land and many feel that it promotes Christianity and/or associates Christianity with the veterans remembered via the memorial. The fact remains that there were a lot of non-Christians who fought and died in the war - why should they be subjected to a Cross mounted on top of their names? Isn't that sort of sacreligious?

James McElroy, the lawyer for the veteran in opposition to the Cross states, "We're becoming more and more religiously diverse in this country. Our government should be saying to respect all religions, not, 'We care so much more about Christians that we'll put a 40-foot, 20-ton cross on the most beautiful land the city owns.' Government is sending a message to non-Christians that they're second-class citizens." And yes, this has in fact become a huge government issue. The fight over the memorial has made its way all the way up to the Supreme Court as well as President Bush who signed a bill in its defense. However that type of blatant disregard for the separation of Church and State is what makes our values hypocritical. Consider the reaction from President Bush if it had been a 20 ton Islamic symbol on top of the site (afterall Islam is the second most popular religion in the world). Surely that would have not been okay...

My point is that war memorials bring other issues into play. What is legal? What is fair? What is just? Often the lines are blurred in terms of right and wrong when it comes to such a sensitive subject such as war/death. However despite the controversy, veterans deserve to be remembered and commended for their efforts. War memorials are not the best way to go about celebrating their honor. The controversy they evoke does more harm than good; people cannot enjoy or show reverence to these memorials/soldiers in peace. There are always questions about the legal, political, religious and economic (who's paying for it?) implications of the edifice and often negative consequences as well. Thus, alternatives to these monuments should and do exist.

For the reasons I have stated (and have gone unrefuted to the final round) memorial services are NOT included in the definition of war memorials; however, they are a great alternative. They can be secular AND patriotic, and effectively commemorate our veterans the way they rightfully deserve. For something more permanent, individuals can own private edifices that do not infringe upon the rights of those who wish to honor/remember in a different way.
JustCallMeTarzan

Con

First, I must apologize for missing the last round. I thought I had a day longer than I did and projects/papers from school caught up with me... Second, I must also apologize for the ridiculous page breaks in my last response - apparently notepad doesn't play nice with the Debate.org text box sizes...

I'll try to move promptly and concisely through my points here, mostly by responding to my opponent's quotes...

There is no qualitative distinction between a war memorial service and a war memorial statue. I'm not entirely sure why my opponent seeks to eliminate war memorial services from consideration.

>>"Similarly, a war memorial can serve as a device for rememberance but the reaction from the public may be extraordinarily unsatisfactory."

As I pointed out earlier, so can a cross. That doesn't mean there is something wrong with a war memorial qua war memorial. Unless by co/counterexample, the cross has also done more harm than good (which is a completely separate argument).

>>"So I ask -- did the war memorial's presence do more harm than good in this scenario? Absolutely."

Wonderful. A single example of a war memorial (singular) doing more harm than good. We're interested in war memorials (plural) on the whole.

>>"Additionally, assuming that it is only a minority of people who feel so strongly against war memorials, since when are minority rights not of importance? Entire congressional movements have taken place in order to ensure just that: minority rights."

This is a blatant misuse of "minority rights." Minority rights are only a compelling government interest when those rights are within the realm of what is appropriate, both legal and social. The minority right to get pissed off and stage a protest at a memorial is not reason to tear down all memorials. And in any event, in a case like this, it would clearly be a case of majority rule - memorials stand.

>>"On that note, there is no way to prove that future war memorials will not celebrate or glorify war, or promote violence amongst particular groups or nations. Just becase war memorials that currently exist may not blatantly encourage these ideas, does not mean that future memorials won't be more graphic, intense, disrespectful and in turn dangerous or harmful."

My opponent makes a good point - namely that we don't know what future memorials will look like or what emotions they will evoke. As such, commenting on how harmful, intense, or disrespectful they may be is simply nonsense. Future memorials are actually more likely to be MORE politically correct, given the current stigma against not being overly PC...

>>"Their noble endeavors are owed a great deal of recognition and respect. My argument is that war memorials are not the best way to go about that commencement."

I'm a little confused as to how one would do this without a memorial or memorial service. A memorial to their actions in WAR... sounds like a war memorial to me.

>>"If I can demonstrate that their existance/celebration does more harm than good, then I have fulfilled my obligation to the resolution and therefore you should vote Pro."

Sigh - technically that is incorrect. To fulfill the burden of proof properly, Pro needs to show that on the whole, memorials do more harm than good. Con needs to show that on the whole, memorials do equal or less harm than good.

My opponent's move in introducing examples of memorials where people have staged protests and such is a valiant effort, but it is somewhat wasted in the quantitative realm, as all I would need to demonstrate against them is that more people derived some sort of good from the memorial than harm. Clearly, this matter is not quantitative, but rather philosophical.

>>"The controversy they evoke does more harm than good; people cannot enjoy or show reverence to these memorials/soldiers in peace."

A bold statement... a quantitative assessment would reveal that the statement is incorrect. Qualitatively - sure there are some people that memorials evoke more harm than good in. But the irritation of these few does not balance against the satisfaction and closure of the majority from visiting a memorial to their lost loved ones.

>>"Thus, alternatives to these monuments should and do exist. "

My opponent has touted this phrase repeatedly without ever making good on her promises.

>>"For the reasons I have stated (and have gone unrefuted to the final round) memorial services are NOT included in the definition of war memorials; however, they are a great alternative."

At last we see the initiative behind the move to discount memorial services. Again, I make the point that there is no qualitative or philosophical difference between a memorial statue and a memorial service.

>>"For something more permanent, individuals can own private edifices that do not infringe upon the rights of those who wish to honor/remember in a different way."

War memorials don't infringe upon anyone's RIGHTS. People have a right to speak their mind (speech, assembly, etc..) but the construction of a memorial does not infringe those rights in any way.

Repeatedly, my opponent has sought to provide some quantitative analysis of this situation, while reality shows that it is clearly a philosophical discussion. I'm perfectly content to let numbers decide the case, however, seeing as there is probably as much as a 10:1 ratio of good/neutral:harm from war memorials. My opponent's most compelling argument concerns the production of some sort of elitist nationalism. I argue that the nationalism provoked by a war memorial is for the most part rooted in sorrow for our losses and pride that our country has been victorious again. I think it would produce egalitarianism, rather than elitism or egoism. I'm not going to pretend that war memorials produce only good, just, fair, kum-ba-yah-singing societies. But do they do more harm than good? Absolutely not.

Again, my apologies for missing the last round and the terrible formatting in the first. Overall an excellent debate!
Debate Round No. 3
27 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by whiteflame 9 months ago
whiteflame
*******************************************************************
>Reported vote: fire_wings// Mod action: Removed<

7 points to Con. Reasons for voting decision:

[*Reason for removal*] Vote placed outside of what is considered to be reasonable expectations for proper voting conduct. Contact head moderator Airmax1227 for details.
************************************************************************
Posted by Paradigm_Lost 9 years ago
Paradigm_Lost
"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat." -Theodore Roosevelt
Posted by HellKat 9 years ago
HellKat
In that sense it did indeed work for your argument.
Posted by Danielle 9 years ago
Danielle
Thanks, HellKat.

Regarding the religion/racism comments, I agree that those played a factor in the whole controversy. However that racism and whatnot was being emulated through war memorials, so really that worked to my advantage in this debate, no?
Posted by HellKat 9 years ago
HellKat
I think theLwerd did a pretty good job considering it wasn't even his/her(?) oppinion.

That being said, some of the examples of controversial war memorials are somewhat disproved if you will (I'm not entirely sure if that's the word I even mean at the moment because I've got a bit of a headache, but hopefully you'll know what I mean). From what I see it wasn't so much the memorials that caused the trouble, but the religious conotations for the memorials in America and racism for the memorial in Australia.

As for the Japanese memorial and the Soviet memorial, they did prove your point well because they themselves caused controversy.
Posted by Darth_Grievous_42 9 years ago
Darth_Grievous_42
Actually, interestingly enough, the rules in the Facebook debate group are only there to mandate automatic voting, meaning judges are not taken into consideration at all, it just is how it is. However, that is not the case here meaning that my say does matter. You'll also see that if you look under the Judge Paradigm section that my first requirment was comitment, meaning I don't vote for people who forfeit. By appointing me to be a judge, the founders of the tournament fundamentally agreed that I was allowed and able to use this reasoning to make my final desision... so like I said over there, is was a default win.

However, per your request, I have now made a detailed, but purely hypothetical, judgment on this debate. On this part you are correct for the first time, in that Pro still won with the information provided.

http://www.facebook.com...
Posted by JustCallMeTarzan 9 years ago
JustCallMeTarzan
Well interestingly enough, the rules by which the FB debate group goes need 2 forfeits for a default win... so like I said over there, it wasn't a default win. Probably still theLwerd's win, but not by default.
Posted by Darth_Grievous_42 9 years ago
Darth_Grievous_42
I've posted my judgement. theLwerd won by default.
Posted by beem0r 9 years ago
beem0r
Missing round 2 as con is like a death sentence; as long as PRO at least tries to address your R1 points, they all get dropped during your forfeited round 2, where it's your duty to defend them. Then, when you have to make completely new arguments or bring up already dropped arguments in R3, it's abusive and most judges won't count the new and/or revived points.

Would have been a lot closer, I'm sure, if you hadn't missed round 2.
Posted by JustCallMeTarzan 9 years ago
JustCallMeTarzan
Unfortunately, the refutation of Pro's point doesn't lend itself to factual verification... i.e. there's not any real way to go look for the incidents that didn't happen. It is indeed unfortunate that I missed the second round, but like I said, papers and projects caught up with me and took precedence...

I'm not going to lie - I did a pretty crappy job on this one - very much unlike my other debates :) Anyway, congrats to Pro.
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