The Instigator
Pro (for)
The Contender
Con (against)

men have become tools of their tools

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 9/2/2016 Category: Technology
Updated: 1 year ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 3,025 times Debate No: 95153
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Men have become tools of their tools. I completely agree with this topic. With the growing of civilizations, technology advanced. It advanced to such a great level that it has made our lives completely dependent on it. Earlier where are ancestors used to rise with the sound of a cock we rise with the help of our alarm clocks or mobile phones.
Today, we cannot live without technology. It has made us slaves. Though technology is just limited by our imagination, it instructs us what to do in life, Our lives our offered to technology though it is in our hand either to destroy it or make it more useful. But technology has made us lazy.
Man's so much dependence on machines has made them listless and obese. As most of the work is done by machines, there is less physical activity, that results in obesity, sickness, and loss of immune power. Today's man cannot be considered as stronger as the man of the past. Even the kids can be seen flabby and having less stamina just because of the machines they use for all the work that could be done manually. Man has become captive behind the bars of machines all around him
The present time are basically the times of machines. Everything from a tiny needle to highly advance space technology is done through numberless and complex machinery. It wouldn"t be out of place to mention that life today is zero if machines i.e. gadgets are taken out of it for a moment ironically, modern gadgets have made us slaves to machines. From doing kitchen to higher ones in industrial units all depends on machines. This all has made the modern man a slave to these gadgets. Consequently, human health has deteriorated to a larger extent. All know that physical labor is very necessary for good health. Perspiration due to physical health helps a lot to maintain the human body perfectly tuned. But the dependence on various gadgets have increased various diseases. The new generation is growing physically weak and suffers strong diseases unheard of in the past. Incidentally the more we become dependent on machine, the weaker we become. Our forefathers used to walk miles and miles but today we need a vehicle to cover a few 100 meters.Thus aspect of human life has made man fully prone to moral the deterioration. Therefore, today man has become a machine " emotionless and devoid of mercy, pity, peace etc.
No doubt science has made our lives easy going but on the other hand it has also spoiled it.


Even though there may come a time that man becomes subservient to their creations, that time has not yet come to pass. We are not tools of our tools as we are still the ones who decide what to do, when to do it, and how to do it whereas our tools remain just that, tools without intelligence or will with the function to enable us to do what we want to do. It is true that with the advancement of tools, that our lives have changed. We can now individually produce more than we ever could before and the physical expenditure to produce has dropped considerably. Additionally, tools have not robbed us of our humanity but may in fact has helped us to become more humane as we now have the luxury to consider our morality and our ethics whereas in the past, man was too occupied to keep himself alive to truly consider such issues.

There is no doubt that science has made our lives easy going, and perhaps it is spoiling us somewhat, but it also giving us the time and opportunity to look beyond our next meal, to spend energy on improving ourselves, and by doing so to develop a higher standard of morals and ethics that humanity lacked in the past so very often.

In the opening statement of my opponent, several claims for his side of the argument were made that I will now address in greater detail:

1) Our lives are completely dependent on technology:

Even though there are people who may have developed such a dependency on technology that it is questionable that they would be able to survive without it, there are a lot of known examples of people who turned their backs on the modern world and did manage. One of them is David Glasheen [1], a former businessman who lost almost $10 million in the 1987 stock market crash, divorced his wife, and moved to the tiny island named Restoration Island. He's not an average hermit; he didn't just abort every single connection with civilization. He goes to Cairns, Queensland once a year to buy milk powder, sauces, culinary herbs and spices, tea, coffee and other foods which are inaccessible on the island, and twice a month to the nearest city to buy eggs and bread. Glasheen brews beer on the island, which is bartered for fresh fish.

Another such person is Emma Orbach [1], a 58-year-old Oxford graduate (who studied Chinese), lives in her self-built mud and straw roundhouse named Tir Ysbrydol (Spirit Land) in Welsh mountains without electricity, running water and other advanced technologies. Her drinking water comes from a nearby watercourse, firewood is from the forest, fruits from her trees and food from her seven chickens and three goats.

2) Technology has made us lazy:

Between 1989 and 2006, the share of teenagers who were volunteering doubled, to 26.4 percent from 13.4 percent, according to a report by the Corporation for National and Community Service. And the share of incoming college freshmen who say they plan to volunteer is at a record high of 32.1 percent, too, U.C.L.A.’s annual incoming freshman survey found. [2]

3) Man's so much dependence on machines has made them listless and obese. There is less physical activity, that results in obesity, sickness, and loss of immune power:

That a lack of physical activity contributes to obesity is true, however, it are not the tools or our technology that has caused obesity but the choices that we make in how we live and what we consume. For example:

Overeating leads to weight gain, especially if the diet? is high in fat. Foods high in fat or sugar (for example, fast food, fried food, and sweets) have high energy density (foods that have a lot of calories in a small amount of food). Epidemiological studies have shown that diets high in fat contribute to weight gain. [3]


The above clearly shows that our eating habits have considerably changed in the last 300 years with an doubling of sugar consumption in the last century alone, one of the main ingredients linked to obesity.

4) Human health has deteriorated to a larger extent:


As the above clearly shows, life expectancy has constantly risen in the last 65 years which indicates that the average Human has become healthier.




Debate Round No. 1


As my competitor said above that is we who have control over the technology. I completely agree with him but I also refuse at the same time because in today's world, people can't resist the urge for technology. As soon as some new technology is launched people can be seen standing in the queues before the shops selling those products.
Today, the mankind is not limited by its imagination as earlier. Today, here we are standing is just because of the men who gave us this platform.
Okay, leave it about the rest of the technology. The platform where we are debating is also technology. It is true that technology has connected us but in distant future that day is not at all far where we will be taking commands from these machines.
When we can start take caring of environment thinking we will die, think about global warming, conserve our fossil fuels before they are replenished that why not technology?
Scientists, Philosophers, tell us to conserve certain things but never thought to stop advancing in technology. It is good but to certain extent, Now they have developed such devices that can even change the weather of a place. This is not at all good. Who are we to challenge nature's fury. It could be devastating but we are not all thinking about this and are developing such technologies which could be proved fatal to mankind.......


Have men become tools of their tools and what this statement mean? When I think about a tool, my first thoughts are about an object that has no mind of its own, a thing that is being used by a person. I think about the hammer, a tool used by a Blacksmith, a person with a mind who is wielding it and using it. But what exactly is a tool?

(1a) a handheld device that aids in accomplishing a task, (1b) a machine for shaping metal, (2a) something (as an instrument or apparatus) used in performing an operation or necessary in the practice of a vocation or profession, (2b) an element of a computer program (as a graphics application) that activates and controls a particular function (2c) a means to an end, (3) one that is used or manipulated by another. [1]

It is quite clear that these definitions do not fit with a man being a tool, with exception of two that is: "one that is used or manipulated by another" and "a means to an end". A man can be a tool if he is being used or manipulated by "another". Please note that the word "another" within the context of the definition can only be read as "another individual". However, when we talk about the definition "a means to an end", that distinction is less clear but still there as to be used as "a means to an end", implies that there must be a purpose or a goal. As the definition of "a means to an end" says: "something that you do because it will help you to achieve something else" [2]. An object has no goal and no predefined idea on what it wants to achieve, it can therefore not do something because it wants to achieve and therefore "a means to an end" can not be used as an argument in the context of a men (and individual) having become a tool (still being an individual) of their tools (in the context of inanimate objects).

With the nitpicking out of the way, lets get into the real argument: "Have men become slaves of their tools".

It is definitely true that the further we advance, the more reliant we have become on our technology but being reliant does not make one a slave. For example, we are not subjugated to our technology nor are in any sort of captivity to it as we do have a choice about how and to what extend we use it. We have the freedom to "turn off" our computers when we want to, to not use a car but go walking instead whenever we feel like it, and there is no law anywhere that demands of us that we "must" carry a mobile phone at all times. The fact that most of us do is by our own choice and the examples that I gave in my earlier argument shows that some of us have made that choice and are managing. We may be reliant but we can live without it.

slavery, bondage, servitude refer to involuntary subjection to another or others. slavery emphasizes the idea of complete ownership and control by a master: to be sold into slavery. bondage indicates a state of subjugation or captivity often involving burdensome and degrading labor: in bondage to a cruel master. servitude is compulsory service, often such as is required by law: penal servitude. [3]

If anything, technology has set us free. It is enabling us to make more choices. Once upon a time, the best you could hope for was to read a good book, then we got radio and suddenly you had a choice between a book or music. And then we got Television and another choice was added followed by the VCR, the Compact Disk, the computer, Internet, online streaming, wikipedia, facebook and list goes on. There is a reason why people find it difficult to resist the urge for technology. The reason is that to take the technology away is to take the freedom away that the technology has brought us. Technologies have increased our capabilities. We have become more productive, more mobile, more informed, and more long-lived. Take it away, and making a meal becomes a full day's job again. You would have to cut wood, make fire without matches, cook on an open fire, wash the dishes in the local pond, knit your own socks, making your own shoes, etc etc.


Debate Round No. 2
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