The Instigator
rross
Con (against)
Tied
8 Points
The Contender
utahjoker
Pro (for)
Tied
8 Points

motherhood is a choice

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Post Voting Period
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 4/27/2013 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,738 times Debate No: 33010
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (13)
Votes (4)

 

rross

Con

In the dialogue about sex equality in the workplace, it is assumed that motherhood is holding women back from equality, and that if only women made different choices in regards to babies and caring for them, then equality could be achieved.

^This is not the subject of the debate. I put it here as the context in which all terms are to be defined.

The resolution is that motherhood is a choice.

I will be arguing that this is wrong. Motherhood is not a choice.
utahjoker

Pro

I accept the debate at hand.

I will define some terms

Motherhood-The state of being a mother; maternity.(1)

Mother-Bearing a relation like that of a mother, as in being the origin, source, or protector.(2)

Choice- An act or instance of selection. (3)

I will be arguing that motherhood is a choice.

Sources
(1) http://dictionary.reference.com...
(2) http://dictionary.reference.com...
(3) http://dictionary.reference.com...
Debate Round No. 1
rross

Con

Thank you, utahjoker, for accepting this debate.

definitions
The word mother can be an adjective, noun or verb. Pro choose to define the adjective, as in mother ship and mother country. This has nothing to do with motherhood as he defined it: the state of being a mother (noun). Using Pro's source (1), mother (noun) is a female parent.


motherhood is the default

More than four of every five women become mothers, and this is consistent across populations (2-4). Motherhood is the default. At the population level, motherhood is an inevitability.

The UN Declaration of Human Rights (5) lists founding a family as a fundamental right (Article 16(2)), and, further, that "motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance" (Article 25(2)).

choice
Of course, any discussion of choice only applies young, childless women. Women who are already mothers and women above a certain age are locked into their state of motherhood or childlessness.

Consider a female unit, W1. She is 28 years old, happily married, a bit bored at work, and surrounded by friends with children. Her parents are longing for grandchildren and, most importantly, her self-esteem is tied up with her perception of herself as a loving, generous person. If, as everyone expects, she becomes a mother it is an extension, an expression of her situation rather than a choice. For W1 to remain childless, there would need to be a strong, additional element. Perhaps she watched her own mother struggle to an early grave as she tried to care for W1s younger siblings. Perhaps she has a medical condition that would make bearing a healthy child difficult. Perhaps her husband, whom she adores, loathes children, or already has too many, or is dying of cancer.

No doubt, with better knowledge, we could express it mathematically. For the population, distribution of motherhood/childlessness for each unit W could be expressed as a function of various biological, psychological, social and other situational factors.

The result would need to reflect the reality: the majority of situations lead to motherhood, the default. Indeed, if anything is a choice, it is childlessness. But even this, a consistent minority of women, is not a result of choice but of circumstance.

bigotry
Consider the following statements:
Homosexuality is a choice.
Heroin use is a choice.
Islam is a choice.

These statements are an indication of bigotry against those respective groups. The implication is that there is a possible alternative, which the individual could have (or even should have) selected. Not only that, the statements imply that the individuals purposefully deviated from social norms and by doing so are solely responsible for any consequences.

For us to name homosexuality, heroin use or Islam as "choices", we must create an alternative - a subjective and judgemental process. For homosexuality to be a choice, for example, we must imagine an alternative life, involving abstinence or heterosexuality, in which we believe the individual can live. Unlike that person's real life, our alternative is entirely fictional. Their is no reason, outside our imaginations, to think it even possible. This process is unfair an unrealistic. It involves making assumptions that falsely diminish the nature of sexual preference, addiction and religious belief.

"Motherhood is a choice" is not a factual statement but a political one. It is not even trying to force individuals towards a norm because, as I showed above, motherhood is the norm. If motherhood is a "choice", then it is entirely reasonable to expect women, en masse, to be like men and not bear children. If they do "choose" motherhood, and, as a consequence take time off work and lose money, why then (the argument goes) it's a foreseeable outcome of their "choice" and they should just wear it without complaint.

But motherhood is not a choice. It is a fundamental aspect of the human condition.

(1) http://dictionary.reference.com...

(2) http://www.abs.gov.au...

(3) http://www.oecd.org...

(4) http://www.census.gov...

(5) http://www.un.org...

utahjoker

Pro

Motherhood is a choice, motherhood like what I defined in the first round is a state of being a mother; and being a mother is being the origin, source, or protector; or what my opponent stated a mother is a female parent. Well there are two ways in which a person becomes a mother or female parent it is by adoption or pregnancy.

Adoption

Adoption is the most obvious of the two ways to become a mother. First, adoption has certain standards that one has to follow before they can claim a child so if the woman wants the child they have to choose to follow the standards. It is clear by the National Adoption Center (1) of their standards. Adoption is one way that can't be refuted as a choice a woman makes.

Pregnancy

Now pregnancy is the grey area of a woman's ways of becoming a mother, but it still is a choice. Of course their are some pregnancies that are not by choice such as rape or incest which is very disgusting and a very sad reality, but 0.04% of all pregnancies are caused by rape (2), while this number should be 0% it still is a very small percentage and I would think that my opponent would agree that this should be an exulted from the debate. But, to continue on to my point a woman doesn't become pregnant from accident a choice is made in the process, this choice is having intercourse with a man. The main point of mating is to continue on the species (3) which having sex does. While the woman might not want the child the old saying occurs, you choose your actions, but you don't choose the consequences. This comes into play when someone gets pregnant they choose to have sex and the consequence was getting pregnant, so in a indirect way choose to get pregnant.

I would like to address my opponents section on bigotry. All the examples are choices someone makes while they are hard for some they still are choices. Homosexuality, while someone could claim to be born gay they aren't homosexual until they choose to act on those feelings, same goes for heterosexuality and abstinence if someone chooses that sexual behavior they are marked as that as well. Heroin is choice also, no one can become addicted to something until they choose to use it. Islam is also a choice like any other religion if someone wants to leave it they can it might be hard, but it still is a choice.

Motherhood is a choice even when they don't want it to be.

Sources
(1) http://www.adopt.org...
(2) http://www.ewtn.com...
(3) http://www.christs.cam.ac.uk...
Debate Round No. 2
rross

Con

Pro says "Islam is a choice like any other religion." His own religion is Christianity, according to his profile. Could Pro choose Islam? Of course not. How could he? He believes in Christianity. It would be completely against his beliefs to be a Muslim. Such a choice is impossible for him.

We can imagine Pro having a change of faith, though. He might have some revelation that totally transforms his belief system. But he hasn't. If we think of Pro with different beliefs, we are not thinking of Pro at all but of a fictional character that resembles Pro. But when we talk of choice, we are talking about choice by real people. And as Pro is, in real life, a Christian, he has no choice. He cannot choose Islam, or Buddhism or any other religion except the one he believes in.

Sometimes people do change religion. For example, Emily Sutcliffe converted to Islam after reading the Quran in college (1). She describes Islam as her "spiritual home". Sutcliffe went through a transformation from vaguely Christian to Muslim. Probably, those who know her imagined she would continue in her vaguely Christian way forever. But they were imagining a made-up character that differed from Emily in a major way: she could read the Quran and remain unaffected by it. The real Emily could not. Once the real Emily had read it, her beliefs had changed to the extent that she had no choice but to convert to Islam.

Emily Sutcliffe was like a pot of water in the freezer. It changed to ice, but in no way did the water choose ice.

Motherhood is like this too. Of course, not all women become mothers. This happens with water in the freezer, too. Sometimes, you can put it in and surprise! it's still water the next day. Immediately we think of theories: the electricity is off, the freezer is malfunctioning, someone took it out overnight, and so on. But even if we can't find the cause, it's still doesn't make turning to ice a choice. The water is doing no more than responding to its circumstances.

Humans like to make up stories, and we like to believe we're in control. A woman in her childbearing years can fantasize about the future - in one story she might have ten children, in another she's Secretary of State. Or, in a serious mood: she has two children in the suburbs, she devotes herself to her career in public relations. These may seem like potential choices, but they are really only fictions. All a woman can do is act in the confines of her current situation, according to her character and values.


Pro's arguments about adoption
Pro argues that adoption is a choice because of the standards women are obliged to adhere to during the adoption process. However, birds build elaborate nests and engage in complicated behaviors to defend them. They are merely following their instincts. Complicated behavior does not prove the existence of choice.

Pro's arguments about sex

It's important to distinguish between rights, responsibility and choice.

If we say that women have a right to motherhood, it means that nobody may forcibly prevent us from having children. If we say that women have a right to remain childless, it means that nobody may force us to have children. Often discussions of this nature will bring up the idea of choice ("it's our choice whether or not we have children"); in fact, the presence of rights does not imply choice one way or the other.

A woman has an unplanned pregnancy. According to Pro, if she consented to sex, she somehow "chose" pregnancy. I suggest that he means she is responsible for her pregnancy.

responsibility: the state or fact of being accountable or to blame for something (2)

Notice the implied passive in the definition. The pregnant woman is held accountable, is blamed by the society in which she lives.

Pro is completely using the idea of choice in a political way. She chose to have sex, he says, so she chose (is responsible for/to blame for) her pregnancy. Compare this with the UN Declaration of Human Rights which explains: motherhood and childhood are entitled to special care and assistance.


"choice" is a political concept
When workers go on strike, nobody ever says "postal work is a choice". Nobody ever comments that the nurses knew the profession had long hours, low pay and tough working conditions and still chose it.

The government would never take this line, of course, because it's where the unions' power lies. The last thing the government wants is for people to stop becoming nurses or teachers.

However, the people saying "motherhood is a choice" - feminists and employers - would like women to spend less time on motherhood. The former because they are committed to sex equality in the workplace, and the latter because they are committed to a larger pool of available workers.

By saying "motherhood is a choice", we are shifting responsibility away from society, away from employers, and onto the individuals.

However, consider. Over eighty percent of women become mothers. Only women become mothers. There has been no population in the history of the human race where women have en masse decided not to be mothers. That's because, at the population level, it's impossible. When we consider society as a whole, we can see that motherhood is not a choice but a certainty.


(1) http://muslimvillage.com...
(2) http://oxforddictionaries.com...

utahjoker

Pro

Religion

It is true if you look at my debate page (1) I am a Christian, but how did I become a Christian is what my opponent failed to answer. I became a Christian because I choose to believe in the Bible and a Heavenly Father. I could also choose to become Muslim if I choose to believe in Islam. But, I won't because of my chosen believes. People change all the time to different religions 4 out of 10 American adults choose to no longer be members of a certain faith,and 1 out of 10 choose to change religions(2).

Water,Ice, and Sex

While water doesn't choose to be put into the freezer someone had to choose to put it there, and if it didn't want it to freeze than why did they put it in the freezer. Compare that to sex if someone doesn't want to have a pregnancy why choose a situation that could cause it to happen. If they do become pregnant than they have to take responsibility for their choice. That choice becomes motherhood.

Adoption

It is simple to believe that someone had to choose to follow the standards that adoption has and humans instincts aren't to follow adoption papers.

Choice is political

No one can force another to work at a job or it turns into slavery which is against the 13 amendment(3). Sex equality isn't about what naturally happens, the term separate and equal comes to play between man and woman both are different, but can be treated equally. Nature doesn't make things equal.

Motherhood is a choice, just because someone feels like they have to doesn't mean they actually do.

Sources
(1) http://www.debate.org...
(2) http://www.cnn.com...
(3) http://www.loc.gov...
Debate Round No. 3
rross

Con

the story of utahgirl
Okay, so there's this girl in Utah, from a nice Christian family and it's coming up to her final exams and she definitely shouldn't go out partying, but she does. There's lemonade, but she drinks beer. And there's this football player with a bad reputation who she shouldn't even talk to, but she goes up and flirts with him. And so on. Up until the point where she really needs to insist he wears a condom. But she doesn't.

Such a bad bad girl. And when you pull it all out, so many bad decisions. We can say she chose to get pregnant, according to Pro. I'm trying to get inside his thinking here.

Because we all know, and she knows, what she should have done, what the right behavior would have been at every decision point in the story. When we talk about her choices, we are talking in particular about how she deviated from the moral standard.

I'm guessing now, that my opponent believes the standards are absolute, set by God, and so that we all - like utahgirl - are choosing to comply or deviate from the right path.

But the way I see it, the moral standards belong to society rather than God, and you can see this because societies differ so much from each other. So I see social expectation as a powerful, but finite influence on utahgirl. There's also habit, sexual instinct, and her restless, angry mood. These influences, the situation, her mental associations interact and vary in strength. On the night in question, for whatever reason, the reckless impulse dominated and she had no choice but to follow it. Her values and self-control just weren't that strongly developed. Can you really say her weak, impulsive character is a choice?

Everyone takes on the values and standards of the society they live in, just as they do its language and customs. The conformity instinct is very powerful and is rehearsed and strengthened all the time through observation, reward and punishment, and story-telling. Everything that happens, such as the utahgirl story, can be used to strengthen the social standards.

This is one of the strengths of organized religion - you can rehearse morality. It's like learning CPR. Just once is not enough, you have to keep practising it so that in an emergency it's automatic. Telling stories can be part of the rehearsal.

Every time the idea of choice comes up in the utahgirl story, we're helping the listeners rehearse the exit points from her downward trajectory. Every instance of gossip about her, every sneer, every "well, she chose to get pregnant," helps cement the pathways of "good" behavior, most usefully in other young women.

It has another purpose too. It blames utahgirl for everything that the pregnancy does to her. She might drop out of college, or get an abortion, or drudge about the house for a few years. But she can only blame herself, according to the theory of choice. This means that every piece of help she gets from her family or from society puts her in their debt.

Imagine if her pregnancy is not her choice, though. Imagine if it's just a blessing or misfortune that falls on almost all women at some point. People would react as if it were a medical diagnosis (in terms of blame - obviously a pregnancy is less horrible) or a natural weather event. There might be fundraisers for her, or child-minding rosters. And if there weren't, people would feel slightly guilty because they would feel obliged to help a neighbor in need. They would praise her, smile in the street, and her employers would extend themselves to give her the shifts she wants.

subjective reality
Pro says: "just because someone feels like they have to doesn't mean they actually do."

Of course it does. In a bank robbery, it matters whether the victims believe the gun is real, rather than whether it really is or not. If someone believes she has to have sex with her husband, and there he is ready to go, she will have sex with him. If someone believes she has to be a mother, she will try to get pregnant or adopt. What else could make her do those things other than feelings of obligation, compulsion or desire? And if the feeling of having to is dominant, what could stop her other than some physical or situational force?

summary

Here are the statements of this debate. The first is mine, the second is my opponent's.

1. Eighty percent of women become mothers.

2. Eighty percent of women choose to become mothers.

The difference is subtle but clear. In the first, motherhood is the default. In the second, it is not. Childlessness is the status quo, and women are making a positive action to remove themselves from the standard.

This second statement is untrue and sexist. Childlessness is only the status quo if we are using men as the standard. For women, motherhood norm and it is ubiquitous. Despite the obvious personal and financial advantages of childlessness, despite drastic differences in lifestyle between societies, despite widespread contraception, most women become mothers, and this happens everywhere. It's unavoidable.

For employers, motherhood is neither normal nor helpful. Like that bad bad Utah girl, workers who become mothers have stepped away from best practice. They have "chosen to" neglect their work and their careers and are therefore responsible for the consequences.

But, if we take out that judgmental "choose to" then the pressure is right back on the system itself. If we want equality, and we see motherhood as inevitable, then the system needs to change so that women don't lose power and status by bearing children.

Humans love the idea of choice. If only I had more space, I would talk more about choice's seductive by illusory nature. The phrase "motherhood is a choice" sounds like it might be a good thing. But it's not. It's pernicious, sexist and subjective.

Motherhood is not a choice.


utahjoker

Pro

The Breakdown on the story of utahgirl

She chose to go out partying when she should be studying
She chose to drink beer instead of lemonade
She chose to talk to the bad reputation football player
She chose to flirt with him
She chose not to tell him to wear a condom
Then she got pregnant, seems like there was a lot of choices that lead to her pregnancy. That is my point that pregnancy doesn't just happen choices lead to it, maybe utahgirl didn't want to get pregnant, but her choices lead to it. So in doing so she choice to become pregnant.

It seems like my opponent is trying to say that being a mother has so much peer pressure that they have to be mothers, but aren't we all taught at an early age to just say no. No one can force another to do something they don't want; if they physically force than it is against the law. While 80 percent is a large number of people that become mothers that still means that 20 percent choose not to become mothers, 1 out of 5 that is a pretty common occurrence. While many of these people do choose to become mothers there is still some that don't want to, but their actions made it happen. My opponent acts like having a child is not equal, well no one is equal. Some are better at things than others and others are better than some, but everyone can be treated equally. Men and woman have separate genders, wants, needs, and thoughts, but they are still equal.

Motherhood is a choice because motherhood just doesn't just happen.
Debate Round No. 4
13 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
After looking at leojm's vote, his votes on S&G and conduct are clearly votebombs.

I will re-award sources to CON to CVB.
Posted by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
"CON simply did not engage this debate at the appropriate level."

I meant PRO, sorry.
Posted by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
Upon reading my own comments, I am reminded of the operating definition of "choice" which CON never contested:

"Choice- An act or instance of selection."

According to this definition, motherhood is a choice, just not an instance of free will:

http://en.wikipedia.org...

"Free will is the ability of agents to make choices unconstrained by certain factors. Factors of historical concern have included metaphysical constraints (for example, logical, nomological, or theological determinism), physical constraints (for example, chains or imprisonment), social constraints (for example, threat of punishment or censure, or structural constraints), and mental constraints (for example, compulsions or phobias, neurological disorders, or genetic predispositions)."

For this, I will reverse my sources vote, even though on the surface such an argument would have easily destroyed CON's position. CON simply did not engage this debate at the appropriate level.
Posted by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
CONCLUSION:

I should have expected CON to close in a much stronger manner than how she opened, as is her practice. This debate morphed from what I thought was a clear concession by CON to an overwhelming victory for CON because of the absolute and complete failure by PRO to engage the topic of choice on a philosophical level.

Arguments easily to CON, not even close.

S&G to CON, PRO's sentence structure was extremely weak compared to the grammar and construction of arguments brought about by CON.

Because this was a philosophical discussion, and because PRO completely failed to engage it on this level, the debate was a complete blowout for CON, because there was no debate. This goes far beyond a 3-0 point spread for just arguments. As PRO failed to "source" the matter of discussion (philosophy), I will award sources to CON as well. It is extremely frustrating to read a philosophical debate where one side either completely fails to take the argument to a philosophical level (this case), or makes such ridiculously illogical statements in the face of logically structured arguments (not this case), and because of this, I will typically award landslide victories to those who win philosophical debates due to either of these cases, in the hopes of discouraging those who simply cannot engage a discussion at a philosophical level from accepting philosophical debates, or to incentivize such people to take the discussion to its appropriate level.

---

PS - Even though CON successfully argued that motherhood is not necessarily a choice (but only due to her opponent's absolute failure to even try to debate at this level), I still find it has zero bearing on whether or not a mother is "more responsible" for child-bearing/child-rearing than the father. Why? Because the mother's physiology is built for such. It is also a product of circumstance, and not a product of choice. It is not fair, but such is life.
Posted by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
21) PRO: "She chose to go out partying when she should be studying"

I saw this reasoning in a different debate. Does principle dictate action, or does action dictate principle? My reasoning was to use the principle of gravity, which is clearly derived from action in the real world...thus action dictates principle, and PRO here uses fallacious reasoning. It simply does not matter what utahgirl SHOULD do when it comes to the question of choice, it matters what she actually does. At the same time, society condems utahgirl's behavior, which is similarly built on the reasoning that regardless of whether or not society SHOULD condemn utahgirl's behavior, it matters what society actually does when it comes to the choices society makes as a collective. What society actually does is more than likely a product of the circumstances around which that society formed. Therefore, choice is illusory in both situations, and is indeed a political tool in the specific situation of utahgirl.

22) PRO: "No one can force another to do something they don't want." This is ridiculous. Absolutely false. Sure, there are consequences for the use of such force, but that force is effective nonetheless.

23) PRO completely fails to engage the topic on the philosophical level, and thereby concedes the debate.

(conclusion next)
Posted by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
18) Hmmm...utahgirl.

What I get most from this story is that society through the modicum of "choice" is attempting to purge the circumstances that would result in utahgirl's situation. They do so by making it clear that the consequences of such circumstances, whether or not they are truly "choice", are highly undesirable.

Is it unfair? Absolutely. Does it punish the girl? Absolutely. Unduly so? Well...hmmm...that's highly questionable.

Relevant to the debate, CON's utahgirl story paints a picture where choice is irrelevant...it is the circumstances surrounding utahgirl's upbringing and the specific conditions of the night in question that led to the unplanned pregnancy. It is the moral conditioning, and not choice, that made utahgirl opt for becoming a mother as opposed to getting an abortion.

Will await PRO's counter to this. If he wholly ignores the philosophical points again, I will award arguments to CON.

19) CON: "This second statement is untrue and sexist. Childlessness is only the status quo if we are using men as the standard."

I find it amusing that CON answers a sexist charge with her own sexist charge. How is childlessness the standard for men?? Is the concept of fatherhood divorced from parenting??

20) CON: "But, if we take out that judgmental "choose to" then the pressure is right back on the system itself. If we want equality, and we see motherhood as inevitable, then the system needs to change so that women don't lose power and status by bearing children."

I wholly disagree with this statement, but it is not relevant to the resolution.

(con't)
Posted by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
12) (cont) The question then becomes - what exactly is choice? PRO defined this:

"Choice- An act or instance of selection. (3)"

PRO's definition, which CON does not contest, clearly does not differentiate between dependency on circumstance. A "choice" could still easily be wholly a product of circumstances. Will await to see how this argument evolves.

13) CON: "Complicated behavior does not prove the existence of choice."

Indeed, this debate has morphed into an intense philosophical discussion on exactly what is a choice.

14) CON: "A woman has an unplanned pregnancy. According to Pro, if she consented to sex, she somehow "chose" pregnancy. I suggest that he means she is responsible for her pregnancy."

Excellent rebuttal.

15) CON: "There has been no population in the history of the human race where women have en masse decided not to be mothers. That's because, at the population level, it's impossible."

In a course I took on developmental economics, a professor noted that modern urbanization seems to be the great modern factor in decreasing child birthing to below even replacement rates, i.e. if not for immigration, populations are actually shrinking in the developed world. This trend is (to my knowledge) unprecedented. Therefore, I think it actually is wholly possible that women en masse could decide not to become mothers. The cost of child-rearing may simply be too great, for example.

16) PRO: "Compare that to sex if someone doesn't want to have a pregnancy why choose a situation that could cause it to happen. "

In case PRO did not know, sex is quite enjoyable, and people for a very, very long time have partaken in it for this reason as opposed to the reason of child-bearing.

17) PRO in round #3 wholly failed to engage in the philosophical discussion that was CON's argument. Depending on how the rest of the debate evolves, this could be a forfeit by PRO.

(cont)
Posted by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
10) CON: "And as Pro is, in real life, a Christian, he has no choice."

Hmm...this is getting rather semantical. CON here is differentiating between "choice" and "choice in becoming", IMHO. At any given point, we are who we are...our past choices dictate who we are today. However, the choices we make in the present dictate what we become in the future.

So yes, CON is correct in her statement here, but my reading of the resolution is that what CON is discussing is women BECOMING mothers, i.e. women making the choice now about becoming a parent in the future, ostensibly after 9 months of pregnancy.

11) CON: "The real Emily could not. Once the real Emily had read it, her beliefs had changed to the extent that she had no choice but to convert to Islam."

This again brings about the point that choice and circumstance are not mutually exclusive (my point #3).

Besides the philosophical point, there's the simple common sense notion that a Christian could read the Quran and still choose Christianity over Islam. Was Emily's change in beliefs a choice she made? I would think so. Someone else could make the opposite choice.

12) Emily Sutcliffe was like a pot of water in the freezer. It changed to ice, but in no way did the water choose ice.

Hmmm...again, the philosophical point. Choice and circumstance are simply not diametrically opposed...it seems CON does believe that choices are dictated by circumstance.

Allow me to proffer a different circumstance. Jesus Christ would have been like putting a pot of water attached to a self-powered heating mechanism into the freezer. The heating mechanism was so powerful that nothing in the freezer froze.

After giving this some thought, I would come to the conclusion that CON also believes that "not motherhood" is also not what she considers a choice, but also product of circumstances. Interesting. Such an interpretation would negate the resolution, giving a clear victory to CON on philosophical grounds.

(cont)
Posted by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
5) CON: "But motherhood is not a choice. It is a fundamental aspect of the human condition."

Ok. How I read CON's round #2 is that she is pointing out a societal hypocrisy. On the surface, society proclaims that "motherhood is a choice". However, also on the surface, society concedes that motherhood is a fundamental aspect of the human condition, i.e. it will occur, and occur often.

These two aims are prima facie diametrically opposed to each other, and thus motherhood is not a choice. It is something else. This seems to be CON's primary argument.

However, I'm not entirely convinced that this reasoning (which I had to develop somewhat independently from CON's arguments) are enough to overcome the a priori logic I laid out in my point #3.

6) PRO: "Well there are two ways in which a person becomes a mother or female parent it is by adoption or pregnancy." Good clarification. I rescind my conduct vote.

7) PRO's point about adoption=motherhood=choice is convincing.

8) PRO's rebuttal on bigotry is convincing.

9) CON: "Pro says "Islam is a choice like any other religion." His own religion is Christianity, according to his profile. Could Pro choose Islam? Of course not. How could he? He believes in Christianity. It would be completely against his beliefs to be a Muslim. Such a choice is impossible for him. "

I don't understand CON here. Obviously PRO could renounce Christianity and take up Islam. A madlibs example:

"US citizenship is a choice like any other type of citizenship." He is a US citizen, according to his profile. Could Pro choose Canadian citizenship? Of course he could. How could he? He is a US citizen. It would be completely appropriate for him to simply renounce his citizenship to be a Canadian citizen. Such a choice is easily possible for him. "

(cont)
Posted by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
1) PRO: "Mother-Bearing a relation like that of a mother, as in being the origin, source, or protector.(2)"

This is clear semantics abuse. PRO picks a definition out of the dictionary that is less commonly used than the prima facie definition of "mother." PRO's definition has nothing to do with CON's intention as stated in round #1. CON was fully justified in stating:

CON: "The word mother can be an adjective, noun or verb. Pro choose to define the adjective, as in mother ship and mother country. This has nothing to do with motherhood as he defined it: the state of being a mother (noun). Using Pro's source (1), mother (noun) is a female parent."

Since this is core, i.e. this set the entire direction of the debate, I will award conduct to CON.

2) CON: "Consider a female unit, W1." Dear lord, is this a discussion about human beings or robots?

3) CON: "Indeed, if anything is a choice, it is childlessness. But even this, a consistent minority of women, is not a result of choice but of circumstance."

I found this a priori wholly unconvincing. If the negation of motherhood, i.e. "not motherhood" is a choice, then clearly "motherhood" is also a choice. This reads as a clear concession by CON, IMHO. CON also attempts to differentiate choice from circumstance...but what if any and all of the choices we make are dictated by circumstance?

4) CON:

"Homosexuality is a choice.
Heroin use is a choice.
Islam is a choice.

"These statements are an indication of bigotry against those respective groups. "

False negatives. I can play this game too:

Becoming educated is a choice.
Rising from poverty is a choice.
Religious freedom is a choice.

These statements would be an indication of a preference for these ideals. We would not call it bigotry however.

(con't)
4 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Vote Placed by GeekiTheGreat 4 years ago
GeekiTheGreat
rrossutahjokerTied
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Total points awarded:20 
Reasons for voting decision: CVB
Vote Placed by tmar19652 4 years ago
tmar19652
rrossutahjokerTied
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Reasons for voting decision: I thought that Pro's final round extended syllogism won the debate for them. Pro showed that even though the decision to become a mother may not be conscious, but the actions of utahgirl essentially implied the choice to become a mother. Otherwise, there were no glaring spelling or grammatical errors, along with a lack of conduct violations that would warrant a point being awarded to either side.
Vote Placed by wrichcirw 4 years ago
wrichcirw
rrossutahjokerTied
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Reasons for voting decision: see comments - if you take on a philosophical debate, prepare to argue in a philosophical manner. +4 to CON (arguments, S&G), +2 to CON to CVB leojm's votebomb on S&G and conduct. As to how I could vote for arguments to CON when I sided with PRO after the debate, I sided with PRO due to the arguments I constructed independent of the debate, but which were made only because of my reading of this debate (see my comments for explanation).
Vote Placed by leojm 4 years ago
leojm
rrossutahjokerTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro had a better way of explaining his point of view. Both Con and Pro use good sources. I do give credit to Con for Having a great argument and a lot of back ups, although to say Pro had it better. Con keep up the good work you will get better in time. Congrats to both of you.