The Instigator
Pro (for)
0 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
11 Points

should water boarding be considered torture

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/15/2011 Category: Politics
Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,900 times Debate No: 19304
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (2)
Votes (2)




water boarding is torture. torture is defined as Torture is the act of inflicting severe pain (whether physical or psychological) as a means of punishment, revenge, forcing information or a confession, or simply as an act of cruelty.

you decide


First, thanks you for this debate and I hope both the readers and participants find this debate engaging.

That being said I found my opponents opening statement a bit confusing. I'm not sure whether he is stating that he believes that it is torture or whether he wants the opponent to pick a side. Since he didn't reply to my question in the comments I would like to start by clarifying a few things (Fell free to correct my assumptions in round 2 if you'd like Pro).

- Pro is arguing that water boarding is torture.
- I agree with his definition of torture even though it's from wikipedia.
- Based on the opening statement it appears that Pro is arguing based purely on the definition of torture.
- Burden of proof is on the instigator

I will now address my opponents round one argument and then state my own claims.

As you can see, in round one my opponent simply states that water boarding is torture and then follows this by providing the definition of torture. This is no now way a valid argument. He fails to show exactly how the definition is connected to water boarding. He doesn't describe the actual methods used or even what part of the definition of torture applies to water boarding. There really is no argument, just two separate statements.
That being said, I contest that water boarding is not torture. Since this debate is based solely on the definition provided by Pro himself, I will now show how that definition doesn't apply to water boarding.

Water boarding is when "... the victim is immobilized and has water poured on his or her face, producing a severe gag reflex, to simulate drowning" (1). Because there is no physical pain applied and the main point of water boarding is to "simulate" the sensation of drowning we can assume that water boarding would fall under the psychological aspect of Pro's definition.
I contest that water boarding not only doesn't qualify as severe (mental) pain but barley registers as pain at all. First off, there is no real danger of drowning so the sensation is just that, a sensation. This is comparable to an exciting pastime, bungee jumping. Bungee jumping obviously provides the sensation that one is free falling to the ground, but there is no threat of death. How is this any different than water boarding? In fact why aren't the numerous activities which simulate the chance of death (amusement park rides, skydiving, even first person shooters) not considered torture but actually fun recreational activities? Water boarding seems more like a severe inconvenience rather then mental anguish. Severe inconvenience however is not the definition of torture.
I believe in order to really see how insignificant water boarding really is, one has to compare to an actual form of mental torture. For example making someone watch as friends and loved ones are executed one by one. This is obviously torture, imagine the severe mental pain one experiences as people he loves are murdered right in front of him. Now how does this compare to the sensation of drowning with no real threat of danger? It doesn't. Even if one still considers it pain, its obviously not severe. So once again water boarding fails to meet the definition of torture provided by my opponent.

There is a lot more I would like to say but I want to give my opponent a chance to expand on his claims, so the rest will be presented in round two.

Debate Round No. 1


im sorry but i have to forfeit this debate i hope for a rematch down the road


kk, hit me up anytime you want
Debate Round No. 2


danjr10 forfeited this round.


Opponent forfeited, vote con.
Debate Round No. 3
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by ComradVlad 6 years ago
Hey Con, Im kind of confused by your openin statement. Is the first round the acceptance round and you were just defining torture or was that your opening argument?
Posted by caveat 6 years ago
Another truism "debate". Move along, nothing to see here.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Mr.Infidel 6 years ago
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Total points awarded:07 
Reasons for voting decision: Conduct: Forfeit Grammar: Poor gramar from pro. Arguments: Forfeit from PRO. Sources: Only CON argued.
Vote Placed by Ore_Ele 6 years ago
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Pro forfeited. Though had this debate continued with the current definitions, I don't see how Pro could have won anyway.