The Instigator
davidhancock
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
MrCarroll
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points

what makes humanity different than animals

Do you like this debate?NoYes+2
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 0 votes the winner is...
It's a Tie!
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/24/2011 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,383 times Debate No: 16671
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (3)
Votes (0)

 

davidhancock

Con

im curious to see who will debate me on this topic as i am con i will be arguing that we are no better than animals if you accept this you agree to follow two rules preset
1. you will present the first arguement
2. if you cant give a reason backed by sound logic then the voters are to default to the con
thank you and i hope to see some logic
MrCarroll

Pro

Good evening,
I wish to debate this topic as it has bothered me for some time. My opponent has requested that I present an argument backed by sound logic, something I always intend to do. The rules then are not that complicated. My opponent is arguing that humans are no better than animals, that we are equal in all ways with them. I will prove that humans are above other animals in many ways. Thank you Con, and let us begin.

Consider existence, and doing so you prove my first point, that humans have an uncanny intelligence and understanding that surpasses any other creature. Us humans are not so much known for our physical superiority, but rather our intelligence that has led us to accomplish great things. Our mental abilities have given us the power to accomplish greater acts of power than the mightiest beasts (consider the atomic bomb). We have tamed fire, tamed land, and tamed all the other animals through this intelligence. We have so tamed other creatures that we put them in zoos on display so that we may observe their stupid yet beautiful way of life with utmost wonder. The closest an animal comes to the human intelligence is supposedly a Grey Parrot. Yet even the parrot is supposedly only intelligent enough to count to six. If humans are astonished about such intelligence, consider that we can count to millions and billions. We also create buildings, cars and computers for our own benefit. No creature can comprehend any of these things, yet we can comprehend everything an animal can. Our sense of language is extremely complicated in comparison to the animal's sense of the word. While they may understand a few vocal signals, we learn languages composed of hundreds of thousands of words and then multiple types of language. However, I understand that intelligence in itself is not necessarily proof of superiority although we have gained superiority through intelligence.

We are the only creatures who truly appreciate beauty and love. Our sense of those words is quite different then animals'. Animals work purely on instinct, and while humans also have instinct, we have something else as well. The animal does not decide rationally between two instincts, rather the stronger instinct always wins. For example, sheep will follow the leader off the cliff, because the instinct to follow the leader is stronger than the instinct to stay away from the cliff. Likewise, a dog may have the instinct to be loyal to its master, yet the dog does not actually love the master in the human sense. Love is a human concept. It is quite different than the loyal instinct or sexual instinct, which we also posses. We can decide whether to love or not love, and it is this decision process that makes humans quite different than animals. Also, we may discern subjective concepts such as beauty. Subjective concepts are also outside of the capabilities of instinct. Humans can also discern morals, what is right and wrong. Nothing an animal does is wrong or right unless a human perceives it as so. A mother snake may eat her children, and we would say it is a wicked act. Yet if asked, the snake would say she was hungry. Animals do not hold this sense of justice and morality that humans do. These things like morals are not evolutionary adaptations, but rather of something quite different and quite human.

Think back when I told you to consider existence. Our understanding of concepts that we cannot understand because our minds are finite is amazing compared to comprehension of an animal. We recognize our brains and know we cannot fully understand the brain. Also, humans recognize animals to the extent that they have control over them. To show my point, I asked my dog if humans are better than animals and if it would be alright if I continued to rule over them. She complied. Sure, I may have trained her to do so, but she did not have the ability to have an opinion on the subject. I think it is obvious that humans are on a different level than animals, yet how do we logically? We may take the evolutionary viewpoint that we are the most intelligent and powerful creature evolutionary, thus we are better then the other animals. That is very valid. But how else do we classify something being more equal than another? Plants are obviously not equal to humans or most animals for that matter, yet they are made of the same thing. Is it a mind that sets creatures apart? But clearly our mind is better than any other creature's. More importantly, the thing that sets humans apart is our spirit, the something that no one can fully understand where it comes from, but we all know we have it whether consciously or unconsciously. It is this something that can recognize art, music, love, beauty, hate, justice, and peace, things that no beast can understand. From this something, this spirit, this human sense, that no other creature has, we may conclude that animals are not equal to humans. Perhaps my opponent can show that animals posses such a 'spirit,' but that would be quite a challenge. I await my opponent's response.
Debate Round No. 1
davidhancock

Con

(sorry bout the rule stupid people)
ok so I will answer each of his arguments one by one and I wont use paragraphs as I don't have time that's cool right?

1. my opponent first part talks of better intelligence
cross apply my first round speech "I will be arguing that we are no better than animals"
he speaks of the atom bomb, cars and a lot of other things

"Our mental abilities have given us the power to accomplish greater acts of power than the mightiest beasts (consider the atomic bomb). We have tamed fire, tamed land, and tamed all the other animals through this intelligence. We have so tamed other creatures that we put them in zoos on display so that we may observe their stupid yet beautiful way of life with utmost wonder. "
"We also create buildings, cars and computers for our own benefit. "
now my argument: turn this argument "for our own benefit." that ending particle is my argument. we kill millions of plants, animals, and ecosystems. those "atomic bombs" threaten to destroy our very existence, cars are doing the same but on a different scale. humans insist on control that's what is going to eventually kill the earth so in fact we are worse than animals our "intelligence" is destroying all of us.

2. his second argument.
first to quote him " does not actually love the master in the human sense. "
first argument: love
ok love is illogical as love is "An intense feeling of deep affection"
animals feel as well look to when you smack a dog it whimpers seeking approval and forgiveness so to say animals don't feel is saying they have no emotions. some animals mate for life and that's the ultimate form of love, staying with someone 365 for a life time. humans cant lay claim to full life partnership so I say animals have a much better grasp on love than us so turn this now as animals are better again

second argument: instinct
um to answer this look to all of our presidents, we blindly followed them off our own form of a cliff. we are just as instinctual as animals and he probably shouldn't have thrown this in there. our instincts are to go to war and kill each other vs animals to kill on a singular level no major factor.

third: I'm going to lump beauty and morals
as no solid beauty argument was made it should be dropped. how do you know how animals feel as they don't speak our lingo doesn't mean they don't feel. morals are what start wars. one person thinks one things bad another thinks its good Bing bang boom 6 million Jews dead and more than 10 million others. war is the thorn in the lions paw for you my friend so long as we kill thousands of our own kind we can never be better than animals

pros final argument
ok so this was mostly a conclusion
1. agreement
he agrees that this is a battle of who's better.
2. all arguments here
have all been answered before this,

vote con on the facts: I turned his case. everything he said is now a disadvantage.
I really wonder how your going to answer this
good luck.
MrCarroll

Pro

Well I'm stumped, but I will give this my best shot. My first argument is labeled under intelligence, but I think power should be there too. Humans are by far the most powerful species. Again, power in itself does not make one species necessarily better than another unless we are speaking in the evolutionary sense. Yet it goes to show just how different we are from animals.

I. Power and intelligence
First of all, my opponent has conceded that we are more powerful and intelligent. My opponent argues a different issue, being that humans are corrupt. Now I will show that this is actually an argument showing that humans are quite different than animals. Power, especially to the amount humans have, corrupts, but it can only corrupt if there is a mind behind it, a mind that is superior to animals'. For example, if we put our very own Peter the Grey Parrot in charge of the world, he would not be corrupt. If he did something wrong, it would only be because Peter didn't know any better. But if humans obtain such power and corrupt, it is because we know what is right and wrong. I will continue this in the argument of morals.

II. Instinct vs. emotion
I am afraid to say, when a master strikes his dog, the dog whimpers because he is hurt and afraid and not because it is seeking forgiveness. Nor can the dog deal out forgiveness, for in order to forgive you must have done something evil. Animals cannot do evil in the human sense of the word, for they only work by instinct. The instinct of fear, which correlates with pain and surprise, is what the dog feels when he is struck. Sure, the dog may come back and know that his master won't strike him again, but its not because he feels forgiven.
My opponent asserts that, not only can animals feel love and act lovingly, but that their sense of love is even better than the human sense. This is a very strong statement, and also an incorrect one. Some animals such as the turtle dove mate for life. This is described as "the ultimate form of love" which is unfounded. Also, my opponent's definition of love is only one of many. It is something very hard to define as there are countless forms of love. I've always thought that laying one's life down for another is the ultimate act of love. But for this we will be speaking of love in the romantic, mating sense of the word. My opponent's argument about mating for life fails on the fact that turtle doves mate for life due to instinct. They don't have much choice when it comes to marriage. Otherwise, we would see some turtle doves mate for life and then others become dove prostitutes. This is illogical because the doves do not have the choice to love as humans do. In order to love in the human sense, one must have the option not to love. Humans are the only creatures who have this type of choice.
With regards to instinct, and the sheep falling off the cliff, my opponent argues that humans do the same with regards to past presidents. I'm not sure how to respond to this as I'm not sure that every president was followed off a "cliff" so to speak. However, I'm pretty sure that no president is every fully backed by every citizen showing that there is a choice to follow presidents. Thus, it is not instinct. Sheep follow the leader off the cliff and have no choice. My opponent also asserts that humans have the instinct to go to war, which is completely unfounded. I think I have shown constantly that while humans have instincts, we also have the ability to choose between our instincts unlike animals.

III. Beauty/subjectivity
My argument here was that humans can comprehend subjective concepts. Humans have an opinion on physical beauty for example. It is not a matter of instinct, for if it was, we should all have the same opinion on it, and it wouldn't really be an opinion at all. Animals don't have such a concept of beauty; when they feel the instinct to mate, they choose another based on size or age perhaps. This can hardly be described as a sense beauty. If you painted a moose's coat blue, its mate wouldn't care. Every moose finds a mate in the same way, instinctually. With humans you'll have a host of opinions based on different cultures and individual people. Also, humans have another sense of beauty that no other animal can understand. We look at other objects and creatures and find them beautiful. We find flowers, peacocks, and sunsets beautiful. Humans also perceive humor, I have never seen anything other than a human laugh. We learn to laugh at a very young age as well. I'm simply touching on subjective concepts, and these all point to the fact that we are more than simply instinctual creatures.

IV. Morality
My opponent's argument here is not well constructed and hard to understand. I understand that animals don't speak our language, yet we know that don't know what is right and wrong becuase they work purely on instinct as shown previously. My opponent seems to concede that only humans have morals and then turns it into an attack on the humans. This is similar to the first response regarding intelligence. My opponent tries to make morals out to be a bad thing, which makes no sense for morals are our understanding of good and bad. Con claims that morals start wars, yet he doesn't explain how (just "big bang boom?"). This is another unfounded assertion. Wars are usually started because of greed. Then my opponent says, "so long as we kill thousands of our own kind, we can never be better than animals." This is basically Con's only argument. Humans are evil, but does that make animals any better then humans? My opponent must make note that while humans are more evil than other creatures, we are also better than other creatures with regards to being good and moral. In fact, we are the only creatures that can be moral and consequently the only creatures that can be immoral. Likewise, since humans are the only creatures that can love, we are also the only creatures that can hate. This all goes to show that we are still above every other species despite being corrupt.

V. I asked my cousin's dog if humans were on a different level than animals, and she agreed as well.

My opponent has conceded that humans are evolutionary superior to any animal. In this sense, my opponent has already admitted animals are not equal with humans.
"It is this something that can recognize art, music, love, beauty, hate, justice, and peace, things that no beast can understand. From this something, this spirit, this human sense, that no other creature has, we may conclude that animals are not equal to humans. Perhaps my opponent can show that animals posses such a 'spirit,' but that would be quite a challenge." My opponent never directly answered this statement from the previous round. I hope that readers understand that it these abilities that put humans on a different level than animals. I hope no one is influenced by my opponent's profile picture, as the cat is not actually writing on the laptop. Cat's cannot read. Thank you very much.
Debate Round No. 2
davidhancock

Con

davidhancock forfeited this round.
MrCarroll

Pro

Extend arguments.
Debate Round No. 3
davidhancock

Con

davidhancock forfeited this round.
MrCarroll

Pro

Like I said, we capture animals, put them in man-made habitats, and then watch the animals for fun.
Debate Round No. 4
davidhancock

Con

davidhancock forfeited this round.
MrCarroll

Pro

MrCarroll forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
3 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Posted by SuperRobotWars 5 years ago
SuperRobotWars
Humans have guns.
Posted by davidhancock 5 years ago
davidhancock
thank you MCarroll
Posted by davidhancock 5 years ago
davidhancock
voters tell how the round is going here please
No votes have been placed for this debate.