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People are born good

brittcb4
Posts: 14
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2/19/2011 10:33:07 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
I have a debate coming up and I have to support that people are born good so I have been researching evidence and I am having trouble. I was wondering if people could help me I have been researching everything to help support by argument that people are born good. I really need some guidance and help. If anyone could help it would be greatly apprciated, thank you.
GeoLaureate8
Posts: 12,252
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2/19/2011 10:45:03 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 10:39:03 AM, Danielle wrote:
But define 'good.' How do we know what 'good' even is or if it exists? ;)

Yep.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
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"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
Danielle
Posts: 21,330
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2/19/2011 10:47:17 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 10:45:03 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 2/19/2011 10:39:03 AM, Danielle wrote:
But define 'good.' How do we know what 'good' even is or if it exists? ;)

Yep.

Lol ohhh, philosophy forum. But seriously this is a good debate topic that actually requires some critical thinking; with most others people just plagiarize directly off the internet (or steal people's arguments from sites like this). To the OP - what do you think? Have any thoughts so far?
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PARADIGM_L0ST
Posts: 6,958
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2/19/2011 10:48:56 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 10:33:07 AM, brittcb4 wrote:
I have a debate coming up and I have to support that people are born good so I have been researching evidence and I am having trouble. I was wondering if people could help me I have been researching everything to help support by argument that people are born good. I really need some guidance and help. If anyone could help it would be greatly apprciated, thank you.:

Good luck with that. Atheists say that there is no solid conception of good, and theists say that no one is born good... the opposite actually.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
m93samman
Posts: 2,685
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2/19/2011 10:54:35 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 10:51:05 AM, J.Kenyon wrote:
http://lmgtfy.com...

That site will be so much fun, forever.
http://lmgtfy.com...
: At 4/15/2011 5:29:37 PM, CosmicAlfonzo wrote:
: Pascal's wager is for poosies.
:
: I mean that sincerly, because it's basically an argument from poooosie.
:
: I'm pretty sure that's like a fallacy.. Argument ad Pussium or something like that.
GeoLaureate8
Posts: 12,252
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2/19/2011 10:56:01 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 10:48:56 AM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
Good luck with that. Atheists say that there is no solid conception of good,

Atheism has nothing to do with whether one believes in "good" or not.

and theists say that no one is born good... the opposite actually.

False. Only one or two of the major Theist religions actually believe that. There are many other Theist religions, like Hinduism, that do not hold to the doctrine of born sinners.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
Danielle
Posts: 21,330
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2/19/2011 10:56:25 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
Also to the OP, I agree with CON on this one but I think you can make your case as follows (I'll use good and moral interchangeably for clarity) ... One's actions can only be 'bad' if the agent was bad intentioned. For instance if I accidentally punch you or intentionally punch you, I think we can agree that the first act was not necessarily immoral while the second was. A baby being born has no thoughts, no experiences to work from to give them bad intentions to do anything. Even if their biological instinct caused them to do something "immoral," it would be instinct so not intentional. As for how you get around arguing that the default natural state is good lol well I guess that's the harder part. I would say that life is by default good. There ya go - I just won you the debate ;P
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Danielle
Posts: 21,330
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2/19/2011 10:57:31 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 10:56:25 AM, Danielle wrote:
I would say that life is by default good.

(Supported by many philosophies you can reference, including Objectivism)
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PARADIGM_L0ST
Posts: 6,958
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2/19/2011 11:32:57 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 10:56:01 AM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 2/19/2011 10:48:56 AM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:
Good luck with that. Atheists say that there is no solid conception of good,

Atheism has nothing to do with whether one believes in "good" or not.

and theists say that no one is born good... the opposite actually.

False. Only one or two of the major Theist religions actually believe that. There are many other Theist religions, like Hinduism, that do not hold to the doctrine of born sinners.:

I was implying the major religions applicable to the West. Let me requalify it with the Abrahamic religions. There. All better now.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Cerebral_Narcissist
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2/19/2011 11:33:44 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 10:33:07 AM, brittcb4 wrote:
I have a debate coming up and I have to support that people are born good so I have been researching evidence and I am having trouble. I was wondering if people could help me I have been researching everything to help support by argument that people are born good. I really need some guidance and help. If anyone could help it would be greatly apprciated, thank you.

People are born essentially as a blank slate, they learn morality, which is a subjective concept. I don't see how you can create a very good case.
I am voting for Innomen because of his intelligence, common sense, humility and the fact that Juggle appears to listen to him. Any other Presidential style would have a large sub-section of the site up in arms. If I was President I would destroy the site though elitism, others would let it run riot. Innomen represents a middle way that works, neither draconian nor anarchic and that is the only way things can work. Plus he does it all without ego trips.
PARADIGM_L0ST
Posts: 6,958
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2/19/2011 11:38:00 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
People are born essentially as a blank slate, they learn morality, which is a subjective concept. I don't see how you can create a very good case.:

Looks like a failure from the start. That's a very difficult proposition to find corroborating data.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
TheAtheistAllegiance
Posts: 1,251
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2/19/2011 2:26:40 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 10:54:35 AM, m93samman wrote:

That site will be so much fun, forever.
http://lmgtfy.com...

Dang it. I got a little excited at the thought of Gaga having a big, juicy schlong!
brittcb4
Posts: 14
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2/19/2011 2:32:02 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
I am also debating that the majority of people are born good, not everyone! So I think at least this will help me.

I am trying to make a definition of what good is to support my argument - being good is helping and caring for others, cooperation. When we are born we have a natural instinct to care for others, to be affectionate. I also have done research and eastern philosophers agree that humans are born good. This is why we have evolved, we are not extinct. This is because we were born with the nature to help others. We are still functioning as a society, we have not crumbled yet. After we are born, our environment and surroundings will shape our behaviors.

For example:
John Locke was a famous English Philosopher who believed that people were born without any innate ideas and were good by birth.

Jean-Jacques Rousseau is another famous french philosopher who believed that man was born innately good, but that it was society that corrupted man. In Rousseau's The Social Contract, Rousseau explains this concept of man being naturally good but corrupted by society.

Mencius was a Chinese Philosopher, and he believed in Confucius's (social philosopher's) theory. He believed that people are inherently good natured and should work towards the greater benefit of society. Confucius held the traditional view that all men are born good.

These are the philosophers I have researched. Although, I need to make a really strong argument as this is difficult.

Any ideas and arguments in which i can add...??
TheAtheistAllegiance
Posts: 1,251
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2/19/2011 2:36:30 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 11:38:00 AM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:

Looks like a failure from the start. That's a very difficult proposition to find corroborating data.

I think somebody that's extremely well-versed in evolutionary theory could argue this very well. Human cooperation has been a driving factor behind human survival, which is the result of behavioral evolution. There have also been experiments that study the concept of fairness and justice in apes, altruism in dolphins, and the results are interesting. And, if good is defined by the conventional idea of morality -- don't steal, kill, or lie, then I think an excellent case could be made that humans are born good, but it would just have to be supported by that corroborating data you mentioned.
TheAtheistAllegiance
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2/19/2011 2:42:45 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 2:32:02 PM, brittcb4 wrote:
I am also debating that the majority of people are born good, not everyone! So I think at least this will help me.

Ruling out genetic defects, humans are born 99.99% similar to one another, so I would think that point is unimportant.

I am trying to make a definition of what good is to support my argument - being good is helping and caring for others, cooperation. When we are born we have a natural instinct to care for others, to be affectionate. I also have done research and eastern philosophers agree that humans are born good. This is why we have evolved, we are not extinct. This is because we were born with the nature to help others. We are still functioning as a society, we have not crumbled yet. After we are born, our environment and surroundings will shape our behaviors.

This is going to require empirical data put forth by biologists.

For example:
John Locke was a famous English Philosopher who believed that people were born without any innate ideas and were good by birth.

Jean-Jacques Rousseau is another famous french philosopher who believed that man was born innately good, but that it was society that corrupted man. In Rousseau's The Social Contract, Rousseau explains this concept of man being naturally good but corrupted by society.

Mencius was a Chinese Philosopher, and he believed in Confucius's (social philosopher's) theory. He believed that people are inherently good natured and should work towards the greater benefit of society. Confucius held the traditional view that all men are born good.

These are the philosophers I have researched. Although, I need to make a really strong argument as this is difficult.

Any ideas and arguments in which i can add...??

I wouldn't approach this philosophically. I would research experiments done on other animals' innate traits, and see how those relate to human genealogy, via evolution. Also, attempt to find studies pertaining to the way children naturally act in regard to their surroundings.
brittcb4
Posts: 14
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2/19/2011 2:45:48 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 2:36:30 PM, TheAtheistAllegiance wrote:
At 2/19/2011 11:38:00 AM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:

I think somebody that's extremely well-versed in evolutionary theory could argue this very well. Human cooperation has been a driving factor behind human survival, which is the result of behavioral evolution. There have also been experiments that study the concept of fairness and justice in apes, altruism in dolphins, and the results are interesting. And, if good is defined by the conventional idea of morality -- don't steal, kill, or lie, then I think an excellent case could be made that humans are born good, but it would just have to be supported by that corroborating data you mentioned.

I completely agree, i am going to be focusing a lot on evolution and experiments that have been conducted. However, my opponent might mention that experiments (science) has been proven to be flawed....In addition, my opponent will be finding the flaws in my debate so I am trying to prevent this. He will be arguing that people are not born good and I think he will provide examples. i am trying to prevent this from happening as much as possible, make a stronger argument, and hopefully distinguish how to find flaws in his argument....
brittcb4
Posts: 14
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2/19/2011 2:49:21 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 2:42:45 PM, TheAtheistAllegiance wrote:
At 2/19/2011 2:32:02 PM, brittcb4 wrote:

Any ideas and arguments in which i can add...??

I wouldn't approach this philosophically. I would research experiments done on other animals' innate traits, and see how those relate to human genealogy, via evolution. Also, attempt to find studies pertaining to the way children naturally act in regard to their surroundings.

Okay, i will research animal experiments. I have also researched studies conducted on adults and children where they are places in surrounding with strangers and instinctively feel empathy for them, wanting to help them. Should I use this a lot in my debate??
PARADIGM_L0ST
Posts: 6,958
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2/19/2011 2:55:52 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 2:36:30 PM, TheAtheistAllegiance wrote:
At 2/19/2011 11:38:00 AM, PARADIGM_L0ST wrote:

Looks like a failure from the start. That's a very difficult proposition to find corroborating data.

I think somebody that's extremely well-versed in evolutionary theory could argue this very well. Human cooperation has been a driving factor behind human survival, which is the result of behavioral evolution. There have also been experiments that study the concept of fairness and justice in apes, altruism in dolphins, and the results are interesting. And, if good is defined by the conventional idea of morality -- don't steal, kill, or lie, then I think an excellent case could be made that humans are born good, but it would just have to be supported by that corroborating data you mentioned.:

You bring up a good point for specifically altruism, which I've strenuously argued in the past, but it will simply come down to semantics on their being no objective good, i.e. what is good to you may be bad to me.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
PARADIGM_L0ST
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2/19/2011 2:59:14 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 2:32:02 PM, brittcb4 wrote:
I am also debating that the majority of people are born good, not everyone! So I think at least this will help me.:

Then let me help you formulate a strong strategy by playing your devil's advocate.

Your proposition is that people are inherently good.

1. What is good?
2. What does it mean to be good?
3. How do you know people are inherently good if you don't even know most people?

Tackle those dilemma's, piecemeal, and we'll go from there.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
kelly224
Posts: 952
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2/22/2011 3:46:24 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 2/19/2011 10:33:07 AM, brittcb4 wrote:
I have a debate coming up and I have to support that people are born good so I have been researching evidence and I am having trouble. I was wondering if people could help me I have been researching everything to help support by argument that people are born good. I really need some guidance and help. If anyone could help it would be greatly apprciated, thank you.

Good and bad are in the eyes of who is judging. You can ne "good" to people who look like you, but "bad" to those who are different.

Everyone has an opinion on what is ethically, and morally correct, but all of our lenses are distorted.