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Intrinsic human value

Stephen_Hawkins
Posts: 5,316
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8/25/2011 6:39:26 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Can anyone help me? I've been asked in a debate a question (live and formal) which completely threw me a month ago, and now I cannot get it out of my head. I know my personal conclusion is one I believe in, and I am not doubting the implications, but I am having a personal problem getting it out of my head. The question is this:

"Why do humans have intrinsic value?" Specifically referring to why we cannot kill human beings as Capital Punishment. It is a topic I am struggling to answer, and I've decided to petition this forum for help. Thank you.

P.S as context, I am a secular humanist who is objetively against Capital Punishment.
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...
Wnope
Posts: 6,924
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8/25/2011 6:42:19 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/25/2011 6:39:26 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
Can anyone help me? I've been asked in a debate a question (live and formal) which completely threw me a month ago, and now I cannot get it out of my head. I know my personal conclusion is one I believe in, and I am not doubting the implications, but I am having a personal problem getting it out of my head. The question is this:

"Why do humans have intrinsic value?" Specifically referring to why we cannot kill human beings as Capital Punishment. It is a topic I am struggling to answer, and I've decided to petition this forum for help. Thank you.

P.S as context, I am a secular humanist who is objetively against Capital Punishment.

If you are against capital punishment, I wouldn't suggest that route of argument.

You could argue that the same question of intrinsic value applies to whether or not a man should be judged for killing an innocent stranger.

I'm curious as to hearing any benefit of capital punishment.

I've yet to hear a single coherent, well-evidenced argument for the death penalty over life in prison past value-based "he deserves it" deals.
PARADIGM_L0ST
Posts: 6,958
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8/25/2011 6:48:59 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/25/2011 6:39:26 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
Can anyone help me? I've been asked in a debate a question (live and formal) which completely threw me a month ago, and now I cannot get it out of my head. I know my personal conclusion is one I believe in, and I am not doubting the implications, but I am having a personal problem getting it out of my head. The question is this:

"Why do humans have intrinsic value?" Specifically referring to why we cannot kill human beings as Capital Punishment. It is a topic I am struggling to answer, and I've decided to petition this forum for help. Thank you.

P.S as context, I am a secular humanist who is objetively against Capital Punishment.:

There most likely is no "intrinsic" human value except the one accepted by both sociology and biology. Humans and other mammals have demonstrated a sense of morality, altruism, and empathy. The higher the intelligence, the higher the ability to consider the suffering of another animal. Why precisely this is so is about as ambiguous as why exactly we breathe O2 and not H20.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Ragnar_Rahl
Posts: 19,297
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8/25/2011 6:52:12 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
I am a secular humanist who is objetively against Capital Punishment.
No you aren't, if you were you'd have an answer. Therefore you're subjectively against it.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.
Stephen_Hawkins
Posts: 5,316
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8/25/2011 7:51:11 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
sorry, quick clarification; I cannot give a scenario where I would allow capital punishment to proceed. My problem is simply to come up with an easy response. Not something like altruism, as a) that contradicts almost all of the rest of my argument and b) its something I don't agree with anyway.
The point was also on the metaethical justification of it (I went down the route of desire to murder being mental ailment in itself), but I would like a quick rebuttal to my opposition putting forth this idea. Although, a head on refutal of this position would be great. I mean, if I were to retreat to a different contention along the logic, it'd be better.
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...
Lasagna
Posts: 2,440
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8/25/2011 8:29:27 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/25/2011 6:39:26 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
"Why do humans have intrinsic value?"

Humans do not have intrinsic value.

/thread
Rob
Tim_Spin
Posts: 446
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8/25/2011 9:10:14 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Humans have no intrinsic value. Value is subjective. We done?
Astonished, the talent agent asks the man what him and his family call their act.The man responds, "The Aristocrats!"
VainApocalypse
Posts: 74
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8/25/2011 9:39:54 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/25/2011 6:39:26 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
Can anyone help me? I've been asked in a debate a question (live and formal) which completely threw me a month ago, and now I cannot get it out of my head. I know my personal conclusion is one I believe in, and I am not doubting the implications, but I am having a personal problem getting it out of my head. The question is this:

"Why do humans have intrinsic value?" Specifically referring to why we cannot kill human beings as Capital Punishment. It is a topic I am struggling to answer, and I've decided to petition this forum for help. Thank you.

P.S as context, I am a secular humanist who is objetively against Capital Punishment.

Postponing any consideration of my own ideas, the moment that you realized that you opposed capital punishment but had no argument for doing so, why did you not immediately stop opposing it? It seems as though you're starting with the conclusion you want to arrive at and are asking for help finding evidence for it. Are you allowing your views to be clouded by emotional reactions rather than reason? Consider whether this is a mistake you've repeated elsewhere.

That said, I am equally described by your post script. I deal with the conundrum as follows.

I would define a right as any protection that is necessary to preserve a social, cooperative, intellectual relationship between men. It occurs to me that each individual benefits from every other individual being granted this protection, because it allows each individual to apply that relationship toward their own ends in order to achieve things unattainable when operating alone.

Observe that even in prison, men still produce goods and ideas that are shared with the rest of us. They cannot do this if they are not allowed any rights. Their crimes dictate that their rights be constricted, but only so far as it is necessary to prevent them from violating the rights of anyone else.

Once incarcerated, a man's rights have been sufficiently constrained so to eliminate him as a threat to society. Killing him would be unnecessary. It would merely remove a valuable resource and call into question the security of everyone's rights. Even the good, moral men should fear for their rights in a country where capital punishment is conducted; innocent men are convicted and sometimes executed.

Through the destruction of people able to create value and information, capital punishment accomplishes only an increase in the universe's overall entropy. It does not deter; it does not protect.
Ragnar_Rahl
Posts: 19,297
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8/25/2011 11:20:04 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 8/25/2011 7:51:11 PM, Stephen_Hawkins wrote:
sorry, quick clarification; I cannot give a scenario where I would allow capital punishment to proceed. My problem is simply to come up with an easy response. Not something like altruism, as a) that contradicts almost all of the rest of my argument and b) its something I don't agree with anyway.
The point was also on the metaethical justification of it (I went down the route of desire to murder being mental ailment in itself), but I would like a quick rebuttal to my opposition putting forth this idea. Although, a head on refutal of this position would be great. I mean, if I were to retreat to a different contention along the logic, it'd be better.

Who cares if desire to murder is a mental ailment? All the more reason to eliminate the mind in question.
It came to be at its height. It was commanded to command. It was a capital before its first stone was laid. It was a monument to the spirit of man.