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The Contender
Pro (for)

Are Humans Fundamentally Different From Animals?

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/11/2018 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 1,911 times Debate No: 107903
Debate Rounds (3)
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I firmly stand on the negation of the resolution, Humans are fundamentally different from animals. On the account that we share many things with the other creatures in the animal kingdom. Beyond our physical features, humans differentiate ourselves with culture, language, cooperation, morality, and many other reasons.


I affirm Resolved: Humans are fundamentally different from other animals.

As my opponent has not advanced any arguments yet, nor will I. However, I will define a few key terms to clarify the debate. In addition, while the affirmative must prove one fundamental difference, the negative has the burden to show no such difference exists. As such, if there is one fundamental difference between humans and other animals, the affirmative wins the round.

First, fundamentally acts as an adverb to modify "different". As such, the resolution holds that the differences between humans and other animals are fundamental. Fundamental differences can be defined as belonging to one"s innate or ingrained characteristics, from Merriam-Webster. Prefer this interpretation for two reasons. First, this gives the affirmative ample ground to provide differentiating characteristics, while providing a not unreasonable expectation of the negative to show the difference as not fundamental. Second, this is the most common use of the word in the English language. Therefore, this is likely the meaning the resolution meant to convey.

An animal is defined taxonomically as a eukaryotic heterotroph that lacks cell walls, is able to move, whose embryos pass through the blastula stage, and possesses some sensory organs by Biology Online Dictionary. Meanwhile, humans are identified by the highly developed brain that confers advanced skills in abstract reasoning, articulate language, self-awareness, problem solving, and sapience. They are bipedal primates in having an erect carriage. They are skillful in handling objects with their hands. Humans may also be described as social animals capable of showing sympathy with other beings, and living life with (inherent) values and ethics. Prefer these definitions for two reasons. First, they are "in the literature" - these definitions come from the relevant scientific authorities. Second, they clearly define the characteristics that make a human, allowing us to see if these are fundamental, and so best set up the debate round.
Debate Round No. 1


Cooperation, is something that both humans and animals possess, according to Boesch 05, "over 45 years of field studies on wild chimpanzees provide a wealth of observational data" demonstrating a capacity for role reversal and perspective taking." The idea that the ability to share goals and intentions are uniquely human is utterly false.

Culture, another big part of everyday human society, may not be as specific to our mental capacity as some may believe. Calidiere 14 states, "Baboons are capable of sustaining a culture in the laboratory that exhibits" fundamental properties of human culture... bird song evolution also exhibits the lineage-specific structure [that is human culture.] " The foundations of culture are the same across the entirety of the animal kingdom, there is no aspect that makes us non-animal.

My third argument is Language, something humans differ in across the globe. In China we have Chinese, France has French, and here we are majorly English. Well, Animals have their own language and scientists have proved it. "New research into Japanese songbirds prove they have syntax and grammar - the last believed difference of human language," says Suzuki from the Department of Evolutionary Studies. Toshitaka Suzuki found that, our language is not as different as it may seem.

Additionally, we have Morality, which once again" surprise surprise, animals all around the animal kingdom have. Animals exhibit the traditional hallmarks of morality. They know right from wrong. They really do.

Finally, my last reason" has to do with the topic chosen today. What does it really mean? It isn"t about the way we relate to animals directly" rather," of or relating to essential structure, function, or facts," according to merriam webster. We may not all look, talk, or act the same, but we all belong to the same kingdom" of animals. So, my opponents arguments are obviously subordinate. Which is why I urge for you to vote for me.
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Debate Round No. 2
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Debate Round No. 3
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by DboPoint 3 years ago
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