The Instigator
Pro (for)
7 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
14 Points

One could logically follow a majority of these guidelines

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Post Voting Period
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 10/19/2009 Category: Health
Updated: 9 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,450 times Debate No: 9739
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (12)
Votes (4)




Resolved: that of the 8 guidelines for safety found here:
one could logically justify adhering to a majority (5+) of these with the intent of preserving health and safety.

Do not continue on without reading the above link. It won't take more than 1 minute.

1. I do not want semantics in regards to the resolution. If I have poorly laid out what this debate is to be about, address it in 'comments' or briefly in your argument. I do not want a debate about how I worded the topic.
Feel free, however to debate the proper interpretation of each of the given guidelines.

2. I win if I prove that a person could logically decide to adhere to 5 or more of the given guidelines with the intent of safety. My opponent wins if he can prove that 4 or more of the given guidelines are not logical in promoting safety. With that in mind, my opponent could lose (or simply ignore) arguments on 4 of the guidelines and still win, provided he proves the other 4 illogical. The same applies to me, but with a maximum of 3 lost arguments.

3 .We are not debating the truth of the statements, just the advisability of the guidelines. "Eating broccoli gives you superhuman strength, so you should eat broccoli" might contain an untrue claim, but remains sound, logical advice (that eating broccoli is good.)

I will:
provide the original text of each guideline;
if the guideline does not give a clear command, provide what I believe to be the implied assertion; and
justify why following this command would be logical if one were foremost concerned with health and safety.


1. In the event of a tornado, lie down in a ditch. If you are already lying in a ditch, do not attempt to sit up.

Since tornadoes happen frequently around the world, 'in the event of a tornado' can clearly be interpreted to address what to do if there is a tornado NEARBY.

Assertion: If there is a nearby tornado, find a ditch and stay in it.
A ditch is a commonly overlooked place to hide from a tornado. It is generally considered preferable to such structures as overpasses, cars, and small buildings. Someone who is interested in protecting themselves from a tornado would be logical in deciding to hide (or remain) in a ditch.

2. The most important thing is to stay calm. This will be difficult since you are most certainly going to die.

Assertion: Remain calm

Remaining calm is clearly beneficial to one's health. It allows people to make level-headed, rational decisions that are less likely to endanger them, particularly in the event of a tornado. In contrast, stress and anxiety can have negative effects on your health and safety, as seen here:

3. Tornadoes spook easily. Firing a few warning shots into the air is usually enough to scare them off.

Assertion: If you see a tornado, fire shots into the air.

Obviously these warnings shots need to be loud enough for a tornado to hear them from up to miles away, so it stands to reason that shooting into the air to scare tornadoes would also be sufficient to garner the attention of surrounding people. This could wake those who are sleeping or otherwise unaware of the approaching tornado. By firing these warning shots, one might easily save the lives of many people by alerting them to the imminent disaster.

4. Live a little, for once: Strap yourself to the roof of your house and rage at the heavens.

Being strapped to the roof of your house is likely to give you direct exposure to the sun. For the majority of Americans who don't spend enough time outside, this extra exposure is very beneficial. For instance, tanning:
1. Prevents skin cancer
2. Give the body Vitamin D
3. Reduces the chance of malignant melanoma
plus many other benefits

Second, people frequently get angry. It is easy to express this anger in dangerous ways. Holding it in can also be dangerous to one's mental health. Experts suggest finding a nonviolent way to release this anger. Raging at the heavens while strapped to a rooftop is a way to express anger that is far from likely to hurt anybody, and thus is a smart way to relieve anger.

5. Prevent tornadoes before they happen: Make sure that warm, moist air fronts do not converge with cool, dry ones.

Preventing tornadoes = less risk of natural disaster = greater safety
This one's a gimme

6. During a tornado, the only safe place is my loving arms. Come here, baby.

C.S. Lewis writes extensively on the term 'love' and concludes that there are 4: storge, philia, eros, and agape. The only true love is agape, unconditional love, which Lewis contends can only come from God.
It stands to reason, then, that the Christian God is the only one that could truly invite you into 'loving' arms.

Assertion: Convert to Christianity.

A. Regardless of where you are, whether there is a tornado or not, you are never safe from pain or from death. While you can be more or less safe, the only way you could be perfectly safe, is if you are protected by a divine or supernatural power.

Because there is no natural way to be safe, the statement is true that you can only be safe if you are protected by god, or 'in [his] loving arms.'

B. Converting to Christianity is, according to the Christian faith, the only way to avoid an eternity in hell. Coming into God's arms and converting to Christianity truly is the only way to be safe from Hell.

C. Even for those that don't believe that God truly exists, following this guideline is still beneficial to health and safety. Regardless of whether God exists or whether converting to Christianity is the only way to be safe, one still ought to convert to Christianity because of the multiple measurable benefits shown here:

7. If a tornado strikes your home, even a basement could be dangerous, so construct a basement for your basement.
A basement for your basement, in this case being a 'storm shelter'

Assertion: A storm shelter constructed beneath one's home would be the safest place to hide.
Underground in a storm shelter is the most preferable place to hide in the event of a tornado. Constructing a 2nd basement under your original basement for use in an emergency would be a safe plan of action, as it gives you a place deeper underground to hide.

8. If you spot a tornado, always remember to point at it, yell "tornado!," and run like hell.

Similar to the 3rd guideline given, this is a smart idea because it alerts others of the tornado.

Pointing at the tornado gives others an idea of which direction the tornado is coming from, so that they no which way to flee to.

Yelling "tornado!" is one of the easiest and fastest ways to convey the message that there is a nearby tornado to those in your near vicinity.

The benefits of running like hell are threefold:
A. It attracts the attention of people who may not have known of the tornado's existence.
B. It allows you to cover more ground and thus alert more people.
C. It puts you farther away from the tornado.

I look forward to a good debate and wish my opponent good luck.


This should be a fun debate =).

I'll attack these points from two angles. First is the mundane one, that several are unsafe. Second, several points contradict each other, and can therefore not be followed if one of them is to be believed as safe.

Mundane Attacks
1) In the event of a tornado, lie down in a ditch. If you are already lying in a ditch, do not attempt to sit up.
There are two problems with this. First, there are far better places to be in the event of a tornado than some ditch in the ground. In fact, the Tornado Safety Project says that premade shelters are far more effective[1]. Ditches are a last resort if a sturdy shelter or interior room in a building cannot be found. As the Tornado Project says, "a culvert in a ditch MAY be a good choice if there is no rain, but if there IS rain, flash flooding may be more dangerous and likely than the tornado." We cannot advise people to take the less safe route - a decision which increases their chance of harm. Second, lying in a ditch could result in a tetanus infection. Tetanus is a horrible disease, and the bacterial spores that cause it are found in the ground [2]. Again, advising someone to a better, non Tetanus-ridden spot is the course of action. We don't want this to happen: .

2) The most important thing is to stay calm. This will be difficult since you are most certainly going to die.
No opposition on principle.

3. Tornadoes spook easily. Firing a few warning shots into the air is usually enough to scare them off.
Firing warning shots at a tornado is one of the stupidest things a person can do. First, a tornado could catch the bullet and send it flying somewhere else. This only adds to its deadly payload and ultimately endangers everyone. Second, tornados have no fear. Fear is an emotion generated by living beings in the amygdala[3]. Tornados are neither alive nor in possession of their own amygdalae. Rather, they are columns of air[4]. Also, people shouldn't waste their time buying/locating firearms, and then loading them with ammunition. They should be seeking safety.

4. Live a little, for once: Strap yourself to the roof of your house and rage at the heavens.
The last place you want to be when a tornado strikes is in the open, or high up [1]. Strapping oneself to the roof of a house constitutes both. Furthermore, tanning can actually be detrimental to one's health, causing skin cancer and much dreaded sunburn (and by extension, ugly tan lines). People should not self-inflict pain, or tan lines. Finally, strapping oneself to the roof of a house during a tornado would likely increase someone's stress level. Stress is a response to a real or perceived threat [6]. Seeing a tornado bearing down on oneself is both a real and perceived threat. The list even claims that most people are "most certainly going to die". Staring death in the face is not a productive method of stress management.

5. Prevent tornadoes before they happen: Make sure that warm, moist air fronts do not converge with cool, dry ones.
The article urges readers to prevent tornados by altering air fronts. Unfortunately, we lack the technology and ability to do so. Compelling people to do the impossible will only confuse them and lead to frustration. This, again, leads to stress[6] - people will not be able to adequately deal with the threat of tornados. They will become depressed when their inability leads to the deaths of millions and enter rage spirals. Suicide rates will skyrocket.

6. During a tornado, the only safe place is my loving arms. Come here, baby.
The only way into the loving arms of God is death. If we accept Pro's interpretation, that means we are bidding people to perform suicide. Suicide is detrimental both to the health of the suicidal, but also to their family and friends. Each suicide impacts at least 6 living people emotionally [7], creating a net-decrease in societal well being.

Second, compelling everyone to convert to Christianity forces them to compromise their own system of morals and beliefs. In essence, we are completely bypassing the individual and their right to free thought. Compromising one's moral system and having another forced results in a feeling of oppression, and will again lead to suicide. See the above.

Third, despite the fact that millions of people are Christian, they are still killed by tornados. Divine protection is as effective as a swiss cheese umbrella.

Fourth, there is no reason to believe that only the Christian God can provide divine love - another God could conceivably be the one. By converting everyone to Christianity we put all our eggs in one basket. If the Greek Gods are the real ones, they're going to become even angrier than they are now, and rain destruction upon us all. Religious diversity protects us from armageddon.

Finally, if someone takes these directions literally and hugs a loved one or the author of the list, they have not increased their safety, and have ensured a higher death toll.

7. If a tornado strikes your home, even a basement could be dangerous, so construct a basement for your basement.
This rule tells people to construct a shelter as a tornado is striking. If a tornado is striking, you seek shelter. Zero-hour is no time to start preparing.

8. If you spot a tornado, always remember to point at it, yell "tornado!," and run like hell.
Outrunning a tornado will almost always lead to failure. Again, the Tornado Project advises people that even cars can have difficulty escaping a tornado[1]. Take a peek at your speedometer. It goes up to >100mph. Even if we everyone could run as fast as Usain Bolt over extended periods of time, they would only reach 23.5 mph[8]. Yelling 'tornado' is redundant when tornado sirens are already alerting everyone of danger[9]. Running like hell is only justified if you are Forrest Gump [video] or being chased by zombies: [you can skip to 2:05, though I recommend watching it all =)].

A) 1, 3, 4, 6, 7, 8
These instructions alternately tell people to hide in ditches, discharge a gun, attach themselves their roofs, seek "my loving arms", construct a shelter, and run like hell. Any one of these guidelines precludes the others (I cannot be running AND strapped to my house). Pro says that "a storm shelter is the most preferable place", meaning that one logically ought not follow instructions 1, 3, 4, 6, and 8. If 5 of them cannot be justified (they are mutually exclusive, and better options exist), then I win.

B) 2, 4+8
One cannot simultaneously stay calm and "rage at the heavens" or "yell [and] run like hell". Plain and simple.

C) 6, the rest of them
If the only safe place to be is in "my loving arms", then the rest of the instructions cannot be followed in the interest of safety.

[8] (based on his best possible time)
Debate Round No. 1


First, a general argument against the fallacies he has strewn throughout his case.

I am a tour guide in Orlando, Florida, and I explain to tourists which attractions they should and should not visit while in Florida. Among the many guidelines I give them are:
A. You ought to visit each Disney World park.
B. You ought to ride the Spiderman ride at Islands of Adventure theme park.
C. You ought to go souvenir shopping.
D. You ought to watch the killer whales at Sea World.
I ask you, are these clearly logical guidelines for the average tourist? I should hope so.

Now, look at CONs arguments:
1. For these guidelines to be logical, one must follow every single one.
2. For these guidelines to be logical, they must all be followed simultaneously.
3. For these guidelines to be logical, they must always be the best option.

Common logic should be enough to prove that these claims aren't true, but apply those to my above example. My example violates all 3 of CONs arguments, yet it remains that the guidelines could all be logically followed. Clearly violating these rules that CON has imposed does not make a guideline illogical.

A & B) There is no reason why every single option needs to be followed simultaneously, or even followed at all. You can look to the above example, or even a more specific one here. Two ways to avoid car crashes are:
1. Only travel by plane.
2. Do not travel from your house.
While these certainly cannot both be done, it remains true that they are both effective ways to prevent car crashes. In the same manner, while one might not be able to hide in a ditch and a storm shelter while running like hell and shooting a gun, they are all logical ways to be safe and this supposed contradiction does not make that any less true.

C) Refer to the 3rd rule I outlined in this debate. Even if CON proved that 'the only safe place is my loving arms' is false, it doesn't help him in the slightest. We are debating whether the commands made in these guidelines are logical, not the truth of the statements on which they are based. My opponent needs to prove that accepting Christianity would be hazardous to one's health to disprove my P6. Accepting Christianity is completely possible even if one chooses to follow the other guidelines.

The Mundane

1. You can refer to that general argument I made about guidelines. The bulk of his attack on my point one is based on those faulty assertions. While there may at times be better options, or times where lying in a ditch might be bad, that does not change whether or not lying in a ditch, as a general rule, would be logical. He doesn't refute my source ADVISING that those seeking shelter from tornadoes lay in ditches, so lying in ditches as a general rules is a safe way to avoid a tornado, and thus Guideline 1 is logical.

He does make brief attacks on the safety of ditches, but they are completely unfounded.
A. "a culvert in a ditch MAY be a good choice if there is no rain, but if there IS rain, flash flooding may be more dangerous and likely than the tornado."

This is a culvert:
A culvert is clearly a bad place to hide. It remains, though, that a DITCH is a good place to hide.

B. Tetanus
1. Requires direct contact between an open wound and the dirt; and
2. Is completely preventable through vaccination
that's from his own source:
For 9/10 people, there is little to no chance of getting tetanus. This isn't a legitimate threat.

2. He concedes this one to me. I would suggest to my opponent a similar plan of action on the other 7 guidelines in his next rebuttal.

3. Read Rule 3. Whether tornadoes have fear is irrelevant.

A. adding a single, small piece of metal to a tornado that has picked up houses, trees, stones, etc. hardly if at all increases the chance of harm. The possibility of saving the lives of those who were unaware outweighs any harms, anyway.

B. Most people, particularly out in the country, have ready access to a gun ( Thus, this applies as a general rule.

4. My opponent assumes that this rule applies strictly during tornadoes. He has no justification for why this is true. My argument stands that far more often than not (the 999 of 1,000 days when a tornado is not an imminent threat) this guideline would benefit one's health.

5. It is commonly known that tornadoes cannot currently be prevented. My opponent claims that telling people to do so would cause an exponential increase in suicide. This is a very slippery slope:

single impossible claim --> confusion --> frustration --> stress --> depression --> rage spirals --> mass suicide

Rather, as the saying goes "necessity is the mother of invention." A call to action such as this is what stimulates the ideas for new inventions. Who knows? Maybe within 10 or 20 years someone will already have a prototype tornado prevention system in place.

6. My opponent says my interpretation is that people should commit suicide. I in no way said that. Guideline 6 clearly advocates converting to Christianity. My opponent hasn't rebutted my arguments as to why, so you can accept this as true.

Second, it is a guideline, not a mandate. This in no way forces someone to compromise their beliefs, it simply suggests to them to do so. CON says having guidelines leads to a feeling oppression, which will lead to suicide. We have missionaries, we have outreach programs, we have billboards and TV shows advocating Christianity. People who don't agree often simply ignore them; they don't commit suicide as he claims they would!

Third, Christianity might not provide divine protection, that much is obvious. However, my opponent casually ignores my claim that Christianity has a measurable positive impact on health. At that point, this guideline is still logical if one wants to increase health and safety.

1. My opponent has absolutely no reason why people would interpret the command that way. I'm the only one with any evidence to justify my assertion.
2. Hugging a loved one, or anyone for that matter, would very likely boost morale.

7. Examine the two statements made:
[If a tornado strikes your home, even a basement could be dangerous]
This is true, my opponent hasn't denied it.

[so construct a basement for your basement.]
This is logical. Knowing the above statement, it makes perfect sense that I would construct a basement for my basement in preparation.

My opponent's only argument is that they would be constructing the basement after the tornado has been spotted.
1. I see no reason why any sane person, reading the above guideline would interpret it as such.
2. Even if they did, they would have to be in the basement to construct a basement for their basement. Assuming they don't have a basement for their basement already, the basement is the safest place they can be. In that regard, it is still logical anyway, because following command 7 would put people in the most safe place to hide.

A. My opponent doesn't deny that pointing to the tornado is logical.
B. Point proven, we can't outrun tornadoes. Remember, the benefits of running are 'threefold' as a I claimed and he has only refuted one of those 3.
C. He doesn't say yelling is bad, just at times redundant.

1. The tornado siren might not be functioning (the tornado could have destroyed it.)
2. There might not be a nearby siren.
3. People may not take the siren seriously until they see you pointing, yelling, and running like hell.
4. They might be deaf, in which case pointing and running might be the only warning they get.

Maybe you can find 1 argument you don't think I've rebutted, by some stretch of the imagination, 2. My opponent needs to win half to win this debate, and he clearly has not.
I'd vote PRO.


@ 'Orlando, Florida example'
Pro's analogy is misleading. When a tornado is in the area, one does not have time to perform so many contradictory actions. Let's look at a better analogy.

I am spending a (1) day in Florida. My tour guide tells me that, to have a good time, I should logically do a majority of these things:
1) Spend an afternoon on the beach.
2) Spend a day at Islands of Adventure
3) Spend an afternoon scuba diving.
4) Spend a day at Sea World.
5) Visit X museum.
6) Eat dinner at X restaurant.

He provides me an impossible task list for fun. If I spend a day at Islands or Sea World, I can only have dinner. If I scuba dive in the afternoon, I can't visit a museum.

If we apply this analogy to the tornado situation, I have a limited amount of time to ensure my safety. I cannot "run like hell" from the tornado AND still strap myself to my roof and rage at the heavens.

Pro then strawmans my side with three points. The argument I make is that if we want to "logically justify adhering to a majority (5 ) of these with the intent of preserving health and safety", then if one cannot either adhere to 5 guidelines or preserve one's safety with 5 guidelines, the resolution is negated. For Pro to win, he must show that adhering to 5 rules would be a logical way to ensure safety.

Now for my own general argument against his case. Let's say I am infected with a disease. The doctor offers me a medicine which is guaranteed to cure me, and one which has a 50-50 chance of curing me. Taking both could lead to complications. If I want to logically make a decision with my safety as the ultimate goal, I take the best option. Anything else is foolish. In this debate, if I show that some guidelines have better alternatives then one should follow the better alternatives.

The next general argument is about health benefits. Pro makes several statements attaching obscure health benefits to his arguments (ex. running like hell can notify people). It is important to put this in scope. Running and screaming would certainly lead to death, and be futile - people would already be alerted by sirens..

@ Contradiction Rebuttal
A (1,3,4,6,7,8)] Pro goes on to prove my point. If I wish to avoid car crashes, then I have several mutually exclusive options. However, if I wish to avoid car crashes with my ultimate safety in mind, then I pick staying at home over flying in a plane - I don't want to expose myself to more risk factors. Similarly, if a tornado is striking and I want to ensure my safety, I HAVE to pick between mounting my roof and screaming, and hiding in a ditch. If one of them is to be preferred, then I logically ought not do the other.

B (2, 4 8)] Pro never individually refutes this. It is impossible to remain calm and "rage" or "yell". One simply cannot do both! Because we have both conceded that 2 (remain calm) is a good thing to do, we must exclude 4 and 8 (roof-screaming and running), as they are foolish things to do. They contradict actual safe advice.

C (6, the rest)] I do not need to prove that accepting Christianity is hazardous. In fact, all I do is show that 4 of the guidelines are unsafe. #6 clearly states that there is only one safe place. If there is only one safe place ("loving arms"), one cannot hide in a ditch (not "loving arms") to preserve safety. That means that one can only logically follow #6 to be safe.

@ Mundane Rebuttals
1 (ditch)] It does not logically remain that a ditch is safe. A ditch is a place where water collects [1]! This means that flash flooding will first fill a ditch and make it unsafe. If you are lying in a ditch and it floods, you will drown, as the rules tell you " sit up". This is encouraging people to drown in tornados.

If someone violates rule 1 and escapes from the flooding ditch, they are liable to be struck by lightning. Sopping wet people are prime targets for lightning bolts.

Tetanus remains a risk for those unvaccinated.

2 (calm)] While I do concede this, I actually gain offense here. We agree that staying calm is necessary. This means that one cannot follow 4 or 8. Remember, if staying calm is staying safe, running like hell and raging at the heavens, which are not staying calm, are both unsafe. One cannot logically follow a logical contradiction.

3 (shooting)] Firing gun at a tornado will not aid safety. Tornados will not be scared off, and people waste valuable time. Tornado sirens are far more effective. They go off before tornados hit[2], as they "provide warning of approaching danger". Deaf people can be alerted by means (TV, internet, people living with them) that do not endanger others. According to Pro's own source, less than half of adult males and females have access to guns. Tornado sirens, on the other hand, blanket areas with safety.

4 (roof)] By the same interpretation, rule 2 about staying calm applies on these 999/1000 non-tornado days, as well as tornado days. It just tells people to stay calm. Because we have both agreed that staying calm is a good thing, we both agree that this guideline is bad.

5 (prevention)] If tornados cannot be prevented, I cannot command someone to prevent them. Therefore, one cannot logically attempt to prevent tornados before they happen. Attempts to do so will only result in failure, leading to frustration and depression. This is actually detrimental to self health. I do not link this to mass suicide, or even create a slippery slope - suicide rates will just increase because of this.

Pro then says that perhaps someone could invent the method. If this takes 20-30 years, then we are increasing depression and frustration for 20-30 years!

6 (loving arms)] Guideline 6 explicitly tells people to go to "loving arms". Under the Christianity interpretation the only way to truly enter God's loving arms is to die and go to heaven. Only then can one truly be with God. By telling people to go to God's loving arms during a tornado, we encourage them to kill themselves and literally be with him. People who literally interpret the command will perform suicide to be with God.

We're not talking about missionaries or ad campaigns. We're evaluating these guidelines. By telling people that the only way to be safe is to be Christian, we are telling them to convert to Christianity to be safe during a tornado. Again, this disregards the individual and their own beliefs.

Con has conceded that Christianity provides no divine protection. He also doesn't attack my eggs in one basket argument either. If everyone is Christian and Christianity is false, everyone goes to Hell. We shouldn't advise people down this road.

7 (basements)] You can apply rule 2 here. A storm shelter would not be safe - the only safe place is in "my loving arms". Hiding in a shelter would therefore be futile.

8 (run like hell)] Pro completely concedes that one cannot outrun a tornado. Because of this, following this guideline would lead to sure death. One CANNOT logically follow this guideline in the interest of safety if it leads to death. Pro's 'threefold benefits' are actually false, as people will ultimately die under this guideline.

*phew*. Just made it =).

Debate Round No. 2


Overview (My General Argument)

To open, I'll point out that I claimed in my last speech that my opponent was using 3 illogical arguments continually to justify multiple claims. They were:

1. For these guidelines to be logical, one must follow every single one.
2. For these guidelines to be logical, they must all be followed simultaneously.
3. For these guidelines to be logical, they must always be the best option.

Rather than arguing that these were logical arguments, my opponent says that they are straw men, or arguments that he hadn't actually made ( That's fine... except that he uses these arguments yet again in his next speech without ever rebutting the fact that they are logical fallacies. I'll point them out where he uses them as I go along.


A. Apply the overview he's conceded to that not being able to do all of these actions at the same time is irrelevant.

B. "They are foolish things to do"

1. My opponent never disproves that venting your anger in a healthy way is good. He ignores it. He also concedes that remaining calm is good. He's already conceded that they can both be true, thus not contradictory.

2. Apply the overview. He is using those logical fallacies yet again. They need not be the BEST option, and they need not be performed simultaneously. There goes his contradiction.

C. I already conceded that "the only safe place is my loving arms" is a false statement (and its truth is irrelevant, as per Rule 3.) This contradiction is based on the assumption that the statement is true, though we agree that it isn't. All my argument says is that Christianity has health benefits, not that it is the only route to health.

His General Arguments

Again, refer to the overview. He doesn't deny that the statement 'these guidelines must always be the best option' is illogical in his last speech, just that he has never said it. What point is he making here, but that there might be better options?

B. "Running and screaming would certainly lead to death, and be futile"

It's my opponents job to prove points like this, not just ignore my evidence and appeal to the logic of the judge.


1. Ditch
His argument last round was that ditches were dangerous based on faulty evidence that actually said that culverts were dangerous. I pointed this out, as well as the fact that the source he used actually says ditches are safe. He is responding by ignoring that source and posting the image of a wet ditch (yes, that's the entirety of his source). Extend his original source, which certainly takes out this new argument.

93% of people are vaccinated. (
Reduce the remaining 7% to the amount of that 7% who ever encounter tornadoes.
Reduce that amount further to the amount that actually have open wounds at the time of the tornado.
Finally, take that amount, and reduce it to the amount whose open wounds actually come into contact with tetanus infected soil.
You have a pretty darn low risk factor, it's safe to assume.


2. Calm
Again, my opponent concedes this. I'll address his arguments against 4 & 8 when I come to them.


3. Warning Shots
He advocates tornado sirens instead of warning shots. There is no reason that the two are mutually exclusive. A tornado siren may be broken. Some people might take a gun shot more seriously than an annoying, wailing siren. There is certainly a potential to save lives, large or small.

He doesn't actually extend ANY HARMS AT ALL of firing these warning shots. He made some shoddy ones in his 1st rebuttal which I refuted. He then dropped them in his last speech. You can consider them null and void.

My opponent is just playing defense here and trying to mitigate the benefits. He doesn't deny the fact that it's all benefit and no harm; he just claims that the benefits are small. No cost, all benefit, clearly logical.


4. Rage on the Roof
Refer to my argument against his contradictions and the overview in particular. His only argument is based on his admittedly faulty assumption that these guidelines must be followed simultaneously.

It is possible for the best course of action to be staying calm on some days.
It is possible for the best course of action to be venting anger on other days.

Staying calm at one point doesn't preclude one from venting anger on others. My opponent does give any harms of either; I don't see why anybody couldn't do both at separate times for maximum benefits.


5. Prevention
There are a few faulty assumptions he makes.
A. "One cannot logically attempt to prevent tornadoes before they happen."
It would not defy the laws of physics to do so. It isn't logically impossible. We simply can't prevent them with our current technology. It can be attempted.

B. "Attempts to do so will only result in failure, leading to frustration and depression."
Many athletes are told to give 110% of their current ability (presently impossible.) Rather than getting depressed and committing suicide as my opponent would have you believe, this is a call to improve that many athletes meet. Why this would lead to depression instead is up to my opponent to prove.

C. "I do not link this to mass suicide, or even create a slippery slope - suicide rates will just increase because of this."
So it's just suicide instead of mass suicide, the rest of your unwarranted chain of events remains:

single impossible claim --> confusion --> frustration --> stress --> depression --> rage spirals --> suicide


6. Christianity
A. "People who literally interpret the command will perform suicide to be with God."
I. This is unwarranted.
II. My original interpretation that guideline 6 tells people to convert to Christianity, not commit suicide, wasn't refuted.
III. My opponent clearly doesn't believe this. The rest of his attacks are against Christianity, not suicide.

B. This is a GUIDEline, not a rule. It doesn't FORCE anybody to change beliefs any more than a billboard that says "Got Jesus?"

C. He double turns his arguments
He says:
I. There is no warrant for 'divine protection' being real.
II. We should all have different religions to ensure that someone gets divine protection.

D. He AGAIN ignores the crux of my point, which is that Christianity has measured health benefits, regardless of whether there is divine protection. I'd presume that this is because he knows it is true.


7. Basements
It seems to me that my opponent just threw out this 2 sentence argument for lack of anything legitimate to say against my point. It doesn't even have anything to do with basements or basements' basements. He's just restating his 3rd 'contradiction' for lack of a better argument.

Anyways, it's based on the statement "the only safe place is my loving arms" which we've both agreed isn't true, so you can drop it right there, same as his 3rd supposed contradiction.


8. Run like hell!

A. He drops the clear benefits of point and screaming a 2nd time. It's getting annoying how he simply ignores all of my most clear arguments.

B. He says the fact that "one cannot outrun a tornado" means running = sure death. However, running isn't necessarily "trying to outrun." I could run like hell prior to hiding (while pointing and screaming) to warn people. I could run like hell to a ditch or my basement's basement. Running is certainly a good form of locomotion.

C. He doesn't actually address the 'threefold benefits,' just that running will inevitably lead to death. People have run for shelter and survived. This clearly isn't true, so my 3 benefits still apply.


He may win one of these points. He certainly can't win 4 of them!

Vote PRO.


@ "Illogical Arguments"
Pro again makes a mistake interpreting my arguments. We are debating, as he said, whether "one could logically justify adhering to a majority of these with the intent of preserving health and safety." The last clause is key - we aren't looking just to logic, but also health and safety. It stands to reason if one of these guidelines does not logically promote health and safety it should be abandoned.

This is where my next argument steps in. If I am presented with competing choices, and I want to logically ensure my safety, I pick the best one! If a tornado strikes, I only have a short amount of time to keep myself safe. I need to take the best steps possible - picking a lesser option is not the most logical way to ensure my safety. This is obvious, as we have seen in my Orlando, Florida example.

A (competing choices). I actually rebutted this overview by introducing the limited time argument. Tornados necessitate people to make quick decisions, and one cannot therefore follow all the guidelines.

B (staying calm v. not). Remember, we agree that "the most important thing is to stay calm", as per the guidelines. This means that one should prefer staying calm to venting one's anger, and that rules 4 and 8 should not be followed. In all situations, staying calm is the best thing to do. If I want to ensure my safety, I logically pick the best option.

C. If the only safe place, literally or metaphorically, is in "loving arms" then none of the other guidelines that involve going places (pretty much all of them, except #2 - staying calm) are unsafe. While Pro may have conceded this statement, I have not. This is going to be one of the biggest issues in this debate - none of the other guidelines can really be followed if this one is true.

You can skip to the bottom to get a really brief summary.

1. Ditch
I showed that ditches, and by extension culverts, are dangerous because flash floods fill ditches with water. I provided
a picture of this. In fact, ditches are MEANT to collect water. As my source pointed out, tornados usually bring with them storms and rain, making ditches unsafe.

Pro is only mitigating Tetanus - it remains a risk.

2. Calm
Remember that this applies to #4 and #8.

3. Guns
Tornado sirens are government maintained. Pro shows no reason to believe they would be broken, apart from the weak "they may be broken" argument. Remember, sirens are DESIGNED to protect people, and would provide far better warning than gunshots. One or two gunshots are likely to fade into the hubbub that tornados cause, whereas sirens are penetrating. Sirens alert far more people without endangering anyone and should be preferred.

Pro also concedes the fact that the time spent firing shots could be better used hiding. If there is a better option, one must logically take it, and #3 falls.

4. Rage on the Roof
We have both conceded that "the most important thing to do is to stay calm". Therefore, rule #2 takes precedence over this rule, and one should prefer staying calm on all days. Staying calm is more important than venting, and one cannot therefore prefer the less important rule. The rule is a normative statement about being calm, and Pro's interpretation that one can follow the rules on "some days" is faulty.

5. Prevention
The means to prevent tornados does not exist. Attempting to do so is not possible, and every single person except the one who succeeded would fail repeatedly. There is no doubt that this would result in frustration and guilt at failing to save lives. Stress and depression would be a sure result, with suicide remaining extremely likely.

The athlete example is irrelevant, as "110% effort" is not a literal phrase - just one that means "try your hardest". Such a thing is possible and therefore results in no anger or stress. Telling athletes to do the humanly impossible, like running a two-minute mile, would result in anger and frustration, especially if lives were at stake. The chain of events is actually:

attempts to do the impossible --> frustration and anger --> stress --> depression --> suicide

Even if we stop at stress and depression, the guideline is still inadvisable.

6. Loving arms.
@ Suicide
All Pro says is that my arguments are 'unwarranted'. He tosses around the word so much it has no meaning. I provide a clear warrant. Read the rule - it says "during a tornado, the only safe place is in my loving arms. Come here baby." It gives an explicit command to "come" to "loving arms". Anyone who takes this literally under the Christianity interpretation will end up committing suicide to literally be in the loving arms of God.

@ Divine Protection
Pro again misinterprets my arguments. They aren't about divine protection of the living, because that does not occur. People die anyway. They are about purported afterlives. If we all convert to Christianity, then we all go to Hell or its analogues if Islam, Judaism, or any other are true. His argument against this is a complete strawman.

Again, whatever 'health benefits' one may gain by converting to Christianity would be far outweighed by an ETERNITY in a negative afterlife.

7. Basements
Again, "during a tornado, the only safe place is in my loving arms". Pro says this is false, and that we have agreed. Again, he's putting words in my mouth. If one takes this statement at face value, then it invalidates the rest of the guidelines. Ditches, basements and roofs are all bad places to be.

Also note that Pro didn't extend his arguments here. He just dropped all of the benefits of storm shelters. This point falls.

Finally, we must note that this guideline just tells people to construct shelters, not seek them. "In the event of a tornado, [they must] lie down in a ditch.", not their basement.

8. Running
I have clearly shown that tornados will catch up with people who just 'run like hell'. While a small number may find some safe place (loving arms), most will just be consumed by the funnel cloud or struck by its debris. I have shown that tornado sirens would be far more effective. They are designed to notify people of tornados. Shouting is not nearly as effective, and is a waste of time. Pro concedes that tornado sirens are loud and blanket areas in safety.

As an aid, here are the most salient arguments.

1 (ditch). Ditches flood and fill with water. They are designed to do this, and are therefore unsafe. Culverts are unsafe for the exact same reason. Furthermore, culverts are IN ditches, and will only fill with water if the ditch fills with water. It follows that unsafe culverts mean unsafe ditches.

3 (warning shots). Warning shots don't notify any more people than tornado sirens. Because sirens go off before tornados, the population already knows of the impending disaster. As I have stated, this makes warning shots redundant and a waste of time. Pro gives no evidence that a warning shot would actually be more effective than a tornado siren DESIGNED to warn large areas. Gunshots have no unique benefits.

4 (roof rage). First, roofs are unsafe in tornados. Second, rule 2 (calm) is a normative statement, and the "most important thing" - we have agreed on this. Raging on the roof is less important, and should not be done.

7 (basements). Pro dropped all of the benefits of basements. In addition, they are unsafe, as per rule 6. Rule 1 also provides contradictory orders.

8. (running). Remember, staying calm is "the most important thing" according to the rules. If we are logically looking to safety, we logically look to the best options. Running and shouting have no unique benefits, and as the saying goes, if you're not helping, you're hurting.

Finally, there are many contradictions in the guidelines. I'm out of space here, but please do consider them.

Thanks, and vote Con!
Debate Round No. 3
12 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by ToastOfDestiny 9 years ago
Might as well put out an RFD and vote.

B/A: Con->Con.
C: Tied.
S/G: Tied.
A: Con; the contradictions were a huge reason to vote Con, as they took out at least 2 arguments at first. Then, Con's argument that death is a greater safety concern than high stress and the other obscure health benefits knocks off the other opposition.
S: Tied.
Posted by ToastOfDestiny 9 years ago
I argued that the loving arms of a family member (which would be the wrong arms) wouldn't help, that going straight to God's arms wouldn't help, and that converting to Christianity would be bad. Going to the author's loving arms (who could be the only one using the phrase 'my') would be the only safe place.
Posted by Nails 9 years ago
Not that argument, the one under guideline 7. You use the statement that you've consistently argued is false as an attack against C7.
Posted by ToastOfDestiny 9 years ago
Divine protection = God physically diverting the tornado from my house. Salvation = reward in the afterlife for following a religion. Divine protection =/= salvation. My argument was that by putting all our hopes in Christianity, we lose the chance to achieve salvation from other religions.
Posted by Nails 9 years ago
"he's putting words in my mouth" (about 'the only safe place is my loving arms')

"divine protection... does not occur"

You've contradicted yourself multiple times on this issue
Posted by ToastOfDestiny 9 years ago
Who +7'ed me?
Posted by LeafRod 9 years ago
I'd vote PRO if I had a vote.
Posted by Nails 9 years ago
Though I will most probably lose, I suppose I can open it up to anyone.
Posted by Danielle 9 years ago
Why not seek to better yourself with a challenge? Oh well.
Posted by Maikuru 9 years ago
Darn this age a' mine!
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