The Instigator
Pro (for)
0 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
4 Points

Sea lions are seals

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Post Voting Period
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after 1 vote the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/29/2015 Category: Education
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 764 times Debate No: 84374
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (8)
Votes (1)




The topic should be self explanatory.


First round: Acceptance only.

Final round: Rebuttals only. No new arguments.

Pro and Con shall not plagiarize, but may reuse their own work.

You flake, you lose.

You troll, you lose.


I accept to argue against this motion. Thank you for giving me this oppertunity.

Enough with the formalities - let battle commence...
Debate Round No. 1


P1 - Any organism of the taxonomic family Phocidae or Otariidae is a seal.
P2 - All sea lions are organisms of the taxonomic family Otariidae.
C1 - Therefore, all sea lions are seals.

This argument is valid. If the premises are true, then the conclusion must be true.

* "P" is an abbreviation for "premise" and "C" is an abbreviation for "conclusion".

Support for P1 -

Support for P1 comes in the form of encyclopedic and dictionary entries for the word "seal". These references are reputable, sufficiently numerous, and are inclusive of the taxonomic families mentioned in P1. The family names have been emphasized.
  • Encyclopedia Britannica [1]
    • any of 32 species of web-footed aquatic mammals that live chiefly in cold seas and whose body shape, round at the middle and tapered at the ends, is adapted to swift and graceful swimming. There are two types of seals: the earless, or true, seals (family Phocidae); and the eared seals (family Otariidae), which comprise the sea lions and fur seals.
  • Oxford Dictionary [2]
    • A fish-eating aquatic mammal with a streamlined body and feet developed as flippers, returning to land to breed or rest. Families Phocidae (the true seals) and Otariidae (the eared seals, including the fur seals and sea lions). The latter have external ear flaps and are able to sit upright, and the males are much larger than the females
  • American Heritage Dictionary [3]
    • Any of various aquatic carnivorous mammals of the families Phocidae and Otariidae, found chiefly in cold regions and having a sleek torpedo-shaped body and limbs that are modified into paddlelike flippers.
  • Collins Dictionary [4]
    • any of two families (Otariidae and Phocidae) of sea carnivores with a doglike head, a torpedo-shaped body, and four webbed feet or flippers: they live in cold or temperate waters and usually eat fish see also eared seal, earless seal

Support for P2 -

Support for P2 comes in the form of encyclopedic and dictionary entries for the term "sea lion." These references are reputable, sufficiently numerous, and demonstrate that sea lion species are of the family Otariidae, which is also referred to as "eared seals." [1][2] "Otariidae" and/or "eared seal" have been emphasized.

  • Encyclopedia Britannica [5]
    • any of five species of eared seals found primarily in Pacific waters. Sea lions are characterized by a coat of short, coarse hair that lacks a distinct undercoat. Except for the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus), males have lion-like manes and constantly roar to defend their harems (hence their name).
  • Oxford Dictionary [6]
    • An eared seal occurring mainly on Pacific coasts, the large male of which has a mane on the neck and shoulders. Five genera and species in the family Otariidae
  • American Heritage Dictionary [7]
    • Any of several large seals of the family Otariidae, having a blunter muzzle and a thinner coat than the fur seals, especially the California sea lion (Zalophus californianus).
  • Collins Dictionary [8]
    • any of several genera of large, eared seals without underfur, usually living in colonies along the Pacific coastline

Sources -

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2 -

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P1: Sea Lions and Seals are both marine mammals (called 'pinnipeds') which differ in physical characteristics and adaptations
P2: Animals vary between their shape, size, look and doing
P3: Different names = different organisms (no matter how close they are in a family)
C1: Seals and Sea Lions are not the same mammals

This argument is valid. If the premise is correct, so too is the conclusion.

Support for P1 & P2:

Seals' furry, generally stubby front feet " thinly webbed flippers, actually, with a claw on each small toe " seem petite in comparison to the mostly skin-covered, elongated fore flippers that sea lions possess.

Secondly, sea lions have small flaps for outer ears. The "earless" or "true" seals lack external ears altogether. You have to get very close to see the tiny holes on the sides of a seal"s sleek head.

Third, sea lions are noisy. Seals are quieter, vocalizing via soft grunts.

Fourth, while both species spend time both in and out of the water, seals are better adapted to live in the water than on land. Though their bodies can appear chubby, seals are generally smaller and more aquadynamic than sea lions. At the same time, their hind flippers angle backward and don't rotate. This makes them fast in the water but basic belly crawlers on terra firma.

Sea lions, on the other hand, are able to "walk" on land by rotating their hind flippers forward and underneath their big bodies. This is why they are more likely to be employed in aquaria and marine shows.

Finally, seals are less social than their sea-lion cousins. They spend more time in the water than sea lions do and often lead solitary lives in the wild, coming ashore together only once a year to meet and mate.

Sea lions congregate in gregarious groups called herds or rafts that can reach upwards of 1,500 individuals. It's common for scores of them to haul out together and loll about in the sand, comprising an amorphous pile in the noonday sun.

Support for P3:

This is common sense. Think of a family in which there are 2 children: Mary and John; although they are in the same family these two children are NOT each other. Mary is NOT John and John is NOT Mary. Now, these two are siblings but technically sea lions and seals are second cousins - FURTHER DISTANCING their relationship.


Thus I affirm my argument.
Debate Round No. 2


Death23 forfeited this round.


Pro has broken his own rule ("You flake [or ditch the debate], you lose.") and therefore this argument will continue no further. It should be noted that I AM NOW AUTOMATICALLY THE WINNER OF THIS DEBATE ACCORDING TO PRO's RULES.

I would like to thank Pro and the audience for this oppertunity.
Debate Round No. 3
8 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 8 records.
Posted by sunnyau 2 years ago
I just see that is a debate asking "Is [whatever book] a book" only.....
Posted by EverlastingMoment 2 years ago
This is literally one of the only things you debate on. ._.
Posted by Lexus 2 years ago
I'll accept.
Posted by Death23 2 years ago
Several people said they didn't like it. That was about it.
Posted by Briannj17 2 years ago
It is like me saying an encyclopedia is a book.
Posted by Briannj17 2 years ago
Because its the only debate you make that you can actually win!
Also it is a truism.
Posted by Death23 2 years ago
What made you think that?
Posted by Briannj17 2 years ago
I thought you were told to stop making these debates?
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by Lexus 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Con's arguments went unrefuted and sufficiently negated the resolution (the distinction between seals and sea lions is a valid one because different names leads to different organisms) -- this sufficiently refutes pro's arguments as well, since pro's arguments are a definitional basis, and con attacked the definition's and so on. Conduct to con because forfeiture