Instigator / Pro
Points: 8

America Needs To Pay Reparations To The Descendants of Slavery

Finished

The voting period has ended

After 3 votes the winner is ...
TheAtheist
Debate details
Publication date
Last update
Category
Politics
Time for argument
One day
Voting system
Open voting
Voting period
Two weeks
Point system
Four points
Rating mode
Rated
Characters per argument
8,000
Required rating
3
Contender / Con
Points: 21
Description
Let's talk reparations. It's plain and simple, American needs to cut the check to the descendants of slavery to write the wrongs of the past. Even though today's reparations hearing was bogus, it has shined new light on the topic at hand. America has paid reparations to every other group that it has had conflict with, but for some reason, this country does not want to repair the people who built this country. If you don't agree, then you are simply racist. Anyone is welcome to take this challenge, but you must bring facts and a logical argument or I won't take you serious.
Round 1
Published:
My point on this topic is self-explanatory. America has to pay the descendant of slavery, and anyone who's trying to logically deny it is an illogical thinker as well as a hypocrite. I really don't want to hear anything about the Irish because the Irish were never slaves. Reparations means to repair something. Let's break things down a bit to what really happened.

America wasn't even America when slaves were doing the work to build this nation. This land was basically a wilderness with its aboriginal people. White people don't have a leg to really stand on in this subject because they are the perpetrators. Reparations go much further than slavery. There was nearly 100 years of racist Jim Crow laws as well as the Black Codes. These are systems that were put in place to hinder progress. 

As I always say..."It's Documented." Trying to argue documented facts is absolutely ridiculous. I'm basically laying the ground work of what the debate is about. 

If you mention the Civil War then I'll basically tell you that Black people fought on both sides of the Civil War as well as every other war that this country has started. I don't even have to justify why black people deserve their reparations because trying to argue against the topic itself is unjustifiable.

The ball is now in your court.
Published:
Alright. Hopefully this will be a civil and productive debate.

==

What We Agree On

Before we start debating, it's always a good idea to find common ground with your opponent. I agree with my opponent that the Irish in America were never slaves. I agree with my opponent that slaves (not all were African-American, though) helped to build the USA. I agree with my opponent that there existed systems which were created specifically to discriminate against African-Americans, such as the Jim Crow laws. These are all facts and I'm not going to argue against them. I will, however, argue with my opponent's conclusion from those facts: that America needs to pay reparations to the descendants of slavery.

===============

=Main Argument=

I am going to discuss the following three topics:

  • Efficiency - Are reparations efficient?
  • Consistency - Are reparations logically consistent?
  • Morality - Are reparations moral?
I will try to prove that reparations are inefficient, inconsistent, and immoral. My opponent should try and prove the opposite.

==

Efficiency

It will simply be impossible to determine who gets the money and who has to pay up. Some whites and blacks immigrated to the United States after the Civil War, which means that they were never part of slavery. A lot of whites never owned slaves and never had anything to do with slavery. Some slaveowners were black [1]. To determine who are descendants of slaves and who are descendants of slaveowners, the United States government would have to spend millions and millions of dollars on research.

It will be hard to determine how much money each person gets. What if my ancestors were both slaves and slaveowners? Or what if only a few of my ancestors were slaves? Do I get the same amount of money as other descendants of slaves or do I get less? What if all my ancestors were slaveowners? Do I pay more money than the guy who only had one slaveowner in his family? It will be hard and expensive to determine who gets more money and who gets less, who was more affected by slavery and who contributed to slavery more.

It will be incredibly expensive. 
This Black Agenda Report article, for example, estimates the amount needed to pay out slave reparations to be $59.2 trillion [2]. The entire United States annual GDP is only $19 trillion [3]. The entire United States annual 2019 budget is only $4.7 trillion [4]. Where the hell are we going to get those 60 trillion dollars from?

==

Consistency

The United States of America wasn't the only country responsible for black slavery. African warlords used their soldiers to capture other Africans and sell them into slavery. European slave traders bought slaves from the African warlords and shipped them to the Americas [5]. For your premise to be consistent, dozens of other countries would also have to pay reparations. Can you imagine how astronomically expensive reparations on that scale would be? Global reparations would require hundreds of trillions of dollars; this amount of money doesn't even exist in the global economy [6]!

Furthermore, why stop at only the Atlantic slave trade? What about the slavery of white Europeans [7]? Should we force the Arab countries to pay reparations as well? What about modern slavery in Asia and Africa [8], should we force Asian and African countries to pay reparations to its own citizens? If we go back in history long enough, every one of us is a descendant of slaves. We simply can't pay money to every single person on Earth.

==

Morality

Forcing the US government to pay reparations to descendants of slavery is immoral. People don't deserve money just because their ancestors suffered. People shouldn't pay money just because their ancestors did bad things. Not a single person alive in the United States today was slave owner. Not a single person alive in the United States today was a slave. Punishing and rewarding people for the actions of their ancestors is illogical and immoral.

==

Conclusion

My opponent's proposal is inefficient, logically inconsistent, and immoral. Reparations would be incredibly expensive, it would be impossible to determine who pays money and who gets it, and we shouldn't punish or reward people based on the actions of their ancestors. That's why America paying reparations to the descendants of slavery is a bad idea. Over to Pro.


=============

=Sources=










Round 2
Published:
Thanks for accepting.
Your argument is well-structured in how you've separated & highlighted certain topics and arguments. I'll try to make my argument somewhat as neat without having to write huge paragraphs. I'm going to try to cover as much as I can.

My opponent stated that "It will simply be impossible to determine who gets the money and who has to pay up." Hopefully, We should know by now that when someone "decides" to relocate to a new country/region of the globe, then that person/people takes on & accepts the burdens of the country/region in question. With that being said, everyone came to America for opportunity, and that opportunity was created by slaves. In other words, the economy was built from slavery because none of the founders wanted or couldn't do the work.

You go on to say that "A lot of whites never owned slaves and never had anything to do with slavery." What my opponent doesn't seem to understand is that you're benefiting from slavery today. If you don't have a problem with inheriting the benefits of your forefathers, then you shouldn't have a problem with inheriting the crimes of your forefathers. It's called Generational Wealth which is passed down with each generation....Black people weren't able to receive generational wealth because whites locked blacks out of the work industries & they've been doing ever since slavery.

It's fairly easy to see who's a descendant of slavery. Since mass immigration started after the Civil Rights era, foreign-born black people do not qualify because their ancestors weren't enslaved in the US. This government/congress has records full of timelines & research. If not, then what's the purpose of having a field that's known as bookkeeping/accounting? 

My opponent goes on to say "It will be hard to determine how much money each person gets." Nope, it wouldn't be hard to determine numerical figures, which is why Congress always put together a team of Economists & Historians. Their jobs are to put things into context when dealing with finances, wages & inflation.

Yes, it would be incredibly expensive, but it's not like there would be a one-time gigantic payment. You said that "the US annual budget for 2019 is $4.7 trillion. Now did you know that congress just passed a multibillion-dollar bill a few days ago? Yes, congress passed a $3 billion bill for farmers who lost their crops over this year's floods, fires & drought. Do you see the hypocrisy in that? I guess there shouldn't be any research.

By using your logic, these farmers shouldn't get a dime because myself, you or anyone else didn't have anything to do with causing floods, fires and drought..

Your entire argument on consistency is 100% inconsistent. You're now playing the blame game. Every race has in-fighting but I'm pretty sure there weren't any "African-war lords" running around before slavery. War lords before slavery? Please tell me that's a joke...

To put this "joke" to bed; If there weren't any buyers, then there wouldn't be any sellers.

You keep talking about expenses. If America & any other nations can magically come up with billions/trillions of dollars to fight in wars, then it is what it is. You said that "everyone is a descendant of slaves." I'm going to let you sink your own ship with that comment...Now you're talking about slavery in other countries, which has absolutely nothing to do with America. You asked, "What about the slavery of white Europeans & Arabs? Irrelevant...

In conclusion,.. As you can see, my opponent's argument fell apart fairly quickly. By the end of his argument, he started to make excuses. I've broken down his argument with rock-solid facts....

He stuck a nail in his own coffin by saying that it's immoral for the government to pay reparations for slavery when it was the government who instituted slavery. My opponent also said that "people don't deserve money just because their ancestors suffered." So...why did Native Americans get reparations? Why does America pay Israel Billions in Reparations every single year? Why do you (not) have a problem with your tax dollars going to that? Yes, my friend, you are paying reparations as we speak & you didn't even know it.



Published:
=Rebuttals=

"We should know by now that when someone "decides" to relocate to a new country/region of the globe, then that person/people takes on & accepts the burdens of the country/region in question. With that being said, everyone came to America for opportunity, and that opportunity was created by slaves. In other words, the economy was built from slavery because none of the founders wanted or couldn't do the work."
This still doesn't answer my question: how do we determine who pays and who gets payed? Is my opponent trying to say that since whites founded the United States, it should be whites that pay for the reparations? We shouldn't force white people to pay now just because white people in the past did bad things. That's racist and immoral. 

"What my opponent doesn't seem to understand is that you're benefiting from slavery today. If you don't have a problem with inheriting the benefits of your forefathers, then you shouldn't have a problem with inheriting the crimes of your forefathers."
The claim that I am benefiting from slavery today is a bare assertion and needs to be backed up by some evidence. My forefathers did nothing wrong, they immigrated to the United States after the Civil War. They didn't earn a single dime from slavery. 

"Now did you know that congress just passed a multibillion-dollar bill a few days ago? Yes, congress passed a $3 billion bill for farmers who lost their crops over this year's floods, fires & drought."
$3 billion is nothing compared to $60 trillion. One number is twenty thousand times smaller than the other. My opponent can't compare those numbers and then call me a hypocrite. Just because I'm for spending $3 billion doesn't mean I'm for spending $60 trillion.

"By using your logic, these farmers shouldn't get a dime because myself, you or anyone else didn't have anything to do with causing floods, fires and drought.."
No, they should get the money, because farmers going bankrupt is bad for the economy and for us all. My opponent has yet to prove how reparations will help anyone except those who are receiving them.

"Every race has in-fighting but I'm pretty sure there weren't any "African-war lords" running around before slavery. War lords before slavery? Please tell me that's a joke..."
It's a historical fact that African warlords were involved in the Atlantic slave trade. My opponent cannot just dismiss a historical fact by calling it a joke. Just because those warlords didn't sell slaves before the slave trade began, doesn't mean that they never existed. My opponent should read the sources in my Main Argument.

"America & any other nations can magically come up with billions/trillions of dollars to fight in wars"
This is a bare assertion and is untrue. Money does not magically appear, it comes from taxpayers like my opponent and me.

"So...why did Native Americans get reparations? Why does America pay Israel Billions in Reparations every single year? Why do you (not) have a problem with your tax dollars going to that? Yes, my friend, you are paying reparations as we speak & you didn't even know it."
Erm... this does not disprove my argument in any way. I never said that I agree with either reparations to Native Americans or Israel. I never said that I don't have a problem with my tax dollars going to that. My opponent cannot accuse me of things I never said and then call me a hypocrite based on those things.

==

My opponent says that my argument about logical inconsistency is irrelevant. It's not irrelevant at all. If we apply my opponent's logic to America, we must also apply it to every single country in the world, so we remain logically consistent. If America has to pay for slavery, then so should all the other countries involved in the Atlantic slave trade. But that would wreck the global economy. You are either for no reparations at all or for worldwide reparations, you can't just support reparations by one country only.






Round 3
Published:
My opponent said that I didn't answer his question on who pays and who gets paid...I've already stated that any (foreign-born blacks) would not qualify for reparations because their ancestors weren't enslaved in the US. I can't speak on the process of paying, but that's why Economists & Historians are brought in to break things down. The government would have to pay because the government pays reparations to other racial groups every single year & doesn't have any problems in doing so.

You said that it's a "bare assertion" that you are benefiting from slavery." Really?...OK, so if America never used slavery to build an economy, then your forefathers wouldn't have never moved here because there wouldn't have been a reason to come here. What ever field that you're working in today wouldn't be possible if there never was an economic foundation...Am I correct? 

As I've said earlier, I can't give you a numerical breakdown of payments because I personally don't know how that stuff works, which is why Economists are brought in.
The reason I brought up the $3-billion-dollar bill that was passed is to prove to you how the government can easily come up with capital when it wants to. So, the question is, "where is the $3 billion coming from?" If a percentage of the money is coming from taxes, then why would I have to be charged for something that I didn't cause?"

I'll let you put that into context because you've previously said that (you shouldn't have to pay for something that you didn't do). Now, do you see the hypocrisy in that?

Here's your next blunder in which you stated that "No, they should get the money, because farmers going bankrupt is bad for the economy and for us all. My opponent has yet to prove how reparations will help anyone except those who are receiving them."

My response is "would farming even be possible today if the foundation wasn't already laid via slavery?" That statement alone destroys your entire argument. If bankruptcy is bad for the economy, then explain to me who or what built the economy? As you can see, you've just destroyed your own argument yet again...In other words, the economy of today didn't manifest out of thin air. 

My opponent goes on to say, "This is a bare assertion and is untrue. Money does not magically appear, it comes from taxpayers like my opponent and me."...OK, so why do you keep asking me where would the money come from? Isn't that a contradiction if you already knew where the money was coming from?

My opponent also said, " I never said that I agree with either reparations to Native Americans or Israel. I never said that I don't have a problem with my tax dollars going to that"...Of course, you didn't say that because you never even knew that your tax dollars were already being used for reparations...For argument's sake, if you already knew this, then you certainly aren't objecting it in any way....On the other hand, if you honestly knew about it, then why haven't you introduced it into your argument? 

In conclusion, my opponent's arguments are getting shutdown with facts. Since America has to pay reparations, he is now trying to hold other countries accountable for their crimes. What damages his case even more is that other countries Are Being Asked To pay Reparations, which proves he doesn't know what he's talking about. If you don't believe me, then research the CARICOM 10-Point Reparations Plan.       caricomreparations.org/
Published:
=Rebuttals=

"My response is "would farming even be possible today if the foundation wasn't already laid via slavery?" That statement alone destroys your entire argument. If bankruptcy is bad for the economy, then explain to me who or what built the economy?"
How does this destroy my argument? I'll summarize my opponent's point in this syllogism:

P1: Bankruptcy is bad for the economy
P2. Slaves built the economy
C: Slaves should get reparations

This is a non sequitur, meaning the conclusion does not logically follow from the two premises. Just because bankruptcy is bad for the economy doesn't mean that descendants of slaves should get payed $60 trillion dollars.

"My opponent goes on to say, "This is a bare assertion and is untrue. Money does not magically appear, it comes from taxpayers like my opponent and me."...OK, so why do you keep asking me where would the money come from? Isn't that a contradiction if you already knew where the money was coming from?"
I keep asking my opponent where the money will come from because it's an astronomical amount of money. The taxpayers don't have $60 trillion. Like I said, the money needed is more than three times the annual GDP of the United States. The problem isn't who's going to pay, but with what they are going to pay. We simply don't have enough money for your proposal.

"My opponent also said, " I never said that I agree with either reparations to Native Americans or Israel. I never said that I don't have a problem with my tax dollars going to that"...Of course, you didn't say that because you never even knew that your tax dollars were already being used for reparations..."
I never said that I agree with those reparations because I don't agree with them. Why on Earth would I say that I agree with something which I don't agree with?

"On the other hand, if you honestly knew about it, then why haven't you introduced it into your argument?"
I haven't introduced this topic because it's irrelevant and has nothing to do with slavery in the United States or the Atlantic Slave Trade.

"Since America has to pay reparations, he is now trying to hold other countries accountable for their crimes. What damages his case even more is that other countries Are Being Asked To pay Reparations, which proves he doesn't know what he's talking about."
How does this destroy my argument? I'll summarize my opponent' point in this syllogism:

P1: TheAtheist disagrees with the USA paying reparations
P2: Other countries are being asked to pay reparations
C: The USA should pay reparations

Another non sequitur with no logic in it whatsoever. Just because other countries are being asked to pay doesn't mean the US should actually pay.

==

Conclusion

I have one question for my opponent.

Aren't the descendants of slaves also benefiting from what slaves built? 

If they are benefiting too, then why do they deserve reparations? And if they're not benefiting, please explain how that happened.




Round 4
Published:
To end this debate, I'll finish with a few more of my opponents nonsensical arguments.

Dude, you brought up bankruptcy not me. I basically stated that farmers were getting $3 billion because weather conditions destroyed the crops. I'm basically showing you just how easy the government can come up with billions in capital. That's really all I meant. On the other hand, you & I both know that if black Americans received reparations that it wouldn't be anywhere close to $60 trillion. I think we both can agree that this amount is outrageous.

You finally mentioned that you don't agree with Native America/Israel reparations. OK, that fine but there certainly isn't any pushback against those groups who are receiving reparations. That's really what I was eluding to because there seems to be so much pushback against black American receiving reparations. 

I personally don't have a problem with Natives receiving it, but I have no idea why America is paying billions to Israel every year. It makes absolutely no sense especially when America had nothing to do with what Hitler did. 

Since this is about American slavery, you shouldn't necessarily have to bring other countries into the conservation. You asked me something similar to, "why don't other countries have to pay reparations."...I said that you destroyed your own case by saying that because other countries actually are fighting for reparations. So, basically, if you already this, then you wouldn't have ever asked the question. 

My opponent asked "Aren't the descendants of slaves also benefiting from what slaves built?"



That's a good question in which I can honesty say yes and no if that's possible. The reason being for this answer is that reparations aren't just for slavery. It also includes the systemic racism that followed such as the Jim Crow Era, the Black Codes, redlining etc. These system were purposely put in place by the government & it's well-documented so trying to argue it is quite foolish. 

White people received thousands of acres of land through the Headright System & Homestead Act..... for Free. Blacks didn't get anything. Whites were able to take advantage of the G.I. Bill while blacks were prohibited. Whites created work unions just to keep blacks out of the job fields. When black created their own successful communities like Black Wall Street & the Rosewood Community, whites burned them down. I'm not going to get into everything that happened, but look at what happened with the 40-Acres & A Mule that blacks were suppose to receive and look at how the government paid slave owners reparations after the war.

Unpaid labor & terrorism is an unpaid debt that's owed. Nobody seems to have a problem with other races getting reparations so it shouldn't be a problem if black people got what's due. You are who you are & I'm not here trying to change anybody's mind.        Thanks for the debate.

Published:
This was a really good debate, thank you to my opponent. I would like to finish off with my final argument and then my conclusion.

==============

=Final Argument=

Even if we choose a smaller number instead of $60 trillion, it's still a huge sum of money. The smallest estimate of how much reparations would cost is around $6 trillion [1], which is still more than a billion dollars higher than the United States annual budget for 2019. Three billion dollars of farming subsidies and six trillion dollars of reparations are two very different numbers.

I brought up other countries into this argument because the United States wasn't the only country responsible for slavery. Europeans founded the US and brought slaves to the Americas, African warlords kidnapped and sold blacks to the Europeans, etc. The United States isn't the only country to blame. To remain logically consistent, my opponent should support reparations from all the countries involved in the Atlantic slave trade. There are many instances of slavery and murder throughout history, and every single country is guilty of something. Blaming the US alone is hypocritical.

Currently, there is not a single law or government policy in the United States which discriminates against African-Americans. There is not a single person alive today who was a slave, and not a single person alive today who was a slaveowner. We should not punish or reward people based on the actions of their ancestors. Both blacks and whites are individuals, not homogeneous groups. Slavery certainly happened, and it was a horrible thing. However, forcing people who were never involved in it to pay people who were never affected by it is not the answer.
Added:
Mr. High IQ, are you even aware that you're currently paying reparations for the Native Americans & fake Jews in Israel as we speak?
Please show me where the slaves were assigned "Freedom Dues."...You know, the same "Freedom Dues" that the Irish received?
I'll wait...………………………...
Instigator
#63
Added:
How is it different. They were treated the same way, given slave names, whipped for not obeying their master. Most were kept as slaves and not given land like promised. This is the same things slaves went through. Now you want descendants of the Irish who almost zero of them owned slaves to pay repairations. retarded
#62
Added:
--> @Wylted
Did you not say that "the Irish were treated exactly identical to how the slaves were treated?
Are you aware that chattel slavery & indentured servitude is completely different?
So, which story are you going to stick with?
Instigator
#61
Added:
--> @mairj23
Nope, I never said all of them got property most just worked for free and never capitalized on their deal, amd it is entirely possible they were treated like slaves and still got property. Slaves got property from their master as well many times. Out of curiosity what percentage of whites were slave owners compared to blacks? Do you know?
#60
Added:
You just agreed that the (Irish worked for 5 - 7 years to get free land), but earlier you said that the (Irish were treated the same as slaves).
Yep, you just put your foot in your mouth.
If you had a high IQ then you'd know to always capitalize the term "Civil War" because it's a proper noun. Oops.
Instigator
#59
Added:
--> @Wylted
Hey Einstein, Explain to me what the "Freedom Dues" were?
End of Discussion......
Instigator
#58
Added:
How the hell did my ancestors who fought to free slaves in the civil war and who were also a part of the underground railroad, die because their gravy train was running out? What is your IQ LOL
#57
Added:
--> @mairj23
Nope, most of the indentured servants got jack shit, and even the ones who actually got land, did not get it for free they worked for it for 5 to 7 years. The system has never given me a freebie lol.
By the way, I have a PHD in Forensic Anthropology and own 3 businesses. Learn your history so you can perhaps win a debate in the future
#56
Added:
By the way, I have a B.A. in Forensic Anthropology and own two businesses.
Caucasians are the biggest welfare case in history because you benefit from a system that gives you freebies. Lol
Learn your history before making stupid comments.
Instigator
#55
Added:
--> @Wylted
Your ancestors died because the gravy train of free labor was ending. The Irish worked for 5 to 7 years then received free land.
Keyword: Free
One statement obliterates your stupidity.
Instigator
#54
Added:
Dude is asking for reparations because he doesn't want to work. Probably collects welfare also.
#53
Added:
My ancestors died to pay for the freedom of slaves, and you think I owe blacks money. What the hell is wrong with you? Also if the Irish weren't slaves why were they treated exactly identical to what the slaves were treated?
#52
Added:
--> @mairj23
And that is why you get the comments that you do. New ideas brought in the mix of things and then you say it is the stupidest comment of the 21st Century. I don't believe it is, in fact it may be very relevant, but then again, may not be at all. What is dumb is your belief that reparations can, and will be paid. They just won't because of all of the reasons your opponent said, and your rebuttals were utter nonsense. Every analogy, was way off base. Even if I believed that reparations could happen, I would still vote against you with your arguments.
#51
Added:
--> @BrotherDThomas
My comment wasn't directed at Dr. Franklin.
I read your bio, which I can respect but there is no such thing as a "Jewish Christian." Jew & Jewish are two separate things.
Instigator
#50
Added:
--> @DBlaze
By far the dumbest comment of the 21st century.
Can anybody prove that white people's lives would be worse is there were no slave trade? Yes
Proof: Roanoke, Virginia
Instigator
#49
#3
Criterion Pro Tie Con Points
Better arguments 3 points
Better sources 2 points
Better spelling and grammar 1 point
Better conduct 1 point
Reason:
So; to start with, pro offers a very light argument related to the need for reparations. Pro doesn’t offer any detail other than slavery and racism was bad, therefore reparations.
Con does very well to break down the practicalities. It’s impossible to work out who should get the money and who should pay: its too expensive, those deeply involved in the slave trade won’t pay due to where they are and that forcing those who had nothing to do with the slave trade themselves to pay is immoral.
Pro starts off with a reasonable argument: that the opportunity afforded to whites were based upon the opportunities ancestrally built upon by slaves. That if one were to accept that opportunity, one must accept the price that comes with it.
While that is a good argument: it doesn’t answer the central question: who exactly pays, how much and who gets paid.
Con outlined that reparations would be prohibitively expensive. Pro doesn’t disagree, and asserts hypocrisy relating to farmers receiving bailout money. This doesn’t follow; cons argument is that we can’t afford trillions of dollars in reparations - not that we can’t afford a few Bn. Con points this out, points out the benefits of such payments and also points out that pro hasn’t offered any justification for how reparations will help solve any of the problems
Con also points out that pro has not shown that he and his ancestors benefited from slavery - and thus is simply a bare assertion. Pro replies with a highly generalized reply about how slaves built the economy, but does not in my view provides cohesive explanation - con points this out.
In terms of warlords, pro doesn’t sufficiently answer why those involved in the slave trade but didn’t start it should not be included. Pro also asserts that con believes that other forms of reparations are acceptable - which he rejects.
The problem with this debate is that pro offers a notional argument, that the broad idea of reparations is valid. While this is probably true at a very high level, for the purposes of this debate, pro should be showing how much reparations would cost, how they would be paid for, who they would go to, and how much of an impact they would have on the world.
That way I can weigh the harm against the benefits, and draw a conclusion.
Pro doesn’t do any of this, and simply falls down onto the original notional premise, which is not enough; we can all agree that blacks have been substantially harmed by the US over time, and that policy should be enacted to help fix the systemic problem: but this doesn’t justify pros policy.
On the other hand - con does very well to address the practicality, the issues and the potential issues with reparations: in the absence of any tangible benefit that pro presents: this argument clearly wins out.
Arguments to con.
#2
Criterion Pro Tie Con Points
Better arguments 3 points
Better sources 2 points
Better spelling and grammar 1 point
Better conduct 1 point
Reason:
Hard resolution to prove due to the “need” qualifier. In order for anything to be a need, there must be a consequence. E.g., I need coffee before I drive home tonight, otherwise the drive will be less safe (“I need coffee” would work as a resolution, with the driving as a contention towards this).
Gist:
Con set the real debate in motion with an outline of actually relevant points, giving pro some chance to meet BoP. If pro does this again, they should base it around their actual reparations plan, with con helping them identify faults to be improved on it.
1. Ad Hominem
Pro’s case for this contention started in the description “If you don't agree, then you are simply racist.” Went into R1 “anyone who's trying to logically deny it is an illogical thinker as well as a hypocrite.” … This should never be in a debate.
2. Truism
Pro insists their case is a documented truism, which absolutely cannot be argued against. … If it can’t be argued against, you would not have a debate, which is literally asking someone to argue against it.
3. Efficiency (I’d call this feasibility)
Con brings up that it would be impossible (or at least cost prohibitive) to determine the payment ratios, and gives a cost estimate of $59T after that. After some back and forth on this, pro said this amount would be outrageous, but could not set a minimum acceptable amount (he or she could have gained serious ground here, but suggesting a 10 year tax return scheme or somesuch). Con defends the farmers bill (first of all, not reparations, it’s a whole other class of thing), due to us having an actual need to keep them in business feeding us, in addition to the very low comparative cost. … An additional problem here is reading the description, pro specifically says “American needs to cut the check” which does not equate to them saying it could be done over time, as it implies a one time payment.
4. Consistency
Con started strong here with a fairness angle (ironic that if this resolution makes sense, various African countries needs to pay the reparations too), but drifted off topic into other slaves around the world. Pro caught this. Pro brought up that the USA gives money to other people, which was equally off topic (a source to prove we’re paying holocaust reparations would have gone a long way).
5. Morality
I feel like con thought this was a slam dunk, but it (at least initially) fell flat. We all profit off the work of those who came before us, some of us more so, some of us less. … Reading into R2, I’m impressed that pro knows the term “Generational Wealth,” which describes this process (which was a much better reply to this than the actual intended one).
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Arguments: Con
See above review of key points. BoP is never met for the resolution in question, and if “should” were substituted in, the feasibility angle defeats it as it strongly implies the USA should not. All other contentions combined did not reach the magnitude of this one.
Sources: Con
How interesting it was that there were black slaveowners (poisons the well effectively, as the source discusses different types of slaves and slavemasters, muddying the waters…), but the real checkmate here was using an African American propaganda site to prove a point directly against its own views (the cost calculations, making it impossible to implement). Comparatively pro had no sources, even when referencing various material which seemed to come from one.
Conduct:
Leaving this tied, even while it leans in favor of con. It never got too ugly, even the ad hominems did not feel personal (weird as that is to say).
#1
Criterion Pro Tie Con Points
Better arguments 3 points
Better sources 2 points
Better spelling and grammar 1 point
Better conduct 1 point
Reason:
Let me start off by stating that prior to this debate: I had zero stance on the position of whether or not reparations should be paid for slavery. I came into this with 100% an open mind and interested to see arguments from both sides.... Ironically, as a result of this debate I am more open to the idea of reparations to the descendants of slaves, but feel that Con's arguments were superior.
There are basically 3 arguments between both sides = Cost, Justification, and Morality.... Of these three, the cost argument in my opinion was the most important point that held the most weight, and Pro dropped the ball massively on this one.
When Con introduces his claim that Reparations would cost $60 TRILLION, the random source he pulls that from operates on the belief that the 40 million descendants of slaves deserve $1.5 million each.... Pro could have easily provided a different number to give an idea of how much it would cost (40 million descendants getting $100k each would bring the cost down to $4 Trillion, which would put it at about 1.5 times the cost of the Iraq War..... Instead though, Pro concedes the $60 trillion figure to con and tries to argue that 60 trillion is not that much, which is a tremendously bad line of reasoning to argue. Pro's comparison of a $3 billion farmers bill in comparison falls tremendously short, so Con absolutely won this aspect of the argument.
Regarding the Justification and Morality arguments, these arguments by Con were not as strong as his argument for the cost of the program, but Pro's counter arguments to these points were almost non-existent. For example, when Con first mentions that the US were not the only ones to benefit from the enslavement of black people such as Europeans and even African warlords who profited off of the slave trade, Pro didn't even give a counter argument to these points in round 2, and counter arguments after that revolved around similar reparation payments to Jews and Native Americans rather then the lack of reparations to slave descendants from other places that benefitted from the enslavement of black people.
In summary, while some of Con's arguments left more to be desired, Pro's arguments completely failed to make a case in favor of reparations. The concession that reparations would allegedly cost $60 trillion was a massive blunder by Pro's part, and the majority of the debate descended into an argument over who all benefitted from the after-effects of slavery once it was eliminated..... Con wins argument points by a wide margin, and his arguments were the most well sourced by a substantial margin as well.