Instigator / Con
14
1588
rating
9
debates
100.0%
won
Topic

RESOLVED: Objective Morality Exists.

Status
Finished

All stages have been completed. The voting points distribution and the result are presented below.

Arguments points
6
0
Sources points
4
4
Spelling and grammar points
2
2
Conduct points
2
1

With 2 votes and 7 points ahead, the winner is ...

BearMan
Parameters
More details
Publication date
Last update date
Category
Philosophy
Time for argument
Three days
Voting system
Open voting
Voting period
One week
Point system
Four points
Rating mode
Rated
Characters per argument
30,000
Contender / Pro
7
1533
rating
11
debates
59.09%
won
Description
~ 0 / 5,000

No information

Round 1
Con
I waive, as the burden of proof is on PRO
Pro
Definitions (Courtesy of Merriam Webster):

Morality- 3conformity to ideals of right human conduct

Objective- 1aexpressing or dealing with facts or conditions as perceived without distortion by personal feelings, prejudices, or interpretations





Argument:

1. What is morality?
As mentioned above, morality is (in this context) a specific act or conduct that conforms to the overall norms of human culture and is deemed "right" by most people. To get a better definition than the one listed above let us talk more about what exactly humans view as right and wrong. There are many many many things humans view as objectively wrong. Mass homicide is objectively wrong. Now, "the murderer doesn't deem it to be wrong," you say. But do we need to take the murderer's opinion into account? No. Morality is measured by the majority consensus of what is right and wrong. And as long as more people believe mass homicide is wrong than not, then the values of human society as a whole dictate that it is objectively wrong. I find this to also be the case with a "good action". Now, a good action is much more tricky as good has a much more loose definition than bad. For this hypothetical example, let me clarify that the performer of the action does not have any hidden ill motives. In this hypothetical, yet realistic, example, a man helps an old woman who's fallen off the ground. There are, and will always be people against this action, but in the context of objective morality, only the majority, the "human", matters.

2. Other Moral and Philosophical systems
There are many philosophical systems my opponent could bring into play to refute my argument, but I'd like to propose a treaty of sorts and not talk about ideologies that view all opinions subjectively as we would be here forever and without a definition to morality. I am willing to take back this treaty if my opponent is able to offer a political ideology with a strict definition of morality (keep in mind strict). Or I would never actually be able to win this debate.





On to you buckaroo
Round 2
Con
BE IT RESOLVED:
Objective Morality Exists


Key Definitions:

Objective Morality: (Explained in “What is Objective Morality?”)

Exists: To have real being (taken from Merriam Webster dictionary)


Interpretation of the Resolution:

Pro will have to prove objective morality is in the state of real being. Con will simply have to refute this argument, saying that objective morality is not in real being. Now a simple kritk by PRO is to say that since we have debates about objective morality, it exists in our minds, but I urge voters not to vote PRO if he decides to argue this. We are arguing if objective morality is actually real, meaning that how it is described is actually being applied to nature. An example of this is that SuperMan exists, but how he is described is not actually in the real world. If my opponent need further clarification on this topic, he just needs to ask!

What is Objective Morality?

Put simply, objective morality is the belief that morality is universal, and it isn’t up for interpretation. It is also saying that morality is encoded in our very nature. Once more, objective morality is not up for interpretation, it is the belief that there are certain moral rules encoded in the universe. My opponent seems to think that objective morality is morality of the majority. However, this is completely false, even if it were true, humans aren’t the vast majority of the universe.

Why is Objective Morality Unreasonable?

No matter what, our morals are always evolving, there are no moral rules that everyone follows and believes that are immoral. My opponent brings up murder and how it is considered immoral, yet he does not take in whole of the huge amount of murder that had been commited throughout society. Even if one person committed murder, it would not be considered an objective morality.
Unless my opponent can prove that there are certain morals that everything in the universe has to follow, I will win this debate. It is simply too hard to even prove that there are objective morals on Earth, much less the Universe.






Rebuttals:

I believe I have addressed most of my opponent’s arguments from arguments I have brought up, that said, I will continue to refute and debunk until there is nothing left. 
My opponent defines objective morality as two different words, not one phrase. This will cause problems for my opponent’s arguments, as just defining the words in a phrase does not necessarily mean a grasp of the concept of the literal phrase. My opponent also thinks that objective means the majority, not the whole. Nowhere in his definition does it describe this concept.
It is clear my opponent has not researched this topic in detail before starting the debate. He does not prove his burden of proof which is that “Objective Morality Exists”, instead he does not recognize that humans are not the majority of the Universe, much less the majority of the world. He believes that objective morals are morals that only apply to humans, which is false.

Conclusion:

I have successfully debunked my opponent’s arguments. My opponent has made several flaws with his arguments, which have proved himself wrong, including not understanding the concept of objective morality. I, as a debater have no choice in the voting side, but I will assume voters will be inclined to vote for the debater that as firm grasp of the concept, rather than a debater with a obscured grasp of the wrong concept.


Pro
Rebuttals:


of real being
Please define what you mean by "real being".
It is also saying that morality is encoded in our very nature.
No, you listed 2 completely different things in a row right there. Having something be an undeniable fact does not in any way, correlate to it having to be in "our very nature".
However, this is completely false, even if it were true, humans aren’t the vast majority of the universe.
I would like to differ. Morality can only be judged by sentient and conscious beings above a certain level of intelligence, you wouldn't have your goldfish telling you what's right and wrong, would you? Unless you can find me an animal as smart or smarter than humans then humans are the ones who decide what is moral or not.
My opponent brings up murder and how it is considered immoral, yet he does not take in whole of the huge amount of murder that had been commited throughout society. Even if one person committed murder, it would not be considered an objective morality.
You seem to think objective morality here is an action, could you please elaborate?
Unless my opponent can prove that there are certain morals that everything in the universe has to follow,
I do not have to prove everyone has to follow certain rules, I only have to prove that there is an action that can be deemed objectively right.
much less the Universe.
Non-sentient stars can't have morals in the first place.
My opponent defines objective morality as two different words, not one phrase.
No, I didn't. I defined objective morality as what the majority consensus defines as right and wrong.


Arguments:

I have no need for new arguments as my arguments in the prior round have yet to been refuted.

Round 3
Con
My opponent does not get the gist of what is happening here. He is defining objective morality incorrectly. Here is a notice: Objective Morality is not what you have defined it as, therefore unless you can properly argue in favor of the actual objective morality, I will win.


I would like to differ. Morality can only be judged by sentient and conscious beings above a certain level of intelligence, you wouldn't have your goldfish telling you what's right and wrong, would you? Unless you can find me an animal as smart or smarter than humans then humans are the ones who decide what is moral or not.
Once again, you are proving your own self wrong. What is Objective Morality, as I so graciously defined before?

"Put simply, objective morality is the belief that morality is universal, and it isn’t up for interpretation. It is also saying that morality is encoded in our very nature. Once more, objective morality is not up for interpretation, it is the belief that there are certain moral rules encoded in the universe. My opponent seems to think that objective morality is morality of the majority. However, this is completely false, even if it were true, humans aren’t the vast majority of the universe."


Objective Morality is the belief that every single living, sentient thing has at least one of the same morals. It is commonly found in religion, where a God creates everything to follow certain moral rules. If my opponent chooses to argue down this path, he for sure is proving my side, rather than his.

Let us take a definition from another source:

"Objective morality, in the simplest terms, is the belief that morality is universal, meaning that it isn't up for interpretation. Some people may think of objective morality as commandments from God, while other people may think the universe has some objective rules we may follow. There are certainly some arguments for objective morality to be had. Apologists for religion will define objective morality according to the commandments of their God. Other people may look at some universal laws, such as murder being bad.
Objective morality says that morality exists in nature, and it's how we were programmed." 
[1]

You seem to think objective morality here is an action, could you please elaborate?
As you said in your later refutes:

"I do not have to prove everyone has to follow certain rules, I only have to prove that there is an action that can be deemed objectively right."

You argue that murder is an objective moral, because the mass consensus believes this. I refuted this point saying that both, that is not how objective morality is defined and that humans aren't the mass population of the universe. Let me simply elaborate, as I believe that you have misunderstood my refute.

1. The action you stated was not an objective moral (meaning that not everyone agrees with this statement of morals)

Let me use this as a chance to back up my own points that morality is ever-changing. There were no set moral rules for all of us to follow in the first place. It was our choice to create our own morals that we choose to follow. Murder was probably not seen as barbaric in older times, other morals you stated were probably not considered barbaric or not moral in nature.

I would like to differ. Morality can only be judged by sentient and conscious beings above a certain level of intelligence, you wouldn't have your goldfish telling you what's right and wrong, would you? Unless you can find me an animal as smart or smarter than humans then humans are the ones who decide what is moral or not.
This actually proves your entire argument wrong. Objective morality is saying that the goldfish has some of the same morals as everything else does, because morality is in nature.

Non-sentient stars can't have morals in the first place.
Stars are not the only thing left in nature. It is almost certain there are other living things in the universe. That means you have to prove those things also follow the objective morals we follow.

What is the Flaw with my Opponent's Arguments?

It seems as my opponent has flawed definition of objective morality. He believes it is the major consensus of the "sentient"(meaning smart, as every single animal is sentient) beings. This in nature proves his own argument wrong, as the very definition of objective morality is morality that exists in nature, meaning that no matter if something is smart enough to process human morality, it should have some objective moral. 

In short, my opponent's definition is completely wrong. I do not have to refute any of his points as they are based off a flawed definition.



Pro
Forfeited
Round 4
Con
My opponent has forfeited, I believe I addressed all of my opinions and beliefs in the previous round.
Pro
First off, sorry for forfeiting the last round, I urge voters to give my opponent the conduct point.

Refute:

Objective Morality is the belief that every single living, sentient thing has at least one of the same morals. It is commonly found in religion, where a God creates everything to follow certain moral rules. If my opponent chooses to argue down this path, he for sure is proving my side, rather than his.
This is what I argued. What you argued was that "moral rules encoded in the universe" was the definition of objective morality.
Let me use this as a chance to back up my own points that morality is ever-changing. There were no set moral rules for all of us to follow in the first place. It was our choice to create our own morals that we choose to follow. Murder was probably not seen as barbaric in older times, other morals you stated were probably not considered barbaric or not moral in nature.
Murder was definitely considered barbaric in older times, in fact, I believe murder was considered barbaric in almost every era except maybe the neolithic era as the brains weren't fully developed.
This actually proves your entire argument wrong. Objective morality is saying that the goldfish has some of the same morals as everything else does, because morality is in nature.
This does not. I argue that objectivity in itself is the consensus of the majority, while you argue that it is rules encoded in the universe. However, this is not possible. Nature is not sentient, the "universe" is not sentient, non-sentient beings cannot have morals. Only humans can have morals, therefore making morality a question of what humans believe and not what "the universe" believes as the universe is physiologically incapable of believing.
Stars are not the only thing left in nature. It is almost certain there are other living things in the universe. That means you have to prove those things also follow the objective morals we follow.
Would you like to have a debate on if aliens exist? Other sentient beings are a completely different topic.
He believes it is the major consensus of the "sentient"(meaning smart, as every single animal is sentient) beings.
sen·tient
/ˈsen(t)SH(ē)ənt/

adjective

  1. able to perceive or feel things.
    "she had been instructed from birth in the equality of all sentient life forms"

Round 5
Con
It is clear my opponent does not know or even fully understand the concept of objective morality. It is the fact that morality exists in nature. It is the fact that there are some moral rules that have been programmed in our very nature to follow.

First off, sorry for forfeiting the last round, I urge voters to give my opponent the conduct point. 
It is completely fine to forfeit one round in this five round debate, please do not let this forfeit consider the victor of the debate. I beg the voters to pass off this forfeit as a mere accident.
This does not. I argue that objectivity in itself is the consensus of the majority, while you argue that it is rules encoded in the universe. However, this is not possible. Nature is not sentient, the "universe" is not sentient, non-sentient beings cannot have morals. Only humans can have morals, therefore making morality a question of what humans believe and not what "the universe" believes as the universe is physiologically incapable of believing.
This refute sums up your entire argument: Only human's can have morals, therefore objective morality exists. Which I urge the voters is completely a illogical statement, and proving Pro's proof wrong. Once again, Pro needs to prove that objective morality exists, not disprove this. My opponent seems to believe that humans are the only sentient beings in the universe, first: sentience doesn't matter in the concept of objective morality. Second, human's are not the only sentient animals.[1]

Once again, my opponent says that human's can only have morals, which I completely agree with, as that is proving my point, objective morality as defined does not exist whatsoever, because other animals are not capable of following any morals, which you so thoughtfully stated.

Would you like to have a debate on if aliens exist? Other sentient beings are a completely different topic.
It does not matter whether aliens exist or not. Objective morality is not only in the scope of sentient beings, it is in the scope of every single living being. Even so, there are other sentient beings in existence. 

Murder was definitely considered barbaric in older times, in fact, I believe murder was considered barbaric in almost every era except maybe the neolithic era as the brains weren't fully developed.
This is not my point, it is clear that this is only an example. My point is that actions, no matter how bad it is seen by the modern human, are not encoded in nature, we are not naturally required to believe that said actions are not good.

Conclusion

Put simply, my opponents argument is that the scope of objective morality only applies to humans, which is utterly false. This debate instead of revolving around if objective morality exists, has instead shifted towards what the scope of objective morality is, which is clearly defined in the definition. Let me restate them for the voters to read:

"Objective morality, in the simplest terms, is the belief that morality is universal, meaning that it isn't up for interpretation. Some people may think of objective morality as commandments from God, while other people may think the universe has some objective rules we may follow. There are certainly some arguments for objective morality to be had. Apologists for religion will define objective morality according to the commandments of their God. Other people may look at some universal laws, such as murder being bad.
Objective morality says that morality exists in nature, and it's how we were programmed." [2]

My opponent seems to think that "we" (at the end, in the sentence with "how we were programmed") is only sentient beings or humans. Which I disproved by saying, humans aren't the only sentient beings, and we actually doesn't only apply to sentient beings but every living being in the universe, even though they aren't capable of having morals. In fact, my opponent proves his own argument wrong saying that not everything can have morals, because they can't perceive morals, which in my eyes is completely true, but in a stable Pro's view is utterly false.



Sources:
 
Pro
My opponent seems to believe that humans are the only sentient beings in the universe, first: sentience doesn't matter in the concept of objective morality. Second, human's are not the only sentient animals.
Humans are the only sentient beings in the universe. And as I have said before, non-sentient beings cannot have morals.
Once again, my opponent says that human's can only have morals, which I completely agree with, as that is proving my point, objective morality as defined does not exist whatsoever, because other animals are not capable of following any morals, which you so thoughtfully stated.
This is not what objective morality is. You seem to think that anything can have morals, but that is just not true. The very concept of objective morality itself cannot apply to non-sentient beings as it is not possible for them to have morals.
Even so, there are other sentient beings in existence. 
According to Merriam Webster, sentience is: responsive to or conscious of sense impressions. Meaning that you must be able to experience different events and be conscious of them and have feelings of them. Sure, maybe some animals will know to run away from their predators but that is just the basic flight of fight reaction. Only humans can make subjective decisions that are needed to have morals. A goldfish cannot have morals, therefore objective morality does not apply to it.
My point is that actions, no matter how bad it is seen by the modern human, are not encoded in nature, we are not naturally required to believe that said actions are not good.
But we can believe that these actions are objectively good or bad based on how society as a whole perceives them. As I have mentioned in my first argument.

I would also like to look at your quote:
Objective morality, in the simplest terms, is the belief that morality is universal, meaning that it isn't up for interpretation. Some people may think of objective morality as commandments from God, while other people may think the universe has some objective rules we may follow. There are certainly some arguments for objective morality to be had. Apologists for religion will define objective morality according to the commandments of their God. Other people may look at some universal laws, such as murder being bad.
Objective morality says that morality exists in nature, and it's how we were programmed.
This quote talks a lot about God and commandments, and God's commandments were directed at mankind. Contradicting this statement you made:
Put simply, my opponents argument is that the scope of objective morality only applies to humans, which is utterly false.

In fact, my opponent proves his own argument wrong saying that not everything can have morals, because they can't perceive morals, which in my eyes is completely true, but in a stable Pro's view is utterly false.
This does not prove my argument wrong of objective morality only being able to be applied to humans.


Conclusion:

My opponent believes objective morality can apply to non-sentient beings that cannot think for themselves but these animals that think for themselves cannot be objective or subjective. Only humans are able to decide what is objective, it is the majority consensus.