Resolved: It is illogical and impractical to oppose that which does not exist.
I Rebuttal: Education
I.a Con alleges I have not answered his argument of educating the ignorant, as if the answer to that concern is a valid argument against the resolution. I remind Con of my rebuttal in my R1, I.b: “One can certainly claim to oppose that which does not exist, but the exercise of opposition is a wasted effort because the effort of opposition will not alter the original non-extant condition of the opposed entity/object.” What has this to do with education? One may be ignorant of a flat earth proposition. That person can be educated with the result that they understand the proposition. They may become an expert on the subject and teach others. That’s the value and consequence of education, yes? Fine, our ignorant friend can now lecture extemporaneously on flat earth theory. But does that resolve the problem that it will not alter the original non-extant condition of the opposed entity/object? Con has not argued that it does, therefore, the BoP remains with Con to prove that, somehow, against logic and practicality, with education, the ignorant person, now educated, can now prove that we inhabit a flat earth. Since Pro has failed to date to demonstrate that opposing the argument against the non-extant condition of a flat earth is logical and practical. I so challenge Con to do so, only, as earlier noted, Con made no argument in R2, and there can be no R3 argument, only rebuttal, defense, and/or conclusion.
II Rebuttal: Button, button, who has the burden of proof?
II.a Con engages in an attempt to shift the Burden of Proof by such exercises as raising the matters of flat earth, the button, gun control, Mars colonization, and now, in R2, donating organs, and abortion ban. I might add that Con’s sole argument in favor of opposing non-existence is a matter of overcoming ignorance, because considering all six suggested subjects by Con, only flat earth and the button are fully non-existent things. In all other cases, these are existing conditions and policies. Therefore, they do not meet the resolution standard of non-existence, and, therefore, opposing these extant conditions is not illogical or impractical.
II.b I could even argue that Con’s “button” factor is extant in this regard: resurrection. I know, I know, I have no empiric evidence of such, so I will not argue the point further, other than saying that the hope of such a consequence after death is a comfort to millions upon millions around the world, and, therefore, meets Con’s argument threshold of allowing us “moving on after someone has died.”
III Rebuttal: “The trolley problem,” and other morality tales
III.a Apparently extending his failed argument of “moving on” with the “button,” which I have rebutted in R2, II.a, II.b, and I.b.2.E, above, Con alleges in R2, “Similarly, even imaginary scenarios are often used to topple morality theories, for example, the trolley problem, which rarely exists in a form so simple in real life. Tough situations prove the logical gaps in moral philosophies, whether true or false.”
III.a.1 May I ask, not expecting to receive a sufficient reply, what, exactly, is “the trolley problem,” and what it may have in context to the resolution, since trolleys are existent things, and, therefore, do not fit the resolution? I say I do not expect a sufficient reply, because Con is now forbidden, by the debate protocol established, from offering further argument in R3. By merely raising the subject of trolleys, without offering a relevant argument about the morality theories it is claimed to contain, and how they relate to the resolution, does not give license to do so in R3. Sorry. That protocol exists, and, therefore must stand. Although Con argues that the trolley problem is exemplar of “imaginary scenarios,” I have already demonstrated, without rebuttal, that fiction is not synonymous with non-reality [R1, IV], and is therefore outside the parameter of the resolution, being restricted to non-existent entities/things. Therefore, the entire effort by Con to include a trolley argument fails.
IV Rebuttal: Shifting the BoP, revised
IV.a Lastly, Con’s R2 argument says, “With argument three, pro points out the slippery slope of banning guns, but he is actually arguing against a non existent policy!”
Exclamation. Fitting, because, exclaimed, or not, Con ignores that the policy banning guns does have examples currently in force, to wit [by State]:[i]
1. AK: a person must certify qualification to own a gun AS 18.65.810
2. AZ: a person must certify qualification to own a gun ARS 13-3121
3. AR: a person must certify qualification to own a gun 5-73-112
4. CA: Cannot own an assault weapon §30500, §30515
5. CT: Cannot own certain specified assault weapons CGS 53-202
IV.a.1Virtually every state has various bans like these examples, and others. Therefore, gun bans do currently exist in the United States by law. No, they do not universally ban all guns, but that is not the argument. That argument takes us back to absolutes, and the resolution does not ask for absolutes, does it? There are extant gun bans of specified kinds. Therefore, Con’s argument fails because it does not meet the parameters of the resolution: non-existence, and lack of both logic and practicality.
IV Rebuttal: “What about Saturn”
IV.a Con concludes his R2 argument asking that if a Mars colonization policy exists, “…what about Saturn?”I suppose that argument could continue down a rabbit hole to this or that other planet, another star system, perhaps a black hole[?], but it is the same reductio ad absurdum I argued in R2, III.a.1 on gun control,and Argumentum ad ignorantium: “The fallacy that a proposition is true simply on the basis that it has not been proven false. Also known as an appeal to ignorance” In my R2, IV.a.1.A on shifting burden of proof. I will still ask: has Con made a valid argument sustaining the proposition that opposing a Saturn colonization policy is not illogical and impractical? No. But he is, by shifting burden of proof, asking me to prove that it is an illogical and impractical argument. I have already done so with the Mars colonization example. I will not describe the argument because I did not raise the argument, it is my R3, and I am prohibited from making such argument. Since Con brought up the subject of a non-existing policy of Saturn colonization, it was his burden to prove the argument would be logical and practical in his R2. Con made no such argument and cannot now offer it in R3. Case closed.
V Rebuttal: What is the resolution argument: an absolute should not, or just illogical and impractical?
V.a Con makes the error in R2 of assuming the resolution states that one must not oppose that which does not exist, as if the resolution is an ultimatum; an absolute. He states, “Pro does not refute the fact that we should oppose flat earth, only that it is not practically a significant issue.” But that is not what the resolution states, either. I have repeated it again above. Pro is correct; I do not refute the absolute that we should oppose a flat earth. I only say that arguing such is illogical and impractical. The resolution does not propose absolute conditions; it does not propose mandates. This is not a debate of absolutes. One certainly can oppose non-extant entities/things, but, I do not need to argue the point of an absolute. I argue that the result of such opposition is senseless and unworkable. It is spurious and unserviceable. It is unreasonable. All synonymous with, respectively, illogic and impracticality.
V.b Con then argues that “If we fail to address ignorance of knowledge, informed consent may be a bigger problem.” Yes, informed consent – whatever that is; it is certainly not a subject mentioned in the resolution, and, therefore, is not defined in the context of the resolution – ignorance of knowledge may, indeed, be a factor of concern, but ignorance is not a subject of the debate resolution, either.
V.b.1 In the fashion Pro is presenting his argument, his is saying, literally, as in R2, “Would [Pro] somehow consider the non-existence of abortion ban in the U.S. worth talking about?” On first pass, Pro would reply to Con’s abortion question, “Let’s consider that Con is really asking a “for-instance” query; an exemplary subject that may have relevance only in recognizing that the resolution is really void of any particular subject, but, rather, allows any subject to be questioned in debate that is currently non-existent. It is true, an abortion ban is, relatively speaking, non-existent, but one cannot say abortion is banned entirely. In that understanding, Pro would have to reply, in keeping with the resolution: No, Pro would not consider such a subject worth talking about within the context of the debate, because an abortion ban does not exist. As the resolution speaks only to non-existent subjects as being illogical and impractical to oppose, it is to Con to prove that an abortion ban opposition is not illogical and impractical. I have nothing to say on the matter beyond the resolution, and the arguments I have raised in R1 and R2, describing why a non-existent subject is illogical and impractical to oppose.
V.b.2 Con may wish to argue [only he cannot] that abortion bans do exist: there are partial birth abortions, conducted, illegally, or not. But existence falls outside the resolution, so, the conduct of it is not arguable.
V.b.2 I have offered, in R1 and R2, a total of four arguments supporting the resolution:
V.b.2.A Such opposing arguments against non-existence is a waste of energy.
V.b.2.B Such opposing arguments against non-existence is a waste of time.
V.b.2.C Fiction is not synonymous with non-reality due to suspension of disbelief.
V.b.2.D The Burden of Proof must overcome the argument that “there is a high probability that not everything that people claim to be true is actually true.”[ii]
V.c Further, Con has, to date, dropped defense of the following arguments I rebutted in my R2:
V.c.1 Con’s R1 argument of misinformation, and my R2 rebuttal I.a – I.e.
V.c.2 Con’s R1 argument of over-population as a possible response to not believing a story, and my R2, II.b rebuttal that over-population is a myth was dropped in his R2.
V.c.3 Con has dropped my R2, IV argument of shifting burden of proof as a Con tactic to be absolved of BoP regarding flat earth [my IV.a.2], the button [my IV.a.3], and guns/Mars [my IV.a.4].
V.d Con has not addressed any of these issues, identified in my R3, I through V.c. I therefore conclude that Con has not met his BoP to satisfactorily argue that opposition to non-existing entities/things is both logical and practical. Therefore, Con’s rounds have failed to rebut the resolution.
I rest my case and ask for your vote.