Instigator / Pro
Points: 23

There is no objective morality

Finished

The voting period has ended

After 5 votes the winner is ...
GuitarSlinger
Debate details
Publication date
Last update
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 / Con
Points: 29
Description
No information
Round 1
Forfeited
Published:
Wrong.  There is objective morality.  Otherwise, you'd have no ground to stand on to accuse your opponent of being "wrong".  Without objective morality (right/wrong), you think what is right/wrong, and I think what is right/wrong....we make our morality.  You have no ground to accuse me of being wrong.  
 
The fact that you participate in a debate site, arguing your position against opposing positions , implies that you live your life as if there is objective morality.  Otherwise, you would have to believe that you are right, AND that your opponent is right, because, after all, if morality is not objective, that means it’s subjective, so the other person in their mind is right, too, regardless of what you believe (each person or group determines what is right/wrong).
 
Next time someone cuts in front of you in line at the movies, grocery store, Starbucks, whatever, how would you respond?  Would you respond “Oh, go right ahead….you are simply doing what you think is right.”  Or would you respond that it isn’t fair, essentially appealing to some standard  (dare I say, “objective) of right/wrong that is outside of you and the other person?
 
Next time your employer, refuses to pay you for your labor, go ahead and say “Yes, you can do that….you are now doing what you think/believe is right.” 

Round 2
Published:
There is objective morality.  Otherwise, you'd have no ground to stand on to accuse your opponent of being "wrong".
There is a difference between morally right and wrong and factually right and wrong. Morality is subjective, facts are not.

Next time someone cuts in front of you in line at the movies, grocery store, Starbucks, whatever, how would you respond?  Would you respond “Oh, go right ahead….you are simply doing what you think is right.”  Or would you respond that it isn’t fair, essentially appealing to some standard  (dare I say, “objective) of right/wrong that is outside of you and the other person?
I would murder them and rape their family. If you tell me that is wrong, then I would murder you and rape your family as well. Just because there is no objective morality doesn't mean I can't feel wronged by someone, and murdering people and raping their family is just as morally valid a response as any other. 
(I would not actually murder anyone or rape anyone, but you can't tell me it's objectively or inherently wrong. If you think you can then I invite you to scientifically prove it to me.)

Next time your employer, refuses to pay you for your labor, go ahead and say “Yes, you can do that….you are now doing what you think/believe is right.”  
There is a difference between a statement like "2+2=4" and a claim that something is morally right or wrong. Morality is a matter of opinion. Now excuse me while I eat my employers children as punishment for not paying me.
Published:
Fair enough.  However, "feeling wronged" by someone and actually "being wronged" by someone are two very different things.  Just because you think it’s wrong, doesn't mean it's wrong.  And just because you think something is right, doesn't mean it's right. 

To the person who cuts in front of you, they think it’s right.  So, the question remains—who is actually right and wrong?  Cuz here’s the rub, you both can’t be right.  That’s not logically possible.  You can’t have two contradicting things and have them both be true.

If you truly believed, in your heart of hearts, that morality was subjective, then you could not look the other person in the eye and sya that they are wrong-- because in a subjective world, the other person is right in their own mind.  

Clever to throw science in this.  I'm assuming you use "science" as your basis?  If so, then wouldn't it also be fair for me to counter to you "Prove scientifically that morality is subjective"?

Round 3
Published:
"feeling wronged" by someone and actually "being wronged" by someone are two very different things.
There is only "feeling wronged". In objective reality, when the cheeta bites the gazelle in the jugular it is because the cheeta is fast and hungry. In the subjective reality of morality, the cheeta and the gazelle would argue back and forth,
"but I have a right to life mr. cheeta" 
"but so do I and I am a carnivore who must eat you to live mr. gazelle"

Nature (i.e objective reality)  clearly doesn't give a shit about morality, the one who gets their way could just as easily be "good" or "evil" and the only consequences that inherently come with being "evil" are imposed by society.

If you truly believed, in your heart of hearts, that morality was subjective, then you could not look the other person in the eye and sya that they are wrong-- because in a subjective world, the other person is right in their own mind.  
That is not true. Even though morality is subjective, a person can still feel wronged and there still can be socially acceptable standards of behaviour based on preventing people from lying, cheating, and harming others. Even though morality is subjective, it is not logical or productive for society to let people go around doing things that harm others.

"Prove scientifically that morality is subjective"?
 Humans made it up to establish what is socially acceptable and what is not, nature does not care about morality, and ideas of what is moral vary widely from culture to culture and from person to person.
Published:
So then....instead of a gazelle and a cheetah, let's say it's Bill and you.

Bill wants to kill you.  He thinks it's ok.
You do not want to be killed.  You think it's not ok.

Is it right for Bill to kill you?

If you say "No", then I have to ask why.
            - If your answer is "Because I don't thnk it's right.", then I would say tough-- your idea of right/wrong doesn't agree with Bill's idea of right and wrong.  Bill is right in his own mind, so he should be allowed to do what he wants, correct?

            - If your answer is "Because we have laws that state you can't kill".  Then I would say "Nope-- you can't do that.  When you refer to a law, you are now using an objective standard to measure behavior against.   When morality is subjective, you can't use an objective standard like a law."




Added:
--> @Melcharaz
Vote Reported: Melcharaz // Mod Action: Removed
Points awarded: 4 points to con for argument and conduct
RFD:
For morality to be objective, moral propositions such as "Killing is bad","Stealing is bad", etc... need to be true independently of the person who is stating them.
Con correctly states the basis of subjective morality and argues with con about feelings regarding morals and morality. I feel Con could have come out clearer in support of Objective morality if he applied utiliarianism and argued more concerning the law, which pro makes a brief passing in but dismisses it in lumping it in with subjective morality.
Pro's example of murder and rape was rather extreme.
Both have good spelling and conduct, though i would argue con seemed more passionate in his expressions.
Reason for mod action: The voter fails to meet the requirements set forth by the COC found here https://www.debateart.com/rules
(1) In order to award arguments points, the voter must:
(a) Survey the main arguments and counterarguments presented in the debate
(b) Weigh those arguments against each other (or explain why certain arguments need not be weighed based on what transpired within the debate itself)
(c) Explain how, through the process of weighing, they arrived at their voting decision with regard to assigning argument points
Weighing entails analyzing how the relative strength of one argument or set of arguments outweighed (that is, out-impacted) and/or precluded another argument or set of arguments. Weighing requires analyzing and situating arguments and counterarguments within the context of the debate as a whole.
(2) To award conduct, the voter must:
(a) Provide specific references to instances of poor conduct which occurred in the debate
(b) Demonstrate how this poor conduct was either excessive, unfair, or in violation of mutually agreed upon rules of conduct pertaining to the text of the debate
(c) Compare each debater's conduct from the debate
#47
Added:
--> @Wrick-It-Ralph
How about if my arguments are corrects and I am trying to point out the flaws in their understanding?
Don't you even agree with me here so am I still being a "skeptic" even though you agree with me?
#46
Added:
--> @GuitarSlinger, @TheRealNihilist
Omar is pressupping you. No matter what you throw at him in this subject, he'll just use hard skepticism to "Why?" you to death. You can pin him down, but he'll just jump back into the "Why?" routine at the first chance. Your only options are to give up any chances of productive conversation or to get him to actually answer your questions (good luck with that)
Hi Omar. I say this as a constructive criticism. Not an insult. You need to be less incredulous (disbelieving) when you argue.
#45
Added:
--> @GuitarSlinger
"1. It's not ad populum,"
How is it not? You did not explain it how it is isn't because everyone else sees it therefore it must be true. I only mentioned this part because I have a problem here. Supporting data is not an argument because you would require initial data to use the supporting data to support it and I have already mentioned you cannot know your senses are correct so initial data is flawed.
2.
"Wouldn't you have to prove that what you think is right/wrong is actually right/wrong before saying your action is right/wrong?"
Not really based on proof. Value can be gained without proving it. I hope it would be supported by evidence but not intrinsic to values. If you want to make sure your values are correct then you would require evidence but it is not a necessity to have a value.
"3.Through the corroboration of others."
That is an argumentum ad populum.
I would have a liked an answer to this. Can you give one?
"You don't know there are right because at a fundamental level were accept a truth that are our senses are helpful in perceiving the world instead of proving it."
#44
Added:
--> @Wrick-It-Ralph
Vote Reported: Wrick-it-Ralph // Mod Action: Removed
Points awarded: 3 points to pro for arguments
RFD: Pro's assessment of using subjective assessments to extrapolate facts about human interaction was ultimately a more convincing argument. Normally I'd be more inclined to go the other way on this subject, but Con did not appear to provide a convincing foundation that would hold objective morality nor was it explain how morality was necessarily objective.
Reason for mod action: The voter fails to meet the requirements set forth by the COC found here https://www.debateart.com/rules
In order to award arguments points, the voter must:
Survey the main arguments and counterarguments presented in the debate
Weigh those arguments against each other (or explain why certain arguments need not be weighed based on what transpired within the debate itself)
Explain how, through the process of weighing, they arrived at their voting decision with regard to assigning argument points
The voter fails to do this thus his vote is removed.
#43
Added:
--> @TheRealNihilist
1. It's not ad populum, it's using supporting data. We do that all the time. If we think or believe gravity causes objects to fall, we then see out supporting data. If other people's data corroborates that, then we can be reasonably sure we are on the right path. Are you suggesting that SCIENCE is basically ad populum? I mean, it's that what science does-- a person obtains data and then also uses the data from others to support their claims.
2. Agreed. Yes. One must ensure their senses are properly formed and ordered properly. If they are mal-formed and not order properly (dis-ordered), then one's interpretation of data will be off. Same question can be said than of you and subjective morality-- Wouldn't you have to prove that what you think is right/wrong is actually right/wrong before saying your action is right/wrong?
3. Through the corroboration of others. Are you suggesting that SCIENCE is purely subjective? Isn't that what science is/does? Uses what we perceive through our senses to obtain info.
Contender
#42
Added:
--> @GuitarSlinger
Wasn't at my computer which is why I am typing this now.
"1. If i observe that gravity causes objects to fall. And others corroborate my findings...and if MANY MANY others corroborate my findings, then I can be reasonably sure that what my senses tell me about gravity is accurate."
You do know this is an argumentum ad populum right? If a lot of people see it therefore it must be true?
"2. Agreed with a good and proper sense we are at a disadvantage. Likewise the person who has a disordered sense of what is right/wrong."
Wouldn't you have to prove your senses are correct before saying the blind person has the wrong senses?
"3. Agreed. Our senses are what we have. It's what we use to experience the world around us. But against, that doesn't mean that everythign we do is subjective."
Everything we do goes through subjective lens. So how do you propose to find objectivity when everything is subject to our perception?
"But interchanging words doesn't change the discussion."
Value is more specific. The statement would have been if I used opinion is that the rapist likes the opinion of rape being okay so he thinks it is okay. Value is less words.
"Your first question is spot on. If my senses are bad, how can i be trusted to actually know what is objective."
How do you know your senses are not bad?
"By forming against things yo uknow are right-- objective things."
You don't know there are right because at a fundamental level were accept a truth that are our senses are helpful in perceiving the world instead of proving it.
#41
Added:
--> @TheRealNihilist
Great questions
1. If i observe that gravity causes objects to fall. And others corroborate my findings...and if MANY MANY others corroborate my findings, then I can be reasonably sure that what my senses tell me about gravity is accurate.
2. Agreed with a good and proper sense we are at a disadvantage. Likewise the person who has a disordered sense of what is right/wrong.
3. Agreed. Our senses are what we have. It's what we use to experience the world around us. But against, that doesn't mean that everythign we do is subjective.
Value...Opinion. You can mince words, change words all you want. It's all the same. People have different values. I get that. But interchanging words doesn't change the discussion.
Your first question is spot on. If my senses are bad, how can i be trusted to actually know what is objective. The key is keeping your senses formed and in shape. Same question pose to you, if your sense of right and wrong is bad...or off...or disordered, how can you be trusted to do what is right? How? By properly forming your "moral compass", if you will. And how do you keep your moral compass in tip top shape? By forming against things yo uknow are right-- objective things.
Contender
#40
Added:
--> @GuitarSlinger
"I said via my senses. I never said they were good"
If you don't know they are good how do you know they can be trusted in actually showing you what is objective?
"why look inward to determine morality?"
Look al-right Buddhist monk. Without good senses you will be at a disadvantage. This is not Daredevil. You are F*cked and I feel sorry for you if you are blind can't hear or your taste is gone.
"Why not look to something beyond you?"
All you are are your senses. Without it you won't be able to perceive the world.
"If you say morality is subjective, then what you think is right, and you would have to believe that if another person thinks something is right, then they are right...because that is their opinion."
It is based on values more specifically. I consider you calling my argument an opinion deserving of you being lynched. Hope you are ready.
Values is better word than opinion. Opinion is too general not specific.
#39
Added:
--> @TheRealNihilist
Ok. I lied. I will respond. Wow. When did say my senses are good source of information? Did I say that? Yo uasked me how I perceive the world. I said via my senses. I never said they were good :-)
But you highlight the point. If you are implying senses are faulty and prone to error, the all the more reason morality is to be objective and not subjective. If your sense is faulty, why look inward to determine morality? If your sense of direction is very poor- would you rely on that to get you where yo uwant to go? of course not. If your sense of what is right or wrong is faulty, why would you rely on that? Why not look to something beyond you?
They rape question is fair. If you say morality is subjective, then what you think is right, and you would have to believe that if another person thinks something is right, then they are right...because that is their opinion.
Contender
#38
Added:
--> @Type1
Nah. Not having issues. I never said "writing the law" is what makes it objective, now did I? Please re-read what I wrote. I said the person that follows the law is being objective. Big difference.
If a person is looking to something beyond themselves to determine morality, they are being objective. If they look to a law to determine the morality of their behavior, they are being objective. It doesn't matter what the law is...could be a law about not wearing Blue on Thursdays....a law about watering your lawn on Fridays....a law about murder...a law about rape...And it doesn't matter if said person is a King, a waif, a pawn or a rock star.
You're actually making my points. You are pointing instances (rape, cutting fingers off etc) and basically implying that it shouldn't matter what the person things (feels or opines about the subject), you are implying that despite what the person (the King or me) thinks, it's wrong. Guess what...that's being objective.
Contender
#37
Added:
--> @GuitarSlinger
"Ok. What speicifically did I accept to be true and not tell you how?"
Your senses being a good source of information.
"Does the fact that I'm blind negate the fact that water is comprised of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom? nope."
If everyone was blind then yes.
"We use our senses to perceive and detect gravity. Does that mean gravity is purely subjective? of course not."
We cannot be sure on our senses because we cannot verify them to be true.
"What exactly was the strawman you said I concocted?"
You said this "So the person who thinks Rape is ok is in the right?"
Fair representation would be if person values rape then that person would say rape is okay.
#36
Added:
--> @TheRealNihilist
Ok. What speicifically did I accept to be true and not tell you how?
Does the fact that I'm blind negate the fact that water is comprised of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom? nope.
I'm using "we all do" as reason. I don't see how yo ucan make that claim. You're making the claim that everything is subjective because we use our senses. I'm simply stating that just because we use our senses to perceive the things around us, that doesn't make everything objective. We use our senses to perceive and detect gravity. Does that mean gravity is purely subjective? of course not.
So, tell me...how did I interpret your argument? That's the best example to see if you understand that person-- restate what the person said (perhaps in slightly different terms) and see if the other person agrees. What exactly was the strawman you said I concocted?
And this will probably be the last I'll respond today-- I'm about to go watch some MARCH MADNESS BABY! GO TEXAS TECH! (Not really a Tech fan, but they are the team from the greatest state in the union still worth watching).
Contender
#35
Added:
--> @GuitarSlinger
You are really having issues here. Writing a law about something doesn't make the morality behind it objective, it means that a social construct was created to prevent people from doing something. Different nations have different laws that are created to fit the morality of their respective cultures, so if two systems of law oppose each other are they both objective at the same time? If the law says the King is allowed to rape your wife is it objectively right? If you want to say that it's just my opinion that rape is harmful, how about I cut your fingers and toes off and feed them to you? If you tell me it hurts, well that's just your opinion I guess.
But in reality something can objectively create a subjective feeling in someone. If I physically harm you then you objectively are feeling the subjective feeling of pain. It really isn't rocket science my dear boy. The law objectively exists as a social construct the validity of which is subjective and things can objectively trigger subjective feelings in people.
Instigator
#34
Added:
--> @GuitarSlinger
You do thing where you accept something to be true without telling me how. That is part I have a problem with.
"I use my sense to perceive my world. We all do. But that doesn't mean everything is subjective."
How? If you are blind you can't see a chemical makeup. If you are visually impaired you can't see a chemical makeup that well.
We all do is not a good reason for why it should be accepted without proving it.
Everything is subjective because it is dependent on the person perceiving it whatever it maybe.
"Explain it? Didn't you accuse of constructing a straw man by bringing about the worst extent that logically follows"
My argument stating rape being good was not my argument. My argument was if the person values rape then rape for him is okay. Your interpretation of my argument was unfair.
"Yes. It wsa brought up in the debate arguments."
Okay
#33
#5
Criterion Pro Tie Con Points
Better arguments 3 points
Better sources 2 points
Better spelling and grammar 1 point
Better conduct 1 point
Reason:
Con barely pulled this off for me. He defined his terms and definitions better and I think that his scenario comparisons were better as well.
#4
Criterion Pro Tie Con Points
Better arguments 3 points
Better sources 2 points
Better spelling and grammar 1 point
Better conduct 1 point
Reason:
It seems that con was having trouble with the concept of what's factually correct or incorrect, and what's morally correct or incorrect. Pro drove that point home in round two by stating "there is a difference between morally right and wrong and factually right and wrong. Morality is subjective, facts are not." Con did nothing to address this point. This was a crucial point that Pro made, and Con didn't even attempt to refute it.
Nobody used any sources, so I didn't award anybody with the sources point. There were only a few grammatical errors, and none of them were all that distracting. Pro made some egregious remarks regarding murder and rape. I wouldn't be to sad if Pro were kicked off the site for misconduct, but I'm not here to judge who should or shouldn't be allowed on this site, I'm only here to judge who had the better conduct in this debate, which goes to Con. Outside of the unwelcome comments by Pro, both sides were cordial, and didn't resort to character assassination, which I guess is held in a high standard on this site. Meh!!!
Good job by both participants.
#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:
Reliable Sources: Neither used any sources so therefore it is a tie.
Spelling and Grammar: Both had relatively the same grammar. Overall between both sides, it was legible.
Conduct: Neither Forfeited and neither resorted to insults, therefore my vote is a tie.
Convincing Arguments: Both had aright arguments and I was flip flopping my position during the debate, however one statement that Con stated absolutely proves that morality has to be objective.
The quote in question was " Cuz here’s the rub, you both can’t be right. That’s not logically possible. You can’t have two contradicting things and have them both be true."
- This quote pretty much proves that morality has to be objective, otherwise morality would contradict itself. Pro's response to this fact was this,
" Even though morality is subjective, it is not logical or productive for society to let people go around doing things that harm others."
- This statement directly contradicts pro's entire argument. Right here Pro is literally stating that harming other people is objectively wrong. Which of course contradicts his entire argument based around subjective morality.
#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:
Conduct to Con because while Pro was more polite than his usual self, the forfeiting of Round 1 (that is the most significant Round where it does become slightly bad Conduct as you give your opponent less to work with, intentionally almost), the entire rape scenario and wording of his Round 2 'joke' was truly vile and not what formal debating should have in it.
Pro explains that not only does morality have no objective source possible but that even the rational-seeming subjective elements of morality like the law or the ‘truly right’ and ‘truly wrong’ that Con was trying to say exist beyond what you think is right or wrong, do not even exist. Con struggled because Con cannot win if Pro doesn’t severely misstep. Con tries to tell Pro ‘but the one cutting in front of you in the queue thinks it’s true’ to prove that an actually wrong thing can subjectively be right. Pro says that this is because it really is right in their subjective moral code and is entitled to be so in an objective sense of ‘entitled to be’. Pro explains that truly the rightness of the act is up to every person to ascertain for themselves based on emotions and rationalising around those emotional preferences.
Con loses.
#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:
Pros arguments revolve around two points:
- That morality and moral behaviour is simply a feeling and is not objective.
- Pro argues that the social and social norms constructs around morality exist to prevent harm to society.
Pro drops this Gem:
“Even though morality is subjective, a person can still feel wronged and there still can be socially acceptable standards”
Pro nails the response - by pointing out that a subjective morality that can be justified objectively through the law - is not subjective. That destroys pros primary defence for morality being subjective - his explanation of why we all seem to agree on most moral decisions.
Arguments to con.
Conduct to con for the forfeit.