Instigator / Con

Fictional debate: should the avengers movment be passed and why?


The debate is finished. The distribution of the voting points and the winner are presented below.

Winner & statistics
Better arguments
Better sources
Better legibility
Better conduct

After 1 vote and with 3 points ahead, the winner is...

Publication date
Last updated date
Number of rounds
Time for argument
Three days
Max argument characters
Voting period
Two weeks
Point system
Multiple criterions
Voting system
Contender / Pro

All of my reasons will be in the arguments, but here are my stances.

1.) Don't submit the avengers to bureaucracy and laws.

2.) Don't force non-avengers to be a lesser state than the avengers. (Pre-homecoming spider man, pre-infinity war doctor strange)

3.) Don't force non-avengers to reveal their identities.

4.) Don't attempt to influence or reduce what the avengers can do.

This is kinda-sorta roleplay, but pretend that the avengers movies were actually documentaries released to the public. (Minus Civil war)

You get to make one example superhero that is in any circumstances you may want, for the sake of the argument.

Pick an avenger to support your cause and testify.

Round 1
To begin, I will enforce that the superhuman registration act, the main focus of Captain America: civil war, is an unjust thing done by incorrect members of the US government. 

There are three major points to this act. 

1.) Superhumans are to reveal their identities to the US government and other important branches deserving of the knowledge, such as SHIELD and the executive branch. 

2.) Superhumans are to avoid civilian casualties and not interfere with military operations. 

3.) Superhumans refusing to sign the act will be considered terrorists and a threat to national security. 

First of all, the US government cannot be directly trusted with the knowledge of superhero's identities. Sure, some never mask their faces and can be identified on regular security cameras, but smaller, poorer others such as spider man deserve anonymity, since they are unable to protect themselves if the government leaks their identities. 

It is one of the common clichés of superhero life when a hero's identity is revealed and their loved ones immediately are endangered. It is a cliché, however, because it is entirely possible. Look at Iron Man. His alter ego is Tony Stark, a famous billionaire with a wife and daughter, a massive, well defended complex, and a penthouse suite in the middle of Manhattan. He can be easily connected to his suit, as he is very obviously one of the only people with the courage and money to make those things possible. 

Then, look at Spider Man. He is a teenage boy who could hardly protect his stuff from being discovered by his aunt. Say, hypothetically, he turned over his identity to the government. The president would obviously learn of the SRA, and would want to know the identities of the defenders of earth. That same president could very easily slip and reveal the identity of an unprotected individual. 

Superheroes' protection is involved in their anonymity. People's protection (against super villains and aliens) relies on superheroes. If a villain got a hero's identity, found their loved ones and used them as hostages/bait/leverage, then superheroes would slowly disappear or do the villain's bidding. They are heroes, they do great things for the world, but they are still very much mortal. Mr. Stark's recent passing proves this. 

Superheroes are vigilantes, but that does not mean that they are inherently bad. They, like the military, would lay down their lives to protect the earth, as well as their own cities and countries. Every single civilian casualty that occurred during major events like the 2012 invasion of New York was the fault of Thanos and Loki. Damages beyond that were simply free movement of the group of people that saved the city, and therefore the earth. If you are at war, and you send a tank battalion to defend your city, you can expect that some of your tanks will bring down houses. This is because it isn't a police operation, it is a war zone. If a military operation is staged to prevent casualties, they will be greatly less efficient than the superheroes that volunteered to fight for them.

Lastly, a quote from shows the true unfairness of this act. 
It was revealed in Amazing Spider-Man #535 that unregistered individuals are sent to a prison in the otherdimensional Negative Zone indefinitely until they agree to register. Iron Man claims that as this is off United States soil, they have almost no civil rights unless the United States Supreme Court explicitly rules otherwise—and he knows they won't. This leads Spider-Man to re-evaluate his support of the act.
(Ignore the links in the quote)
How can this be fair in any way? Is there a waiting period of discovering powers and becoming a vigilante before registering? To enforce this, they would need to have very strong technology that limits superhero's abilities. They would also need to have full control in every country in the world, as well as control of space and sovereign nations.

Lets use our hypothetical superhero for this. A young man living as a monk in the Tibetan mountains received a special gift by achieving something no other monks could achieve. This special gift was the ability to manipulate fire in it's entirety. He can start fires with a thought, as well as snuff them out with the same effort. He can change color, heat, and spread of the fire. He is still learning about his own powers, and has moved down into an even more secluded area to train and practice. In his training, he discovered a ancient rouge monk with the same gift intended to destroy all life in a two hundred mile radius to provide true seclusion. His battle with the rogue monk attracted attention to him, and to avoid revealing his identity to the cameras and people that appeared, he masked himself with fire. 

The superhuman registration act would logically require that this monk reveal their identity to the US government or local authorities. The monk naturally didn't want to, as their identity would connect them to their troubled past again, as well as endanger the relatively defenseless monks at the temple. This could go two ways now. 

1.) The monk is sent to the ethereal prison through some means, and is forced to register themselves to regain their power. An unforeseen secondary villain then appears after this, and with the knowledge of the secret monks in the mountains, destroys their temple and the master. This troubles the monk so greatly that, separated from indirect military help, attempts to take revenge on the villain. Their battle causes a city to be fully destroyed and 100,000 civilian casualties to be wreaked. 

2.) The monk evades capture or stands their ground for long enough for them to not trust the government and turn against them. While on the run, the monk turns against the government and decides to hurt them rather than help them. The unforeseen villain is then free to wreak their own havoc and start a war with the US government that lasts a few years before finishing. 

If the SRA never interfered, the monk would've trained for longer, forseen the villain, and been prepared to defeat them, fighting them in a smaller village and only causing a few hundred casualties.

This is all hypothetical, yet the points stand, and accidental interference from the government will hurt the ability of the superheroes. 
Warning, this obviously will spoil things from the Series


Forgive me, darlings of Earth but if Mr. Stark is dead then surely I am too if we're truly going along the timeline. I suppose I am speaking to you all as a spirit, what a beautiful thing to know those that I assassinated in my training and career exist beyond it... I can't say it's paradise but who the hell was I to ever deserve that?

Gentlemen and ladies, as well as you unique fluid people, let me tell you this... I am not here to advocate something for the sake of some agenda other than peace, love and harmony amongst all. You may ask then, how can someone like me a Russian agent torn apart psychologically and reprogrammed by brutal training to be an android-like being in situations that would make most panic or angry speak of peace, love and harmony? I want you to know what the Avengers were, what supernatural people are and what people like myself; the only truly 'natural human' in terms of physical capabilities of the team, saw and understood about life as a whole and the world. I am not here to talk down to you, rather I want to explore ideas with you, listeners, for you're the only hope the world you're in has left. You're the ones on the stage for now and I've seen things from quite a unique perspective regarding the laws.

I must... make a disclaimer *looks down*... When I say natural human, I am sterilised, or is it was? Since I'm dead and all... gulps,  well yeah I'm glad that's out of the way. It's what they did to us S.H.I.E.L.D agents to complete our training and make us truly accept our life mission as killing machines rather than mothers or anything of the sort. Other than that, I was not a particularly psychopathic girl and words can't describe the love I have for my beloved best friend Clinton Barton, better known as Hawkeye or my estranged sweetheart Doctor Banner, better known as Hulk but best known as Bruce :) I learned of friendship, of deep connections… They were fantastic men who taught me so much and I am sure I taught them too. Even to the bitter end, Hawkeye was fighting to be sacrificed in place of me.

I am… Unsure, who “Con” is, is it Peter Parker the Spider-Man I’m dealing with? He was on our side of the Civil War!... He supported having this enacted alongside us, and he is debating against the Act? That would be disappointing… Stark was very fond of him.

The idea that Con is pushing forth is that instead of trusting elected officials and human intelligence agencies, you’d be better off letting the superhumans rule by a ‘might is right’ mentality where they can stay anonymous, unknown and unguarded against. The idea is that enough of them will be ‘good’ and fight off the ‘evil’ ones. This is very similar to the gun rights debate, one I know a lot about as I’m a trained assassin who understand just how responsible one should be with weapons and what everyone having one could achieve, both good and bad. If we simply let mutants be unmoderated, without restriction and able to hide as they please, guess which kind of superhuman will take advantage of this? The evil ones. Sure, maybe one or two very introverted superhumans who hate the stigma against them or who are embarrassed about their power(s) will dislike it being known who they are and what they can do but that’s the price you pay for safety and harmony in the world.

I stand here telling you that we are your friends, so there’s only two reasons to support Con’s side of the debate:

  1. You’re a corrupt superhuman who wants to stay anonymous to enable you to ruthlessly harm humanity and get away with it.
  2. You’re a naive privacy advocate.

Let’s go a little further with scenario 2. I will explain to you why the Avengers Act is both good and necessary. I was a non-superhuman member of the team so you can point at me and say ‘all that would be on record is you’re a well trained assassin, it’s easy for you to support it’. They wouldn’t be wrong, that’s why I don’t stick to only my perspective on this.

At first, the superhuman beings, Avenger or not, would be able to get by quietly and humbly unbothered about their power as they can usually hide it well (the obvious ones have no choice but to reveal it, which actually supports my side as being fairer on all of them). Slowly, the ones with sinister motive are going to abuse ‘normal humans’ and even inferior or countered superhumans as they please, relishing in their power. Then, you’re going to be screaming, begging for an Avenger group to form and fight them off, protecting you from them and the one thing that would help us most; knowing who the superhuman beastly villains are, is the thing you have not made exposed to both you and us, meaning we’re left in the dark. We’d be more than happy for you to know who we are and to answer to elected, well-regulated officials of the human species. It’s you who want gods and/or demigods like Thor and Loki to have you at their whim and not even have a clue or see them coming.

All must answer to someone in a civilised society. I must answer to my commander and the one at the ‘top’ must answer to the people as a whole and be someone they want in charge. That is precisely what this act would enable. No matter how great our superpower, we are known to you and unable to make an irresponsible move that you don’t know how to counter or which we’ll not be disciplined for if we do manage to pull it off.

Round 2
To begin, my opponent did not address a few key points of my argument that deserve addressing. 
  • What would happen to superheroes that need to hide their identity to keep their loved ones safe?
  • Is there a waiting period between discovering powers and joining the act, or do you go immediately into the negative zone?
  • The entire monk argument, (I would like at least one reason why this is an unreasonable argument and not a realistic, important thing.)
My opponent presented a strongly pathos argument in the last round, and as my highschool debate club taught me, that is the most manipulative way of speaking for when your argument cannot be supported by logic. 

As I stated in a previous argument, my opinion on this act was changed when I discovered of the negative zone and the lack of basic human rights presented there. The negative zone is a other-dimensional Guantanamo bay. Superhumans, no matter what age, are thrown into there until they "decide" to register their identities to the government. 

There are many possible problems that arise when facing this act. These problems all have one thing in common: the government. 

1.) Hydra can easily infiltrate our government. Imagine what would happen if Hydra knew the full identity of me, or Ant man, or Falcon? 

2.) There is a little thing in the government called bureaucracy. This is a well known process that always takes way too long for anything to get done. Imagine the government decides that superheroes need more control beyond the registration act. Imagine if the government puts checks and balances on our powers! We are superhuman. While that doesn't make us gods, (In most cases) it does mean that we should never give control of our actions to any government! Hypothetical time again. Say another big bad comes out and tries to, oh I don't know, eat the earth's core. Now, without the registration act and further acts, the avengers would run in and risk their lives immediately in order to save the earth. But with bureaucracy in the way, we would have to wait for our controllers to get the news, their subordinates to get the news, at least one executive meeting, and then a dispatch to the bad guy. Bureaucracy will hurt superheroes. For an example, look at the invasion of 2012. 

3.) Testing and training. The government, NASA, other governments, they all want to know as much as they possibly can. If we superheroes register ourselves, they will be able to contact us whether we want to or not. In time, they will want to know, out of sheer curiosity, what the hell we are. They will want to see my tech *Shows off webshooter* they will want to take blood samples, and fitness tests, and MRI's. This has multiple problems on its own. 
  • If superhumans spend our time testing, we will not get: free time, privacy, space, home life, etc. We will have to explain to everybody that wants to spend time with us that we are busy nearly 24/7, and they will likely guess what we do when we "can't hang out" (See below argument between bold lines ------------)
  • The tech we use makes the things we do entirely possible. Wakanda's help made it so that the world has access to new, never-before-seen things that will likely catapult us towards the new space age. But what about Kree energy cores, Iron man's suits, Ant man's nanotech, or my webs? Yes, that tech can be helpful, but it can also be very harmful. We don't want a world where battles are carried out exclusively between intentional robots, super soldiers, and hulks. Not to mention the possible issues arising when people start hooking patented SCOTTY(TM) cameras up to flies and spying on their exes, or thousands of other possibilities that can arise from the secrets we hold. 
We can trust the top levels of the government, maybe, but do you think we could ever trust our immediate family when they find out what we can do? We aren't ALL orphans. Some superhumans will have abusive parents, crafty girlfriends, or loudmouth brothers. Imagine getting calls every other day saying that you need to skip school AGAIN to go to another testing site. In order to do this, the people that would need to know would be: Your guardian, your ride, your boss, your coworkers or peers, your SO, your entire moderately extended family, and anybody you need to care for. The government can't just pick all of you up and force you to in a government facility unless you need to fight a war. 

Slowly, the ones with sinister motive are going to abuse ‘normal humans’ and even inferior or countered superhumans as they please, relishing in their power.
And you don't think that somebody on the fence can be pushed into a supervillain role because of the basic want for privacy being violated by the government? If that happens, and the superhuman is powerful, don't you think that some avengers will need to come stop them? I don't want to spend half my time chasing down scared, naïve young adults and teens with powers just to solve problems the government created. 

Think of it like the comic book superhero, batman. He cooperates with one person, commissioner Gordon. Every time Gordon puts up the bat-signal, Batman comes, fully masked and prepared to fight crime. The SRA would work in that situation, at least partially, if superheroes could keep their identity as private as Bruce Wayne's.
[Out of character comments] I just want to say that it's really anti-sportsmanlike behaviour of con to not be roleplaying at all. The description clearly made out that this would be a debate between two characters from Marvel, I figured he'd be Captain America or Hawkeye. This is just a deplorable effort where the very things I did to really make it a convincing act as Black Widow ended up being things he claimed were bad debating strategy. I am roleplaying a convincing heartfelt speech, of course some of it will be emotional.


In character from here on out.


Con seems to be presenting to you a case of heartfelt emotion while accusing me of the very same, saying that his high-school debating coach told him that's used by the side that's lying. See, the entire case of Con boils down to the following erroneous angles:

1. That superhumans are more entitled to secrecy and privacy than the non-superpowered and non-vigilante-trained humans are entitled to protection from them.
2. That superhumans should anonymously rule by 'might is right' and that this is more trustworthy than elected government officials from the non-superhuman human species to keep the world safeguarded.
3. That those that want to know superhumans are going to be more sinister than benevolent in motive.

All three are baseless...

Who is Batman? I don't know him... Is he from another universe maybe? I am from Marvel universe, or so I've been told in the afterlife.

The government should know of the superhuman threats and either tame us or indeed put us down. Just because we feel entitled to privacy doesn't mean you're not entitled to protection. You elected a government and they keep you safeguarded. Sure, it's remotely possible that suddenly a group of really evil and sinister people run the Avengers scheme and recruit to turn us evil etc, yeah this is indeed remotely possible. If the world is so corrupt or unlucky that the very elected government and agencies attached to them are wanting to harm the human species as a whole, that's kind of a doomed scenario no matter what...

A guy like Bruce Banner is a fantastic individual when he's calm but once he's in Hulk mode, if the government and its army lacked data on how to calm him down it could end bad both for him and others (because they'd stop at nothing to kill him or permanently trap him).

It's bad for the superhumans to remain anonymous and suddenly break out or attack. The world and the agencies running/protecting it need to know the difference between a Hulk attack and a Loki attack (the latter being one with malicious intent). They also need to study them and understand how to help protect even the superhumans themselves from others by explaining it to others. Knowledge of who is which kind of superhuman and how to tame/handle them is very essential to keep both superhumans safe from human authorities and humans safe from superhumans. It is win-win.
Round 3
Sorry, I didn't fully intend for this to be a debate between the two superheroes, by roleplay I meant the lawyers representing their causes on the legal ends. The testifying should have meant that the superheroes we represent get a say in things too. I decided to attempt to "Yes-and" what my opponent was saying because I just wanted to avoid confrontation. By the "Yes-and" in the rules, I meant that this is a fictional universe and therefore we would "Yes-and" the hypothetical/real in the universe examples. 

That obviously didn't go as intended, but I jumped in this shit creek so I might as well do some laps. 

[In character]

To begin, Batman is a comic book superhero. I read about him in Stan Lee's comic shop in harlem. 

I want to begin by applauding my opponent and saying that the Hulk-or-Loki attack is a VERY valid point. I want to present a counterargument and a compromise, saying that superheroes that believe in the government's ability to keep secrets or help them could register if they want, and rely on the government to protect them. However, this is not a universal situation, and you cannot generalize the anomalies that we are. 

Con seems to be presenting to you a case of heartfelt emotion while accusing me of the very same, saying that his high-school debating coach told him that's used by the side that's lying
1.) I did not say that your side was lying, I said that it was a side that cannot be supported by logic.
that is the most manipulative way of speaking for when your argument cannot be supported by logic. 
These are not the same things, as Pathos makes up for what Logos cannot attain. I did say it was manipulative, because it is. 

2.) What part of "A kid in highschool can't defend himself without some anonymity" is heartfelt emotion? Haven't you heard of the internet? 
Even now, on the internet, I protect my identify with Usernames, VPNs, and passwords. A superhero would be a celebrity if public. Celebrities protect their identities too. Look at Alan Walker, Marshmello, or any other masked music artists. 

Superheroes are humans too. We deserve privacy and rights equal to humans, even if we have unnatural abilities. Say, a superhero wanted to use their power in  a neutral way, and simply use it to preform on stage. Would it really be logical for the government to force them to register their powers and roll the dice on creating a vagabond, criminal, or villain? 

Many mistakes made by the government and military are covered simply because the people they wronged are powerless. If you accidentally wrong a superhero, (Which could certainly happen during an attempted capture) you can easily make an enemy. 

Not all superheroes have a belief in doing good and only good. When I was working to take down kingpin, the Green Goblin set out a police force hell-bent on killing exclusively me. I became an enemy to the people thanks to Oswald and JJJ. Yet, I wanted good. I wanted to stay on my path and clean up the mess I left when kingpin finally went down. I could've gone for the secret police, I could've forsaken the government and joined AIM or Hydra. Yet, I didn't. 

Not all Superhumans have the same values as me. To my opponent: you are a Russian agent working for SHIELD, correct? That means you have already forsaken one government in favor of another, is it so far to reach that a nuclear superhero could forsake ours? 

There are 137 countries in the world, an they all want to have the upper hand at all times. Superheroes in the unwilling possession of any government will be a danger to mankind greater than the prospect of nuclear war. 

The avengers deserve to be a sovereign group. They have geniuses in charge, strict rules for noobs, and moral codes. We have done nothing but lay down our lives for the city, world, and universe we live in. 

In the words of star-lord, we want to save the universe because we're the freaking idiots who live in it. 

And if you finally decide that this movement deserves to be passed, I just want to simply say: 

Have fun trying to control Captain Marvel. 
You should watch out with remaining anonymous on this site with VPN, or there'll be nothing at all to distinguish you from another user using the same VPN service. I think that's a brilliant analogy to end this off with, thanks for bringing it up.

There is this notion that in a world of revealed superpowers only the corrupt will stay hidden and very hidden indeed, much like gun rights as I alluded to in my first Round. The problem with this defeatist attitude is that is presumes you would never be able to truly have a loyal, benevolent group of superhumans serving humanity as a whole. After all, it would take only one or two very efficient psychic-powered people to be for your side to help expose very many hiding superhumans. The thing is you assume inability, inefficiency and all this but it would of course be done. The reason it is fairly obvious how efficient that it would be done is that you're most afraid of just how powerfully it would be done. I notice that the case made by you, mysterious lawyer, is that you come from a stance of 'everyone is out to get everyone but we should assume that anonymous supervillains won't outsmart and outfight anonymous superheroes'. This is hilarious, I hope you understand that I've proven this concept thoroughly self-defeating throughout. You need to expose all superhumans and well-trained non superhumans that are either going to be a force protecting the world or... Eliminated. Indeed, there would be war involved. You need to eliminate threats at times but it's very important no resources are wasted and no superpowered heroes on a Hulk-like rampage are taken as 'threats' of any long-term kind and instead correctly calmed down and made to love humans, even through peer pressure from their fellow revealed Avenger Heroes.

You talk as if we are to trust that all secret superhumans will form an Avengers-like group and protect their people. Yeah... That aint gonna happy, hon. Pretty blatant why, considering how malicious you fear a non-superhuman elected government being... Not everyone is a good guy.