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 Courtney's Negative

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Courtney Gray

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Number of posts : 17
Age : 26
Registration date : 2007-12-01

PostSubject: Courtney's Negative   Mon Oct 27, 2008 9:50 pm

Hello, my name is Courtney Gray and I will be the negative speaker for this debate round. I would like to start off my case with an illustration.
An elephant is placed in a large cage. Three blindfolded men are given the task of reaching into the cage to touch this animal and make an educated guess about what it is. The first man reaches in and grabs its trunk and concludes it must be a very large snake. The second man reaches in and feels the solid stomach and concludes it must be a rhino.
The final man reaches in and feels the small swishing tail and believes it must be a cow.
All three of these men were faced with the same reality but came to a different conclusion. Using this analogy I would like to present the thesis or big idea of my case and that is we must equally value idealism and pragmatism to ensure the truth.

My value for this round is truth, which is defined as “the quality or state of being true” and true is defined as “in accordance with fact; that agrees with reality; not false”(Webster's New World College Dictionary, 4th Ed)

C1- Ideals do not always reflect truth
Truth is needed to discern what is true in a given situation. Truth does not change, it is absolute, however human experience and circumstances can influence how a person interprets truth. Because it is possible to formulate ideals that do not reflect truth, but rather a human agenda. An example of this is found in the ideal of communism, the belief that all men should share their assets equally in order to secure a “perfect” society. Although this philosophical ideal sounds noble it did not balance practice with truth. When put into practice the truth that all men are inherently sinful was exposed through the pragmatic actions of those who attempted to achieve this ideal. We must consistently balance idealism with pragmatic evaluation. This leads me in to my second contention.

C2-We must equally value idealism and pragmatism

In order to more consistently determine truth we must equally value idealism and pragmatism to ensure that truth is upheld. An illustration of a perfect balance is found in the simple workings of a slingshot. There must be two equal opposing forces to ensure the success of this tool. One hand holds the base while the other is pulling back the cord. If either hand were to be removed or not functioning correctly, then the slingshot would not work. The tension between what is experienced as real through our senses must always be balanced against the truth of an ideal. It is only then that we can discern the absolute truth and what is best.

I would like to close my case with a quote peppered with action words from John F. Kennedy who once said, “It is from numberless diverse acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped. Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.”
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James C.

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Number of posts : 39
Age : 25
Registration date : 2008-09-18

PostSubject: Re: Courtney's Negative   Fri Nov 07, 2008 1:31 pm

Quote :
Hello, my name is Courtney Gray and I will be the negative speaker for this debate round. I would like to start off my case with an illustration.
An elephant is placed in a large cage. Three blindfolded men are given the task of reaching into the cage to touch this animal and make an educated guess about what it is. The first man reaches in and grabs its trunk and concludes it must be a very large snake. The second man reaches in and feels the solid stomach and concludes it must be a rhino.
The final man reaches in and feels the small swishing tail and believes it must be a cow.
All three of these men were faced with the same reality but came to a different conclusion. Using this analogy I would like to present the thesis or big idea of my case and that is we must equally value idealism and pragmatism to ensure the truth.

My value for this round is truth, which is defined as “the quality or state of being true” and true is defined as “in accordance with fact; that agrees with reality; not false”(Webster's New World College Dictionary, 4th Ed)

C1- Ideals do not always reflect truth
Truth is needed to discern what is true in a given situation. Truth does not change, it is absolute, however human experience and circumstances can influence how a person interprets truth. Because it is possible to formulate ideals that do not reflect truth, but rather a human agenda. An example of this is found in the ideal of communism, the belief that all men should share their assets equally in order to secure a “perfect” society. Although this philosophical ideal sounds noble it did not balance practice with truth. When put into practice the truth that all men are inherently sinful was exposed through the pragmatic actions of those who attempted to achieve this ideal. We must consistently balance idealism with pragmatic evaluation. This leads me in to my second contention. Does being pragmatic really allow you to evaluate truth any better? After all, if men had truly been practical, they would have shared in the communist system, and everyone would have gotten along. Pragmatism merely extends whatever ideal you are using. If that ideal is true, then pragmatism acts on true ideal, if its not, then pragmatism just acts on an untrue ideal.

C2-We must equally value idealism and pragmatism

In order to more consistently determine truth we must equally value idealism and pragmatism to ensure that truth is upheld. An illustration of a perfect balance is found in the simple workings of a slingshot. There must be two equal opposing forces to ensure the success of this tool. One hand holds the base while the other is pulling back the cord. If either hand were to be removed or not functioning correctly, then the slingshot would not work. The tension between what is experienced as real through our senses must always be balanced against the truth of an ideal. It is only then that we can discern the absolute truth and what is best. Couldn't the two opposing forces be two ideals? Wound't they most likely be two ideals? After all, as I said, pragmatism has no inherent qualities. It merely practically acts on whichever ideal you choose. if your ideal is to pull the slingshot one way, then you will pragmatically do so.

I would like to close my case with a quote peppered with action words from John F. Kennedy who once said, “It is from numberless diverse acts of courage and belief that human history is shaped. Each time a man stands up for an ideal, or acts to improve the lot of others, or strikes out against injustice, he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope, and crossing each other from a million different centers of energy and daring, those ripples build a current that can sweep down the mightiest walls of oppression and resistance.”
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PostSubject: Re: Courtney's Negative   Tue Nov 11, 2008 3:31 pm

What exactly was your point in using the elephant illistration. I didn't really hook it up with anything.

Question: Do all people have the same veiw on what truth is?

If people don't have the same veiw on truth how then can you uphold the value of truth which shifts depending on each person's different veiw?

I thought this might be something to consider, and look forward to your answer.

Swimmer Dude
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