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Oppressive Cultures: Take Action or Leave Alone?


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#1    AztecInca

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Posted 19 September 2005 - 10:13 AM

Debate suggestion by Stellar.

Should oppressive cultures be allowed to thrive, not interfered with or should they be denounced with action taken against them for their oppressive practices?

I`m looking for two members to debate this topic. One member will debate that they should be allowed to "thrive" and left alone, and one will debate that they should be denounced with action taken against them for their oppressive actions.

This is a formal, 1v1 debate. Each debater will post one introduction, five body posts and one conclusion. Posts will need to be made within 7 days of the last reply.

If there are any questions, please PM myself or Lottie.

Edited by Lottie, 29 November 2005 - 09:49 AM.


#2    Paranoid Android

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Posted 19 September 2005 - 11:50 PM

Yeah why not.  I'll take this debate.  I'll argue that we should leave the culture alone.



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#3    AztecInca

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Posted 20 September 2005 - 01:09 AM

Thank-you PA.

Paranoid Android will be debating against interfering with oppressive cultures.

We need one more member to debate for interfering with oppressive cultures.


#4    thebarman

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Posted 23 September 2005 - 09:56 AM

I would like to register my interest in this debate (with a view to making it more interesting than my last one  disgust.gif  ) however, as some of you may know I only have internet access at work and am out of the office all of next week. This means it would be October 3rd at the earliest that I could next post.

Therefore I ask that should someone else wish to debate that it start without me, however if no one wishes to before October then I shall post upon my return.

Many thanks  thumbsup.gif

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#5    AztecInca

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Posted 24 September 2005 - 03:28 AM

Very well barman. If no one else registers to debate this topic before October 3 then you will be debating for interfering with oppressive cultures.


#6    Novo

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Posted 30 September 2005 - 03:20 AM

*waves hand* Me teacher Me!
However if barman really wants this one I'll let him have it.

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#7    thebarman

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Posted 30 September 2005 - 08:16 AM

No it's OK, it's all yours. I'm back early but I'm off to another clients soon and I don't want to hold back the debate, all yours Novo  thumbsup.gif

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#8    AztecInca

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Posted 01 October 2005 - 05:51 AM

Thank-you Novo.

Novo will be debating for interfering with oppressive cultures
Paranoid Android will be debating against interfering with oppressive cultures.

Just a quick reminder that this is a formal, 1v1 debate. Each debater will post one introduction, five body posts and one conclusion. Posts will need to be made within 7 days of the last reply.

Any questions please feel free to PM myself or Lottie!



#9    Paranoid Android

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Posted 03 October 2005 - 03:49 AM

It looks like Iíll be starting off.  Firstly Iíd like to wish Novo well on this debate.  As this is my first debate, Iíll probably need it more than him though tongue.gif

Introduction
This debate is not about whether we should interfere in other cultures or not, it's about who is right and who is wrong.  How can one say someone is wrong, except to infer that they are right!  In this debate, I shall be arguing that we should not interfere in oppressive cultures.  I will argue first the relativity of what it means to be "oppressive".  I will examine, through psychological analysis, the mentality behind the need to interfere in other cultures, oppressive or otherwise.  Then, through a study of history - of dominant cultures imposing their ideals on others, of minority cultures rising up against the dominant, and also of subcultures within one's own society - it will become apparent that interference, no matter how pure the motives, has irrevocably changed the culture, often to its detriment.  

Once again, good luck Novo.  Over to you.

Regards, PA

Edited by Paranoid Android, 03 October 2005 - 03:52 AM.

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#10    Novo

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Posted 06 October 2005 - 02:21 AM

Introduction
Oh but to the contary friend, That is precisely what this debate is about. Where as "Right" and "Wrong" are merely concepts wich differ from culture to culture. Oppression is the enforcement of ones belief unwillingly on another individual. To simply invade a country because they allow, say gay marriage would be contradictory because there is no one being oppressed. However if say there was a culture where all african americans were forced to do menial labor tasks and not allowed opportunitys on a equal playing field action against this purported "oppressive" culture can be justified. What you speak of is the enforcement of differing moral ideaologies, What  am trying to justify is the interferrence in the soveriengity(sp) of another nation based on "Oppression" not a different merely a different belief or value system.
Good luck.

The stupider people think you are, the more suprised they are when you kill them.
- Unknown


History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people.
-Martin Luthur king Jr, activist


Never forget that everything Hitler did in Germany was legal.
- Martin luthur King Jr., activist

#11    Paranoid Android

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Posted 11 October 2005 - 03:14 AM

Post 1 - the subjective nature of being "oppressive"

The concept of tolerance is a fairly new belief, which today pervades Western thought.  Looking therefore at cultures that happen to be less tolerant, or even intolerant of something or someone is often anathema to this outlook.  We certainly do not have a tolerant past.  
What does it mean to be "oppressive"?

The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary gives this definition:  

QUOTE(Oxford Dictionary)
1. Of the nature of oppression; unjustly burdensome, harsh, or merciless.
2. Characterized by oppressing, disposed to oppress.
3. Having the quality of oppressing or weighing heavily on the mind, spirits, or senses; depressing; overpowering


Of similar note, "Oppress" has many definitions.  The definition most relevant to this debate is:

QUOTE(Oxford Dictionary)
4. To keep under by tyrannical exercise of power; to load or burden with cruel or unjust impositions or restraints


It seems fairly simple, right?  An oppressive culture is one that uses tyrannical power to impose on a group in some fashion.  The problem with this is that the answer is determined by each individual's sense of right and wrong - a thoroughly subjective concept.  What is tyrannical oppression?  To draw from a banal example, imagine for a moment that a woman walks outside wearing a medium-length skirt (or perhaps shorts) and tank top.  Now imagine if a woman walks outside in the 1920ís wearing the same clothesÖ *shock!* *horror!* SHE'S SHOWING ANKLE!!!! I guess our recent past was very oppressive - you can certainly make that argument.  But you can also argue that it was simply the convention of the times, a phase which society needed to progress through to reach its current state of "enlightenment" (though "enlightenment" is also a debatable and subjective term, but that's for another argument methinks tongue.gif).  Would interference have been helpful, or even wanted?    

Back to the present and we see something similar in Muslim culture.  A woman must wear the hajib out in public.  Is this being oppressive?  Women are clearly being treated differently to men.  Some will say that this is being oppressive.  Some will say not.  Whatever the case, it must be handled with care - for where does liberation of oppression end, and the encroaching on freedom of religious expression start?

QUOTE(Novo)
Oppression is the enforcement of ones belief unwillingly on another individual. To simply invade a country because they allow, say gay marriage would be contradictory because there is no one being oppressed.


To interfere in a culture is to become as oppressive as the culture in which you are liberating.  Using the aforementioned definition of oppress as "to press down by force", how can interfering in another culture be considered anything less than this?

This debate is more in the line that if a country does NOT allow gay marriages, should they be invaded?  There is clearly an oppressed group.  You seem to be saying yes.  At this stage of cultural development, very few countries allow gay marriages - should they all be invaded (or liberated if you will)?  

Over to you Novo

Ö

Edited by Paranoid Android, 11 October 2005 - 03:22 AM.

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#12    AztecInca

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Posted 17 October 2005 - 05:30 AM

Just a reminder Novo that by the end of tomorrow it will have been 7 days since the last post in this debate and points will have to be deducted from your final score.

Please let myself or Lottie know if you are enable to post.


#13    AztecInca

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Posted 22 October 2005 - 06:24 AM

Novo has informed both myself and lottie that he will be unable to post within the alloted time and as he has a valid reason, he will not be penalised.


#14    Novo

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Posted 23 October 2005 - 02:29 AM

Post 1 -

Quote

The concept of tolerance is a fairly new belief

Actually, While it may be new to western thought the concept of tolerance has been around for millenia. A excellent example of this is Bhuddism a religion based almost centrally on a belief in tolerance. During its peak a miniumum of 70% of the population of Asia were followers of Bhuddism.(However dont forget to take into account that the population of the continent of Asia has more then Quadrupled since this time)

Quote

(Oxford Dictionary)
4. To keep under by tyrannical exercise of power; to load or burden with cruel or unjust impositions or restraints

I have learned from experience, That it is very easy for a definition to be taken out of context. Not to mention, That many words have very different meanings to different people. However I'm in agreement with the context the definition of this word is being used in, So I will neglect expanding upon it. Rather, I will show how you are misinterpreting it.


Quote

Oppression is the enforcement of ones belief unwillingly on another individual. To simply invade a country because they allow, say gay marriage would be contradictory because there is no one being oppressed.


To interfere in a culture is to become as oppressive as the culture in which you are liberating. Using the aforementioned definition of oppress as "to press down by force", how can interfering in another culture be considered anything less than this?


Lets look back at the definition of Oppression.

Quote

(Oxford Dictionary)
4. To keep under by tyrannical exercise of power; to load or burden with cruel or unjust impositions or restraints

Well in the case of something like Homosexuality in the united states, There is not tyrannical force or sadistic punishment being used to afflict this group. While there are certainly twisted individuals within the social structure of the united states whom would violently attack a homosexual, the majority of Americans are apthetic to the situation.
But kets look at a country like Iran. Iranians regulary hang and torture homosexuals, Using "Tyrannical Force" To oppress this group. These people can not petition for equal rights, Because there voices are being oppressed with the use of force. Hence interference could be justified. The oppressers would not simply change hands if the purpose of the violent actions against this state were truly motivated by a belief in equal human rights and helping a oppressed people. However, We dont see this in examples such as Afghanistan and Iraq. Both are wars justified by claims in liberating a people, But in reality economic and power related motivations.


Using something such as fashion is completely out of context, The concept of peer pressure differs greatly from the violent or "Tyrannical" oppression we see in some cultures .
Slavery for example, Went on for several centuries in the United States. Countries such as Canada evantually began harboring runaway slaves, And over time the country was divided and a civil war was fought over the matter. Had Canada avoided interfering, And returned the slaves to the United States then most probably the slave populace of the country at that time would never have gained the support from other individuals it required to relinquish itself of the bonds placed on it by other individuals.
I suppose the point im trying to convery, Is that circumstances like women dressing differently are completely different from circumstances like women being beheaded for it. The woman can still feel safe in doing it. Hence she is not being oppressed, Simply mocked.

Edited by Novo, 23 October 2005 - 06:42 PM.

The stupider people think you are, the more suprised they are when you kill them.
- Unknown


History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people.
-Martin Luthur king Jr, activist


Never forget that everything Hitler did in Germany was legal.
- Martin luthur King Jr., activist

#15    AztecInca

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Posted 25 October 2005 - 01:01 AM

Paranoid Android has informed myself that he may not be able to post within the 7 day time-limit and has provided a valid reason so he shall not be penalised.
The debate will go on.

PA has now informed me the he will post by the end of wednesday.

Edited by AztecInca, 08 November 2005 - 11:38 PM.





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