Since the time of fire, man has had arguments – rare or well done? Of course, arguments depend on your point of view, or in the case of husbands and wives, what the wife thinks. Some arguments are never-ending. Over the centuries, there have been some doozies that have kept philosophy students and teachers debating.
To be included on this list of Arguments That Can’t Be Won, the argument must have no clear answer that cannot be countered with another opposing view.
Disclaimer: TopTenz.net is in no way trying to lead you to think in one way or another. We are only trying to present the arguments in a meaningful context.
Evolution or Creation?
Theologists and scientists have been arguing this one for centuries as well. The argument goes back to the time when organized religion was almost as powerful as the monarchies ruling countries. When people starting postulating that the Earth was not the center of the universe, it gave way to the rise in questioning the idea of a seven-day creation and God’s role in creating the Earth. Enter Darwin and his Theory of Evolution and the debate truly kicks off with an unholy fevered pitch. Add in that there are many stories of creation across many different religions and your brain can really start to hurt.
Nature vs. Nurture
Does how you are raised affect your views as an adult more than what your genetic codes dictate? If your family has always been carpenters, are you destined to be a carpenter because of your genes or because of your familial upbringing? When identical twins are separated at birth and grow up to have identical tastes is that an argument that it has more to do with nature than nurture? However, is it nature to love spicy food, when that’s all that your family and friends eat?
It’s not guns that kill people, it’s the bullets. In America, citizens have a right to bear arms, which has proven to be dangerous for many other citizens and police over the centuries since the country’s birth. On the other hand, large portions of the gun-toting population are careful citizens who have never crossed the law. Why should one group’s rights to bear arms be stripped away because another group feels unsafe? Or why should they be allowed to bear those weapons of death among a land of peaceful citizens?
Dr. Kevorkian helped many people commit suicide due to their health conditions and their desires. His motives were questioned because all life is supposedly precious, but his patients wanted to move on from their frail existence. What if those patients didn’t have a say and we had the opportunity to choose whether they live in agony or die in peace by not giving them medication or a procedure? What is the better option?
The Death Penalty
Centuries ago, the prevalent rule of thumb was an eye for an eye, or in some cases, a life for a life. So the question becomes have we advanced far enough in our social and political structures to ban the death penalty? Or when is the death penalty justifiable? Is the death penalty appropriate for an accidental homicide? How about for a mass murderer?
Abortion or Pro-life?
Does a woman have the right to control her body by ending a life inside her? When is a fetus truly alive? Is all life truly precious? What happens when a woman is raped and becomes pregnant – is that life still precious? There may never be answers to these questions; however, the government has helped us out many times by entering its own opinion whether the pro-lifers like it or not.
Free will or Destiny?
The free will or destiny argument stems back to the Christian doctrine that God is omniscient and has seen everything that will happen. So if God can see everything that happens, is it free will or destiny that makes you choose to continue reading? Some have argued that God knows you will read this but you still have a choice. However, if the path is already apparent to one being, then the path has already been decided for you. However, that directly contradicts our everyday actions where we constantly make decisions – is something, a destiny foreseen by God, guiding us or are we truly free of the strictures of destiny?
Morals – Relative or Universal?
Like the question of gun control, whether ethics being morally relative or universal comes down to whether the good of the one outweighs the good of the many. If it is fine to sleep with another man’s wife in one society but not in another, then the problem is that the morals are relative to the society or person. But why wouldn’t it be universal that it is wrong to sleep with another man’s wife or woman’s husband in any society? Why is it OK to speed, when it is breaking the law? Shouldn’t breaking any law be just as wrong? If you would never steal a person’s purse, why would you pirate a DVD?
The chicken or the egg?
Perhaps one of the most fun arguments on this list, the chicken or the egg debate has raged for centuries mainly because it asks the questions does the animal evolve and then reproduce or was it hatched? That debate can then be transferred to our own existence, which leads into the argument of Evolution or Creation.
Does God Exist?
Since the dawn of recorded time, there have been people trying to prove that there is a higher being or beings that have caused the worlds and its creation. Organized religion comes down to having faith that there is a higher being and a place to go after death. Most people, if not already deeply religious in their life, find religion and start believing as they near their twilight years because they want to believe there is somewhere to go and someone to be with. So the question is how do you prove that god, in which ever religion you believe, exists?