ForumsWEPRTHE GREAT DEBATES! (Rd. 6 Results)

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Moegreche
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Moegreche
3,572 posts
Duke

Some of you may remember The Great Debates thread from years past. Some thought it was fun, and some thought it was just too heavy.

So I thought I'd bring things back, but with a twist! The basic idea is still the same: two users will debate on a topic. The difference is that you won't get to pick the topic or which side you'll be arguing for.

Oh, and I almost forgot - the topics are going to be somewhat ... silly But that doesn't mean your argument has to be silly. In fact, if you can defend your silly point in a serious way, you might just earn yourself a merit! So it's not about winners or losers, it's about whether you can argue for, well, just about anything!

RULES:

- I will provide three possible topics for debate. If you'd like to participate, then you can SIGN-UP HERE in the Art, Music, and Writing forum: click here

- Once 6 people (at least for now) have signed up for the current three topics, the signup thread will close and the debates will begin

- Assignments will be given on this thread (who will be debating for which topic and what side).
**NOTE** You are signing up to play. Which topic you get and what side you'll be arguing for will be decided randomly. So be prepared!

- You will only have 1 post in which to give your argument, so make it count! Keep in mind that your argument should stand on its own. So don't quote your opponent and just shoot down their arguments. But you should also anticipate potential objections and try to respond to them.

- Merit-earners will present well-reasoned and genuine arguments in favour of their position - even in the face of some pretty silly topics. What that means is that, if users on opposite sides each give great arguments, they would both earn merits!

- A loosely enforced time limit (which has yet to be officially established) will be in place. Once that time limit is reached, the next round will begin.

Good luck! And let the return of The Great Debates begin!

  • 224 Replies
Ishtaron
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Ishtaron
359 posts
Jester

@akshobhya

The evidence that humans are superior to all other organisms is all around us. Our cities are made out of alloys and silicate compounds no other creature can produce. They were built with tools that augment human abilities to far beyond that of any other living creature. No other creature could even begin to compare to humans when the very building blocks of our society far surpass anything other animals have access to.

R2D21999
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R2D21999
18,314 posts
Templar

@HahiHa

Well I suppose you're right about babies only learning morals through experience and not emotions.

However, let me bring up a point you made on your post from the last page. You said that robots are incapable of having a conscience. However, according to the definition of conscience:

: the part of the mind that makes you aware of your actions as being either morally right or wrong

: a feeling that something you have done is morally wrong

Merriam-Webster

Now let's go back to my last post, I've said and even shown an article that one day a robot will be able to observe a classroom of children and study the actions of children. However, we all know that there will be a few bad children in the class. So what do you think will happen to the child? Well they'll probably be put in time-out. The robot through it's studying of emotions(most likely the child will cry, look sad, etc) will understand that it's a bad thing to do And how about a good child? Let's say that another child answered a question right and was rewarded a piece of candy. The robot will understand that it's a good thing to do(Child will probably smile, get excited, etc.).

However, let's bring up a different point from the last paragraph but ultimately giving the same answer. Let's make this a Robocop type thing where the person programming the android gave it a set of rules for it to follow in it's programming.(Can't harm people, can't destroy, etc.) And if the robot is able to break the rules and it seems as if it's going to break a rule, a safety measure can be put in to internally destroy the robot automatically. Technology is growing so it wouldn't be impossible to pull a feat like that.

And apologies for the misunderstanding. It seemed you were trying to implement the thought that animals should not have rights.

HahiHa
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HahiHa
7,751 posts
Grand Duke

@R2D21999

The definition you cited is correct, but addresses only moral conscience. Other parts include what is likely more aptly termed consciousness. However moral conscience is probably the easiest part to mock with algorithms.

I am not certain your Robocop example helps your case. Not only is the android restricted to a set of rules in the same way every single computer and smartphone is working nowadays, but once it gains the ability to break those rules (probably due to a bug) you propose to destroy it? If it was protected by human rights, this course of action would be a blatant breach of those very rights. You would be treating it as an object and not a person.

Now, I have a question for you. Why, exactly, do you think do we humans have rights to protect us?

akshobhya
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akshobhya
4,921 posts
Justiciar

Sorry guys that I have not posted my debate here since the start. I have been very busy since the past couple of days. The work that I am doing is making me skip meals and is also starting to take toll on my sleep. But I am writing a debate in a document in the computer and I am not finding time to completely complete it. The new rule says that if I do not post here in 3 days, I would be out for this time. So, Moe, what will be the deadline for me to post my debate here? It would be very difficult for me if it is within this week. But if I had time till the weekend, it would be great and I will certainly have a big message up here by this weekend. But, if my deadline is within the week, please do not break rules because of one person and I will bbs time and will somehow try to squeeze some time from other activities in order to post here. So if my deadline for my first post is within the week, since I can post in parts, I would try to post a small first part and post a big debate in the weekend, only if my deadline is within the week. I think I atleast got lucky enough to get half an hour of free time and this relieved me for today and I could find some time to post here. if my last day to first post here is in the weekend, I will certainly have my entire debate up here....
And @Ishtaron while comparing, one has to consider some common traits in order to find out the better among the two.And the examples that you have given is tough to be compared, based on the topic .But I will be sure to put a counteract in my upcoming debate.
So, this should be it for now, but more to come further..... So I am going back to the desk... But I do see that the other topics are doing good and the debate is going on excellently and the new rule of having more than one post is proving to make the counteracts more tough and I feel that I this will also make the judging a bit more tough!!!!

R2D21999
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R2D21999
18,314 posts
Templar

@HahiHa

I believe it's to identify us as humans.

Zophia
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Zophia
9,453 posts
Bard

So why is it better to be a dog than a bird?

On average across the species, dogs are larger and less likely to be eaten. That alone is a pretty big advantage. Now, both dogs and birds have a lot of subspecies and it would be very difficult to cover all of them, so I'm going to examine the case of the pet mutt and the pet budgie, both owned by a competent owner.

The dog would most likely be engaged more by its owner than the bird. The dog would definitely get engaged more by other humans than the bird, although the bird might make for a more interesting conversation piece. That doesn't really benefit the bird, though.
The dog would also be allowed more space to move around in, maybe including a dog park, while the bird at most gets to fly around the house or a large voliere, assuming its wings have not been clipped.
The dog might be allowed on the human furniture, such as the delightfully soft bed. The bird will likely spend a lot, if not most, of its time in a relatively small cage.

I'm going to leave it at this for now even if it is very short, as I'd like to see what direction @apldeap123 wants to take the discussion before I decide what other angles I want to go over.

JACKinbigletters
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JACKinbigletters
9,521 posts
Templar

Nuclear power plants are unacceptably unsafe.
Nuclear power technology is only getting safer and safer, if it were to be used on such a massive scale of every developed country the technology and procedures would move forward in leaps and bounds.
***ushima was an old plant, and the latest generation of nuclear reactor designs are much less likely to meltdown. In addition, earthquakes and tsunamis of the sort that caused the ***ushima disaster are much less common in Europe and America. The plant itself had multiple safety issues before anything even happened. In the initial construction of the plant, in 1966, there were changes to the emergency cooling system that was against regulations even at the time. This lead to the reactors not being able to activate the back-up cooling system, which condensing the steam from the pressure vessel into water to be used for cooling the reactor. In 1976 ***ushima was central to a falsified-records scandal that disclosed previously unreported problems which led to a fuel leak leading it to close down all 17 of it's reactors. On 30 October 1991, one of two backup generators of Reactor 1 failed, after flooding in the reactor's basement. Seawater used for cooling leaked into the turbine building from a corroded pipe and an engineer was quoted as saying that he informed his superiors and of the possibility that a tsunami could damage the generators. A 2008 in-house study identified an immediate need to better protect the facility from flooding by seawater. This study mentioned the possibility of tsunami-waves up to 10.2 metres (33 ft). Headquarters officials insisted that such a risk was unrealistic and did not take the prediction seriously. The Active Fault and Earthquake Research Center urged officials to review their assumptions of possible tsunami heights however this was also ignored. Even the location of the plant was dangerous as Japan has be victim of many earthquakes in it's past, these earthquakes could have, and subsequently did damage it's power-plants. All things considered the plant was in danger from the beginning but not from being a nuclear power plant but from human error, the same mistake could have happened to any other form of power plant, imagine if the same mistakes were made with a dam/hydroelectric plant, the following destruction would be absolute.
Chernobyl was way back in 1986 and was the result of a flawed reactor design that was operated with inadequately trained personnel. the accident was caused by violations of operating rules and regulations. "During preparation and testing of the turbine generator under run-down conditions using the auxiliary load, personnel disconnected a series of technical protection systems and breached the most important operational safety provisions for conducting a technical exercise." During the time of accident key security measures were turned off and personal willingly ignored regulations to quickly finish a running test. On the subject of the disconnection of safety systems, Valery Legasov said, in 1987, "It was like airplane pilots experimenting with the engines in flight." Chernobyl was also a soviet designed reactor, meaning it was basically irrelevant to any western reactors.
In the Three Miles there were no injuries or adverse health effects from the Three Mile Island accident. It was also nearly 35 years ago, and as I've stated before the technology since then has immensely progressed. The fault here was through improper cleaning measures within the facility.

big ugly mines have to be made
Much of the uranium is in the ocean and needs no mining to get to it. And these mines create employment and are mainly not in any developed areas, mainly in the wilds of one country or another. Plus Uranium mines today aim for zero emissions of any pollutants.
and the earth only has so much uranium
In 2011, due to increased exploration, known uranium-235 resources have grown by 12.5% since 2008. Yes there is only so much but we are still finding more and more of it. There is 160,000 years worth of natural uranium in total conventional land resources and phosphate ore and there is another 30,000-60,000 years of the stuff in the ocean that we know of now. Thorium, an often overlooked alternative to U-238 in breeder reactors, is several times(about 3 to 4) more abundant in Earth's crust than all isotopes of uranium combined, with the only natural thorium isotope thorium-232 being several hundred times more abundant than uranium-235. If nuclear fusion ever became possible, and with the support of every developed nation is possible the two main cycles, the deuterium + lithium fusion fuel cycle and the deuterium + deuterium burn cycle, 60 million years is the estimated supply lifespan of the first and 150 billion years of fuel for the second.
or environmentally friendly.
The OECD have also calculated that with fast breeder reactors such as the BN-800 and conceptual Integral Fast Reactor, which has a closed nuclear fuel cycle with a burn up of, and recycling of, all the uranium, plutonium and minor actinides; actinides which presently make up the most hazardous substances in nuclear waste, there is 160,000 years worth of natural uranium in total conventional land resources and phosphate ore. We already have nuclear reactors that deal with their own waste.

Nuclear power offers few benefits above sources such as solar power
Solar power can only be built in areas that have suitable amounts of sunlight to make them economically feasible plus the size needed for the solar farms is huge, some countries can't afford the space required, geothermal plants need to be in areas of tectonic movement to access the magma many countries don't have access to these, hydroelectric plants need areas of sufficient kinetic energy from water and space in case flooding is necessary losing huge areas of land, wind energy is ineffective in many areas and multiple wind turbines to compensate for their low energy yield. However nuclear power plants can effectively be built anywhere.

*Cracks knuckles with a wolfish grin* Let's drop some arguments on this topic!

It's safe. As I've said multiple times so far the technology for nuclear power plants is only getting safer and safer, workers are getting more and more educated in proper procedures. If the worlds developed countries pooled resources and research into their new nuclear power plants then they would only get more effective, safer and more efficient. A 2001 study by the Paul Scherrer Institute in Switzerland found that, between 1970 and 1992, nuclear power had the best safety record of all major energy sources, both in terms of total deaths and deaths per terawatt of energy produced each year. The results for the top four sources were coal: 6,400 total deaths, 342 deaths per terawatt per year; hydro power: 4,000 total deaths, 884 deaths per terawatt per year; natural gas: 1,200 total deaths, 85 deaths per terawatt per year; nuclear power: 31 total deaths, 8 deaths per terawatt per year. Since the 31 years since the Three Mile Island incident there have been any emergencies in the US that remotely come near the severity of the incident. There are more safety features at the plants, plant personnel are better trained, and reactors have been redesigned so that accidents are far less likely to occur. For instance, every U.S. plant has an on-site control-room simulator where employees can hone their skills and handle simulated emergencies, and plant workers spend one week out of every six in the simulator or in the classroom.

Climate change So far the use of gas, oil, peat and coal are massively damaging to the environment, causing huge amounts of pollution and contributing to the rapid climate change occurring through carbon dioxide production, something nuclear power does not create. As I have stated in my counter argument we already have ways of using nuclear power without creating any toxic waste materials. The only pollution from these plants are heat and noise, both dissipate quickly and easily. It also doesn't create acid rain, destroying many above-ground limestone areas.

Self-sustainability A country that is in control of it's own energy production means it has fewer exploitable weaknesses from outside forces. Take Russia as an example, it feeds massive amounts of electricity into Eastern Europe meaning that Eastern Europe is at a disadvantage in relations with pressure coming from Russia.

Production It's 24/7, round the clock energy production, not effected by wind speed or solar intensity or even the strength of the tides and in the cold depth of winter it is reliable. It can be fine tuned to peaks and wallows of energy demand with ease and means little energy is wasted. New reactors are also more efficient in their production meaning that less goes in and more comes out for less green-backed dollars. More stable and efficient energy production means the electricity bill at the end of every month is reduced meaning you can spend your money on things you want. And heck who doesn't want cheaper electricity? In England Nuclear energy is the cheapest form of electricity (92.50/MWH) besides from fossil fuels (55.05/MWH) and in new plans they hope to bring that down to 77/MWH, drastically cutting electricity bills.

Society The world we live in has told us that nuclear plants are extremely dangerous places, plenty of movies have not helped this false idea. Yes Chernobyl happened, yes ***ushima happened, yes Three Mile Island happened. They happened, but so did world war I and II and the cold war and so many other things but we learned from those things and and made things better, safer.

Potential Two words. Nuclear fusion. With that technology we could solve all our energy needs from developed to developing nations, the entire world could be supplied with this form of nuclear energy. Just imagine it, a world were energy wasn't a problem. Where everyone had a constant supply of energy all over the globe without any environmental dangers. What a world to live in eh? One step toward a utopia.

akshobhya
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akshobhya
4,921 posts
Justiciar

I finally found some time I will have the First Part of my debate by today!

akshobhya
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akshobhya
4,921 posts
Justiciar

@Ishtaron.

Here is the First Part of my Debate. And every statement that I have made has some kind of proof along with it.

Let me start off this – Any living creature on this earth which exhibits metabolic activities is known as an organism. Let my Debate be in a more organized fashion. I will start off and compare humans with the lowest form of creature on earth and I will climb up the ladder.

Monerans, the lowest forms of organisms found on earth.
Though they have human disease causing ability, a few of their abilities should be appreciated.
Consider Nostoc - a genus of cyanobacteria found in a variety of environmental niches that forms colonies composed of filaments of moniliform cells in a gelatinous sheath.

Image -
http://protist.i.hosei.ac.jp/pdb/images/Prokaryotes/Nostocaceae/Nostoc/Nostoc.jpg

They are known to produce O2 when ever they are in contact with light. They are trying to make a living and also add an important part needed for our survival – Oxygen. Just try to imagine how much of CO2 that you are putting into the atmosphere...

Another Organism from this Kingdom of Classification - Rhizobia

Rhizobia are soil bacteria that fix nitrogen after becoming established inside root nodules of legumes.

http://textbookofbacteriology.net/Rhizobium.combo.jpg

Do you think your food would have been naturally nutrition filled without these?

Moving on, the next kingdom is Kingdom Protista.

Consider Euglena. Most species of Euglena have photosynthesizing chloroplasts within the body of the cell, which enable them to feed by autotrophy, like plants. Though they are microscopic, they add O2 into the atmosphere. Imagine what you are doing in just turning browsing the site.

Euglena - http://www.fcps.edu/islandcreekes/ecology/Miscellaneous/Euglena/E_grac17.jpg

Kingdom Plantae and Animalia will be up soon. I have made them to be huge and I will add more before putting them here. But the next part is much larger than any of the other debated posted here for this round. :P
Lucky me that I found some time to post atleast a starting debate up here! If I had time, I would have the entire thing up here. But..., have more work to do for today. But everything will be up here by Weekend...

Ishtaron
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Ishtaron
359 posts
Jester

@akshobhya

Expect a response to your full debate on Monday, maybe Sunday night. I've got my own work to do this weekend and it'll probably eat up my whole Saturday. But for now, let's deal with what you've already put up.

Your argument so far has 2 major flaws. The first is that you're using behavior that also happens to help other living creatures as some proof of... value? Yes, value would seem to be most accurate for what you've already posted. The flaw with that is that those behaviors aren't done to help other creatures, they're a necessary means of survival for the organisms you've listed. Any other effects those behaviors might have is completely beyond their control and unintentional. Therefore, those traits do not support an argument of that organisms superiority. The second is that even your format indicates an inherent stratum of superiority among organisms. You yourself refer to Monerans as "the lowest forms of organisms found on earth", and thus display that Monerans are inferior to all other organisms.

akshobhya
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akshobhya
4,921 posts
Justiciar

Expect a response to your full debate on Monday, maybe Sunday night.

You can expect it by Saturday End, by AG Time.

The flaw with that is that those behaviors aren't done to help other creatures, they're a necessary means of survival for the organisms you've listed.

Atleast their Survival is benefiting Man and man's survival is not benefitting them.

You yourself refer to Monerans as "the lowest forms of organisms found on earth", and thus display that Monerans are inferior to all other organisms.

I meant in order of the Five Kingdom Classification, that is widely accepted

Don't have time for more. But would surely be back into the Debate by Weekend!

apldeap123
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apldeap123
1,707 posts
Blacksmith

To be a bird would be better than being a dog. Why?

Here are two reasons:

With the exceptions of a few species (the penguin, ostrich, etc.), all birds can fly. This gives them almost unlimited mobility and the freedom for them to choose where to go. A tree? Sure. The roof of a tall building? Why not. Dogs, on the other hand, only have four legs as a means of moving around, which means that they can only walk, run or swim.

Also, many birds are admired by people. There can be whole zoos and sanctuaries dedicated solely to birds. Some people often go lengths just to see some species of birds in their natural habitats. In fact, numerous species of birds are protected under U.S. federal law, and the penalties for killing one of those birds merits harsh punishment.

Those are my two points so far. I will be awaiting my partner's response shortly!

HahiHa
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HahiHa
7,751 posts
Grand Duke

@R2D21999

I hadn't thought of it that way, I admit this wasn't the answer I expected. But I'm sceptical; why would the human rights be there to identify us as humans if they only apply to humans in the first place? And wouldn't applying them to androids put us in a literal identity crysis?

I personally think human rights are there to protect our dignity and freedom that is inherent to human beings, and in some way it does set us apart from animals by implying animals have no such inherent dignity and freedom. Maybe this is what you meant with your definition.

I guess the point I'm trying to make is that as androids are not humans, they are not entitled to human rights, since only humans have been recognized to have the inherent qualities that provide us with our rights. Even the best android will remain a simulation machine and hence cannot be free.

akshobhya
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akshobhya
4,921 posts
Justiciar

@Ishtaron,
Here is the part two of my debate. here, I have talked about Kingdom Plantae.

The next Kingdom – Plantae. Everyone is familiar with this.

Plants can adapt to very cold temperatures and are found in both the Arctic and the Antarctic. They grow small and close together for protection from the wind, and they focus on growing and reproducing during the long summer days when there is almost constant sunlight.

I dont think you will be needing much of a proof for this -
There are creatures living among us that use air and water to make sugar! Sounds magical, doesn't it? You probably take them for granted, but you shouldn't. They make the air you breathe, the food you eat, the fiber for your clothes, dyes for fabrics, the building materials for your house and the legs for your table. I could keep going but you get the idea. Kingdom Plantae is one of six kingdoms of organisms, and it includes every plant you could imagine from the moss growing on the forest floor to the mighty, towering fir trees.

Plants are autotrophs, meaning they can make their own food. Humans, in contrast, are heterotrophs, so they must consume other organisms for food.

When you think of a plant, that green stuff that grows inside your fish tank probably isn't the first thing that comes to mind, but algae is in the Kingdom Plantae. In fact there are over 12,000 different species of algae: some brown, some green and some red. And you thought all plants were green! Typically, plants are green due to chlorophyll, or green pigment that helps the plant get energy from the sun. In the case of some of the algae, the chlorophyll combines with other pigments to make the red or brown. Algae are an important piece of the food chain in marine and freshwater environments, along with contributing to the O2 levels of the earth.

http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/assets/img/posters/algae-fuel-vi.jpg

Mosses or bryophyta are non-vascular. They are an important foundation plant for the forest ecosystem and they help prevent erosion by carpeting the forest floor. They are also tolerant to SO2 Pollution. Are humans tolerant to that, considering the fact that humans add to the SO2 levels of the atmosphere? They also trap nutrients right from the air or from the moisture and thus help in the complete usage of Nutrients and thus, Nutrients are not wasted. On the other hand, humans with all their technology are not able to completely trap nutrients directly from the Air? There is even more interesting part to this. Once Bryophytes die, they release their nutrients to the surrounding plants or to the atmosphere. Isn't this called “Re-Cycling”? They are also played an important part in Plant Evolution. The peat moss genus Sphagnum is an economically important bryophyte.Peat is used in horticulture, as an energy source (fuel), and, to a limited extent, in the extraction of organic products, in whiskey production, and as insulation.Bryophytes are very important in initiating soil formation on barren terrain, in maintaining soil moisture, and in recycling nutrients in forest vegetation. Indeed, discerning the presence of particular bryophytes is useful in assessing the productivity and nutrient status of forest types. Further, through the study of bryophytes, various biological phenomena have been discovered that have had a profound influence on the development of research in such areas as genetics and cytology. So, aren't these “Small” Plants superior in atleast some aspects? They are also antiseptic in Nature. So, shouldn't humans consider them to be superior to them in a few aspects, if not all?

Bryophyta -

http://www.plantzafrica.com/planttuv/plimagestuv/trichstomumbrachyd3.jpg

Pteridophytes are the first group of vascular plants with conducting tissues and hence were a great advancement in Evolution and consists of 10,000 Species. Ferns like Dryopterisare used in medicine. D.filix-mas has a rhizome that produces sweet mucilage which is used as an antihelminthic. Lycopodium is used in homeopathy and Selaginells botryoides yields a medicine that in used in liver Ailment. Selaginella also help in Soil Conversation. So, aren't these helpful to humans?

Pteridophyta -
http://save-our-green.com/allpost/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/Maidenhairferns.jpg

The gymnosperms are a group of seed-producing plants that includes conifers, cycads, Ginkgo, and Gnetales.They produce good quality wood. Trees like Pine, Cedar, Fir etc. are of great importance in this respect for their light colored and light weighted Soft Wood. These woods are used extensively in making furniture, packing Cases, Match Boxes, Pencil, Paper Pulp. They are also used as Fuels, as building purposes and in Home Furniture. Can you imagine a hoe without no wood in it? Can you imagine your Ancestors with no Fire Wood in the Cold Night? Can you live a Snowy Day in a home that contains no wood in it? Can you build homes with no wood and expect them to stand there when a Twister arrives and also think that it will cause no damage to your Pocket/Wallet and more importantly, expect that it causes not much of a damage to all? Do you think we can even survive with no trees on earth? Without these, all Snow Capped Mountains' vegetation will be naturally wiped out, eventually. Saddening, isn't it? These trees also secrete Resins. Without these, a few of the fossils would have vanished from earth and we would probably not be aware of Vegetation which were present around these trees. It is also important from the food point of view. Medicinally, a few drugs that are extracted from them are used in the drugs, which are used in the treatment of cough, asthma, bronchitis, Ulcers, Piles and Rheumatism. Do you think there would be natural Cancer treatment without an Anti Cancer Drug obtained from Taxus? Do you think you would be having a Christmas tree without this Phylum? Gymnosperms take in Carbon Dioxide (CO2) and releases Oxygen (O). The paper we write on comes from conifers. Turpentine and rosin is made from the conifer's sap. Fibers in clothing and cellophane wrappers also come from conifers. So, aren't these making up a part of your life? Didn't they help your ancestors to survive?

Gymnospermae -

https://isheti.files.wordpress.com/2010/06/gymnos23.jpg

Angiospermae or Magnoliophyta, are the most diverse group of land plants. The angiosperms have historically been divided into two groups: the monocotyledons (monocots) and the dicotyledons (dicots). Some of the most species-rich families of flowering plants include the monocot species of Orchidaceae, the orchids (19,500 species), the Poaceae or grass family (8,700), the Cyperaceae or sedge family (4,500), and the eudicot families of Euphorbiaceae or spurge family (6,900), the Fabaceae or legume family (18,000), the Rosaceae or rose family (3,000), Brassicaceae or mustard family (4,130), Rubiaceae or coffee family (9,000), the Lamiaceae or mint family (6,970), the Apiaceae or carrot family (4,250), and the Asteraceae or composite family (23,000).Today, there exists over 400 families of angiosperms classified into about 250,000 species. Now, do you see how superior they are in Genetic Variations, Diversification and Adaptations? An important aspect of angiosperm evolution is their well-documented relationships with other organisms such as animal pollinators, mycorrhizal (fungal) root associations, and even bacteria.. Now, think about Humans...More than 80% of the green plants living in the world are included in Angiosperms. And, now estimate the amout of O2 which is produced be these amd then compare it with the Air Pollution that is caused by hymans. These are the main producers of Fruits and Vegetables. Now, just think of a world without thses. More than half of our Human Ancestors would probably have suffered due to the unavailability of food and this would have forced them to eat Grass along with Raw Animals(Fire cant be created without Firewood) and this would have caused diseases in them and would have killed them in large numbers. If all Angiosperms just vanished now, we would have to resort to eating Grass and Meat and the prices of food would Skyrocket and this condition is hard to even imagine. They consititute about 80% of the world's food. . The proof for their evolution is Venus Fly Trap, for example and many such others. Can humans get humans as diverse as this???Angiosperms came into being some 240 - 200 million years ago when they diverged from gymnosperms, their evolutionary predecessors! And human ancestors cam here 200-180 million years ago. So, who is Superior in terms of Age? Apart from constituting the majority of wild growing plant population on Earth, angiosperms are, incidentally, also the most cultivated plant forms by humans. Don't believe me? Well, check out all cereal crops - they are all flowering plants! So, who is relying upon whom here and whose Superiority does this prove??
Flowering plants form an extremely important part of Earth's ecology as an amazingly huge number of insects feed on the nectar of flowers. These insects are, in turn, eaten by various birds and animals. Therefore, flowering plants play the role of the first link of the food chain! Not only this food chain, They are the base of almost any Food Chain you take. So, who is Superior here in providing nourishment to all and helping in sustaining life on earth and maintaining balance in nature? Without thses, our ancestors would have nothing but animal hides to wear. Can you think of a world without Cotton? Can you think of a world without cereals, pulses, fruits, vegetables and many such things obtained from these? They have a record for heights. Heard about coast redwood?Hyperion is the name of a coast redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) in Northern California that was measured at 115.61 m (379.3 ft), which ranks it as the world's tallest known living tree –

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/7e/Redwood_National_Park_REDW9343.jpg/640px-Redwood_National_Park_REDW9343.jpg

They also have a record for Age. Know about Old Tjikko? Old Tjikko is a 9,550-year-old Norway Spruce, located on Fulufjället Mountain of Dalarna province in Sweden. The age of the tree was determined by carbon dating of genetically matched plant material collected from under the tree, not by dendrochronology, or counting tree rings.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/7e/Old-Tjikko-2011-07-19-001.jpg/640px-Old-Tjikko-2011-07-19-001.jpg

So, are humans, by themselves superior in these aspects?

Here are a few Quotes -

"A single mature tree can absorb carbon dioxide at a rate of 48 lbs./year and release enough oxygen back into the atmosphere to support 2 human beings."

- McAliney, Mike. Arguments for Land Conservation: Documentation and Information Sources for Land Resources Protection, Trust for Public Land, Sacramento, CA, December, 1993

"One acre of trees annually consumes the amount of carbon dioxide equivalent to that produced by driving an average car for 26,000 miles.That same acre of trees also produces enough oxygen for 18 people to breathe for a year."

- New York Times

" A 100-ft tree, 18" diameter at its base, produces 6,000 pounds of oxygen."

- Northwest Territories Forest Management

"On average, one tree produces nearly 260 pounds of oxygen each year. Two mature trees can provide enough oxygen for a family of four."

- Environment Canada, Canada's national environmental agency

"Mean net annual oxygen production (after accounting for decomposition) per hectare of trees (100% tree canopy) offsets oxygen consumption of 19 people per year (eight people per acre of tree cover), but ranges from nine people per hectare of canopy cover (four people/ac cover) in Minneapolis, Minnesota, to 28 people/ha cover (12 people/ac cover) in Calgary, Alberta."

- U.S. Forest Service and International Society of Arboriculture joint publication.

Now, who is humbly helping whom and who is to be considered superior? We now how dangerous Air Pollution can be and still we can't help but add more to it? And, atleast these organisms are trying to repair everything and we not only cut them for our purposes but never grow them in the same numbers as we cut them? Let us not forget the role of shrubs and Herbs in Ancient medicine. Think of this – Small plants having compounds that are able to cure diseases that affect humans! Now, who is Superior?

Lot of work is hampering the progress of my Debates and the next part where I will be talking about Kingdom Animalia will be up here, but maybe not too soon.
*EDIT : Had to do as one of the images was not happening.*

Ishtaron
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Ishtaron
359 posts
Jester

@akshobhya

Atleast their Survival is benefiting Man and man's survival is not benefitting them.

Actually, if man made global warming is real we're a boon to all autotrophs. The world is still technically in a glaciation, once we reach the next interglaciation plant life across the planet will experience a huge burst of growth as plentiful amounts of water, sun, and CO2 turn even deserts into verdant forests.

There are creatures living among us that use air and water to make sugar! Sounds magical, doesn't it?

No, I'm fully aware of the process of photosynthesis and other matters of basic high school biology. This also isn't proof of plants' superiority unless you're trying to say they're superior survivors. It's another act that other organisms perform to survive and we take advantage of for our own survival. By eating them and the herbivores that eat them. As the veritable pinnacle of the food chain we are the most fit creatures on the planet.

They make the air you breathe, the food you eat, the fiber for your clothes, dyes for fabrics, the building materials for your house and the legs for your table.

So they're tools for our survival. Organisms so easily killed, broken down, and used as parts that they're nothing more than another object for us to turn into whatever object makes our lives easier. It would seem that this only proves humans are so superior to plants that we shouldn't even consider them living creatures.

Are humans tolerant to that, considering the fact that humans add to the SO2 levels of the atmosphere?

We must be to some extent if we're pumping it into the same atmosphere we breathe without dropping like flies. Even if SO2 levels did reach toxic levels, we have tools that allow us to survive in environments that would normally be lethal to us. A few creatures have a hibernative state that allows them to "survive" comatose in an otherwise deadly environments, but humans can thrive in those environments (warning, article contains some nightmare fuel) building homes and families regardless of the obstacles.

Once Bryophytes die, they release their nutrients to the surrounding plants or to the atmosphere. Isn't this called “Re-Cycling”?

This process is hardly unique. Whenever any creature dies it decomposes, releasing their stored nutrients and energy into the air and ground around them. In fact, humans bury their dead ensuring that no nutrients are lost into the air. Even the planet itself recycles as the planet causes water to recycle itself from oceanic saltwater to the freshwater of rivers, lakes, and subterranean deposits.

Peat is used in horticulture, as an energy source (fuel), and, to a limited extent, in the extraction of organic products, in whiskey production, and as insulation

Yet another organism humans have turned into a tool for their own comfort.

So, aren't these “Small” Plants superior in atleast some aspects? They are also antiseptic in Nature. So, shouldn't humans consider them to be superior to them in a few aspects, if not all?

No, we shouldn't. They've proven useful so we've made them into tools for our own use. We develop means to produce more of them, machines to duplicate their abilities, and synthetics to replace their use in our society. The things they do mindlessly to survive we study and duplicate simply because it makes life marginally easier for us. Their usefulness as tools does nothing more to make them superior to us than would a hammer or crowbar.

Can you imagine a hoe without no wood in it? Can you build homes with no wood and expect them to stand there when a Twister arrives and also think that it will cause no damage to your Pocket/Wallet and more importantly, expect that it causes not much of a damage to all?

My hoe is plastic and metal. ;P I assume you meant home there and yes I can. Many homes around the world are built by digging into the ground or by raising structures made of mud and clay baked by the sun. Entire cities are built with metal, glass, and concrete managing to survive fires, tornadoes, earthquakes, tsunamis, and hurricanes far better than the wood structures of the past.

So, aren't these making up a part of your life? Didn't they help your ancestors to survive?

Being a part of my life and being useful do not make them my superior. I am a part of many lives. Arguably, I am a part of the lives of all the trees that went into building my home and my furniture. I am useful to plants in producing CO2, in killing plant eating pests, and in the nutrients my body will one day provide as it decays underground.

Now, do you see how superior they are in Genetic Variations, Diversification and Adaptations?

The standard definition of a species is "The largest group of organisms capable of interbreeding and producing fertile offspring." A genus containing many species says nothing about each individual species ability to adapt nor the genetic variation within that species or its populations. Humans can communicate and travel all over the world, while most of those plant species would be trapped living in their own small section if we didn't study them and bring them with use to other environments where they can thrive.

And, now estimate the amout of O2 which is produced be these amd then compare it with the Air Pollution that is caused by humans.

Most of our air pollution is made up of greenhouse gasses which are beneficial to plants.

...[eat] Raw Animals(Fire cant be created without Firewood) and this would have caused diseases in them and would have killed them in large numbers.

Before the discovery of fire our ancestors did eat raw animals. Most creatures today do still eat raw animals. The risk of disease is more prevalent among modern humans because of the processing time that our meats spend hanging from hooks in butcher shops and processing plants. Cooking was originally beneficial mainly for the nutritional value it added, breaking bonds within amino acids and making them easier to digest.

Angiosperms came into being some 240 - 200 million years ago when they diverged from gymnosperms, their evolutionary predecessors!

Technically, neither. Our estimated origins of existence overlap and thus neither can be said to truly be older. Of course, older does not necessarily mean superior. Many older species went extinct because they were unable to adapt to changing environments. If humans are having trouble adapting to the environment we change it to better suit us. That certainly seems to be a far superior method than that of any other organism.

Apart from constituting the majority of wild growing plant population on Earth, angiosperms are, incidentally, also the most cultivated plant forms by humans... Flowering plants form an extremely important part of Earth's ecology as an amazingly huge number of insects feed on the nectar of flowers. These insects are, in turn, eaten by various birds and animals.

So, not only are these plants tools and food for us that we specifically breed and grow to use as food. They're also food for organisms that act as food for other organisms. Angiosperms don't appear to be superior to anything other than the flies stupid enough to get caught in a fly trap.

So, who is Superior here in providing nourishment to all and helping in sustaining life on earth and maintaining balance in nature?

I wouldn't call providing nourishment a true matter of superiority. It requires being so ill-equipped to survive that something else kills and eats you. Of course, even if providing nourishment is the stage you want to fight this on then everything is equal in that matter. Plants suck nutrients from the ground, herbivores eat plants, carnivores eat herbivores, omnivores eat everything, and all animals die to decompose and release nutrients into the ground.

*Armorgames hasn't liked youtube links lately so I'm trying to embed these. If they don't work just look up "Circle of Life" on youtube.
Edit: Nevermind, they worked. Although there seems to be extra code I don't want to mess with for fear of screwing up the embedding.
Edit2: And for some reason editing my post caused the embedding code to disappear. Sometimes I really don't like these forums.

Hyperion is the name of a coast redwood (Sequoia sempervirens) in Northern California that was measured at 115.61 m (379.3 ft), which ranks it as the world's tallest known living tree –

The tallest building in the world is over 800 meters tall.

They also have a record for Age. Know about Old Tjikko? Old Tjikko is a 9,550-year-old Norway Spruce, located on Fulufjället Mountain of Dalarna province in Sweden.

If we're going to talk old trees I prefer Pando. And no, we as individuals cannot outlive these trees. But we don't have to. The have the power to destroy these trees whenever we want to. In the relatively brief existence of human civilization we've developed the power to end all life on the planet at will. Although, I suppose overtime HeLa cells might outlive everything. There's literally tons of immortal human tissue lying around. And who can forget the immortal jellyfish. Right now it's just a race to see which immortal lifeform can reproduce fast enough to overrun the whole planet and good old Henrietta Lacks is in the running for us humans.

Now, who is humbly helping whom and who is to be considered superior? We now how dangerous Air Pollution can be and still we can't help but add more to it? And, atleast these organisms are trying to repair everything and we not only cut them for our purposes but never grow them in the same numbers as we cut them?

Once again, that "air pollution" is mostly greenhouse gasses that help trees, especially CO2 which they breath in order to undergo photosynthesis. They're not trying to repair anything, they're just living (thriving really) off of the gasses we release into the air. The fact that we can destroy them faster than they grow, and plant new trees to replace those we cut down in order to provide ourselves with more oxygen and more tools is just further proof of mankinds superiority.

Small plants having compounds that are able to cure diseases that affect humans! Now, who is Superior?

Humans cure diseases and kill the pests that spread them or destroy other organisms all the time. Not only that, we can weaponize disease to specifically target the organisms we want dead. Some plants have an added use that others don't, humans protect billions of other organisms every year by killing trillions of other organisms. It hardly seems fair to compare herbal medicines with modern chemicals, vaccines, and genetic engineering. It's outright absurd to suggest that plants are superior because they were used to make herbal medicine.

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