Twenty one people attended the Christmas Room101 Debate where four members argued for what they thought was the worst scourge in society. Each person pleaded their case before self service tills, cold callers and overpopulation were relegated to Room 101 leaving Wally Bensilum's choice of extended Christmas to be saved for posterity! The attendees also shared seasonal refreshments and a raffle.
There is no report about the Question time session as Lorry was away on holiday.
Chris Lane proposed that: “Capitalism is better than Socialism" since it is based on successful investment, innovation, invention and consumerism. He also argued that it works because it is regulated by laws and moderated by taxation unlike Socialism which is based on an elitist minority with mass oppression. Opposing the motion, Jean Yates, from Brighton Debating Society, asserted that Socialism worked for the benefit of all and not just a few. She considered that it was not only more efficient but it also made employers more accountable and humane. Furthermore she thought that Socialism had a better effect on society as a whole because it was egalitarian and not based on individual greed. Following contributions from the floor, the motion was won by 6 votes to 3 with 4 abstentions.
Sadly this was our last meeting in Granville Road. Our next meeting will take place at the new venue in the Methodist Church, Kings Avenue, Holland on Sea on Wednesday 5th November at 7.30pm when the panel will explore questions on subjects of topical interest. All welcome, annual membership £16, visitors £2.
Bill Hartop proposed the motion: “Mankind has no Rights only Responsibilities ". He considered that we have no rights, only an instinct to survive and our primary responsibility is to look after ourselves. Ray White disagreed, asserting that there are no universal rights but where they are ascribed in various cultures, they came hand in hand with responsibilities. Following lively input from the floor, a vote was taken resulting in 2 votes for the motion, 1 against and 11 abstentions!
It was a truly family affair when teenage cousins debated whether "We are Still a Sexist Country". Proposing the motion, Madeleine Spence stated that there is still a huge disparity between men and women because equality laws and financial provision have not been fully implemented. She thought that further change was required before the sexes could be considered on a level pegging. Opposer Murray Lane disagreed, arguing that appropriate gender equality legislation had been put into place but it's success should not be based on the entrenched sexist views of individuals. Furthermore he believed that because men and women are intrinsically dissimilar, they make different life choices. Following many diverse and stimulating contributions from the floor, the motion was narrowly defeated by 8 votes to 9 with 4 abstentions.
Under the chairmanship of Helen Rees, the question time panel of Gwen Bryant, Chris Lane and Lorry Greenall addressed a variety of topical questions including: is Clacton a resort or a housing estate, the desire to be famous, public understanding of the European Union, relocating business to match available accommodation and the Rolf Harris verdict. With many contributions from the floor it proved to be a thought provoking evening.
Norman Jacobs proposed the motion: “Alternative Medicine has No Merit" arguing that it is not based on scientific research. He also stated that studies have shown that these therapies not only do not work but have been detrimental to health. Opposing the motion, Mary Lane asserted that medicine is still an art and much that is practised remains outside the realms of science. She considered that thousands of people use unorthodox treatments because they have found them to work and that should be evidence enough. Following many contributions from the floor, the motion was lost by 10 votes to 1 with 2 abstentions.
At the May meeting The Reverend Guy Thorburn proposed that “Morals are not a Personal Matter". Wally Bensilum stood in for Jerry Monk at short notice and opposed the motion. After many diverse contributions from the floor, the motion was won by 12 votes to 9 with 1 abstention.
Under the chairmanship of Derek Cheek, the question time panel addressed a variety of interesting questions including the disappearance of MH370, electronic cigarettes, pavement parking and the influence of big business on politics. With input from the floor it proved to be an interesting and lively evening.
Derek Cheek proposed the motion: “Yes We Can". He considered that having a positive attitude facilitated more successful outcomes in life citing Margaret Thatcher, Barrack Obama and Bob the Builder as ideal role models for this. Opposing the motion, Lorry Greenall argued that sometimes no we can't was the more appropriate message for people to hear. She considered a healthy dose of realism to be more beneficial than any comic book slogan. Following contributions from the floor, the motion was won by 10 votes to 6 with 3 abstentions.
Jerry Monk proposed the motion: “Censorship cannot be Justified". He considered any suppression to be an exercise in control which resulted in a mistrust of authority. He also felt that a culture of censorship encouraged incompetence. Wally Bensilum disagreed citing war, terrorism, the internet and media as key areas requiring containment. He believed this was essential for both national security and protection of the vulnerable in society. Following lively input from the floor, the motion was lost by 8 votes to 1 with 4 abstentions.
Mary Lane proposed the motion: “A Multi-Cultural Society is Unworkable". She considered culture to be an individual nation's expression of it's laws and customs which could only be workable if migrants abide by the traditions of their newly adopted countries. Helen Rees disagreed, stating that multi-culturalism is not a modern innovation. She argued that nations have mingled for thousands of years resulting in the successful development of many diverse languages and customs. Following lively input from the floor, the motion was lost by 6 votes to 9 with 5 abstentions.