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heirokee
15th August 2008, 7:10 AM
So, I've been thinking about ethics lately...

Anyways, I have a bunch of different ideas about ethical situations that I figured would be substantial fodder for a nice little debate. The post is numbered, because I intend on asking more questions, but I figured I should start somewhere, and numbering them helps me to sort through the topics.


Anyways, my first question is about laughter.

Laughter is a natural human impulse. Actually, laughter is noted to occur in several species... or at least sounds and reactions that indicate a reaction similar to human laughter. As people, however, we have developed a sort of culture around laughter, just as we do with most things. You might not think of it often, but at least in some situations, the reaction to laugh is a learned behavior. When presented with situations we are told are funny, we begin to correlate laughter to the event. Granted, many times laughter is merely instinctual, though it seems in most situations people assume that we are laughing off of the learned behavior, regardless of what the case may be. The reason I say this is fairly important to the debate.

Based on location, people may deem laughter as taboo.

That is simply a fact. I mean, how would others react toward you if you laughed at the funeral of a loved one? Odds are, it wouldn't be a positive reaction. So, in that laughter, we encounter an ethical dilemma (hooray for using the phrase in the title!)

Actually, there are a few questions here:


1. Is it wrong to laugh? If so, what makes it wrong to laugh?

2. Is it OK to chastise somebody for laughing? Why or why not?

3. If somebody tries to hold in their laughter, is it still wrong? Why or why not?



edit: to make the intent of these questions more clear, let me put some modifiers on them.

append for #1: This question assumes that laughter is uncontrollable and is released to its fullest extent. Ultimately, the intent is to determine whether the initial reaction towards laughter is wrong. Given this context, attempts at concealing laughter are irrelevant as the initial reaction toward laughter is, for the sake of argument, always uncontrollable.

append for #2: This question would also assume that laughter is uncontrollable and clearly audibly. The intent is to determine whether or not a negative reaction from another party, towards something which the culprit was unable to control, is ethical or not. In this case, you have to assume that the laughing person would have no intentions otherwise to conceal or subdue their laughter. The only thing that would cause that to happen is the potential intervention of the scolder. Also, yet again, the true question is asking whether or not the desire to chastise somebody for laughing is wrong or not. Regardless of whether or not the action is carried out, the intent still exists, and that is the ethical problem.

append for #3: This question assumes that the laughing person has made a conscious decision to subdue their own laughter. The intent is to ask whether or not the desire to correct an ethically poor response makes up for the initial transgression. However, it is not a universal question, it pertains specifically to laughter. In other words, the transgression is spontaneous and unavoidable, but at the same time, it is a relatively mild offense.



Anyways, just because this is an ethical debate does not mean scientific evidence can not be used... it's just harder to use... though it should be noted that personal opinion is clearly what most people will be using as grounds for their debate. With that in mind, before you answer, it might be worthwhile to consider the impact that cultural ethics have upon your own personal ethics... often times they aren't same.

Conquistador
15th August 2008, 7:40 AM
Question #1 (and thus subsequentially #2 and #3) makes a logical jump in assuming that it even is wrong to laugh.

Before any of the questions can be answered, we must answer the most important one;

Is it even wrong to laugh in said situations in the first place?

heirokee
15th August 2008, 8:00 AM
Question #1 (and thus subsequentially #2 and #3) makes a logical jump in assuming that it even is wrong to laugh.

Before any of the questions can be answered, we must answer the most important one;

Is it even wrong to laugh in said situations in the first place?


... I think I may have phrased my first question poorly... as that was intended to be part of that question... I've edited it.

Hakajin
16th August 2008, 6:39 AM
Well, it's wrong to laugh if it hurts someone else and you can help it. The will to laughter is always innocent though, because you can't stop yourself from thinking something's funny. I don't know about chastisement... it seems like it would only be appropriate to correct someone who could've stopped herself from laughing but didn't. But it's hard to tell when someone can help it and when she can't.

Conquistador
16th August 2008, 6:57 AM
Well, it's wrong to laugh if it hurts someone else and you can help it.

*ahem*.

Why? Assumption alert =P

Ethan
16th August 2008, 7:12 AM
*ahem*.

Why? Assumption alert =P


Because being mean on purpose is simply not nice sir. Or impolite if you will.

Don't you go into that moral relativism now. I'll have to eat you.

Hakajin
16th August 2008, 7:17 AM
*ahem*.

Why? Assumption alert =P

It's self-evident, unless you want to say that there's no such thing as right and wrong. Otherwise, the number one moral law is to do no unnecessary harm.

Conquistador
16th August 2008, 7:28 AM
It's self-evident, unless you want to say that there's no such thing as right and wrong. Otherwise, the number one moral law is to do no unnecessary harm.

Self-evident! How is it self evident? You can't just say something is self-evident and expect that to suffice as something to support your argument (unless of course it's truly self-evident, ie by definition).

Hakajin
16th August 2008, 7:34 AM
Well, this is self-evident. All of moral law is based around avoiding doing harm. If you're already assuming that moral law exists, then you can't go any farther than that.

Conquistador
16th August 2008, 7:39 AM
All of moral law is based around avoiding doing harm. If you're already assuming that moral law exists, then you can't go any farther than that.

But that's exactly what I'm on about! You assume too much;

1. You assume that there is even a 'moral law' in the first place

but even moreso...

2. You assume that if this proposed moral law does exist, then "all of it is based around avoiding harm".

I would firstly like to see justification for both of these assumptions before we move any further.

Korusan
16th August 2008, 7:39 AM
Laughing can be controlled at all times, actually. It takes a strong will, but you can resist it with discipline. Said discipline is what can give a high tolerance to pain, ect.

Hakajin
16th August 2008, 7:48 AM
But that's exactly what I'm on about! You assume too much;

1. You assume that there is even a 'moral law' in the first place

but even moreso...

2. You assume that if this proposed moral law does exist, then "all of it is based around avoiding harm".

I would firstly like to see justification for both of these assumptions before we move any further.

Doesn't this topic already assume moral law? We're discussing whether something is wrong, and for something to be wrong, there has to be moral law.

Anyway, there's no way to justify that further. I suppose if you wanted to get really technical, you could say that harm impedes our progress as humans, but that's only saying that harm causes more harm, and you still haven't said why that's bad. It's really only a matter of whether there's moral law or not.

Conquistador
16th August 2008, 8:08 AM
Because being mean on purpose is simply not nice sir. Or impolite if you will.

Don't you go into that moral relativism now. I'll have to eat you.

*just notices post*

Lol, well it's relevant to the debate so I shall do as I please ;) :P


Doesn't this topic already assume moral law? We're discussing whether something is wrong, and for something to be wrong, there has to be moral law.

Anyway, there's no way to justify that further. I suppose if you wanted to get really technical, you could say that harm impedes our progress as humans, but that's only saying that harm causes more harm, and you still haven't said why that's bad. It's really only a matter of whether there's moral law or not.

No, I do not believe it does, and even if it did, in question #1 posed by heirokee, it was asked whether laughing at such things was wrong at all, about which you have yet to justify your stance.

For the sake of not opening a whole other massive can of worms that will send us spiraling off topic, I will accept there is some sort of moral law and that things can in fact be right or wrong.

My main problem though still remains in that you have made an assumption in that laughing is wrong without sufficiently supporting it.

As for what you said about harm causing more harm, what did you mean by me still having not said why that's bad? I don't believe I've yet said anything is bad so far. :/

Hakajin
16th August 2008, 8:18 AM
Well, that's true, but once you start talking about whether there's a right and wrong, that takes over the entire argument. Anyway.


My main problem though still remains in that you have made an assumption in that laughing is wrong without sufficiently supporting it.

As for what you said about harm causing more harm, what did you mean by me still having not said why that's bad? I don't believe I've yet said anything is bad so far. :/

Well, if it hurts someone else, it's wrong because it hurts someone else. Oh, not you you, I was using the word in general terms. What I was saying is that when you try to explain why harm is wrong, the only thing there is is that it causes more harm to more people. That explanation still depends upon harm being wrong.

Conquistador
16th August 2008, 8:25 AM
So you can't explain why harm is wrong?

heirokee
16th August 2008, 9:10 AM
... hmm... I think you're being a little bit critical about the subject of what is wrong.

As people we all have different views on what is right and wrong (and yes, things are right and wrong, we just don't always agree on what those things are) for the sake of an ethical argument it would be worthwhile to make it clear what you're working off of when you post, simply because everybody else needs to understand the basis behind your beliefs.

In my opinion, it is clear that Hakajin believes causing pain to others is wrong. The correct target for this debate is probably not whether or not Hakajin is right about that, but rather why laughing would cause others harm.

Ethics debates can always digress into why something is wrong to begin with, but the questions at hand should provide enough guidance so that we are able to avoid that.




Anyways, my position is that laughing is never wrong. All people react to situations uniquely, if the initial reaction is laughter, how can we say they are wrong for that? Harm towards other, in my opinion, is irrelevant. If somebody else is hurt by my laughter, that's really not something I should be concerned with. In fact, I would go so far as to say that it is wrong for other people to take offense at my laughter. Generally speaking, laughter is not something that can be controlled, you either have the reaction to laugh or you don't. Even if you try to cover it up, the laughter is still there. At least to my knowledge, you can't preemptively subdue laughter.

In that same train of thought, I would say it is not wrong for somebody to laugh and cover it up. I think that the act of trying to cover up laughter shows that the laughing person has respect towards the customs of others, which could be considered ethically correct. In this case, I feel the attempt at appeasing the current company would, or rather should, override any offense that may be taken at the existence of the laughter to begin with. Though, these thoughts do assume that laughter is an involuntary reaction and not intentionally done to insult or demean others.

Conquistador
16th August 2008, 9:32 AM
... hmm... I think you're being a little bit critical about the subject of what is wrong.

As people we all have different views on what is right and wrong (and yes, things are right and wrong, we just don't always agree on what those things are) for the sake of an ethical argument it would be worthwhile to make it clear what you're working off of when you post, simply because everybody else needs to understand the basis behind your beliefs.

In my opinion, it is clear that Hakajin believes causing pain to others is wrong. The correct target for this debate is probably not whether or not Hakajin is right about that, but rather why laughing would cause others harm.

Ethics debates can always digress into why something is wrong to begin with, but the questions at hand should provide enough guidance so that we are able to avoid that.


However, simply accepting one persons definition would only allow a single very narrow minded debate concerning this topic.

However again though, for the purpose of the progress of this debate, I think we should simply accept Hakajin's definition of wrong and move on from there. =)

Ethan
16th August 2008, 9:55 AM
However again though, for the purpose of the progress of this debate, I think we should simply accept Hakajin's definition of wrong and move on from there. =)

Oh yeah, now you take the hint I gave in my first post. -_-

Australians.

Hoshi no Kabii
17th August 2008, 3:43 AM
There is nothing inherently wrong with laughing. Saying otherwise would be ridiculous. While it could be argued that there is nothing inherently wrong with mass murder (or wearing fabric on one's head, for that matter), that's a different argument I don't care to go through.

Where it is and is not considered socially acceptable to chastise people for laughing is wholly dependent on location, region, and situation. If a culture emerges where it is not socially acceptable to laugh at jokes, then it is OK to be chastised for laughing at jokes.

If someone tries to hold in laughter it is still wrong. There are two reasons why people consider laughing bad: A) it is a sign of immaturity and B) the belief that everything ceases to be funny when something serious happens. If you laugh at the word "pianist," you are chastised for being immature, which the laughing represents. Also, if you effectively communicate that you think something is funny (whether a joke you remember or something that happened around you), you can be chastised for making light of the current situation.

Which brings us to the "Are you being chastised for laughing or for what the laughing represents?" debate. I'm not exactly well-versed in the science of laughing, but I'm not sure science is the reason behind the taboo on laughing.

Armel
17th August 2008, 4:17 AM
#1: No, laughter certainly isn't wrong unless it's directed to a person who might get hurt by it. Laughing at someone because they fell on stage is wrong, because it's going to hurt their feelings.

#2: This question is similar to the first question. Yes, it's normal to scold someone for laughing if it's been directed to someone who fell, got hurt or was made fun of.

#3: Depends on the situation, really.

heirokee
17th August 2008, 4:24 AM
#2: This question is similar to the first question. Yes, it's normal to scold someone for laughing if it's been directed to someone who fell, got hurt or was made fun of.

similar but different. The first question asks if it is wrong to laugh, the second asks, essentially, whether it is wrong to think it is wrong to laugh.


#3: Depends on the situation, really.

Please elaborate. What situations make it wrong? For that matter, why do you believe the situation has any relevance to the question? More explanation is needed in order to debate anything here.

Strants
17th August 2008, 5:24 AM
1. Is it wrong to laugh? If so, what makes it wrong to laugh?[QUOTE] If it is done with malice, I believe it to be wrong. Otherwise, I really don't think so, because no one was supposed to get hurt.
[QUOTE]
2. Is it OK to chastise somebody for laughing? At any time? What times are OK?[QUOTE] If it to stop them from causing harm (ie, I laugh at someone in pain, and am told that I should make sure that the person who is in pain is alright so as not embarass them) I can hardly say that it is wrong.
[QUOTE]3. If somebody tries to hold in their laughter, is it still wrong? I. . . don't think it's wrong in the first place. . . so. . . what do I do?

In fact, I would go so far as to say that it is wrong for other people to take offense at my laughter. Why? They aren't doing it to spite you. It's hardly their fault if they misinterpreted you, or felt embarassed. If you use this moral, everything is the victim's fault, for having been making something harm? (If death isn't harm, isn't it the victim's fault for making it so?) This sounds remarkably like a spin on relative morality to me.

heirokee
18th August 2008, 8:35 AM
If it is done with malice, I believe it to be wrong. Otherwise, I really don't think so, because no one was supposed to get hurt.

But the laughing we are discussing, is, for the most part, involuntary. Situations involving false or mocking laughter are barred from this discussion. People can't help what they find funny, so what does malice have to do with it?



If it to stop them from causing harm (ie, I laugh at someone in pain, and am told that I should make sure that the person who is in pain is alright so as not embarass them) I can hardly say that it is wrong.

But is it wrong to impose your ethical beliefs on to another person? I think it is. In this case, you are rebuking somebody simply because they have a different belief about what is funny. You admit yourself that laughter itself is not wrong, so why does it become OK to censure something which is inherently benign. What about the other person's pain makes laughter malicious?


I. . . don't think it's wrong in the first place. . . so. . . what do I do?

But you seem to think that ill intent can be behind laughter. What if somebody were to try to cover it up then?

Hakajin
18th August 2008, 9:15 AM
But is it wrong to impose your ethical beliefs on to another person? I think it is. In this case, you are rebuking somebody simply because they have a different belief about what is funny. You admit yourself that laughter itself is not wrong, so why does it become OK to censure something which is inherently benign. What about the other person's pain makes laughter malicious?

This isn't just about thinking something different is funny, it's about hurting someone else. It's malicious because it increases the pain of the person being laughed at. Laughter in and of itself is benign. So is a knife. Both can be used as a weapon under the right circumstances. It's fine to think someone else's pain is funny; you can't help that. It's even fine if you can't help laughing. But if you can and don't, that's your responsibility. Rebuking someone over it could help her to restrain herself in the future, which would reduce pain caused to other people. People don't always think about how others feel, and they'll often change their behavior if they realize it hurts someone else.

Conquistador
18th August 2008, 9:20 AM
This isn't just about thinking something different is funny, it's about hurting someone else. It's malicious because it increases the pain of the person being laughed at.

Mmm... I'll just play along lol.

How about laughing at someone hurting themselves on, say, the T.V.? Is that still malicious? It doesn't increase the pain of the person being laughed at in any way.

BloodthirstPriest
18th August 2008, 10:12 AM
Mmm... I'll just play along lol.

How about laughing at someone hurting themselves on, say, the T.V.? Is that still malicious? It doesn't increase the pain of the person being laughed at in any way.

I do not believe that an outburst of laughter is necessary at any time, a smile of laughter is enough in my opinion.

Now laughing at somebody hurting themselves on TV, I don't approve of. Firstly because, well, you have to put yourself in their shoes, and I don't think anybody would want people laughing at them hurting themselves on TV, unless they are seeking attention, which still only requires a smile.

Also, you should not laugh at people behind their backs just because they can't get hurt, that really shows arrogance and disrespect. Respecting people is necessary at all times, whether in front of them or behind them. Laughing at people is not justified by their absence.

Conquistador
18th August 2008, 10:52 AM
I do not believe that an outburst of laughter is necessary at any time, a smile of laughter is enough in my opinion.

What is necessary and what you cannot help but do are different things. Sure, an outburst of laughter may not be necessary, but if you simply can't help it, it doesn't matter if it's necessary or not, you'll just do it.



Now laughing at somebody hurting themselves on TV, I don't approve of. Firstly because, well, you have to put yourself in their shoes, and I don't think anybody would want people laughing at them hurting themselves on TV, unless they are seeking attention, which still only requires a smile.

Also, you should not laugh at people behind their backs just because they can't get hurt, that really shows arrogance and disrespect. Respecting people is necessary at all times, whether in front of them or behind them. Laughing at people is not justified by their absence.

However, the whole justification for laughter being wrong in the first place is based on the fact that it hurts people;

1. Something is wrong if it hurts someone
2. Laughter hurts someone
3. Therefore laughter is wrong

If however people are not hurt by laughter in certain situations (whether it be behind their backs or at someone on T.V.), then it is, in those situations, not wrong at all.

BloodthirstPriest
18th August 2008, 12:14 PM
What is necessary and what you cannot help but do are different things. Sure, an outburst of laughter may not be necessary, but if you simply can't help it, it doesn't matter if it's necessary or not, you'll just do it.

If someone can't hold laughter then, I have to say that they lack control and will, and that shows weakness.


However, the whole justification for laughter being wrong in the first place is based on the fact that it hurts people;

1. Something is wrong if it hurts someone
2. Laughter hurts someone
3. Therefore laughter is wrong

If however people are not hurt by laughter in certain situations (whether it be behind their backs or at someone on T.V.), then it is, in those situations, not wrong at all.

Actually, the first post at this forum, as seen below, makes no reference whatsoever that laughter is wrong because it hurts others. Don't get me wrong; I agree with that. That does not, however, rule out the first question, as it is still open to other reasons for why laughter is wrong, as there was no consensus or agreement to that.


1. Is it wrong to laugh? If so, what makes it wrong to laugh?

Allow me to point out this sentence:


1. Something is wrong if it hurts someone

That IS NOT the whole truth. Something is wrong if it hurts someone "DESTRUCTIVELY". For example, you might tell someone something that might hurt, BUT actually benefits him/her, while on the other hand, laughing at someone is NOT beneficial and can and does on occasions demoralize the person and damage the person's self-esteem.

I think that every action by a rational human should be beneficial. (That is another topic, so I will head back to laughter).

Now to laugh at people behind their backs is in no way constructive, or beneficial. And I doubt one can justify otherwise.

Conquistador
18th August 2008, 12:30 PM
If someone can't hold laughter then, I have to say that they lack control and will, and that shows weakness.

Okay. I'm going to shoot you in your left leg. Your knee, to be specific. You're going to double over now. Does that lack control and will? Does that show weakness?

Of course not, you can't help but fall over in such circumstances. Much the same with laughing; laughing is a reflex to a certain degree that in very many circumstances simply cannot be controlled, just as how when the doctor taps your knee with that funny little hammer you flinch.


Actually, the first post at this forum, as seen below, makes no reference whatsoever that laughter is wrong because it hurts others. Don't get me wrong; I agree with that. That does not, however, rule out the first question, as it is still open to other reasons for why laughter is wrong, as there was no consensus or agreement to that.

You should learn to read the whole thread. That was the definition of wrong that was given for the purposes of the debate, agreed by all active parties at the time. If you wish to contend that definition of wrong, then do so, but that is where we must start before progressing any further.



Allow me to point out this sentence:

That IS NOT the whole truth. Something is wrong if it hurts someone "DESTRUCTIVELY". For example, you might tell someone something that might hurt, BUT actually benefits him/her, while on the other hand, laughing at someone is NOT beneficial and can and does on occasions demoralize the person and damage the person's self-esteem.

Yes we got all that.


Now to laugh at people behind their backs is in no way constructive, or beneficial. And there is no way that anyone can justify otherwise.

That's just downright wrong. First of all, as we have established, laughing at someone on the T.V. or behind their backs does in no way 'hurt' them (destructively or otherwise).

On the contrary, laughing is in fact good for you in many ways, and just generally makes you feel good.

How is laughing behind someone's back bad when there are no negative aspects (that is, 'hurting' someone) yet there are in fact beneficial aspects!

BloodthirstPriest
18th August 2008, 1:15 PM
Okay. I'm going to shoot you in your left leg. Your knee, to be specific. You're going to double over now. Does that lack control and will? Does that show weakness?

Of course not, you can't help but fall over in such circumstances. Much the same with laughing; laughing is a reflex to a certain degree that in very many circumstances simply cannot be controlled, just as how when the doctor taps your knee with that funny little hammer you flinch.

Let me shoot in the head, liver, kidney, pancreas, and lung:
The people who CAN hold their laughter - yes there ARE people who CAN - have control over themselves, and, also, are confident. So, I don't need to repeat myself in saying that people who can't are weakly willed. Laughter is an expression, an emotion some might say, shooting somebody in the leg and him falling over is a reaction.

Expressions and reactions are completely different things.


You should learn to read the whole thread. That was the definition of wrong that was given for the purposes of the debate, agreed by all active parties at the time. If you wish to contend that definition of wrong, then do so, but that is where we must start before progressing any further.

Funny thing is that yes I did read the whole thing, but you said:


Mmm... I'll just play along lol.

And well, it's hard to believe that YOU agreed to that after that statement, and guess what: right after that you laughed, "lol". Hmmmm. that doesn't really show that you agreed, now does it?


That's just downright wrong. First of all, as we have established, laughing at someone on the T.V. or behind their backs does in no way 'hurt' them (destructively or otherwise).

On the contrary, laughing is in fact good for you in many ways, and just generally makes you feel good.

REALLY? You want us to do what isn't really beneficial, yet does "feel good"? If people did what made them "feel good" the world will be filled with tyrants, corrupt people, thieves, drug addicts, and the list goes on.


How is laughing behind someone's back bad when there are no negative aspects (that is, 'hurting' someone) yet there are in fact beneficial aspects!

Remember, I said that people should do what is beneficial, not things that are neither beneficial nor harmful, and as I just pointed out, "feeling good" is not what beneficial or constructive really mean, and laughter just happens to be one of those things that are neither beneficial or constructive.

Key Keeper
18th August 2008, 1:36 PM
I believe that the main assumption in this topic seems to be that we only laugh when something seems funny to us, which is not necessarily true. Hysteria, for example, may cause a loss of self-control due to fear, and the person may laugh. To use the example from the original post, a person may feel overwhelming fear after the death of a loved one, and may laugh. Similarly, depression (manic) can cause laughter. In this case i do not feel that the laughter is wrong.

I do, however, feel that it is wrong to deny a person their right to laugh, because in doing so you make the assumption that they are laughing a) at something at hand, and b) find it funny, neither of which may necessarily be true. In any case, denying the right to laugh is denying someone freedom of expression, which i would also say is wrong.

As for holding in laughter, the reason would presumably be because you feel that it is inappropriate (which bypasses the hysteria arguement i gave, as you yourself are aware of your reasons for laughing in this case), and are therefore suppressing the laughter so as to avoid causing embarrassment or harm to yourself or others. And i hardly feel that sparing someones feelings, in this case, is wrong.

Dekori
18th August 2008, 5:04 PM
1. Is it wrong to laugh? If so, what makes it wrong to laugh? - I would never say laughter is wrong, however I would say it can be inappropriate at times.

2. Is it OK to chastise somebody for laughing? At any time? What times are OK? - I would also say, at the times in which it is inappropriate this is justified.

3. If somebody tries to hold in their laughter, is it still wrong? - Once again, I don't think it is or can be wrong, but inappropriate. At least with covering it up, the person is trying to subdue and consequently keep from being rude. IT is a good effort, and the best effort possible to subdue a natural reaction.

So I don't get bombarded by "ZOMG WHENZ IT INAPPROPRIATEZ!!!1!!!1!!!" I'll make a list of when I fell laughing is inappropriate.

At the scene of a Death - Its a shocking experience for most, laughing seems insensitive.

At a funeral (Unless a joke has been told) - Meaning, Don't laugh at stupid things people say or mistakes speakers make in their speeches, as it is once again rude, and a solemn occasion. However, in many funerals, friends and family comfort each other by telling fond or funny stories about that person, in which, the object is to get the people to laugh to ease some of the pain.

I also think any sort of gathering in which silence is wanted is a place where you shouldn't laugh, though most of these depend on the situation. I think laughing in a movie is rude unless the object of it was to make you laugh. Don't laugh during a dramatic scene, that isn't the point of the scene. I also think if someone is speaking, laughing is just as rude as talking over them or leaving, unless they want you to laugh, like the other situations.

So there's my stance. Laughing isn't wrong, but sometimes rude. Use it respectfullly and enjoy it.

Umbreon_13
18th August 2008, 5:11 PM
in some cases laughter is actually unavoidable and it may hurt someone so yes it could be wrong but it could be right if someone just told a funny joke or your laughing at yourself cause laughter is good for you

Conquistador
19th August 2008, 8:05 AM
Let me shoot in the head, liver, kidney, pancreas, and lung:
The people who CAN hold their laughter - yes there ARE people who CAN - have control over themselves, and, also, are confident. So, I don't need to repeat myself in saying that people who can't are weakly willed. Laughter is an expression, an emotion some might say, shooting somebody in the leg and him falling over is a reaction.

Expressions and reactions are completely different things.


This is where I would have to agree and disagree at the same time. True, laughter in general is indeed an expression, one which can be suppressed as you say. However, the initial outburst of laughter, that is when you start laughing, is a reaction, one that cannot be controlled.

I think that rather than 'one of us is right, one of us is wrong here' it's simply we're not on the same page :/


And well, it's hard to believe that YOU agreed to that after that statement, and guess what: right after that you laughed, "lol". Hmmmm. that doesn't really show that you agreed, now does it?

For all intensive purposes of the debate, yes, I did agree to the definiton.

However, it is irrelevant anyway, what matters is whether you agree. You did not raise any objections and thus I assumed you too agreed to the definition, or else did not skim through the topic before contributing.



REALLY? You want us to do what isn't really beneficial, yet does "feel good"? If people did what made them "feel good" the world will be filled with tyrants, corrupt people, thieves, drug addicts, and the list goes on.


Remember, I said that people should do what is beneficial, not things that are neither beneficial nor harmful, and as I just pointed out, "feeling good" is not what beneficial or constructive really mean, and laughter just happens to be one of those things that are neither beneficial or constructive.

Once again I believe we are not on the same page. I was under the impression that what makes you 'feel good' fell under the umbrella of what is beneficial.

Please then, share with us all what you think is 'beneficial' or 'constructive'. Define those two terms for us.

NONETHELESS, you still haven't quite shown me what is so wrong or bad about laughing at someone/something behind there backs or on T.V., where no 'harm/hurt' (thus no bad) is done, whereas benefit is derived in the form of pleasure (or even if that isn't benefit, it still makes you feel good). So, what is so wrong about it?



I would never say laughter is wrong, however I would say it can be inappropriate at times.


I just want to point out this really great post here, that clearly outlines a large problem currently present in this thread. I believe that the two terms 'inappropriate' and 'wrong' are being muddled and substituted for each other.

I think we really ought to make a clear distinction between those two terms.

PsiUmbreon
19th August 2008, 9:39 AM
Actually, there are a few questions here:


1. Is it wrong to laugh? If so, what makes it wrong to laugh?

2. Is it OK to chastise somebody for laughing? At any time? What times are OK?

3. If somebody tries to hold in their laughter, is it still wrong?


1. Laughter is a reflex. It can't be controlled, and a genuine laugh cannot be done on purpose, it must be in response to something. You can taunt someone like "haha, you suck" but a real laugh can't be done on purpose. Laughter cannot be right or wrong because people cannot make a conscious choice to laugh.

2. It may be that laughter is a reflex, but if that particular reflex comes at an inappropriate time, then something is clearly wrong with that person, in which case, yes, it's okay to inform them that they need help.

3. Laughter isn't inherently wrong, it's the person behind it who may have something wrong with them, if a situation in which laughter is an inappropriate reaction arises.

BloodthirstPriest
19th August 2008, 12:24 PM
This is where I would have to agree and disagree at the same time. True, laughter in general is indeed an expression, one which can be suppressed as you say. However, the initial outburst of laughter, that is when you start laughing, is a reaction, one that cannot be controlled.

You say that the initial outburst is an uncontrollable reaction. Yes, some people find laughter uncontrollable, BUT, it is not a reaction, it is an expression of joy, which may come as a result of something. Please take note that every reaction is a result, but not every result is a reaction.

I do feel that we're slightly derailing the debate.


I think that rather than 'one of us is right, one of us is wrong here' it's simply we're not on the same page :/

I don't think that one can be "wrong" on this issue, as the views of laughter change from culture to culture, and from belief to belief.


For all intensive purposes of the debate, yes, I did agree to the definiton.

Then, I misunderstood your post.


However, it is irrelevant anyway, what matters is whether you agree. You did not raise any objections and thus I assumed you too agreed to the definition, or else did not skim through the topic before contributing.

Yes, I did read all the previous posts, and the reason I did not raise any objections, was because I was interested in the outcome of this debate, and should I have posted something earlier on, I don't think this debate would have progressed.


Once again I believe we are not on the same page. I was under the impression that what makes you 'feel good' fell under the umbrella of what is beneficial.

Please then, share with us all what you think is 'beneficial' or 'constructive'. Define those two terms for us.

*Sigh* I didn't think I'd have to clarify those two words, but here you go:
Beneficial: Helpful and useful. (For the record feeling good is not helpful, it's why alcoholics are so and why drug addicts are also so).
Constructive: Something that can lead to more improvement, or that has been built upon previous advancement.


NONETHELESS, you still haven't quite shown me what is so wrong or bad about laughing at someone/something behind there backs or on T.V., where no 'harm/hurt' (thus no bad) is done, whereas benefit is derived in the form of pleasure (or even if that isn't benefit, it still makes you feel good). So, what is so wrong about it?

Didn't I previously say that it's arrogant and disrespectful. I said before that laughing at someone is not justified by their absence. If anything, then, laughing at someone during their absence is harmful to yourself. How so? Well, in general, it damages your character, and creates insensitivity, this is so, because laughing at someone during their absence shows that you cannot relate or connect yourself to that person.

Let me define insensitive as well: Showing lack of feeling or emotion towards someone.

Key Keeper
19th August 2008, 12:58 PM
it is an expression of joy
Not necessarily true, many people can confuse their emotions and laugh for other reasons such as when afraid, or when sad in an attempt to comfort themselves (which, even according to your definition, is beneficial, and constructive, as feeling better is likely then to inspire them to move on). Laughter may also come along with an outburst of emotions, even those which oppose joy.


Beneficial: Helpful and useful.
Beneficial: Producing or promoting a favourable result.


Let me define insensitive as well: Showing lack of feeling or emotion towards someone.
So am i insensitive towards someone i don't know? Being insensitive requires one to be aware of someones feelings or how they are likely to feel. It seems to me that you have defined apathy, in part.

BloodthirstPriest
19th August 2008, 2:57 PM
Not necessarily true, many people can confuse their emotions and laugh for other reasons such as when afraid, or when sad in an attempt to comfort themselves (which, even according to your definition, is beneficial, and constructive, as feeling better is likely then to inspire them to move on). Laughter may also come along with an outburst of emotions, even those which oppose joy.

I am using the most widely and commonly known form of laughter, I oppose THAT type of laughter. There is a helpful goal for laughter when afraid, and that is to reassure yourself and regain confidence. Laughing when afraid is not really an outburst of laughter, but instead a short and usually nervous laugh, which usually involves the person laughing at his/herself to regain confidence, or boost morale, one might say. And laughing because it makes you feel good, is not a really valid or strong reason to do so.


Beneficial: Producing or promoting a favourable result.

*Sigh* Again? Each word has 100s of meanings, and when I defined beneficial, I defined it according to how I used it in my post and how I intended it to be understood. If all words had one meaning that was agreed upon, you'd have only one dictionary, but I'm afraid we have hundreds if not thousands.
But really, posting another definition is derailing the topic, I was asked to define the terms, not you.


So am i insensitive towards someone i don't know? Being insensitive requires one to be aware of someones feelings or how they are likely to feel. It seems to me that you have defined apathy, in part.

Yes you are insensitive if you do so, or you'd say apathetic. So what you're saying is that you can laugh at people if you are not aware of their emotions? That's ignorance... another reason, perhaps, why one shouldn't laugh at people behind their backs. Thanks for the reason.

And again, words have 100s of meanings, and I defined it according to my terms. Sure, you can define apathy like that; there are so many synonyms of words, and surprisingly insensitivity and apathy are synonyms.

Ethan
19th August 2008, 10:22 PM
2. It may be that laughter is a reflex, but if that particular reflex comes at an inappropriate time, then something is clearly wrong with that person, in which case, yes, it's okay to inform them that they need help.

Define a wrong situation.

Hakajin
19th August 2008, 10:38 PM
How about laughing at someone hurting themselves on, say, the T.V.? Is that still malicious? It doesn't increase the pain of the person being laughed at in any way.

I don't think so. Especially since in most cases, the person being hurt agreed to let it be shown. Eh, I guess if you allow yourself to laugh at things that are too serious, you could desensatize yourself and might not take people's feelings into consideration if something liket that actually happened, but... I don't think there's too much risk of that.


That IS NOT the whole truth. Something is wrong if it hurts someone "DESTRUCTIVELY". For example, you might tell someone something that might hurt, BUT actually benefits him/her, while on the other hand, laughing at someone is NOT beneficial and can and does on occasions demoralize the person and damage the person's self-esteem.

In that case, you're not hurting her. You're actually benefitting her, though it may cause discomfort. You would actually hurt her by not saying anything. I'm talking about hurting as in something that causes unnecessary pain and hinders a person.


I am using the most widely and commonly known form of laughter, I oppose THAT type of laughter. There is a helpful goal for laughter when afraid, and that is to reassure yourself and regain confidence. Laughing when afraid is not really an outburst of laughter, but instead a short and usually nervous laugh, which usually involves the person laughing at his/herself to regain confidence, or boost morale, one might say. And laughing because it makes you feel good, is not a really valid or strong reason to do so.

But laughter is still a reaction. It can express joy, but that doesn't change that fact. Think about how hard it is to make yourself laugh, for example. It sounds fake. That's because true laughter has to have a stimulus. You really can't control it sometimes, especially when what you're laughing at happened unexpectedly. Also, sometimes things become funny because they're not supposed to be. Knowing you're not supposed to laugh makes it a lot harder not to.

BloodthirstPriest
20th August 2008, 6:21 AM
But laughter is still a reaction. It can express joy, but that doesn't change that fact. Think about how hard it is to make yourself laugh, for example. It sounds fake. That's because true laughter has to have a stimulus. You really can't control it sometimes, especially when what you're laughing at happened unexpectedly. Also, sometimes things become funny because they're not supposed to be. Knowing you're not supposed to laugh makes it a lot harder not to.

The reason because you can't make yourself laugh is because you anticipate what you're going to do, and thus, you build a sort of defence. For example, when you tell yourself a joke or tickle yourself, you don't really laugh, because you anticipate this. But in a way, you can make yourself laugh: You can watch a video of yourself being stupid years back, and you might laugh. But I don't think that's what you meant.

"Knowing you're not supposed to laugh makes it a lot harder not to." That may apply to some people, but there are people to which that statement does not apply to.

With a bit of discipline and will, laughter can be held, even when it the occasion is really unexpected.

Laughter is not a reaction. A reaction requires a certain situation to to begin or cause that reaction. Laughter may require a funny situation, etc, but laughter is not always the result of said situation. A reaction in the body, is, for example: The clogging of arteries results in a heart attack. That is a reaction, as your body tries to get blood everywhere, a heart attack will ensue. A reaction is the result of an action, which after said action has occurred, will result in another action (reaction). Now, a funny situation may result in laughter, but will not always. Therefore it is not a reaction, but one of many results of the aforementioned situation. As I said earlier, it is an expression.

Hakajin
20th August 2008, 6:37 AM
The reason because you can't make yourself laugh is because you anticipate what you're going to do, and thus, you build a sort of defence. For example, when you tell yourself a joke or tickle yourself, you don't really laugh, because you anticipate this. But in a way, you can make yourself laugh: You can watch a video of yourself being stupid years back, and you might laugh. But I don't think that's what you meant.

"Knowing you're not supposed to laugh makes it a lot harder not to." That may apply to some people, but there are people to which that statement does not apply to.

With a bit of discipline and will, laughter can be held, even when it the occasion is really unexpected.

Laughter is not a reaction. A reaction requires a certain situation to to begin or cause that reaction. Laughter may require a funny situation, etc, but laughter is not always the result of said situation. A reaction in the body, is, for example: The clogging of arteries results in a heart attack. That is a reaction, as your body tries to get blood everywhere, a heart attack will ensue. A reaction is the result of an action, which after said action has occurred, will result in another action (reaction). Now, a funny situation may result in laughter, but will not always. Therefore it is not a reaction, but one of many results of the aforementioned situation. As I said earlier, it is an expression.

You can't make yourself laugh if you try to laugh without doing anything. It doesn't matter if it doesn't apply to everyone. We're speaking in general terms, and for the majority of people, the desire to laugh increases if it's an inappropriate thing to laugh at. This is because laughing is a way of processing emotion, and when something is preventing that process, the brain tries to get it through faster and more vehemently. A reaction doesn't have to occur in every situation to be a reaction. An expression is a type of reaction. Whether its laughing, frowning, or crying, all candid facial expressions are emotional reactions. If you don't laugh, it's because you've had another reaction to the situation instead. You can stop a reaction if you catch it, and you can change the way in which you react, but that doesn't change what it is. A reaction is an event that results from another event.

BloodthirstPriest
20th August 2008, 7:39 AM
You can't make yourself laugh if you try to laugh without doing anything. It doesn't matter if it doesn't apply to everyone. We're speaking in general terms, and for the majority of people, the desire to laugh increases if it's an inappropriate thing to laugh at.

Maybe the desire to laugh at something inappropriate does increase, but that does not justify the laugh.


This is because laughing is a way of processing emotion, and when something is preventing that process, the brain tries to get it through faster and more vehemently. A reaction doesn't have to occur in every situation to be a reaction. An expression is a type of reaction. Whether its laughing, frowning, or crying, all candid facial expressions are emotional reactions. If you don't laugh, it's because you've had another reaction to the situation instead. You can stop a reaction if you catch it, and you can change the way in which you react, but that doesn't change what it is. A reaction is an event that results from another event.

The way you use react in that post, sounds more like respond. One may respond to a situation differently. There are differences between a reaction and a response. A reaction is ultimately uncontrollable. Laughing is controllable. Laughing is an expression, which is a response, not to be confused with a reaction. You are ultimately controlling the way you respond to something. You may laugh, you may smile, you may frown, you may shout, or you may cry, but ultimately you can achieve control over these emotions, which are responses. A reaction is uncontrollable, from the the moment the action that sparks it ends, the reaction continues on from that without control. The action that starts a reaction can be stopped preventing the reaction from occurring.

Hakajin
20th August 2008, 7:45 AM
Maybe the desire to laugh at something inappropriate does increase, but that does not justify the laugh.

Never said it did.


The way you use react in that post, sounds more like respond. One may respond to a situation differently. There are differences between a reaction and a response. A reaction is ultimately uncontrollable. Laughing is controllable. Laughing is an expression, which is a response, not to be confused with a reaction. You are ultimately controlling the way you respond to something. You may laugh, you may smile, you may frown, you may shout, or you may cry, but ultimately you can achieve control over these emotions, which are responses. A reaction is uncontrollable, from the the moment the action that sparks it ends, the reaction continues on from that without control. The action that starts a reaction can be stopped preventing the reaction from occurring.

From Wordperfect's dictionary:
Reaction: 2 (reactions) a person's ability to respond physically and mentally to external stimuli.

BloodthirstPriest
20th August 2008, 7:50 AM
Never said it did.



From Wordperfect's dictionary:
Reaction: 2 (reactions) a person's ability to respond physically and mentally to external stimuli.

Again with definitions... Maybe I should put this in my signature:
WORDS HAVE 100s OF MEANINGS. When I first used reaction, the meaning I intended was what you see before your post.

Also:
Every reaction is a response. A reaction, how I intended, is uncontrollable. Laughing is a controllable response, meaning that it is not a reaction.
Not every response is a reaction. A response does not necessarily have to be controllable or not.

It's like saying that every man is a human, but not every human is a man, because some humans are women.

Hakajin
20th August 2008, 7:53 AM
Again with definitions... Maybe I should put this in my signature:
WORDS HAVE 100s OF MEANINGS. When I first used reaction, the meaning I intended was what you see before your post.

Also:
Every reaction is a response. A reaction, how I intended, is uncontrollable. Laughing is a controllable response, meaning that it is not a reaction.
Not every response is a reaction. A response does not necessarily have to be controllable or not.

That doesn't make your definition any more valid than mine. It's a reaction in that it has to be caused by a stimulus. It doesn't have to be controllable, nor does it have to occur 100% of the time.

However, I'm just going to say that laughter is not always controllable, and there's nothing wrong about it when it's not.

BloodthirstPriest
20th August 2008, 7:56 AM
That doesn't make your definition any more valid than mine. It's a reaction in that it has to be caused by a stimulus. It doesn't have to be controllable, nor does it have to occur 100% of the time.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that I was the first to mention reaction, was I not?


However, I'm just going to say that laughter is not always controllable, and there's nothing wrong about it when it's not.

I've said this before quite a few times:
Laughter is controllable, for those who cannot control it, then they should learn how. Or even better, they can just never listen to anybody.

Hakajin
20th August 2008, 8:04 AM
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that I was the first to mention reaction, was I not?

You didn't say exactly what you meant by the word, though.


I've said this before quite a few times:
Laughter is controllable, for those who cannot control it, then they should learn how. Or even better, they can just never listen to anybody.

I've stated my case several times before, too. You can't conceal laughter when you don't know it's coming, and also in other situations. You can try to cover it up, but you cannot stop the signs of a twitching mouth and muted chuckles. There are techniques such as thinking certain things, but that's after it's already begun. They're also difficult to put into practice and unreliable.

BloodthirstPriest
20th August 2008, 8:08 AM
You didn't say exactly what you meant by the word, though.

Nobody asked did they? So I assumed that everyone understood. If you or anyone else didn't understand, then there's no need to be shy.


I've stated my case several times before, too. You can't conceal laughter when you don't know it's coming, and also in other situations. You can try to cover it up, but you cannot stop the signs of a twitching mouth and muted chuckles. There are techniques such as thinking certain things, but that's after it's already begun. They're also difficult to put into practice and unreliable.

That's why I said in my first post that I do not approve of an outburst of laughter. I said that a smile would suffice.

If you don't know when you're going to laugh, then you really don't know yourself.

Conquistador
20th August 2008, 8:13 AM
Laughter is an expression of joy rather than a reaction and is therefore not involuntary and can be suppressed

(Just thought I'd size down the quote).

I think a big question here is whether laughter is a reaction or and expression. I and those others who have posted...


1. Laughter is a reflex. It can't be controlled, and a genuine laugh cannot be done on purpose, it must be in response to something. You can taunt someone like "haha, you suck" but a real laugh can't be done on purpose. Laughter cannot be right or wrong because people cannot make a conscious choice to laugh.



But laughter is still a reaction. It can express joy, but that doesn't change that fact. Think about how hard it is to make yourself laugh, for example. It sounds fake. That's because true laughter has to have a stimulus. You really can't control it sometimes, especially when what you're laughing at happened unexpectedly. Also, sometimes things become funny because they're not supposed to be. Knowing you're not supposed to laugh makes it a lot harder not to.

... are positive that laughter is indeed a reaction (while it may express joy) that comes about due to external stimuli. However, you for whatever reason seem unconvinced.

For that reason I intend to research the topic more thoroughly and perhaps find some hard evidence for you to show


I do feel that we're slightly derailing the debate.

Haha, don't worry this is what usually happens in the debates here ;)



*Sigh* I didn't think I'd have to clarify those two words, but here you go:
Beneficial: Helpful and useful. (For the record feeling good is not helpful, it's why alcoholics are so and why drug addicts are also so).
Constructive: Something that can lead to more improvement, or that has been built upon previous advancement.

But laughter is helpful, and can lead to more improvement! All the health benefits of laughter cannot be ignored;

- Laughter reduces stress
- Laughter reduces the chance of heart disease or a heart attack
- It gives a great internal workout (abdominal muscles etc...)
- Helps control high blood pressure
- Helps control hormones
- Boosts your immune system and helps you fight illness
- Alievates pain
- Increases stamina (a good laugh gives you more stimulation than 2000 chocolate bars!)

And many more. This shows how in various ways laughter can be beneficial and constructive. It therefore shows that by your definition laughter (inherently, at least) is good.

SOURCES:
http://www.umm.edu/features/laughter.htm
http://stress.about.com/od/stresshealth/a/laughter.htm
http://www.laughteryoga.org/about-benefits-laughter.php
http://ririanproject.com/2007/10/26/10-benefits-of-laughter-and-how-to-use-it/


Didn't I previously say that it's arrogant and disrespectful. I said before that laughing at someone is not justified by their absence. If anything, then, laughing at someone during their absence is harmful to yourself. How so? Well, in general, it damages your character, and creates insensitivity, this is so, because laughing at someone during their absence shows that you cannot relate or connect yourself to that person.

Let me define insensitive as well: Showing lack of feeling or emotion towards someone.

Arrogant and disrespectful does not equal wrong. Something can be arrogant and disrespectful and yet still not be wrong by this debate's definition.
The definition of wrong being used is that something is wrong...

... if it hurts someone else.

Laughing at someone on the T.V., as previously stated, does not hurt that person. Sure, it may still be arrogant and disrespectful, I agree, but that does not mean it is bad.

As for the latter part of that quote, I've shown you all the good things that come from laughter. However, there is nothing to suggest that having one good laugh at someone on the T.V. can create or build up insensitivity; aka the slippery slope fallacy.



Define a wrong situation.

Babs you always do this. Don't be pedantic; there is not even any reason that he needs to define a wrong situation to defend his argument. He's just saying that if they laugh in a wrong situations - whatever that may be - then perhaps there is something wrong with the person.

Hakajin
20th August 2008, 8:18 AM
Nobody asked did they? So I assumed that everyone understood. If you or anyone else didn't understand, then there's no need to be shy.

Well, you know what they say about assuming! Ha, just kidding. I just didn't have any reason to think the definition would be different.


That's why I said in my first post that I do not approve of an outburst of laughter. I said that a smile would suffice.

If you don't know when you're going to laugh, then you really don't know yourself.

Ah, that's fine then. Still... I'm going to give a couple of personal examples. I know they don't represent everyone, but any argument to the contrary suffices, and I can only say that I couldn't help it for sure about myself. Anyway. The first case was in Latin class. There were a couple of jerks who got into an argument with a volatile kid in our class over whether corn could be blue. The kid really lost it, and it was obvious that they were just mocking him. It made me angry, because I know what it is to be treated that way. But at the same time, the kid was really making a fool of himself. I was doing my best to cover it up, but it was obvious that I found it funny. I told the other guys that it was cruel of them to antagonize him like that after the kid got kicked out of class, but still.


If you don't know when you're going to laugh, then you really don't know yourself.

That has nothing to do with it. The second case concerns my aunt. She's a total neat freak and makes everyone conform to that. She's the type who makes you take your shoes off when you get in her van and parks all the way across the parking lot so no cars can scratch it. Well, we were leaving my house one day, and the bottom of the front of her van scraped against the curb coming out of my driveway. I let out a "ha," before I could even catch myself, because stuff happens to cars no matter how much care you take. She got mad at me, and I ended up crying. I always cry about things like that, which is horribly embarrassing, so I have every reason to avoid it. The event just happened before I knew it.

BloodthirstPriest
20th August 2008, 8:59 AM
(Just thought I'd size down the quote).

I think a big question here is whether laughter is a reaction or and expression. I and those others who have posted...

... are positive that laughter is indeed a reaction (while it may express joy) that comes about due to external stimuli. However, you for whatever reason seem unconvinced.

Do you really expect everyone to think the same? I will only agree with your definition if you can convince me, hence the use of debates.


Haha, don't worry this is what usually happens in the debates here ;)

Just a question:
Do debates actually derail completely, yet are continued?


But laughter is helpful, and can lead to more improvement! All the health benefits of laughter cannot be ignored;

- Laughter reduces stress
- Laughter reduces the chance of heart disease or a heart attack
- It gives a great internal workout (abdominal muscles etc...)
- Helps control high blood pressure
- Helps control hormones
- Boosts your immune system and helps you fight illness
- Alievates pain
- Increases stamina (a good laugh gives you more stimulation than 2000 chocolate bars!)

And many more. This shows how in various ways laughter can be beneficial and constructive. It therefore shows that by your definition laughter (inherently, at least) is good.

Finally, a bit of evidence.
I know and have heard of these facts. I do highly disagree with these, but that is not enough, is it? So here's my research :P

-So, laughing actually increases your heart rate. See for yourself, put your hand on you chest when you laugh, and you'll notice the amount of pulses. Yes, slower heart rates are better.
-Laughing can cause a heart attack and cardiac arrest.
-Laughing can pop blood vessels in the brain and other blood vessels.
-Yes, laughing can kill.
-And if you say that laughter prolongs your life, then you might as well believe that right-handed people live longer than left-handed people.
-Laughing makes you look older, as it strains the muscles on your face.

http://www.snopes.com/horrors/freakish/laughing.asp


Arrogant and disrespectful does not equal wrong. Something can be arrogant and disrespectful and yet still not be wrong by this debate's definition.
The definition of wrong being used is that something is wrong...
... if it hurts someone else.

Since when do arrogance and lack of respect not qualify as "wrong"?


Laughing at someone on the T.V., as previously stated, does not hurt that person. Sure, it may still be arrogant and disrespectful, I agree, but that does not mean it is bad.

So, it's alright to be disrespectful and arrogant. So, if someone dumps their garbage in front of your house, that's not bad?


As for the latter part of that quote, I've shown you all the good things that come from laughter. However, there is nothing to suggest that having one good laugh at someone on the T.V. can create or build up insensitivity; aka the slippery slope fallacy.

-A man called Alex Mitchell died of laughter while watching a TV show. Hmm...
-A man called Damnoen Saen-um died of laughter while he was sleeping. Really? That is the next level of laughter.
-Also:


In 1989 a Danish audiologist, Ole Bentzen, died watching A Fish Called Wanda. His heart was estimated to have beat at between 250 and 500 beats per minute, before he succumbed to cardiac arrest.

The site was too long, so I decided to quote what I needed, if you don't believe me, here:

http://arewelumberjacks.blogspot.com/2008_01_01_archive.html

In response to Hakajin's post:


Ah, that's fine then. Still... I'm going to give a couple of personal examples. I know they don't represent everyone, but any argument to the contrary suffices, and I can only say that I couldn't help it for sure about myself. Anyway. The first case was in Latin class. There were a couple of jerks who got into an argument with a volatile kid in our class over whether corn could be blue. The kid really lost it, and it was obvious that they were just mocking him. It made me angry, because I know what it is to be treated that way. But at the same time, the kid was really making a fool of himself. I was doing my best to cover it up, but it was obvious that I found it funny. I told the other guys that it was cruel of them to antagonize him like that after the kid got kicked out of class, but still.

Blue corn? You know there is such thing as blue corn - yes, laughing was the wrong thing to do, but with enough discipline one can hold it. (No, I am not that kid).
Here's some evidence to blue corn:


"One of the most unique corns found here in the Southwest is blue corn," said George Dickerson, horticulture specialist with New Mexico State University's Cooperative Extension Service. "During his 1540 expedition into the Southwest, Coronado found blue corn and other flour corns to be major staples of Pueblo Indians. Blue corn is still an important element in Native American religious rituals."

http://cahe.nmsu.edu/news/1999/110299_bluecorn.html

But really, we should leave that topic at that; that's another debate.


That has nothing to do with it. The second case concerns my aunt. She's a total neat freak and makes everyone conform to that. She's the type who makes you take your shoes off when you get in her van and parks all the way across the parking lot so no cars can scratch it. Well, we were leaving my house one day, and the bottom of the front of her van scraped against the curb coming out of my driveway. I let out a "ha," before I could even catch myself, because stuff happens to cars no matter how much care you take. She got mad at me, and I ended up crying. I always cry about things like that, which is horribly embarrassing, so I have every reason to avoid it. The event just happened before I knew it.

Instances like that are second-nature. You do it without really noticing. It may seem uncontrollable, but it isn't. These second-natured laughs are, perhaps, the hardest to control.

Conquistador
20th August 2008, 9:26 AM
Do you really expect everyone to think the same? I will only agree with your definition if you can convince me, hence the use of debates.

I've done some research of my own. :P

Well there is an objective answer to this question, but until I have investigated the matter moreso (it is of course possible that I am wrong), I don't intend to discuss the matter any mroe with you :)




Just a question:
Do debates actually derail completely, yet are continued?

It depends. While we may have 'derailed' the debate, what we are arguing is still completely relevant. It's only when either outright flaming is happening, or the posts are completely off topic is a debate closed. ^_^



I know and have heard of these facts. I do highly disagree with these, but that is not enough, is it?

I really don't see how you disagree when I presented you with 5 different sources claiming it was so... That's like me showing you 5 different maps of the world made by different people and you telling me Africa doesn't exist =/


So, laughing actually increases your heart rate. See for yourself, put your hand on you chest when you laugh, and you'll notice the amount of pulses. Yes, slower heart rates are better.

This is not a bad thing. Increasing your hear rate is in fact very good for your heart as it exercises it. Why do you think running is such a good cardio workout? Because it gets the heart pumping nice and strong. As does laughing, helping strengthen your heart.

Laughing will never normally increase your heart rate to a dangerous level. (before you explode at that statement I'll explain what I mean later).


Laughing can cause a heart attack and cardiac arrest.

Laughing can pop blood vessels in the brain and other blood vessels.

Yes, laughing can kill.

And if you say that laughter prolongs your life, then you might as well believe that right-handed people live longer than left-handed people.

http://www.snopes.com/horrors/freakish/laughing.asp

Some things should be cleared up about fatal hilarity. Laughter on its own (i.e. under normal circumstances) will never cause any of these things to happen. These things would only ever occur if there were pre-existent problems within the laugh-ee, such as having a heart condition of some sorts or a weak blood vessel.

Also, it's not just me that says laughter prolongs your life, it's also the three sources I gave.


I'd also like to examine your source that you gave;
http://www.snopes.com/horrors/freakish/laughing.asp

I'm not sure if you read this through completely, as towards the end it in fact says this;


Yet even if there may have been an occasional death from guffawing, it's still possible merriment is far more healthy than harmful (at least for the ones who survive). Some studies assert laughing produces beneficial effects on physical health, including decreasing the secretion of serum cortisol (a stress hormone) and boosting the blood levels of immunoglobulin A, an antibody that fights bacterial and viral infections in the upper respiratory and gastrointestinal tracts. However, not everyone in the scientific community has jumped on this bandwagon in a study reported upon in 2002 in Current Directions in Psychological Science ("Is Laughter the Best Medicine? Humor, Laughter, and Physical Health) researchers reported that the connection between humor and wellness was "less conclusive than commonly believed" and that "future research in this area needs to be more theoretically driven and methodologically rigorous."

So, the health benefits of laughter heavily out way the unlikely harms.


Since when do arrogance and lack of respect not qualify as "wrong"?

Since when they did not meet the definiton that is being used by this debate;

'something is wrong if it hurts someone'



So, it's alright to be disrespectful and arrogant.

I never said it was alright to do such a thing, because bad doesn't equal not alright. However, disrespect and arrogance isn't bad.


So, if someone dumps their garbage in front of your house, that's not bad?

That's right.

itsme
20th August 2008, 9:40 AM
1. Is it wrong to laugh? If so, what makes it wrong to laugh?
It's not wrong to laugh.
2. Is it OK to chastise somebody for laughing? At any time? What times are OK?
So what if I laughed at a kid who buried himself in sand and died. Or when my parents relatives died. Or when my beloved grandfather died. I don't really think there is an inappropriate time to laugh, but there are people who finds it dirupting or disturbing, so as a person, I think you need to be able to tell when you can laugh and not disturb or disrupt others.
3. If somebody tries to hold in their laughter, is it still wrong?
I find holding in laughter embarassing. Either you let it go, or don't laugh at all.


Thoughts in bold.

BloodthirstPriest
20th August 2008, 9:55 AM
I really don't see how you disagree when I presented you with 5 different sources claiming it was so... That's like me showing you 5 different maps of the world made by different people and you telling me Africa doesn't exist =/

No, it's just there is not much evidence to those claims. My claims came with evidence. Anyone can post something on the internet without evidence to support their claims.


This is not a bad thing. Increasing your hear rate is in fact very good for your heart as it exercises it. Why do you think running is such a good cardio workout? Because it gets the heart pumping nice and strong. As does laughing, helping strengthen your heart.

Your heart rate should be above average while exercising, laughing is not an exercise. (Unfortunately, I know we're gonna end up in a debate about this too).


Laughing will never normally increase your heart rate to a dangerous level. (before you explode at that statement I'll explain what I mean later).

Laughing easily raises the heart rate above normal.


Some things should be cleared up about fatal hilarity. Laughter on its own (i.e. under normal circumstances) will never cause any of these things to happen. These things would only ever occur if there were pre-existent problems within the laugh-ee, such as having a heart condition of some sorts or a weak blood vessel.

Yes, that is true, but none of us can really say we don't have those problems until it actually happens.


Also, it's not just me that says laughter prolongs your life, it's also the three sources I gave.

That is really just a claim. People who don't laugh a lot, might coincidentally die of something unrelated to laughter.


I'd also like to examine your source that you gave;
http://www.snopes.com/horrors/freakish/laughing.asp

I'm not sure if you read this through completely, as towards the end it in fact says this;

I read it; it says it's "possible" not confirmed. Also, it was either that or wikipedia, but, unfortunately wikipedia is not allowed. :(


So, the health benefits of laughter heavily out way the unlikely harms.

Well, go ahead if you want to take the risk. I'd rather be on the safer side and not laugh. If given a choice to live 50 years, or 80 years with the possibility of dying before you pass 50, which would you choose?


Since when they did not meet the definiton that is being used by this debate;

'something is wrong if it hurts someone'

In that you did not include that arrogance or disrespect are not wrong.


I never said it was alright to do such a thing, because bad doesn't equal not alright. However, disrespect and arrogance isn't bad.

So, what is it then? In between? Disrespect and arrogance are not bad? Those two things are the source of lies, corruption and much more. Or are those not bad too?


That's right.

So, if I understand correctly, then, dumping garbage in front of your house is not wrong? So you'll greet those people who'll do so with open hearts and arms?

heirokee
20th August 2008, 10:02 AM
a few thoughts:

Laughter is a reaction... at least in most cases... the ones pertaining to this conversation in particular. I mean, yes, you can just start laughing for no real reason, but what the topic is about are the honest laughs because you responded to something and laughter was the result. Laughter in these situations is not controlled. While it is possible to stifle, even to the point of silence, the initial reaction towards laughter is not controllable. Granted, environmental factors certainly affect what you think is funny and what is not, but it's pretty hard to actively change those to make them conform to some preset ideal of what should and should not be funny.

With that in mind, you are not wrong to say that laughter can just be an expression of joy... or whatever... but it doesn't matter. Laughter, as it pertains to this debate, is true, gut-reaction laughter. If you insist that it can be controlled, you are talking about question 3, in that you are trying to conceal laughter. Questions 1 and 2 both work under the assumption that we consider the initial reaction to laugh as being equally received as all other actions taken after laughter has commenced.


Also, you don't need to stick to "laughter is wrong when it hurts somebody" as the only definition of what makes laughter bad. Ethics doesn't really work that way, it's very open-ended. In fact, I would encourage other views of what could make laughter wrong, but I would stress that whoever has another view of what makes it wrong fully explains him or herself.


Oh, and the positive and negative effects of laughing are minimal at best and/or experienced only under extraneous circumstances. Debating such minute points is ridiculous and a waste of time. For argument's sake, we should probably just say that laughing is inherently neutral physiologically and worry more about the ethical aftermath of giggling.




edit: one more thing. Ethics are not weighed equally for all situations. Laughing at somebody's dead grandma is not equal to dropping a nuclear bomb on Hiroshima. It just isn't, don't ever think it is. In that same vein, trying to found arguments by saying that certain concepts are always bad is a very poor way to debate this. It is only laughing. In order for your argument to have any ground, you need to explain why it is wrong when you are laughing.

BloodthirstPriest
20th August 2008, 10:21 AM
Also, you don't need to stick to "laughter is wrong when it hurts somebody" as the only definition of what makes laughter bad. Ethics doesn't really work that way, it's very open-ended. In fact, I would encourage other views of what could make laughter wrong, but I would stress that whoever has another view of what makes it wrong fully explains him or herself.

Let me answer all three questions:

1. An outburst of laughter is wrong. A smile of laughter is enough. Why? Because outbursts of laughter at pretty much anything, can hurt people destructively, and does show arrogance and disrespect. Arrogance and disrespect apply to all occasions, besides laughing at yourself, which is another story.

2. Yes, it is all right to punish people for laughing. I encourage it, but not severe punishments. The only time you cannot punish them if they at least attempted to conceal it.

3. Of course it's not wrong if someone holds their laughter. It's best that they hold their laughter if they can't stop the laughter altogether.

Hakajin
20th August 2008, 10:49 AM
-And if you say that laughter prolongs your life, then you might as well believe that right-handed people live longer than left-handed people.
-Laughing makes you look older, as it strains the muscles on your face.

The first one is true. Left-handed people have more accidents, on average, because we live in a right handed world. Also, laughing doesn't make you look older. It does cause wrinkles, but you get those anyway. Laugh wrinkles can actually make a person look younger. There's an old expression that says that when you're old, you have the face that you've earned. If you go around frowning all the time, your wrinkles will show it, and you'll look bitter, whereas you'll look happy if you have wrinkles from smiling and laughing. Also, Conquistador is right when he says that the benefits of laughter strongly outweigh the benefits. Dying from laughter is very rare, whereas laughing regularly can help you live longer.


Blue corn? You know there is such thing as blue corn - yes, laughing was the wrong thing to do, but with enough discipline one can hold it. (No, I am not that kid).
Here's some evidence to blue corn:

Yes, I know that, but he was arguing against it. You can only do what you're capable of in that situation. I was not capable of holding it in. I did the best I could. Well, I could have apologized later, in the same way I might apologize for accidentally tripping someone, but that's beside the point. The point is that the only thing I could do was do my best to suppress it, or leave the room.


Instances like that are second-nature. You do it without really noticing. It may seem uncontrollable, but it isn't. These second-natured laughs are, perhaps, the hardest to control.

I strongly disagree. To prevent laughing at a time like that, you would have to constantly be on guard, waiting for something to happen. You can't do that. You can't predict every situation in which you might laugh. Even if you could, you probably wouldn't be able to stop yourself in all of them. Thinking you might react a certain way in a certain situation and being in that situation are two very different things. Even if you can predict how you would react, you still can't always stop that reaction from occurring.

Conquistador
20th August 2008, 10:55 AM
No, it's just there is not much evidence to those claims. My claims came with evidence. Anyone can post something on the internet without evidence to support their claims.

Now this is just ignorance.

One of the sources I listed was a university, which is an institution whose goal is to teach people.

Are you saying that a university is in fact lying? Doing the opposite of what they are trying to be doing?



Your heart rate should be above average while exercising, laughing is not an exercise. (Unfortunately, I know we're gonna end up in a debate about this too).

Firstly, exercise is simply physical (or mental for that matter) exertion. Therefore laughing is exercise.

Secondly, even if laughing is not an exercise, that does not mean your heart rate shouldn't be above average when laughing, that's just absurd.


Laughing easily raises the heart rate above normal.

Relevance?
You're quite right, I agree entirely. However it does not as I say normally raise the heart rate to dangerous levels.

Yes, that is true, but none of us can really say we don't have those problems until it actually happens.




That is really just a claim. People who don't laugh a lot, might coincidentally die of something unrelated to laughter.
Point? That's like saying that people who eat a high-cholesterol diet might coincidentally die from something unrelated to cholesterol.



I read it; it says it's "possible" not confirmed. Also, it was either that or wikipedia, but, unfortunately wikipedia is not allowed. :(

Nothing in science is 'confirmed'. Possible is just a weasel word.


Well, go ahead if you want to take the risk. I'd rather be on the safer side and not laugh. If given a choice to live 50 years, or 80 years with the possibility of dying before you pass 50, which would you choose?

The safer side IS laughing. What you said is ridiculous. Exercising can cause heart attacks too. That's like saying "Oh I'm not going to exercise because I'd rather be on the safe side. After all, if given a choice to live 50 years, or 80 years with the possibility of dying before you pass 50, which would you choose?"


In that you did not include that arrogance or disrespect are not wrong.

This statement is just ridiculous. It doesn't even take someone with only half a brain to understand that if something does not comply with the definition than it is not the word.

If I had to include everything in the definition that is therefore not wrong we'd be here for centuries. That's like saying "a T.V. is a box that provide visual images" but then having to continue that definition to say "therefore a T.V. is not a duck, a guitar, a hat, an encyclopedia, a wallet, a lampshade, a...." and so on.



So, what is it then? In between? Disrespect and arrogance are not bad? Those two things are the source of lies, corruption and much more. Or are those not bad too?


So, if I understand correctly, then, dumping garbage in front of your house is not wrong? So you'll greet those people who'll do so with open hearts and arms?

Well done! You're cottoning on now! Bravo. Have a special sticker =)

profpeanut
20th August 2008, 11:08 AM
Dang, late post.
Laughter shouldn't be considered a bad thing. It is something that happens whenever a situation occurs or is narrated that we deem funny or out of the ordinary in a good way. You don't tell someone to bugger off if he laughs at something, unless it was rude and uncalled for. (and by that, I mean that it would have insulted the victim's dignity assuming it isn't a comedy or something and that the situation was an accident and a misfortune.) And if you cover up laughing, it means either 1.) the current situation is no time for laughing or 2.) you've been laughing far too much and would like to breathe right now.


Do you really expect everyone to think the same? I will only agree with your definition if you can convince me, hence the use of debates.

But you probably know that one is more likely to discover life on Mercury than to change one's perspective on the Internet. I guess we'll just have to work around your definition. Expression, wasn't it?

Actually, laughter somehow does qualify under reaction because true laughter is purely involuntary. Sure, you could pretend to laugh, but that would be a fake laugh, or one you 're just acting out. It is, however, also an expression of happiness and that one's sadness or monotonous outlook has been broken by a good joke. Therefore, it is neither an expression nor a reaction. It's both.

BloodthirstPriest
20th August 2008, 12:36 PM
I hate being stuck in the middle and being asked the same questions and being forced to repeat myself over 5 times to each person. Can't you deduce anything from just 1 comment?

In response to Hakajin:


There's an old expression that says that when you're old, you have the face that you've earned.

I'd just like to point out that it's just an expression - not a fact.


I strongly disagree. To prevent laughing at a time like that, you would have to constantly be on guard, waiting for something to happen. You can't do that. You can't predict every situation in which you might laugh. Even if you could, you probably wouldn't be able to stop yourself in all of them. Thinking you might react a certain way in a certain situation and being in that situation are two very different things. Even if you can predict how you would react, you still can't always stop that reaction from occurring.

I strongly disagree that you should be constantly on your guard. No, you need to be prepared, not "constantly on your guard". How do you prepare yourself? Discipline. Discipline yourself not to laugh like maniac even at the funniest things on Earth.

In response to Conquistador:


Now this is just ignorance.
One of the sources I listed was a university, which is an institution whose goal is to teach people.
Are you saying that a university is in fact lying? Doing the opposite of what they are trying to be doing?

Ignorance? It's ignorant to call one ignorant.
I'm not saying that the university is lying. They could be mistaken. How many theories and claims of the past have been proven wrong? And I don't see how it is possible to discover that laughter is beneficial. Did they survey people? There are hundreds of other factors that affect the outcome. If they did do a survey then they would have to survey the entire globe to get a moderately fair answer. A fair experiment is one in which only the thing being tested is changed. That's impossible to do with laughter. That is what I'm saying.


Firstly, exercise is simply physical (or mental for that matter) exertion. Therefore laughing is exercise.
Secondly, even if laughing is not an exercise, that does not mean your heart rate shouldn't be above average when laughing, that's just absurd.

No it is not an exercise; physical exercises are bodily activities that keep you physically fit and healthy. Mental exercises are those activities that exercise your brain and keep you sane. Laughter does not qualify under any of these forms of exercise.
I'm not saying that your heart rate shouldn't be above average when laughing - I'm saying that your heart rate shouldn't be above average when you haven't been exercising. When physically exercising, your heart pumps faster to resupply your body and to replace any lost energy. During laughter, your heart is not pumping faster for any reason, and puts strain on the heart.


You're quite right, I agree entirely. However it does not as I say normally raise the heart rate to dangerous levels.

Firstly, I know I'm right. Secondly, continuous strain on the heart on the heart can be dangerous.


Nothing in science is 'confirmed'. Possible is just a weasel word.

So you're admitting that your information is false? Ok. I've got no problem.


The safer side IS laughing. What you said is ridiculous. Exercising can cause heart attacks too. That's like saying "Oh I'm not going to exercise because I'd rather be on the safe side. After all, if given a choice to live 50 years, or 80 years with the possibility of dying before you pass 50, which would you choose?"

No, the safer side is not laughing. What I said makes perfect sense. Exercising can cause heart attacks too, BUT that's for people who've barely exercised in their lives, so their bodies are not accustomed to exercise. It is riskier to do nothing than to do exercise. Laughter, on the other hand, does not get safer the more you do it. It stays the same as long as you stay the same.
You know, I asked you "if given a choice to live 50 years, or 80 years with the possibility of dying before you pass 50, which would you choose?" first, and should I answer that question before you, you'll reply only with the opposite so that you can oppose me on one more issue. :P


This statement is just ridiculous. It doesn't even take someone with only half a brain to understand that if something does not comply with the definition than it is not the word.
If I had to include everything in the definition that is therefore not wrong we'd be here for centuries. That's like saying "a T.V. is a box that provide visual images" but then having to continue that definition to say "therefore a T.V. is not a duck, a guitar, a hat, an encyclopedia, a wallet, a lampshade, a...." and so on.

Hmm... may I point to what the starter of this thread has pointed out recently:


Also, you don't need to stick to "laughter is wrong when it hurts somebody" as the only definition of what makes laughter bad. Ethics doesn't really work that way, it's very open-ended. In fact, I would encourage other views of what could make laughter wrong, but I would stress that whoever has another view of what makes it wrong fully explains him or herself.

So, I can pretty much give any reason to why laughing is wrong. Heirokee, has pointed out that the debate does not have to continue on "laughter is wrong when it hurts somebody", so before you say that that does not include arrogance or disrespect, then please read all previous posts before posting something that goes against what has already been said. And because that post came from the starter of the thread, I believe that we should respect his wishes, and not narrow down the subject to one reason.


Well done! You're cottoning on now! Bravo. Have a special sticker =)

Did you expect me to jump up on down saying: Ooh ooh ooh! Where's my sticker?
*Sigh* The intellectual levels of people.
Oh, and you have a strange sense of what is allowed and not allowed - no offense.

And finally, in response to profpeanut:


But you probably know that one is more likely to discover life on Mercury than to change one's perspective on the Internet. I guess we'll just have to work around your definition. Expression, wasn't it?

That raises an interesting question: Is there life on Mercury? Really, what is this thread's title?

Yes, I do know that I'm wasting my time trying to change people's perspectives.


Actually, laughter somehow does qualify under reaction because true laughter is purely involuntary.

I stated earlier, that when people think it is involuntary, it is second-natured. Laughter is a response - not a reaction. Yes, one can change their second-natures. Yes, laughter is controllable, and if you disagree, then please note that the world is not is not limited to your neighborhood, there are other people in the world. And quite a few of them are quite capable of controlling their laughs.


Therefore, it is neither an expression nor a reaction. It's both.

Wrong, it is not both. It is in no way a reaction whatsoever. It is a response and an expression.

PsiUmbreon
20th August 2008, 1:26 PM
Bloodthirstpriest, your responses are actually making me laugh. "I know I'm right"? Seriously. Everyone, get a load of this guy. He's got no source, yet he brushes off trusted sources as "lying", with his counterargument being "I know I'm right". Best argument ever. I mean, I bet this guy is a champion debater. No matter the argument, he stops them cold with "I know I'm right". Seriously, dude? Claiming laughter is bad for you and then responding to the obvious objections and all the sources with "I know I'm right"? Wow he sure stopped them cold. This guy must be the Chuck Norris of debating.

Seriously dude if you're gonna be arrogant (which is wrong according to you anyway, lol), at least have the ability to back it up.

profpeanut
20th August 2008, 1:33 PM
^Boy, you sure get around on these boards a lot.



And finally, in response to profpeanut:



That raises an interesting question: Is there life on Mercury? Really, what is this thread's title?

Yes, I do know that I'm wasting my time trying to change people's perspectives.



You complain that the topic is derailing, yet you're on the side of the enemy yourself? Don't go off-topic.

And note how I said "on the Internet", which you should know is rampant with bigotry and human retardation, though Serebii can be described as one of the safer zones. If you really want to change one's perspective, it usually takes a life-altering experience or personal contact with the person.



I stated earlier, that when people think it is involuntary, it is second-natured. Laughter is a response - not a reaction. Yes, one can change their second-natures. Yes, laughter is controllable, and if you disagree, then please note that the world is not is not limited to your neighborhood, there are other people in the world. And quite a few of them are quite capable of controlling their laughs.


I never said it wasn't controllable, though controlling laughter is a bit like controlling hormones depending on your humor. It is addictive and contagious in a good way though. And you seem to fail to acknowledge that not everyone knows self-control. It's possible, but someone has to help them, which is weird as no one really needs help with laughter unless they giggle to themselves a lot in a creepy way.


Wrong, it is not both. It is in no way a reaction whatsoever. It is a response and an expression.


Reaction
-An action performed or a feeling experienced in response to a situation or event.

Response
-A verbal or written answer; a reaction to something.

Reminds me again how response and reaction aren't even close to synonymous?

Just to check: You're not one of those morose emos who prefer sadistic outlooks on life, are you?

BloodthirstPriest
20th August 2008, 1:45 PM
Bloodthirstpriest, your responses are actually making me laugh. "I know I'm right"? Seriously. Everyone, get a load of this guy. He's got no source, yet he brushes off trusted sources as "lying", with his counterargument being "I know I'm right". Best argument ever. I mean, I bet this guy is a champion debater. No matter the argument, he stops them cold with "I know I'm right". Seriously, dude? Claiming laughter is bad for you and then responding to the obvious objections and all the sources with "I know I'm right"? Wow he sure stopped them cold. This guy must be the Chuck Norris of debating.

Have you not read my posts fully?
Also, how can one properly debate on something if they themselves don't believe they are right. To do that is contradicting one's own belief or stance. And, secondly, my counterargument was NOT "I know I'm right". Apparently it seems that you could not continue reading on.
Another thing; I did not brush off any source as a lie. Twisting words and putting words into people's mouths is really the lowest one can go.


Seriously dude if you're gonna be arrogant (which is wrong according to you anyway, lol), at least have the ability to back it up.

Do you sincerely believe that I would bother debating this knowing that I'm wrong?
"if you're gonna be arrogant". There's a saying: "It takes one to know one". Also, you must be quite ignorant of the information that I've posted to say that I am unable to back it up.
Look at what you have posted. You have just made my point with an example. That last sentence proves my point that laughing at people shows arrogance. Firstly, you assumed that I had no evidence. Secondly, it is arrogant to call one arrogant. And to further strengthen my point, you laughed. Now, surely you cannot say I have no basis for my argument. If you say I have no evidence, then I reply to that that you have given me evidence.

In response to profpeanut:


^Boy, you sure get around on these boards a lot.

Now, if I fell silent, nobody would be debating my point would they?


never said it wasn't controllable, though controlling laughter is a bit like controlling hormones depending on your humor. It is addictive and contagious in a good way though. And you seem to fail to acknowledge that not everyone knows self-control. It's possible, but someone has to help them, which is weird as no one really needs help with laughter unless they giggle to themselves a lot in a creepy way.

No I did not say that nobody here has the ability to hold their laughter. Everybody has. Is your definition of "good way" similar to Conquistador's or different. Please, I want to know how you see laughter as good.


And note how I said "on the Internet", which you should know is rampant with bigotry and human retardation, though Serebii can be described as one of the safer zones. If you really want to change one's perspective, it usually takes a life-altering experience or personal contact with the person.

Do you have a "life-altering" experiences, then, to convince me that I should not be debating my topic?


Reminds me again how response and reaction aren't even close to synonymous?

*Sigh* I have mentioned on several occasions in this same thread that words have 100s of meanings! I believe I stated in one of my previous posts the way I was interpreting response and reaction. I will not repeat myself, but instead go and reread the previous posts and you will find my definitions of those two words. It seems I've gotta change my signature.

Hakajin
20th August 2008, 10:36 PM
I'm just going to say one last time that unless you're on guard 100% of the time, you're never going to be able to control every short outburst of laughter. You can't discipline yourself into being able to prevent a sudden reaction. That'd be like saying you can stop yourself from jumping when someone sneaks up behind you. It's humanly impossible to be that aware. And with that, I'm through.

Strants
20th August 2008, 11:23 PM
No I did not say that nobody here has the ability to hold their laughter. Everybody has. Is your definition of "good way" similar to Conquistador's or different. Please, I want to know how you see laughter as good. No arguement. However, (and I wish I didn't have to be so crude) everyone can hold there urine. However, it can be difficult and painful. It's the same for laughter.

heirokee
21st August 2008, 3:32 AM
As the TC, I would like to try and keep this debate on track...


Bloodthirstpriest- I don't know if you're quite getting this idea. You can prepare, and you can even prepare to the point that no audible laughter is emitted. However, that doesn't really matter. In regards to the first two questions, you need to assume that somebody has given in to the desire to laugh. The question is not, is it wrong to laugh... oh yeah and it's totally OK to just not laugh at all even though that kind of takes away the whole point of asking about whether or not laughter is wrong. The question is simply what could make laughter wrong. A legitimate answer to the first and second questions doesn't worry about restraining laughter. Still, if you want to talk about restraining laughter, you can answer question 3.

I'm fairly certain that the primary reason people are getting upset with you is that you are not answering these questions properly. For the sake of the debate, you need to accept that for questions 1 and 2 audible laughter is emitted and there is nothing the laugh-er could do to stop it.


Everybody: For the love of GOD, please stop chattering about the random health benefits and negatives of laughing. Like I said, the question is really not about whether or not laughter is good for your health. The question is whether laughter is good for your conscience. Yes, I know that health can play a part in that, but for this debate, we're just going to assume that the physiological effects of laughter are neutral. Whether or not that's true doesn't really matter, just go with it.

BloodthirstPriest
21st August 2008, 4:40 AM
I'll answer the debate questions again and I'll try not to mention anything about controlling laughter.

1. It depends on the degree of the laugh. I find it wrong for an outburst of laughter. I don't disapprove of smiling or maybe even a light laugh. Why? Outbursts of laughter directed at an individual can hut them destructively. It is also arrogant and disrespectful.

2. Yes it is all right to punish someone for an outburst of laughter, but not so severely. You cannot, however, punish someone if they tried to hold or conceal their laughter.

3. No, it is not wrong for somebody to conceal their laughter. It is the better thing that one could do while laughing.

heirokee
21st August 2008, 6:25 AM
I'll answer the debate questions again and I'll try not to mention anything about controlling laughter.

1. It depends on the degree of the laugh. I find it wrong for an outburst of laughter. I don't disapprove of smiling or maybe even a light laugh. Why? Outbursts of laughter directed at an individual can hut them destructively. It is also arrogant and disrespectful.

2. Yes it is all right to punish someone for an outburst of laughter, but not so severely. You cannot, however, punish someone if they tried to hold or conceal their laughter.

3. No, it is not wrong for somebody to conceal their laughter. It is the better thing that one could do while laughing.



let me rearrange this so that you can get the idea...


1. I find it wrong for an outburst of laughter. Why? Outbursts of laughter directed at an individual can hut them destructively. It is also arrogant and disrespectful.

2. Yes it is all right to punish someone for an outburst of laughter, but not so severely.

3. No, it is not wrong for somebody to conceal their laughter. It is the better thing that one could do while laughing. I don't disapprove of smiling or maybe even a light laugh. You cannot punish someone if they tried to hold or conceal their laughter.



There, except for one line... and an omitted however for grammar's sake, but whatevs.... those are all your words, just placed more correctly given the questions. The point is that questions 1 and 2 don't care about the degree of laughter. Question 3 is where you should be expressing your opinions on the effect the degree of laughter has.

For future reference, I'm editing the first post to make this more clear.

PsiUmbreon
21st August 2008, 7:07 AM
Have you not read my posts fully?
Also, how can one properly debate on something if they themselves don't believe they are right. To do that is contradicting one's own belief or stance. And, secondly, my counterargument was NOT "I know I'm right". Apparently it seems that you could not continue reading on.
Another thing; I did not brush off any source as a lie. Twisting words and putting words into people's mouths is really the lowest one can go.
My apologies. "I know I'm right. No, you're wrong, *insert opponent's claim here* is not true."

There, that sounds a bit more like you. Dude, what makes you more believable than a university and a medical organization? All you're doing is going "no, I'm right, laughter is bad" despite evidence backed up with sources to the contrary. I feel sorry for anyone who listens to you and actually believes laughter is bad and doesn't laugh. For everyone else, the laughter generated by your responses should add a day to their life.

If you're going to have the balls to claim something so asenine as "laughter is bad for you" then at least have sources to back it up.


Do you sincerely believe that I would bother debating this knowing that I'm wrong?
"if you're gonna be arrogant". There's a saying: "It takes one to know one". Also, you must be quite ignorant of the information that I've posted to say that I am unable to back it up.
Look at what you have posted. You have just made my point with an example. That last sentence proves my point that laughing at people shows arrogance. Firstly, you assumed that I had no evidence. Secondly, it is arrogant to call one arrogant. And to further strengthen my point, you laughed. Now, surely you cannot say I have no basis for my argument. If you say I have no evidence, then I reply to that that you have given me evidence.
"It takes one to know one"? What is this, elementary school? And you really don't have any evidence because it's all been refuted by sources. How is it arrogant to call one arrogant? If you see someone and they're all "I'm better than you" then how does pointing out that they're arrogant make you arrogant too? Please explain that one.

What difference does it make if a person tries to hold their laughter? Take our funeral example. According to you it is not wrong if they held their laughter. Regardless of whether they managed to stifle the laugh and make it inaudible, they still had the same thought that something was funny at an inappropriate time which is disrespectful. But you claim that disrespect is wrong no matter what? Contradiction much?



Everybody: For the love of GOD, please stop chattering about the random health benefits and negatives of laughing. Like I said, the question is really not about whether or not laughter is good for your health. The question is whether laughter is good for your conscience. Yes, I know that health can play a part in that, but for this debate, we're just going to assume that the physiological effects of laughter are neutral. Whether or not that's true doesn't really matter, just go with it.

But the health benefits of laughter are important to the discussion of whether or not laughter can be morally wrong, because actions that are beneficial are morally positive, and despite what BloodthirstPriest has to say about it, it's been shown by sources that laughter is in fact beneficial for health and not neutral, or negative, as he would have you believe.

Conquistador
21st August 2008, 7:56 AM
*Sigh*.

I'm just going to stop. There is just absolutely no way you will stand down despite all the arguments against you. You run in circles, dodge the question and bring in irrelevant points to shield you from opposing arguments.

I've been thinking to myself lately; "can anyone really be that stupid?.

It is my belief that in fact you are now debating for the sake of not wanting to admit you are wrong. You would have come out of this looking much more favourable should you have modestly and graciously recognised certain things instead of persisting silly and petty ideas.


I'd also like to issue an apology to heirokee, as his thread has almost completely escalated out of control =(


Anyway, on a final note, I think I'll just have a nice big laugh at all of this, content in the knowledge that I wont have a heart attack from it. *rolls eyes*.

BloodthirstPriest
21st August 2008, 8:01 AM
Dude, what makes you more believable than a university and a medical organization? All you're doing is going "no, I'm right, laughter is bad" despite evidence backed up with sources to the contrary.

I did not refute the evidence. I said it can be inaccurate as one would to survey the entire globe, which I doubt they did.


If you're going to have the balls to claim something so asenine as "laughter is bad for you" then at least have sources to back it up.

Did I not post sources? Also I am one of the few people to have actually posted sources. You haven't posted sources, so you have no right to tell me to post sources, when I HAVE ALREADY POSTED SOURCES. Read all previous posts, not the posts that are on the same page.


"It takes one to know one"? What is this, elementary school?

From the way you arrogantly posted it did sound like elementary school.


And you really don't have any evidence because it's all been refuted by sources. How is it arrogant to call one arrogant? If you see someone and they're all "I'm better than you" then how does pointing out that they're arrogant make you arrogant too? Please explain that one.

It is arrogant to call one arrogant, because the person calling the other arrogant thinks they know so much and thinks that he/she is superior enough and thus entitled to call people arrogant.


What difference does it make if a person tries to hold their laughter? Take our funeral example. According to you it is not wrong if they held their laughter. Regardless of whether they managed to stifle the laugh and make it inaudible, they still had the same thought that something was funny at an inappropriate time which is disrespectful. But you claim that disrespect is wrong no matter what? Contradiction much?

It is not wrong if they held their laughter why? Because they showed enough respect to actually attempt to hide it. No there is no contradiction. It just seems you are quite unable to decipher things and interpret them properly.


But the health benefits of laughter are important to the discussion of whether or not laughter can be morally wrong, because actions that are beneficial are morally positive, and despite what BloodthirstPriest has to say about it, it's been shown by sources that laughter is in fact beneficial for health and not neutral, or negative, as he would have you believe.

Despite what I have said? I stated before that it was near impossible to really pinpoint the benefits of laughter, because if you were to survey, you would have to survey the globe. Even if they wanted to do so, they are likely to lack the means to do so. Picking a random 50 people, say, is not a real or proper way to represent the entire world. If they did it another way then tell how they did it.

EDIT: I would've gladly backed down should one have asked. If for this thread's sake you wish me to back down then I am more than happy to do so. Again, nobody said that I should back down, but it is just as easy to ask me to step down. I'm sure nobody will have any problems with me stepping down, so I withdraw.

PsiUmbreon
21st August 2008, 8:47 AM
I did not refute the evidence. I said it can be inaccurate as one would to survey the entire globe, which I doubt they did.
And exactly why would they need to survey the entire globe to determine that laughter is beneficial for one's health? It's not a survey of "let me ask you, does laughter make you healthy? Did Isaac Newton have to ask everyone when he formulated his theory of gravity? Did Albert Einstein have to ask everyone on the planet whether or not his theory of relativity made sense to them?



Did I not post sources? Also I am one of the few people to have actually posted sources. You haven't posted sources, so you have no right to tell me to post sources, when I HAVE ALREADY POSTED SOURCES. Read all previous posts, not the posts that are on the same page.
Well that's cause someone else already has posted sources. It would be a bit redundant of me to post the same sources... but if it'll make you happy, I'll do it anyway.

http://www.umm.edu/features/laughter.htm
http://stress.about.com/od/stresshealth/a/laughter.htm
http://www.laughteryoga.org/about-benefits-laughter.php
http://ririanproject.com/2007/10/26/...how-to-use-it/

As for your "sources", does it really say laughter is bad for you? No, all it says is that there are a few isolated instances where someone's died from laughing. I never said there weren't. All I said was that laughter is good for you, which is backed up by the above SOURCES. People can die from lots of things that are good for them, like exercise, eating, and drinking.


From the way you arrogantly posted it did sound like elementary school.No, not really.


It is arrogant to call one arrogant, because the person calling the other arrogant thinks they know so much and thinks that he/she is superior enough and thus entitled to call people arrogant.
So... you're arrogant because you called me arrogant? I'll agree that you are exhibiting arrogance in this thread, but not for the reason that you have given me.


It is not wrong if they held their laughter why? Because they showed enough respect to actually attempt to hide it. No there is no contradiction. It just seems you are quite unable to decipher things and interpret them properly.
Yes, but they still thought to laugh at something inappropriate. Things can still be wrong even if you know they're wrong.


Despite what I have said? I stated before that it was near impossible to really pinpoint the benefits of laughter, because if you were to survey, you would have to survey the globe. Even if they wanted to do so, they are likely to lack the means to do so. Picking a random 50 people, say, is not a real or proper way to represent the entire world. If they did it another way then tell how they did it.
Again, why would you have to survey every single person on the planet? It doesn't make sense.


EDIT: I would've gladly backed down should one have asked. If for this thread's sake you wish me to back down then I am more than happy to do so. Again, nobody said that I should back down, but it is just as easy to ask me to step down. I'm sure nobody will have any problems with me stepping down, so I withdraw.
Who asks their opponent to back down in a debate? Doing so would also be arrogant. "I'm right, you're wrong, so it's better that you get out of this debate".

Conquistador
21st August 2008, 9:01 AM
EDIT: I would've gladly backed down should one have asked. If for this thread's sake you wish me to back down then I am more than happy to do so. Again, nobody said that I should back down, but it is just as easy to ask me to step down. I'm sure nobody will have any problems with me stepping down, so I withdraw.

No. I did not say I want you to back down, so do NOT turn what I said into a blatant strawman and use it as a pathetic excuse to flee!

I merely pointed out that it would have been more honourable for you to admit yourself to be wrong in a gracious and modest manner, and that you would have come out of this whole charade looking much better than as everyone sees you know.

Ethan
21st August 2008, 9:37 AM
If it's not too much to ask, I would appreciate it if we could lower the tension around here. Tensions lead to flames...which aren't fun.

Profesco
21st August 2008, 10:38 AM
Wow, lots and lots of funny stuff being said in here. ^_^ The expression "fatal hilarity" actually gave me quite the chuckle.

Now that we're done feeling a multitude of emotions over a debate on laughter, what else have you got in store for us, heirokee? I believe this is a series of ethical dilemmas, yes? ^_^

BloodthirstPriest
21st August 2008, 12:05 PM
No. I did not say I want you to back down, so do NOT turn what I said into a blatant strawman and use it as a pathetic excuse to flee!

Fine, I won't disappear, but even though I can say more, I won't as some people want a new debate.

Ethan
22nd August 2008, 6:35 AM
I'm confused. Are you over with this heirokee? Do you want it closed or what?

heirokee
22nd August 2008, 7:19 AM
I'm confused. Are you over with this heirokee? Do you want it closed or what?

no, I do not want it closed. However, my attentions have been shifted towards number 2.

Still, I think the debate has a lot more potential than was shown here, so leaving it open is still a very good idea.

Besides, since when have we been closing threads just because one person stops caring about it? Not that I have, just saying...

Ethan
22nd August 2008, 7:35 AM
I was just wondering what you wanted dear.