As video games gain prominence, some game creators are turning to global issues, such as poverty alleviation, international diplomacy, and combating climate change, for inspiration. Playing these socially minded games, they argue, allows users to build tangible skills in combating crisis and solving critical problems. But others see the multi-billion-dollar gaming industry, dominated by portrayals of crime and war, as a threat that desensitizes its users to violence and encourages anti-social behavior. Will video games soon provide innovative solutions to our most pressing social, political and economic challenges? Or is the impact of gaming overrated and potentially destructive?
More than 11 million immigrants are currently residing in the United States illegally, and
the question of what to do with this growing population remains a hot-button issue, thanks in part to the considerable attention it has received in recent months from Republican Presidential Nominee Donald Trump.
At the crux of the issue is whether these millions of immigrants should be granted an opportunity to pursue citizenship so they can become contributing members of American society, or whether they should be punished for entering the country without following proper protocols and sent back to their countries of origin as a result. While there are obvious economic and social implications involved with deporting this population or establishing a path to citizenship, moral and ethical considerations also come into play.
The IQ2US panelists debating for the motion were Angela Kelley, executive director for the Center for American Progress Action Fund, and Marielena Hincapie, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center. Debating against the motion were Steven Camarota, director of research for the Center for Immigration Studies, and Rich Lowry, editor of the National Law Review.
Proponents for the motion argued that many undocumented immigrants would gladly have pursued a legal path to citizenship if additional factors hadn’t barred them from doing so. For example, it was noted that the U.S. immigration system has not undergone any significant overhaul since 1990, and that the current system allows exactly 5,000 visas to be granted. The number of immigrants seeking work visas far exceeds this number, creating a massive backlog and further complicating one’s ability to work in this country legally. Furthermore, current laws dictate that anyone in the country illegally for six months or more will be penalized by being denied a chance to pursue legal citizenship for 10 years. Given that many of these immigrants have family members and children born in the United States, few are willing to take such a risk.
Proponents also referenced logistics, noting that the nation does not currently have the resources necessary to deport 11 million immigrants, and statistics, referencing the fact that between 72 and 88 percent of U.S. citizens support some type of path to citizenship as opposed to the alternative, deportation.
Opponents of the motion countered the argument that there is no logistical way to deport 11 million people by noting that there also is no logistical way to appropriately process and vet a group of this size seeking citizenship. They also noted that letting illegal immigrants pursue a path to citizenship is essentially rewarding this population for its bad behavior, and in doing so, setting a poor precedent that may lead others to take similar actions.
Additionally, opponents referenced the fact that many less-educated Americans are having to compete with immigrants for jobs, and they also noted that most immigrants receive more in government benefits than they pay in taxes. They argued that more attention must be given to protecting U.S. borders and enforcing existing immigration laws, as opposed to using already-limited resources on helping those who came here illegally obtain citizenship.
Pre-Debate Poll Results
Prior to the debate, 66 percent of audience members were for the motion, 10 percent were against it and 24 percent were undecided.
Post-Debate Poll Results
After the debate, 55 percent of audience members were for the motion, 37 percent were against it and 8 percent were undecided.
Critics of corporate subsidies argue that it’s outrageous to have taxpayer money feeding into the wealth of corporate entities. Others contend that strategic subsidizing is necessary to vitalize innovation and serve those not served by private interests.
Do subsidies fill an important role in the public interest, or is it time to pull the plug on what some have termed corporate welfare?
As an investor, I once financed a group of computer scientists applying machine learning and statistical analysis to outperform the stock market.It took us four or five years to beat the averages by mere hundredths of a percent. This was not a huge advantage. On the other hand, our small team of six was outperforming teams that would typically employ hundreds of professional analysts and portfolio managers.
According to a recent Gallup poll, 42 percent of Americans subscribe to creationism—the belief that, approximately 10,000 years ago, God created humans as we are today. In total, half of Americans believe that humans evolved over time, with 31 percent holding the opinion that God guided this evolution, and 19 percent believing that evolution took place without the aid of a higher power. Despite the strength of creationism’s appeal, the portion of the American public that believes in evolution independent of any type of God has doubled since 1999. This seems to have only fueled the debate between science and religion. For many, a belief in God provides the only answer to such existential inquiries as, “How did we get here?” and “What is our purpose?” while others find that modern science contradicts religion’s most basic principles. Intelligence Squared US (IQ2US) took on this highly divisive topic on December 5, 2012, questioning whether science and religion can coexist with a debate on the motion, “Science Refutes God.”