Mapping the world's opinions

Parlia is the Encyclopedia of Opinion

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Which blocs are forming out of the UK lockdown debate?

The coronavirus pandemic has led to unprecedented isolation measures throughout the world. One effect has been the creation of ideological blocs across traditional party lines, lobbying for different approaches to containing the virus. UK lockdown came into effect on March 23, shutting down non-essential business and movement outside the home, bar a single daily outing for exercise. Critics variou...

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Which opinion clusters have formed in the aftermath of the George Floyd murder?

On May 25 2020, George Floyd was suffocated to death by the police. Floyd had been arrested on suspicion of using a counterfeit $20 bill. In chilling footage that would go viral within 24 hours, officer Derek Chauvin knelt on his neck for more than 8 minutes ignoring Floyd's repeated pleas for him to move. The asphyxiation led to his cardiac arrest. Floyd's death has so far inspired protests acros...

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Should children's toys be gendered?

Traditionally, toymakers market their products to either girls or boys. The toy industry presents dolls and dresses as being girls’ toys, while cars and construction tools are for boys. In recent years, advocates have highlighted the presence of harmful gender stereotypes in such marketing tactics. Considering our society’s ongoing discussion of gender identity, should children’s toys be gendered?

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What are the pros and cons of capitalism?

Capitalism is an economic system in which the four factors of production (entrepreneurship, capital goods, natural resources, and labor) are owned by private entities with the aim of generating a profit. Capitalism requires a free market economy driven by supply and demand. There is a lack of government intervention. Competition helps keep prices moderate and production efficient. This stands in o...

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Is religion the primary motivation and recruitment behind ISIS?

The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) is a terrorist militant organization seeking to establish itself as state and as a self-proclaimed Islamic caliphate. Under the ideology of Salafism, a conservative interpretation and movement of Sunni Islam, and describing its efforts as a jihad, many point to how religion is at the core of ISIS. However, many others argue that the Islamic State's p...

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What is the impact of invasive species?

Invasive plant and animal species live in virtually all areas of the globe. The reason for their unnatural presence is because humans have accidentally or deliberately introduced them to new ecosystems. Because they have been introduced to new habitats they are not initially meant to be in, invasive species have negatively impacted their new homes. How extensive is their damage and are all invasiv...

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Is Universal Basic Income a good idea?

Universal Basic Income (UBI) is a type of program in which all people receive a regular sum of money unconditionally, regardless of employment or current wages. Proposed UBI programs vary across the world, allowing different UBI programs to align with both progressive and conservative goals. Several UBI pilot studies have been tried throughout the world, and the interpretations of results vary wid...

How will coronavirus change the world?

As coronavirus spreads, the possibility that it will have a severe and lasting impact on our world increases. But how will covid-19 impact the different facets of our existence and society? After the coronavirus pandemic is over, will we go back to life as normal? Or will things never be the same?

Is BDS anti-semitic?

BDS stands for Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions. It is a non-violent, Palestinian led political campaign that advocates for and promotes various forms of finanical protest against the state of Israel. The objective of BDS is to pressure Israel into abiding by international law, which includes ending the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip, granting Arab-Palestinians Israeli citize...

Should the BBC license be mandatory?

Introduced in 1923, more than 25 million UK TV owners pay the annual license fee that fund the BBC’s television and radio operations. Non-payment is considered a criminal offence and can result in a hefty fine. As other European nations move away from mandatory license fees, should the UK government follow suit?

Should we explore space?

Humans have been fascinated with space for centuries. Mayans made a calendar from the stars, Galileo made a telescope, and a man was put on the moon. Space is vast, and scientists still don’t know a lot about it. Is space worth still exploring? Now that the space race has died down, does humanity need to continue to learn about space?

Are the Kardashians-Jenners feminists?

The Kardashian-Jenners have built an empire worth over a billion dollars around their name alone. While some argue their entrepreneurship is inspiring for young women, others point to their sexualization and fixation on appearance as evidence they are bad influences on young women. Are the Kardashian-Jenners empowering, feminist figures? Or do they demean all that feminism stands for?

Mapping the world's opinions.

Should churches pay taxes?

Church tax exemption is hotly debated. Although several countries require church members to pay a tax, many consider churches as tax-exempt. In discussions related to this policy, a nation’s perception of religious freedom and the common good is pivotal. Does the tax-exempt status of churches protect or violate these values?

Who should be the 2020 Democratic presidential nominee?

The Democrats are preparing to beat Donald Trump in the 2020 US Presidential election. While united by party, the contenders are divided on how they plan to take the US forward. So, who are the possible top candidates? What are their policies and what do they represent? And could they beat Donald Trump in an election?

Is herd immunity the best way to beat coronavirus?

As governments have struggled to kill the spread of the coronavirus, policies have varied. Herd immunity - followed by countries including Sweden - has come under scrutiny. The strategy assumes a large section of the population will inevitably be infected whatever is done. Rather than enforce lockdown measures, herd immunity encourages social distancing in public places. The aim is to have as ma...

Was Persephone kidnapped?

Persephone, wife to Hades, daughter of Demeter and Zeus. The myth of Persephone says that she was kidnapped by Hades and that she is allowed to visit her mother Demeter for six months out of the year...or does it? Was Persephone kidnapped, or did she go willingly?

What does the response to COVID-19 tell us about our ability to cope with climate change?

The global shocks of the COVID-19 pandemic have tested every part of our society, from healthcare, to employment, finance, supply chains, global trade, nationalism, governance, emergency response, and so on. How our governments have responded to the pandemic is revealing a lot about how the world works, and makes us ask what it reveals about potential responses to future disasters, such as the cli...

How should we address homelessness?

A homeless individual lacks a permanent and safe nighttime residence. Approximately 150 million people worldwide suffer from homelessness. Although a wide variety of potential solutions exist, experts disagree about the correct response to this widespread problem.

Would a Mars colony need a fixed government?

Advanced Space capabilities are in all likelihood coming rather soon, with SpaceX’s next generation rockets at the forefront. However, exploration of how a colony will fit into the global stage has only been explored by fiction authors thus-far and not decision - makers.

Is Thanos really a villain?

One of the latest villains in the esteemed and massively popular Marvel Cinematic universe is an alien named Thanos. Far above other beings, he believes that half of the world needs to be exterminated in order to save the planet. This may sound terrible, but Thanos has surprisingly understandable logic. Is Thanos evil, or justified in his claims?

Should euthanasia be legal?

Ethical aspects of euthanasia (Greek for "good death"), a physician-assisted suicide of a patient with a goal of ending the suffering from a terminal or incurable illness, were debated since the times of Hippocrates. Since then, although modern medicine made a great deal of progress, euthanasia and its validity as a medical practice still leads to controversies. Should a patient in great suffering...

#CakeGate: can you refuse service on the basis of faith?

The cake that Colorado baker Jack Phillips refused to bake was the kindling that lit a nation-wide discussion in the USA. Can a business deny service to an individual on the basis of their sexual orientation? As the Supreme Court came to a verdict in favour of the baker, the narrowness of the ruling still left the question unanswered. The baker was quickly followed by others who stood up in solida...

Should prisons be abolished?

Prison abolitionism is an ongoing debate globally, but in American society in particular. Prisons were first created to punish the guilty for their crimes and protect the innocent from harm. Now, some are creating rehabilitation programs to help the incarcerated have a better life after being released. Are prison systems effective, and would abolishing them be beneficial for society?

In 'Lord of the Flies', is Jack evil?

In Nobel Prize-winner William Golding’s 1954 dystopian novel Lord of the Flies, a group of British schoolboys are stranded on an deserted island and are left to govern themselves. This ill-fated attempt to battle through civilization, morality, and order led to extreme bloodlust, violence, and savagery amongst the group of boys. Jack Merridew, the power-loving antagonist of the story is obsessed w...

Should obesity be treated as a disease?

Obesity affects more than 1/3 of America and is the leading cause of heart problems and heart-related deaths. In today's day and age, it is often normalized and praised. But should it be considered a disease?

¿Monarquía o República?

The monarchy and the republic-two very different ways of running a country and two very different forms of leadership. In the end, which is the best of the two?

What defines the word "love"?

Few words in the English language convey such a range of meanings as the word "love". For many, love is the point of existence, for others it's the manifestation of the divine, for some it is a tool of oppression. No subject has spawned so much poetry. But what is love? Is it an animalistic urge, a mystical aspiration, a social construct, a neurological glitch, or nothing at all?

Are zoos ethical in the modern age?

Zoos can be a fun trip for any age, young or old. It may be the only chance most people will be able to see various exotic animals from around the world. Yet, they have also been known to be unethical or dangerous for both the animals and people. What are the sides to the zoo debate? Are zoos truly bad?

Is India a global superpower?

A world superpower is usually defined as a country that is capable of projecting its power and influence on a global scale. India's broad range of quality of life among its citizens and booming economy have put the country in a unique position in the world. It competes with leading superpowers in creating new technology and defense, yet most rural areas are still underdeveloped. Impoverished citiz...

Where does 420 come from?

For stoners worldwide, the 20th of April has long represented a day of celebration. Known commonly as '4:20' participants spend the day smoking cannabis and glorifying the culture that comes with it. But why? Competing theories exist over its origins. So, where does 420 come from?

Should Parlia support local opinions?

In other words there are many debates within localities. “Should there be a new traffic light installed outside the elementary school” people might say yes for safety reasons, people might say no because of the tax expense. Wouldn’t this be a good use of Parlia?

Should the weight of fashion models be policed?

Fashion models have been in the scrutinizing eyes of the public for decades leading to debates regarding weight and health. These models are widely looked upon for inspiration for fashion and lifestyle, which may pose a problem for the younger generation. Young adults could be idolizing a toxic idealism. Some countries, like Spain and France, have instituted regulations regarding the weight of the...

Are Stephen King's novels sexist?

Stephen King is one of the world's top-paid authors, with over sixty published books and even more films and TV shows based upon these novels. The way he portrays women in these books, unfortunately, is not always the best. Women are constantly subject to abuse, fantasy, and objectification. Are Stephen King's novels sexist, or not?

Should genetically modifying babies be legal?

The term “genetic modification” most commonly refers to a technique known as mitochondrial replacement therapy. The treatment involves constructing an embryo from the DNA of three people, using one party’s mitochondrial DNA in place of another, which is at risk for passing on a mitochondrial illness. In recent years, the genetic modification of babies has become a widely debated issue. The first g...

Should you give money to beggars?

For people fortunate enough to have extra money in their pockets, giving it away can be fraught with stress. The decision to give or not to give money to homeless people has real-world consequences. This question is not concerned with the legality of giving money, but rather with the moral and ethical dilemma that goes along with it.

Is the BJP dangerous?

Founded in 1950, modern India is a federal parliamentary democratic republic, with 28 states and 8 union territories. At the 2019 election, almost 614 million people voted, a record 67.1% voter turn out. The Bharativa Janata Party (BJP) was re-elected with a single-party majority, the first since 1971 to do so. With its alliance partners in the National Democratic Alliance, it won 353 of the 543...

Is marriage an outdated custom?

The idea of marriage scares many people and it is seemingly becoming less and less ideal for younger generations. Nevertheless, marriages are still occurring. Marriage allows partners to identify their commitment on a higher level, as well as gaining benefits such as financial stability. However, government involvement in marriages can cause people to shy away from the institution. Others feel th...

What caused the American Civil War?

The American Civil War (1861-1865) officially began with the battle of Fort Sumter on April 12th-13th, 1861 and fundamentally shifted the trajectory of American history. Arguably the first instance of modern total war for the United States, the war impacted virtually every facet of American society. However, different perceptions of its origins and legacy persist across regions and demographics i...

Should animated films be considered for Best Picture at the Academy Awards?

The Academy Awards is among one of the most prestigious awards ceremonies for film in the world. The most coveted award of the ceremony is that for Best Picture. While animated features, such as Disney's Beauty and the Beast, have been nominated for this award, none have ever won. Further, there is a separate category for the Best Animated Feature that does not consider live-action film. Is ther...

Are video games art?

The debate over what counts as art has raged for centuries. Famous artists who we know today as legends were once under scrutiny for their art forms in one way or another. Today the debate continues, but with a new subject under scrutiny: Video games. So are video games art, or just another hyped up fad?

Should you watch anime dubbed or subbed?

Anime (Japanese animation) is a cultural phenomenon that has swept the globe since the 90’s. More and more non-Japanese speakers are becoming interested in the world of Japanese animation. Instead of learning Japanese from scratch, viewers deliberate between the controversial choices of watching dubbed (with English voiceovers replacing Japanese audio) or subbed (retaining the Japanese audio and a...

Were Indian police complicit in the Palghar lynching?

On 16 April 2020, two Hindu priests and their driver were killed. This happened after the men were stopped by a crowd of men at a checkpoint amid coronavirus lockdown, accused of being thieves or child kidnappers, and then taken away and killed. The presence of the police at the scene has raised questions about their involvement. Did they do enough to try to stop the killings? Or did they let it t...

Should exotic animals be pets?

The thought of owning an exotic pet can be exciting, but many do not research how to properly care for it before purchasing, leading to animal abuse and neglect. But domesticating wild animals that are endangered or don't have a natural habitat due to climate change can save a species from extinction. Should the private ownership of exotic animals be banned, or is it beneficial to both owners and ...

Should the U.S. mandate year-round education?

Year-round school in the U.S is neither a new concept nor an unusual one. Traditional school calendars and year-round schedules both provide students with about 180 days in the classroom. But instead of taking off much of the summertime, year-round school programs take a series of shorter breaks throughout the year. Should this model be mandated by the government?

Is Tony Blair a war criminal?

In 2017 the official investigation into former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair's invasion of Iraq was finally published. Known as The Chilcot Inquiry, it concluded that the invasion was unnecessary and undermined the United Nations recommendations. This blatant disregard for international law has led many to argue that Blair is a war criminal, and should be tried in an international court for war cr...

Do zodiac signs influence anything?

Astrology is the belief that the alignment of stars and planets at an individual's time of birth affect their mood, personality, and environment. In astrology, personalized horoscopes are printed by birth date and make vague predictions, generally about the love life, success, and health of everyone who has that sign. But how does this work? Can the movement of planets have this much impact?

Are rationalism and idealism compatible?

Idealism is the belief in mind over matter; the conviction that matter itself has no existence apart from mind (one-directional). "Objects" and "matter" exist only in being perceived. However, several of the most prominent idealist philosophers, such as Socrates, Plato, Berkeley, Hume, Kant and Schopenhauer, are also classified as rationalists. Is this possible? Or is it a fundamental contradictio...

Should children be homeschooled?

Public, private, homeschooled, or charter - there are many different ways to provide education to children. Homeschooling is a very popular method, with varying ways of teaching within itself. Students can be taught by online teachers, parents, or even partially attend a class. Should all children be educated with some sort of homeschool method?

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