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91+ Controversial Topics that Turn a Pointless Argument into an Exciting Discussion

December 22, 2019
Controversial Topics Blog

What is a Controversial Issue?

It’s no secret that debates can get boring. Often teams pick a topic that is not particularly interesting to discuss or even straight facts that are impossible to argue. The participants feel no joy arguing for their side, and the audience does not respond well to boring topics as well.

There are many ways to find a tremendously controversial topic to discuss during a debate. If you simply look and listen around you, you will definitely spot some heated arguments and can get inspired to choose them as your debate topic. Another effective strategy is to listen to the news or check news websites and magazines. Many of the issues discussed here can be classified as controversial, and therefore will make great debate topics.

A key feature of a successfully chosen controversial debate topic is that there are two clear sides and it’s not clear which one is the right one. For example, there is no point in arguing whether vaccination is a good thing because it clearly is. On the other hand, you can definitely argue about whether the UK was right to vote for Brexit or whether the US was right to elect Donald Trump as President.

At the same time, you need to know that if a debate topic is too controversial, it can alienate the teams and audience members against each other. There were cases where a heated debate transformed into a full-on conflict between team members. Ultimately, the debate is about finding some common ground and choosing the strongest side of the argument, not turning people against each other.

What are the Top Controversial Topics?

controversial topics for students

There is no shortage of controversial topics that can be discussed during a debate, but when choosing the topic for your next debate, there are several factors you need to take into account. The most important one is whether the topic is appropriate for the audience and the occasion. You also need to consider the age and academic level of the participants and the audience. For example, middle-school children will hardly be able to have a knowledgeable discussion about US politics, while college students may not find it particularly interesting to talk about school uniforms or lunches. Here are 91 controversial debate topics for a fascinating discussion.

Controversial Argumentative Essay Topics

  1. Can a doctor deny medical care to a patient who doesn’t have enough money?
  2. Rich people don’t deserve tax breaks.
  3. Should companies monitor the social media accounts of their employees?
  4. Teachers cannot become friends with students.
  5. Hybrid vehicles cannot solve the environment.
  6. Online reviews for products cannot be trusted.
  7. We should continue using animals for scientific research.
  8. Arts should not be a part of a mandatory school curriculum.
  9. American football is a dangerous institution.
  10. Should we give equal maternity and paternity leaves?
  11. Schools should be made more diverse.
  12. Fast food advertisements should be banned.

Controversial Research Topics

  1. People are born with their sexuality; it’s not a choice.
  2. Should we allow the government to monitor everyone?
  3. Daycare should be made free for working parents.
  4. The advertisements should become more inclusive.
  5. People should not be punished for taking drugs.
  6. Churches have too much impact on our lives.
  7. The obesity crisis is caused by food manufacturers.
  8. Surrogate motherhood is unethical and needs to be banned.
  9. There is not enough attention from the government to global warming.
  10. Civil marriage is the same as a legal marriage.
  11. Hitchhiking is a dangerous activity.
  12. Society needs to go back to same-sex schools.

Current Controversial Topics

  1. The government isn’t doing enough for gun control.
  2. The anti-vax movement is responsible for the measles outbreak.
  3. Brexit was the right move for the UK.
  4. Donald Trump has made too many mistakes for a President.
  5. Legalizing marijuana isn’t as important as it’s made to look.
  6. The border wall is an effective solution for drug trafficking.
  7. If people can’t afford health insurance, they need to work more.
  8. We should not lose net neutrality.
  9. Banning guns is the only way to stop school shootings.
  10. Bitcoin is a fad and will not survive.
  11. Organic food is overrated.
  12. The legality and morality of physician-assisted suicide.
  13. The use of facial recognition technology by law enforcement agencies.

Controversial Topics For Teens

  1. Metal detectors ensure 100% campus security.
  2. Millennials complain too much and work too little.
  3. School uniforms are outdated and should be given up.
  4. The quality of food at schools should be improved.
  5. We should lower the drinking age or increase the voting age.
  6. People with face tattoos should be allowed to have government jobs.
  7. School bullies grow into dysfunctional adults.
  8. Rap music promotes violence and crime.
  9. It’s impossible to survive on a minimum wage.
  10. Wikipedia is a credible source for research.
  11. Astrology is useless and people who believe in it are not smart.
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Good Controversial Topics

  1. Celebrities should not be entitled to privacy.
  2. Should we make the summer break shorter?
  3. All schools should introduce video surveillance.
  4. Creationists are fundamentally wrong.
  5. We should limit the use of nuclear energy.
  6. Plus-size models promote obesity and unhealthy eating habits.
  7. Schools are not a place to practice religion.
  8. Cloning humans is immoral and should not be attempted.
  9. Child YouTube stars are being exploited by their parents.
  10. Gambling should be treated like an addiction.
  11. We should allow children to work legally.

Controversial Psychology Topics

  1. Humans are violent in their nature.
  2. Children are irreparably harmed by the divorce of their parents.
  3. School bullies come from toxic family environments.
  4. Is it ethical to try and treat LGBT people?
  5. The psychological harm of the internet on teens.
  6. Instagram influencers damage our self-esteem.
  7. Too many Americans are taking antidepressants.
  8. Celebrity lifestyles promote envy and jealousy.
  9. ADHD is not a diagnosis, it’s simply a personality trait.
  10. Is too much praise bad for children?
  11. Full-time working parents neglect their children.

Controversial Medical Topics

  1. Vaccination should be made mandatory.
  2. Vegan parents should not be allowed to make their children vegan.
  3. People should be allowed to choose when to die.
  4. Childhood obesity is a nationwide problem.
  5. Homeopathic treatments should be made illegal.
  6. Acupuncture is an effective way of treatment.
  7. Body Mass Index is an outdated concept.
  8. Medicinal plants should be used more widely.
  9. The aggressive practices of medical representatives.
  10. Doctors should not be paid to prescribe certain medications.
  11. Emergency room treatments should be free.

Controversial Topics for Social Studies

  1. Parents should monitor the mobile phones of children.
  2. School detention is pointless and should be abolished.
  3. All athletes should be tested for drugs.
  4. Celebrities are able to get away with a crime.
  5. Should the government introduce taxes for churches?
  6. Cell phones and laptops should be banned during class.
  7. Is daylight savings time good for the economy or stupid?
  8. Social media give stalkers more opportunities for harassing their victims.
  9. Should we allow former felons to vote?
  10. We, as a society, are too dependent on information technology.
  11. A high intake of cow milk is not healthy.