[eDebate] Supreme Court Topic wording issues

J T jtedebate
Wed May 10 11:48:06 CDT 2006

Darren Elliott <delliott at kckcc.edu> wrote: Good discussion starter JT!  My thoughts are below.

>>> J T  05/09/06 2:30 PM >>>
1. one big area ("law enforcement", 1st Amendment/free speech, federalism)
R. That the Supreme Court should overturn one or more of its decisions to substantially increase 1st amendment protections
R. That the Supreme Court should overturn one or more of its decisions to substantially reduce law enforcement authority.

Chief chimes in:
But my initial reading concerns "to substantially increase 1st amendment protections".  My concern is the modifying article.  Is the resolution suggesting the SC overturn a case that was meant to increase 1st amend. prot. thereby the aff is meant to decrease said protection, OR is the resolutional intent to have the Supremes overturn a case that previously limited thereby the aff is increasing 1st amend. prot.?  The same concern is true for the "to substantially reduce law enforcement authority" resolution.

"to increase protections" should make this clear. The aff would overturn a SC decision "for the purpose of" increasing protections of 1st Amendment rights, etc.

JT continues:
2. a list of say 5-7 areas (too allow many cases and diverse topics...a la the Europe topic)
R. That the Supreme Court should overturn one of its decisions in one or more of the following areas: x,y,z,w,q

The Europe topic was a nightmare.  If we went this route my recomendation would be a list of cases in AN area OR a list of the specific cases.  

Agreed...Europe was awful...just wanted to respond to Malgo about the POSSIBLE ways to word the resolution....didn't make a judgement either way

Some of the original discussion about courts that I heard folks make at last years meeting was something like "The SC should overturn one or more of the following case......" with the belief being that those cases be landmark or foundational decisions.  If that is the route then it is more manageable.  

Landmark cases is a mistake...How do we decide which specific cases? No aff flexibility...boring as hell...oh...you run Dred Scott? How about Roe v. Wade? (now you're in for it!).  I agree it would be the most manageable, but overly restrictive.  I guess we could rehash Korematsu from the HS topic...The main problem is multiple overlapping decisions...If we pick case x...and a new case is uncovered or heard, not only does the case we choose become functionally irrelevant, but also that new cases should be able to be aff ground (now it's either irrelevant or a topical CP)...aff flexibility is pretty popular

It would not be wise to say: The SC should overturn one or more decision in one or more of the following areas: 1st amendment protection, law enforcement authority, medical rights, etc.  (Not sure if that is what you mean by a al Europe but that was my initial read). 

Why not?  I made distinction between a) a long list of random crap (like Europe), b) a short list of representative and flexible areas, c) no list, just one big area (remember how Europe could have just as easily been US-EU "trade") and finally the list within a big area...i.e. "LAW ENFORCEMENT"...looking over the sites I posted, Law Enforcement is sufficiently broad enough to be the res., but also can be limited down a bit WITHIN the area of Law Enforcement, via a short list....hope that clarifies.....but if so, check out:  www.landmarkcases.org

3. a list of 3 areas (a little broader in nature compared to the larger list)
Maybe something we could tackle.  I want to get a better feel for the lit. and how big it would be.

After looking around the lit a bit, I think this is the best option.  The crucial part is to pick the right 3 areas...I'd like to see dicussion on the areas....I've posted a large list of possible areas THAT HAVE BEEN RECENTLY DISCUSSED BY THE COURT.

4. A list within an area:
 R. That the Supreme Court should overturn one or more of its decisions to substantially reduce law enforcement authority.

An old standby that may be what the community defers to.

Not sure if you are referring to the area or structure of this res....but LAW ENFORCEMENT would be incredible!  It could include some the types of cases under the federal authority topic as well....I think a res. crafted along these lines would be both clear and flexible.  If you think one area is too small, I would suggest you do some serious reseach in the areas of law enforcement or 1st amendment rights...as per RECENT Court decisions.

I will say initially I am interested in either:
A topic that lists specific SC cases (dealing with different areas of the law)
A topic that picks AN area of the law and asks for SC action in that area
Perhaps a topic that limits to 2-3 areas of the law and asks for SC action

Not in favor as of yet a topic that:
Picks more than 3 areas of the law and asks for SC action

I could sign on to this! 


Darren Elliott
Director of Debate--KCKCC
CEDA 2nd VP Elect


Asst. Debate Coach
Emporia State University
Get amazing travel prices for air and hotel in one click on Yahoo! FareChase 
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: http://www.ndtceda.com/pipermail/edebate/attachments/20060510/e587c05a/attachment.htm 

More information about the Mailman mailing list