[eDebate] a defense of areas over cases

gabe murillo gabejmurillo
Sat May 27 12:37:52 CDT 2006


I guess I'll just respond, although I don't have a lot
of beef with your suggestions, 

> people seem to think
> that an area
> resolution would be something like "the ussc should
> overrule a
> decision in one or more of the following areas:
> abortion, criminals'
> rights, the first amendment, equal protection."
> obviously, that
> resolution would be huge and entirely impossible to
> debate.  

these are the types of resolutions I am worried about,
I haven't seen much discussion of "areas" outside of
the model you've explained above, which worries me

> instead of abortion,
> the area could be 'mandatory waiting periods for
> abortions'; instead
> of 'criminal rights,' the area could be 'the
> exclusion at state trials
> of evidence obtained in violation of the 4th
> amendment'.  

I think these areas are much less frightening then
what has been discussed, however I have a couple
problems, first, if you are willing to have this level
of specificity, what's the harm in listing the cases?
I don't really know what the response is to the
quality of negative strategy with a specificed list of
cases over these areas. I'd also be interested to know
how many cases would be topical under each of these
areas, and I think this is a fair request for any
resolution which proposes certain areas, please give
us an idea of how many cases these resolutions would
include! I do think this approach maybe a good middle
ground, but I'm not sure how successful a compromise
would be on the areas vs cases question.

> those areas
> mandate a direction and are small enough to provide
> predictable
> advantage ground and fairly predictable cases, but
> still large enough
> to provide diverse ground for the aff. 

I think that this statements ignores a couple
important things 1) those "predictable advantages" are
not going to beat generic CPs, the advantages that
will win are the unpredictable advantages which come
from something internally in the decision, which is
why a list of cases is the best way to balance
affirmative and negative ground. 2) diversity in
ground for the affirmative is not restrained by a list
of cases, I think my argument about diversity being in
the eye of the beholder is pretty true. 

 > i also think
> that areas
> tailored this way resolve gabe's first problem with
> an areas approach
> - it's fairly obvious which decisions uphold
> mandatory waiting periods
> or provide exceptions to the exclusionary rule. 
> obviously, eloquence
> has never been my style, but you get my drift.

this is true  

> my big concern about a list of cases is very similar
> to what tripp
> said, but it i think that it's a much bigger
> potential problem than he
> thinks - simply saying "the ussc should overturn:
> casey, hamdi, etc"
> means very little.. this was addressed some on the
> blog, but i don't
> think there's ever been a good resolution.... 

this is the part of the areas vs cases debate that is
a little blurry. I think that funny thing about "there
are many things that could happen after an overturn"
is that it proves my aff creativity argument, even a
list of cases would provide an affirmative with
creativity in their advantage claims. Now some may say
"well then what the hell is the difference" and that's
where my arugment about negative strategy comes in.
with a list of cases it is predicitable the different
directions an affirmative can go, because you can
research the case and know all the possible angles,
and from that research comes in-depth negative
strategy, with a research burden that is still
managable for teams without mega-research
infra-structures. As far as not seeing a good
resolution on cases, well that's not unique to this
topic, remember china? :) 
> can ANYONE who supports cases instead of areas
> PLEASE explain to me
> how the resolution can be worded to prevent this? 

I can't, but that's more because I'm not smart enough
to craft a resolution.

> or
> does everyone
> just think that it's going to happen in either an
> areas or a cases
> topic, because we'll be overturning cases either
> way?  

this seems to make sense to me, even under your areas
overturning those cases can have a plethora (I don't
know why but I love that word) of consequences / legal

> or do you just
> view it as how more aff ground can be written into a
> cases topic? i'm
> not so worried about annoying affs, 

I am more worried about unpredictable affs, and this
isn't selfish of me, we'll probably have a generic K
that links to whatever aff people run, and MSU will
probably have more then enough generics to answer
these affs, but generally these are not the best, most
educational debates, especially on a legal topic! a
list of cases allows us to focus strategies on the
cases themselves, the merits, justifications etc, lets
encourage this kind of debate now that we finally have
a legal topic! 

> i'm worried
> about even more
> annoying neg args.  

some amount of annoying neg arguments is inevitable,
no topic can stop it. However, a list of cases at
least gives people the oppurtunity to prepare
strategies that are not "annoying" but instead answer
the central questions of the affirmative, I think we
can agree that it is less annoying to see someone
execute a case specific strategy, then say Zizek, or

> it really seems like a list of
> cases is the
> direction that the topic is moving, so i hope that
> this issue is
> discussed more thoroughly

I do too, I know cases are far from perfect and hope
that people smarter then me can come up with solutions
to your problems. 

> i hope this all makes sense...
> caitlin ryan

indeed it does 

gabe murillo 
wayne state 

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