[eDebate] Start your own league......

Jim Hanson hansonjb
Mon Jun 11 23:54:31 CDT 2007


here's my kneejerk perspective:

1. we'll keep at it but . . .
2. it is both demoralizing to our younger team members to debate non-topical 
"we should critically examine genocide" cases. in general, they hate it; one 
kid quit because of it. our older debaters, in general, also loathe them but 
have figured ways to deal with them.
3. it serves virtually no educational function in my mind. that's probably 
an overstatement but it is pretty close to what I think.
4. it increases the research and coaching burden on our program. we want to 
research the policy aspects of the topic. that can and does include kritikal 
aspects of the topic. when we have to go beyond that already nearly 
insurmountable level of research, it becomes even more difficult.
5. it is irritating to debate teams that refuse to follow the community 
agreed upon topic. that topic is chosen by a process and a vote--you know, 
the ones where not everyone gets their way including me.
6. I think the framing of most of the aff cases that are not topical are 
exactly as gregg hartney describes--patently unfair to the negative. the 
equivalent neg positions criticizing various aspects of policy debate but 
not really the aff case are no better.
7. I would gladly split including defacto (that is, start choosing 
tournaments where more "policy" teams attend). practically, I doubt that 
will happen but just saying . . . .

jim :)
hansonjb at whitman.edu

----- Original Message -----
From: <debate at ou.edu>
To: <edebate at ndtceda.com>
Sent: Monday, June 11, 2007 9:31 PM
Subject: [eDebate] Start your own league......

Take the Ball and Go Home?

Here is my perspective on debate right now.  There is an ideological battle 
between those who see debate from a critical
perspective and those who see it from a games perspective.  (not absolute by 
any means) As those who want one type of
debate attempt to frame topics that promote debate in their way, others who 
have been involved in the community for many
years disagree with this move.  We are not going to start our own league. 
Not Fullerton, not Louisville not Oklahoma or the
many other schools who have chosen to debate differently.  The desire to 
decrease affirmative flexibility along with creativity
for fear of debating the ?unknown? has been combined with an increase in 
technological methods that increase coaches?
participation in the game.  The more predictable, the more the coach can be 
involved.    The less predictable, uh oh, the more
the debates are up to the debaters.  The more coaches you have, well guess 
what, the more predictable a team would want the
topic.  When people say the topic should be framed X way, it is only a 
perspective and can be taken as nothing more.
Unfortunately one perspective is dominating the topic making process. 
Critical minds are not going to lay down and surrender,
they will only find ways to explode from within the topic, and if that means 
ignoring it for educational purposes, then that is a
strategic and sometimes value-laiden choice.  These are debates that are 
happening on edebate and in competitive debates
themselves.

Vote for the topic with less words for practical purposes.  Ever figure out 
which one that would be?

Peace,

Massey


Fact: As the topics have narrowed to have more predictable affirmatives, 
there has been a increasing trend for more schools to
switch to parli or ended debate at their school.
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