[eDebate] Frustrating and Saddening

Jay Hawk ostertaglives
Wed Aug 6 13:54:25 CDT 2008

As an alum with limited ability to actually spend time with the activity and people that I came to love with every fiber of my being, this board is increasingly becoming something very tragic.

The striking amount of disrespect, lack of civility, and simple bullshit is truly disturbing.  Do you understand that this is a public board, where all sorts of folks (alums, administrators, prospective debaters, etc) check-in on the activity?  These people are the key to the future of the activity as they are what provide financial support and future debaters.  Lose them, and you lose the forum.  And, IMO, the tone of these discussions is a quick way to lose these people.

You will find no person who loved college debate more than me.  I gave a huge chunk of my life to the activity as a debater, coach, and now as a alum.  Given the tone of these discussions, I would be very hesitant to encourage my son to do the activity right now, as it seems to losing the humor, love, and joy that made it transformative for me.

When, or if, you leave the activity you will value the bonds you have formed with your friends in debate far more than the success of any particular argument.  These bonds should transcend opinions on arguments, but are impossible to form if people insist on acting like pricks and taking themselves so seriously.

As an aside, who the fuck is Scott Elliot and why would anyone take someone serious who, non-ironically, had "JD" after their name in an email signature?

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