[eDebate] No Justice, No Peace

scottelliott at grandecom.net scottelliott
Mon Aug 4 17:19:21 CDT 2008

Sorry Ede, but I really do dismiss competitive success  as a measure of a social
movement's success. Why? Because you can argue anything and get wins and speaker
points. Just look at a normal varsity round and we now see that anything can win
a round and get speaker points. By the way, I do think high point loses are
examples of peopple trying to overcome their guilt. "My heart bleeds for you,
you get a 30, but you still lose. I feel better now."

You ask, why do we not achieve social change? I have some very quick, but very
pointed answers for you:

(1) White privlege really does exist in debate. Those who hold the power don't
want to give it up. You have no credible threat, so why should they change?

(2) There really is not a problem. All you are doing is making arguments in
rounds and winning debates. Even winning tournaments. But those are merely
arguments in debates and wins at a game called tournament debate. This is not a
real social movement for real change.

(3) There really is a problem, but you have not isolated the real propblem,
which IO told you this morning--the economic realities drive minority
particpation--not the culture of debate. In fact, it is the openness of this
culture that allows you to even present your arguments for evaluation.

My measure of your sucess is quite simple. When I use the term "your project" I
am referring to the overall project that orgianlly started with the concept of
more Blacks need to particpate in college policy debate.:

(1) Has your project led to a substantial increase in African-American student

(2) Has your project led to a substantial increase in African-American coaches?

(3) Has your project led to more HCBU's or predominantly African-American
programs joining CEDA-NDT?

(4) Are more African Americans juding-prelims and elimination rounds at

The answer to all four is No, NO, NO and No. Unless we do a game with
percentages--we have gone from 3 Black coaches to a whole 5!

I think this is a valid standard to determine the success of a movement for
inclusion. I think the same key questions can be asked in terms of a movement
for gender equality. Your standards to evaluate success are so vague that they
amount to nothing more than If Ede feels warm and fuzzy about it, it must be a

You blow my proposal off as a waste of time. Interesting considering how for ten
years, outside of a few debate rounds, your project has been blown off as a
waste of time. At least I am willing to discuss the issues at hand. Most, if
not all those who hold real power simply click onto the next item or hit delete
when they see your posts.


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