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1 Refutation

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First in many slideshows used to teach novice policy debate

First in many slideshows used to teach novice policy debate

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  • 1. WELCOME TO DEBATE! WHAT IS DEBATE? Show by Jenny Heidt Style: Kohanim
  • 2. RESOLUTION We have a national topic that hundreds of thousands of students across the nation use for debates.
  • 3.  Theyearly topic, called the “resolution” is a statement of why the federal government ought to address a pressing national problem. Past topics have included changing our foreign policy towards Russia, ocean conservation, protecting civil liberties, helping the homeless, immigration reform, and many others.
  • 4. 2009-2010’s resolution is 
  • 5. RESOLUTION every debate, two students In propose a specific plan to enact the resolution and their two opponents argue that their plan is a bad idea.
  • 6. RESOLUTION Can you brainstorm a list of some social  services that might be provided to alleviate poverty?
  • 7. RESOLUTION Debate is enormously creative and rewards hard work.
  • 8. RESOLUTION You may have seen debates on TV where  people shouted, ignored counter arguments, or seemed to be in a contest about who could attack the other person more effectively.
  • 9. RESOLUTION THIS IS NOT WHAT DEBATE TOURNAMENTS ARE LIKE!
  • 10. RESOLUTION
  • 11. WHAT DOES A DEBATE LOOK LIKE? students from one school are Two assigned to be affirmative (they agree with the resolution) and two students from another school are assigned to be negative (they disagree with the resolution).
  • 12. WHAT DOES A DEBATE LOOK LIKE? Debates occur in classrooms, in front of one judge and usually no audience (you might have an audience way down the road but by then you will have lots of experience and it will be to win an award).
  • 13. AFFIRMATIVE VS NEGATIVE job of the affirmative is to The prove that their proposal (which must fit under the resolution) is a good idea. job of the negative is The to prove that the affirmative proposal is either a bad idea or does not fit under the resolution.
  • 14. AFFIRMATIVE VS NEGATIVE judge votes The for whichever team does a better job of proving their point.
  • 15. AFFIRMATIVE VS NEGATIVE You will use a combination of  research, logic, and strategic moves to win your debates. Given that you are competing against a very bright pool of students and that debate has a very long learning curve, every debate is different and the game never gets repetitive.
  • 16. AFFIRMATIVE VS NEGATIVE The core of debate is refutation. Debaters  both make their own points and are responsible for responding to arguments made by the other team. This is what makes debate different from other speaking
  • 17. AFFIRMATIVE VS NEGATIVE Write down the following list of  arguments and prepare to refute them, point by point:  “Cats are better than dogs because cats are: 1) cleaner,   2) prettier,  3) more lovable.”
  • 18. AFFIRMATIVE VS NEGATIVE
  • 19. AFFIRMATIVE VS NEGATIVE Let’s try it again but with a political  example. Write down this list of arguments again and prepare to refute them. “George W Bush was the greatest President of all time because 1) he was firm in the war on terror, 2) he liberated the people of Iraq, and 3) he cut taxes.”
  • 20. AFFIRMATIVE VS NEGATIVE One more time…  “Poverty is a problem that would be better addressed by  the government than the free market because: 1) developing countries have very free markets but also the worst poverty while highly regulated economies have lower rates of poverty, 2) the free market cannot demonstrate compassion but government can and we have a moral obligation to alleviate poverty.” This example is harder. You also learn a TON about the  yearly topic from debate. Within a few weeks of being on the team, I guarantee that you will have many ideas about how to refute this common thread of arguments on the 09-10 topic.
  • 21. AFFIRMATIVE VS NEGATIVE
  • 22. FORMAT FOR REFUTATION Step 1: “They say…”  Step 2: “But I disagree…”  Step 3: “Because….”  Try to show that your argument is better  because….  It’s better reasoned  It’s better evidenced  It has historical or empirical support  It has greater significance Step 4: “Therefore….” 
  • 23. LET’S PRACTICE THE FORMAT… Respond to each of the following  arguments, using the format suggested above:  1) McDonald’s is the best restaurant in the world.  2) Video games should be banned because they make teenagers violent.  3) Schools should save families money by requiring uniforms.
  • 24. FOR NEXT TIME All debaters need to go to the bookstore  and purchase:  Simple manila file folders  Legal pads (legal length best)  A timer  Some pens  A debate notebook and folder to keep track of handouts

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