Debate – Is TP or LD right for me? by: Wyatt Eichholz

Ah- summer a time to sit back and relax!! Unless… you want to get a jump start on Resolutions, learning more about argumentation styles, rhetoric, and debate! This is meant to be a helpful guide for you. Yes, you! Well, that is if you are new to the Speech and Debate universe or just aren’t sure which style of debate is right for you.

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Are You Ready for Debate Camp? (Online)

We are beyond excited to announce our partnership between Lasting Impact! and Skill Set Debate! Let me introduce you to Skill Set Debate-they are a small business created by young entrepreneurs in 2017 whose lives have been drastically changed by the power of public speaking. Each member of their team has a unique story and is passionate about helping others develop their personal communication style for the glory of God. I am excited about what the Lord has in store… even if it means online, because growth will continue, relationships will be made, and we will have fun!!

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Learn More About Parli Debate and Why It’s Awesome by: Luke Litz

If you have never done Parli before or in a league where Parli is not currently offered, you may be thinking to yourself, “Why would I want to Debate in Lasting Impact’s Online Trailblazers Tournament?” OR “Why would I want to get involved with Parli?” OR “Why would I take the Lasting Impact Introduction to Parli summer course?” Well, I’m glad you asked! Parli has a plethora of benefits to you, as a growing debater…

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2020-21 NCFCA Resolutional Analysis by: Eric Meinerding

Warning!! Long, thorough article!! To close out this year’s resolution analysis articles, here are the NCFCA TP and LD reviews! As with the resolutions, I’ll be going over the pros and cons of each option and then offering my opinion on which I believe is the best resolution. To provide some guidance, I’ll be rating each topic in two categories. First will be educational and engagement potential. Here I’ll basically be judging each topic on their ability to prevent the year from going stale, and value to students as a learning opportunity. Secondly, each topic will be graded on its ability to facilitate competitive debate rounds, basically which topic will generate the greatest quantity of fair, even debates. I’ll look at balance, breadth of aff and neg arguments, and the available research on the topic. Each category will be rated on a scale of 1-3, with 1 being the best topic for that category and 3 being the worst.

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Online Tournament Success!

This last weekend over a hundred people from over twenty states met to participate in a debate tournament…. ONLINE. I know what you are thinking… Why? What for? What’s the point? The point was to be a pioneer! The point was to grow and participate in building communication skills in new ways. What Lasting Impact! created was something unique and different. Read on to hear all about this new type of speech and debate tournament…

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2020-2021 NCFCA Debate Resolution Perspectives

Have you taken a look yet at the new proposed NCFCA resolutions for 2021?  There is quite a breadth of interest represented there!! Our hope, as always, is that you explore the resolutions for yourself, or as families. Have discussions and read analysis. We are excited to be able offer different perspectives over the next few days…

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2021 Stoa TP Resolutions… Analysis By Eric Meinerding

The new topic options have been presented for STOA team policy debate and there is incredible potential for an extremely engaging and competitive year of debate across all three topics. Just like last year, I’ll be going over the pros and cons of each option and then offering my opinion on which I believe is the best resolution. I’ll be rating each category in two topics. First will be educational and engagement potential. Here I’ll basically be judging each topic on their ability to prevent the year from going stale, and value to students as a learning opportunity. Secondly, each topic will be graded on its ability to facilitate competitive debate rounds, basically which topic will generate the greatest quantity of fair, even debates. I’ll look at balance, breadth of aff and neg arguments, and the available research on the topic. Each category will be rated on a scale of 1-3, with 1 being the best topic for that category and 3 being the worst.

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Don’t Give a Debate Without These Four Elements by: Catherine Alles

During my sophomore year, I was asked as apart of the advanced debate class to spend a round helping a novice team through their first round. Before the debate, I sent them this worksheet I had made, emphasizing that these four main sections were essential for each and every speech they give. Here is what it looked like:

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Moot Court Tips (part 1) by: Hope Turner

​Mister Chief Justice and may it please the court…

​Moot court is something special. It transcends the everyday and takes you to a higher plane of thought. At least, that’s how I think of it. I LOVE moot court, but I’ll be the first to tell you that it is HARD. However, I have learned that if you invest in it, moot court will grow you into a stronger, smoother speaker who gives mic-drop answers using razor-sharp reasoning skills.

​I would like to give you a few tips to approaching moot court that makes you a better advocate and helps you have more fun. These aren’t just abstract tips. I’ve actually done these. In fact, I’m doing them right now as I prepare to compete at Nationals in collegiate moot court.

Fully immerse yourself in moot court
​Moot court can be daunting at first. And two months in. And six months in. In all honesty, I’m still intimidated by it to this day. That’s ok. The Supreme Court of the United States is daunting too. Ask anyone who has argued before the Supreme Court.

​“Come on, Hope,” you say. “It’s just pretend. We’re not actually arguing for a real person in front of the real Supreme Court.” To which I say, “but what if it were real? What if you actually were arguing for a real person before the real Supreme Court trying to affect real change?”

​That is the attitude you should have when you compete in moot court. Take it seriously! Fully immerse yourself in the role of The Attorney: arguing passionately on behalf of your client, who has been seriously injured; or defending the United States of America, who has done nothing wrong. Don’t do it half-heartedly. You get out of moot court what you put into it. So throw your whole self into it! Treat every round as if it were your one chance to speak before the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS). Your client is counting on you for justice. Act like it.

Read the cases
​Real talk: life is busy. Between high school (or college) classes, SAT prep, and everything else you are doing, your time is very limited. I get it. But actually reading the cases is invaluable to your moot court preparation for a few reasons:

  • Quotes
    ​SCOTUS has some pretty punchy lines. Use them to your advantage. Memorize them to use as answers to questions. Incorporate them into your arguments. Respond to opposing counsel’s arguments with them. They are wonderful little tools.
  • Actually understanding the cases
    ​This one seems like a no-brainer, but I can’t tell you how many times I have heard cases misrepresented or misquoted because counsel hasn’t actually read the case. Read the whole thing. Read the footnotes. Read the concurrences and dissents. Read it all.
  • Commentary on other cases
    ​It is common for cases to comment on past cases. Sometimes, SCOTUS overturns past cases (a fancy way of saying that they were wrong). They may even comment on cases you have available to you. That can increase your understanding of those cases, show you how to apply them to different circumstances, and distinguish the rule from dicta. (if you have no idea what I just said, let me explain: the “rule” is the part of a case that is binding on lower courts. It is the actual decision and the reasoning behind it that causes real change. It is how they answer the question presented to them. Anything else, like commentary on other cases or thoughts about potential future cases, is “dicta,” which is the non-binding opinion of the court. Dicta can be great for persuasive or rhetorical appeal, but it is not binding on the court.)

​​Tune into Hope’s next article for tips on – how to read cases…

Hope Turner is a Lasting Impact! Team Member and Coach. She is the reigning Moot Court Champion, along with her partner Hope Rawlson. For more one on one coaching, contact us.