Updated and Simplified Pre-St. Mark’s
jgriff22 at nd dot edu
I debated for Jesuit from 2015 to 2019 (surveillance topic to immigration topic, always a 2A). I’m a part-time assistant coach for Jesuit, and I’ve judged a decent amount on this topic so far, including every round at a summer workshop tournament and 7 regular season tournaments.
Clarity > speed. Dropped arguments should still be extended with warrants and impacted out. I’ll only evaluate arguments from the person who’s supposed to be speaking during a given speech. I prefer closed CXs.
Debating in “Unprecedented Times”
Slow down more than usual. If you have significant tech issues, please let me know immediately if you need to stop the debate to fix them. I keep my camera on during speeches, CXs, and the post-round discussion. I prefer that debaters keep theirs on during the entire debate and while I’m giving the RFD, but if there’s a legitimate reason why someone can’t have the camera on then that’s fine. I won't evaluate any arguments about what the debaters are doing in terms of COVID protocol because a) it's not pertinent to the substance of the debate and b) I will give people the benefit of the doubt and assume they're doing what they can to debate safely with the resources they have.
K Affs and Framework/T-USfg
I haven’t judged too many of these debates and don’t have a significant bias towards either side. A K aff can interpret and critique the resolution in interesting ways but should still, at its core, be about the general concept of criminal justice reform. Teams reading T or Framework should have some “CP-like” argument about some way they can access the affirmative’s offense (e.g. a TVA, switch-side debate solves, etc.). Research, clash, and topic education impacts are generally more compelling than procedural fairness.
Not a huge fan but I’ll listen. Slow down more so I can hear the compressed analytics. More and pointed theory arguments that are contextualized to what has happened in a specific debate are better (e.g. “conditional consult CPs without solvency advocates are bad” is likely more compelling than just “conditionality bad”). I won’t vote on new affs bad.
Normal T Debates:
I don’t think anyone has gone for T in the 2NR (or even that often in the block) against a policy aff in front of me this year, and as a result I still don’t have strong feelings about which affs are or aren’t topical. So to persuade me to vote on a T violation, you should construct narratives—use specific examples of affs they allow and explain concretely what the inclusion of these affs would do to the topic. Reasonability is strictly about the counter interpretation. I default to competing interpretations if the affirmative doesn’t make any reasonability argument.
They’re a lot of fun if done right. Rely on specific link narratives and pertinent historical examples, not on “K-tricks” or enthymemes. Something I’ve seen a lot on this topic (especially with abolition-type arguments) is a lack of external impact explanation, so if you’re negative, you should remember that “the aff doesn’t solve” isn’t a compelling argument on its own. Not super familiar with high theory so I would advise against reading those types of Ks in front of me.
Need a solvency advocate or else you’re open to smart permutations and potential theory objections. I’m not a huge fan of process unless it’s specific to the aff. Amendments in the block are probably bad, especially if they're in the 1NR. If your CP text is incoherent (like if you literally said "The 50 states should do the plan" word-for-word in the 1NC because you forgot to edit the text before the round to apply to a specific affirmative), it'll be tough for me to vote for it.
Zero risk is possible if the affirmative’s defensive arguments are very compelling, there’s conceded defensive arguments that are extended, and/or the disad is just that bad on its own.