Megan Mapes ParadigmLast changed 1/11 4:13P CDT
Debated at KU for 5 years
Coached at UNI of 2 years
Currently a GTA at Georgia State but not working with the debate team right now.
If you have more specific questions, or need clarification please feel free to send me an email.
THE SHORT OF IT
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I strongly believe that people with strong beliefs about can or cannot happen in a debate are kind of silly.
I believe that there is value in having discussions about the resolution. An example of the resolution should probably be the endpoint of any advocacy and debaters can creatively and critically engage the topic. I prefer debates where the affirmative defends a clear change from the status quo, but I'm open to what that means. When that does not happen I am more willing to vote negative on presumption.
I default to competing interpretations on questions of topicality.
Topicality will almost always come before theory arguments.
I default to offense/defense -
Tech > Truth
THE LONG OF IT:
*Prep time/Paperless debate
- i find myself to be on the strict side of prep time questions. You have 30 seconds to get the other team your speech doc before prep starts again. If you're not using an email chain by now you'd better have a good excuse.
-- Smart strategic debaters who can make me laugh get good speaker points. Debaters who are offensive, rude, and neg teams that don't split the block do not.
--I'm willing to assign 0% risk to an argument if you are effective at establishing terminal defense. Obviously, offense always helps as most debaters are unlikely to effectively do this. This means you should probably adjust your impact calc in the 2ar if you're only going for defense to assess the possible risk of the disad. However, a dropped argument is a true argument in most cases for me (dropped evidence is considered based on the claims in the evidence and not necessarily your tag --- that means if you drop something, in a later speech you should be on top of the spin for that evidence in later speeches) so lack of offense doesn't mean ignore the defense because you'll think I always vote on a risk. Remember mistakes happen - if you drop an argument you always have the ability to make arguments as to why they only get the arg for what their evidence says in the case you drop a solvency argument or defense to an advantage. - the debate is never over.
--I am not likely to vote on a cheap shot but could be convinced otherwise if the argument is fleshed out. BUT I'm flow-centric and like tricky args. you should know the difference between a cheap shot and strategically hiding args.
--cross-x is either the best or the worst part of the debate. Teams do well when they use cross-x to set up arguments or question the evidence quality of the other team. This will be better for everyone if there is actually a point for your cross-x questions, and not just using cross-x as the 3 minutes of free prep that your partner gets.
*Clarity is very important to me. I will not flow cards that I cannot understand. I will not hesitate to drop teams for clipping cards even if the opposing team does not make the challegne. IF it is questionable I will not hesitate to tank your speaks.
speed is ok and I highly enjoy judging fast debates. However, err on the side of clarity ESPECIALLY on theory and topicality debates. They are already messy enough and going at your top speed will only hurt you if I can't flow all of the warrants to your arguments. But seriously - you should know when its right to slow down and just do it. - there is nothing more annoying than a post-round decision where debaters are asking about arguments that didn't get on my flow - there's probably a reason that happened and it's probably because YOU weren't strategic when it comes to your speed and clarity. I am a very technical judge and you will make me happy if you're also technical
Case - Extremely underutilized. Minimizing the case is a sweet way to win a high risk of the disad. Likewise, I think the aff teams should be leveraging alot more of the case against disads/Ks than what happens in most rounds. A "try or die for the aff" argument is quite persuasive. I think even if you are going for a CP, you should still extend case defense as a way to avoid a "try or die" framing by the aff.
Disads - Impact framing arguments are pretty important to win these arguments, and i think that alot of teams do a poor job of explaining how arguments interact with each other, and explaining meta-arguments that will frame how i assess the debate in terms of Uniqueness, link, etc. DA turns the case is a slayer, and I will be more than happy to vote on it. On a side note, i tend to do some politics research, and do infact find it intrinsic to the plan. Intrinsicness arguments are an uphill battle, unless dropped by the negative (which happens more than it should). I also think that alot of the politics cards that people read are atrocious, and think that 7 bad cards does not equal one good, well warranted card. This also isn't unique to the politics disad, alot of cards people are reading everywhere are atrocious, and smart teams will capitalize on it by pointing out how their evidence makes arguments that go the other way. I am not part of the "cult of uniqueness" by any means, but I think that uniqueness is an important component of the link debate.
CP's- They are a very intergral part of the negative strategy. I think that there is a time and a place for textual or functional competition, and I try to let the debaters convince me one way or the other. In general, here are my views on legitimacy of CPs. CP theory is a reason to reject the argument, not the team, unless the aff has a reason why it skewed their ability to debate other positions (I can only see this being true in a conditionality debate). The net benefits shoud probably be disads to the aff, and not just advantages to the CP (I can be persuaded that the condition net benefit is a disad to the aff).
Topicality- . This was my favorite argument as a debater, which can be both good and bad for me as a judge. It means both that I am more willing to reward tricky T arguments but also that my expectations for what makes for a good topicality debater are a bit higher. I also think topicality/theory is about impact calculus and weighing your impacts against your opponents (i.e. why aff ground o/w's neg ground). These debates can be messy so try to be as clear as possible and engaging as possible. I prefer contextual definitions. Abuse should be proven, i probably won't vote on potential abuse because I think you can get to the crux of this through a different impact. I think that the negative lets affirmatives get away with way too much in these debates by no providing a topical version of the affirmative, and explaining how the affirmative interpretation explodes the limits of the debate. Generic impact turns are not particulary persuasive. .
I think that the most important standard for me is that the affirmative has an advocacy statement that deploys a specific instance of their method. However, if you tell me to think otherwise, fine. I won't tell you how to debate and will listen to any argument with an attempt to judge objectively. Just give me a clear explanation of the importance of your argument applied to the round. Impact assessment is important.
Theory- I'm persuaded by reject the arg not the team with a majority of these small blippy arguments. Don't assume you win because the 1ar dropped multiple perms bad. If you'd like me to default to another setting, explain why it means they lose. I generally think conditionality and pics are ok but will vote on anything so eh- go for it
Kritiks- My knowledge of the literature is limited but growing. I will actually be more inclined to reward you if you take a new and innovative approach on a lot of these arguments. I find that I do better with structural criticism, which probably has a lot to do with the research I've done so far in my academic career. My main requirements are a detailed and applied explanation of the alternative to the specifics of the affirmative case OR a fleshed out and impacted justification for why the alternative doesn't have to DO something in a traditional sense. I think negatives make a huge mistake ignoring double bind arguments on the perm and it can be detrimental. I'm also probably a TERRIBLE judge for Reps K's/PiCs - You will have to do a lot of work to convince me that a team should use because they used nuclear war reps - I also think Reps args are served better as links to a better K. I generally think framework is only a reason to reject the alt not the team or a reason the aff gets to weigh their impacts.