Eugenia Xu Paradigm

Last changed 9/1 6:29P PDT

*Please please please do not read any argument on suicide in front of me / provide graphic descriptions of anything mental health related without content warnings. Consequences may include me not being able to evaluate the debate or speak up about the fact that I cannot think about the debate resulting in me having no choice but to give you an auto loss & 0 speaks. Also, do not ask me why I can't engage with these arguments, I am under no obligation to answer that question even if I know you. I feel like this is a given but apparently it isn't. I think content warnings are good. If you as a competitor cannot engage in a certain discussion and want me to know/do something about it, message me on facebook (just search my name) or email me at eugxu@nuevaschool.org before the round and I'll do whatever I can to help. I'm also down to talk about this outside of rounds because making debate a safe space for its competitors is super important to me as a person who breaks down crying at tournaments too often because of content I'm forced to engage with <3

Just use she/her pronouns for me. I have 0 tolerance for purposeful misgendering but I also don't expect everyone to be perfect.

Do not joke about anything I write in this paradigm about equity please.

In light of recent disputes in the parli community about whether lay or flow debate are more valid, here’s an excerpt from an end-of-the-year post from my sophomore year, content warning for a discussion of mental health + a reference near the end towards suicidal ideation:

“… Alright so not going to lie this season has been overall terrible. I’ve seriously considered quitting at least three separate times, all of which didn’t end up happening but I’ve never felt this extent of frustration at the activity so consistently before. Out of the 5 tournaments I’ve attended this year (which admittedly is not a lot), there has only been one singular tournament during which I didn’t cry. In every other case I cried because of a mental health issue, either because I had to engage in triggering content in round, because of a separate issue that debate was causing, because debate just generally did not feel like a safe space for me, or all of the above. There were tournaments where I cried both days. I’ve had people tell me in round that they didn’t believe in content warnings and told me I had to deal with my emotions. I’ve had a judge say something that implied I would have picked them up if I chose to out a highly stigmatized mental illness that I don’t think a single person I know has been able to treat in a non-problematic way from the day I came out to them about it. I’ve had teams read ridiculously problematic accounts of mental health issues that hit really close to home against me and I didn’t have the ability to react to them because the judging wouldn’t allow me to read a stock theory shell I have memorized for those situations and I had no ability to respond by talking pretty or whatever people are able to do when they don’t feel like literally shrinking into the ground and staying there forever. I’ve had people ask exceedingly triggering questions when I make a request to the debate community about not reading arguments that I knew I would react really badly to. I don’t want to tell everyone about all of this but I felt the need to summarize everything I listed above pretty simply and tell the entire student forum at TOC all of this because this year has proven to me that debate as an event, especially lay debate where it’s harder for me to check against the in-round issues that I have, is at best unwelcoming to me and at worst wants me out of the activity at any cost. I’m not trying to promote any agenda here, all I’m saying is that I’m frustrated that people seem to refuse to recognize exactly how exclusionary their preferred form of debate can be to some people. I’m never going to claim that flow debate includes everyone and lay debate has no merits. All I’m going to claim is that, to me, flow debate feels way more welcoming because I actually have a way to easily open up a place where I can exist.

I’m honestly not sure what the solution is. It seems overly optimistic to say everyone should just be nicer and treat mental health and debate like a real issue. I’m just very done listening to a lot of discussions around how debate could be more accessible and see nothing about mental health or see the few discussions about it get shut down by people who ask a bunch of really unproductive questions most likely for the sake of seeming edgy rather than actually trying to engage in the topic...”

tl;dr though I vaguely hack for Ks & Theory, the space is yours to do what you want, I'm willing to accommodate you, pls accommodate me, explain things to me, don't be problematic, plsplsplsnohandshakes

Hi just call me eug, I'm currently a junior debating in parli for the Nueva High School and I don't think I'm too terrible at it...? I have 3 years of background debating in parli & 4 weeks of VBI + lurking in the community worth of experience in LD. I also mod the facebook page Bad Debate Opinions (shameless plug), most of the self-deprecating jokes are me.

I want to accommodate whatever arguments you want to read. I do evaluate everything on the flow so you can speak pretty in front of me but that's not going to improve your chances of winning or your speaker points. I've debated a lot of different things and I think I will have the ability to evaluate *most of* what you want to read. I do want you to slow down & repeat all advocacy texts and theory interps twice. I will be very happy if you pass me a text but I won’t ask you to unless it’s ridiculously long.

Default to K & theory>case and Metatheory>T>Theory but do what you want. Pleasepleaseplease make sequencing arguments between theory & the K, I find compelling arguments for theory>K and K>theory and I haven't made up my mind which I'm more down for.

Ethics: Probably the most important part of my paradigm. I will auto drop you & give you 0 speaks if you impact turn/ deny structural violence & its impacts (i.e. arguments like racism good, ableism doesn't exist, antiqueerness has little/no impact, etc. This does not include arguments like cap good unless the argument is cap good because poverty good).

(Stolen from Ben Shahar) If your language is violent (violent language being slurs, derogatory language towards marginalized communities, & language is violent against your opponents) I'll stop the debate and we'll discuss it -- you'll lose but if you make an effort to engage could get high speaks.

Sure, debate is a game but games can have impacts outside of the gameboard and I refuse to support argumentation that pushes marginalized communities out of debate even more by giving my ballot to them.

Your opponents & I don't ever owe you any explanations of anything outside of the debate round. I don't care if it's obvious someone has been crying, needs to take medication during the round, or is visibly disabled, you can ask your questions but if we don't want to answer your questions we aren't under any obligation to. Same goes to you, you're not under any obligation to answer our questions. I’m obviously not going to penalize anyone for asking but expect pretty heavy punishment in terms of speaks if you insist that someone provide you with information about themselves or others that you’re not entitled to.

I also get really ticked off when people read mental health arguments to be “edgy” or “dramatic” or whatever. Mental illness is not your fun impact story.

T+Theory: I'm all for theory, I think it's really fun. I'm down to evaluate frivolous theory though I'm equally down to evaluate metatheory/ RVIs against it. I don’t think OCIs are real; if you read one, please tag it as an independent reason to drop the debater. Default to drop the debater but super willing to listen to drop the argument. Please weigh between fairness & education. I’ll evaluate everything through competing interpretations (which to me means an offense/defense paradigm, i.e. I’m not expecting a small school novice to tag an argument as a counterinterp but if they make the argument for an alternative model of debate I will evaluate it functionally as a counterinterp), but I’ll have a higher threshold for winning theory introduced in novice rounds and the 2AC. I think it makes sense to be more truth>tech as the debate progresses given that there are fewer and fewer speeches to respond to previous issues and also because of the absolute shitshow that was my partnership's strat at NPDI 2018 (basically 2AC theory every round & winning on golden turns even if we were behind everywhere else in the debate, it’s super strategic but please don’t do it for the sake of not breaking debate). I am definitely biased against RVIs (especially very blippy ones), but I’ll be more willing to vote for them on frivolous shells. I really like theory with K esque impacts because it's my two favorite things in debate colliding.

I’m pretty much down for whatever as far as theory goes (in terms of the shells you read or in terms of the dubiously theoretically legitimate arguments you make), but there are a few lines that can be pretty iffy for me: 1) bad (aka 90% of) spec shells; I will be very sad to vote on them; 2) frivolous theory in a round where there are serious arguments about identity being made; 3) ridiculously gerrymandered interps.

Case: Despite what my debate career & the rest of my paradigm indicate, I'm totally down to evaluate case, but if the resolution is a bill, about a specific person, or is generally a bit obscure, do not expect me to know about it & please at least have a brief explanation.

Framework / Impact framing: Do what you want, I'm familiar with utilitarianism & structural violence. I've never really seen phil be read in parli and I'm frankly really terrible at phil debate but I'm down to try to evaluate it, chill with y’all reading consequentialism / truth testing as long as y’all explain things. I default to epistemic modesty, meaning I evaluate the strength of the impact x how much they’re winning their framework. Please do some meta weighing, it’s not done nearly enough.

Ks: VERY down to evaluate them on the aff & neg but also down to evaluate theoretical arguments against them (though I'd be lying if I said I'm not biased against Ks bad arguments) ; that being said there are a few things to keep in mind before you read one in front of me.

I'm down to listen to all sorts of K strats. If you want to spread at me for 5 minutes go right ahead! If you want to read poetry in front of me for five minutes go ahead as well! However, I do want the K to at least discuss the resolution in some way (as in don't have policy bad as your only reason to reject the res) because I think it's valuable to understand critical arguments in the context of different policies and I expect people to take the arguments they're reading seriously. Check with everyone before the round starts to make sure whatever you’re reading isn't triggering for anyone.

I’d say I’m very comfy with cap, dis/ableism and fem IR, am confident evaluating qu/kweer theory, model minority, and orientalism based on my own lived experience, but other than that I have pretty general background on most common literature bases. Read witchy alts in front of me, I love them! I'm down to listen to anything, but keep in mind I will likely be very confused if you go full speed and refuse to explain anything when you're reading Baudrillard or something else that isn’t very straightforward.

Also, just because I'm ultra comfy with those 3 kritiks doesn't mean you should definitely read one of them in front of me; it just means that I will be really happy to listen to a good one and really sad to listen to a bad one. This holds especially true for dis/ableism though if you want feedback on a dis/ableism K you’re prepping I'm your judge :)

Being an ally is different from speaking for others. I'm not going to prevent you from reading a race K if you don't look that race but do not appropriate another identity for the ballot, i.e. if you are nonblack don’t read antiblackness in a way that claims black identity for yourself. Obviously unverifiable for most identities but pls just don’t be part of the problem.

I have a pretty low tolerance for really bad K debate. At least understand the lit behind the K you're reading and how the argument interacts in the round. Please do not contort perfectly legitimate arguments into things that are borderline/highkey problematic.

I have a pretty low tolerance for people reading Ks that clearly disrespect the philosophy that it's built on; aka if you don't understand something & aren't even attempting to interact with the literature please just do not read it. This is not to say you can't read the lit, disagree with part of it and modify that part.

I have 0 tolerance for kids spreading other people out with Ks and making it impossible for them to interact with their arguments. I'm probably gonna yeet your speaks pretty badly. This is the reason why K debate gets a bad rep in parli in the first place.

Speed is fine as long as both teams are comfortable with it, I'll clear you if I can't understand you but I won't penalize you for it because it's kind of bs for me to assume you know my limit on any given day. I will, however, penalize you if you refuse to accommodate your opponents when they can't understand you. I will also be skeptical if you continuously clear your opponents but speak faster than the speed you've slowed them to.

Speaks are arbitrary and I kind of don't like them so I will mostly use them to reward things I think are really cool / really gutsy strategies and penalize problematic things in the debate space. I'd say my average would be 28. If you don't say something really problematic you're not going to get below a 27.

30 speaks to anyone who reads 26/27 off (as long as none of it is problematic lol), if you manage to do that and pass texts of all interps, advocacies & rob/js to both me & your opponents I will love you forever

30 speaks to really dope dis/ableism strats / tbh really dope / gutsy and well executed strats in general.

30 speaks to any dope performances

I protect against new arguments in the rebuttals but I'm not gonna get mad at points of order. If you POO more than twice and I think your POOs are correct I'll probably be a little more attentive to new arguments.

Fact/value are not really my cup of tea in parli. Though I think value debate can be done well I don't really believe that fact debates can, though feel free to prove me wrong (it will take a lot). 100% totally down with framing fact/value as policy / fact as value & also totally down with Ks. Kind of very skeptical of trichot as drop the debater (or the idea that there’s a trichotomy of resolutions in general, tbh) & I'll be very sad if I have to vote on it. I think "more harm than good" = value but debate those resolutions how you want, I'm not going to intervene. In value debates, pls justify your v/vc and tell me what it means for me to evaluate arguments under your framework (i.e. theory of good and theory of right, tell me what I value and how I value it). Again, epistemic modesty.

Other things:

I love you but please PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE I don't do handshakes (like seriously, I will reject your handshakes)

After having a lovely conversation about this, I've decided that I will treat all final answers to POIs as binding statements to avoid a floofton of chaos that could ensue if that were not true. (s/o to Alan Fishman)

I'm probably going to disclose my decision to you & give feedback. If it takes me forever, I’ll probably tell you that it’ll be in your rfd / feedback section but if it isn’t there feel free to message / email me.

Debate however you're comfortable! If that means sitting down in a unicorn onesie go right ahead, and if that means I need to do something to accommodate you let me know! (in all seriousness I am never going to make you stand up, dress a certain way or refuse to let you do things in the debate that keep you safe & comfortable. I have 0 business policing your body.) This also applies if you need to pause the round at any time.

I kind of really don't forking care if you swear as long as it's not done in a derogatory way. For example, I'm not very comfortable with male presenting debaters using words like b*tch, sl*t or c*nt which have historically been demeaning. Slurs that you cannot reclaim are also a big nope.

If I am in any way making the round uncomfortable (i.e. if I ask an uncomfortable question, if I misgender you, use a term that I reclaim for my own identity that oppresses you in a way that makes you feel uncomfortable, allowing a team to mansplain at you, say something problematic, etc.) please do tell me if you feel safe doing so & we can discuss what I can do to make you feel more comfortable. This will not impact my decision or the speaker points I give you.

Feel free to discuss my decision with me if you think I'm missing something but don't try to argue with me / push me to change my decision. First of all tab won't let me do that and second as a female presenting debater I've seen so many more kids aggressively try to tell me that I'm wrong compared to male presenting debaters so if you're trying to argue with me it's probably gendered in some way and I ask you to examine that. (also, most of the time when this happens, I verify it with at least one or two other debaters to confirm that I'm not actually wrong. There has never come a time when I have been wrong in these instances.)

As someone who has faced & is facing a few different barriers to accessing debate, I definitely have tea with debaters & coaches on the circuit who make my existence on it very difficult but I will do my best to put that aside during the round, i.e. if you know that I have tea with your teammate(s) / coach(es) / friend(s) / family member(s) I am going to try to prevent that from interfering with my role as your judge. (& obviously, I do have tea with people on the circuit just because we don’t get along, but that’s going to be way easier to put aside)

We stan some bad puns (I really hope this statement doesn't make you decide to strike me / pref me 4)

I want to be your friend but I can be very low energy a lot of the time so if it looks like I'm disinterested in doing anything apart from judging you I don't hate you & I'm sorry if it feels like I do.

I cry and anger a lot especially at tournaments so I get how much of a mess the tournament environment is. Feel free to find me if you're not feeling great, I'll do my best to help if I happen to be not crying

Remember that at the end of the day, we all lose rounds we shouldn’t have and whether you win or lose a round in front of me is not at all indicative of your value as a person or as a debater!

If you're confused about anything message me! 0 judgment if you do & 0 judgment if you don't message me because talking to people is hard.

Full Judging Record

Tournament Date Ev Rd Aff Neg Vote Result
Nueva Parli Invitational 1/13/2019 JPAR R4 Crystal Springs Uplands WC Valley Christian TH Neg
Nueva Parli Invitational 1/13/2019 JPAR R3 Los Altos CS Crystal Springs Uplands HG Aff
Nueva Parli Invitational 1/13/2019 JPAR R2 Washington SR El Cerrito RM Neg
Nueva Parli Invitational 1/13/2019 JPAR R1 Notre Dame BP Crystal Springs Uplands KH Neg