Cat Smith Paradigm

Last changed 19 February 2021 9:45 AM CDT

please don't call me judge it makes me feel old and uncomfy, call me cat :)


yes i wanna be on the email chain

lindblom msa '20

wake forest university '24

20-21 Szn Things:

I think this topic has tons of potential and is probably one of the better topics in recent years. I do think it's super broad and leaves tons of room for AFF and NEG creativity so I'm super excited to see what y'all bring to the table.

Online Debate Specifics:

1. Slow down a little! With online debate comes the potential for lagging and connectivity issues. Going 600 wpm definitely sounds a lot different online than in person.

2. Tech difficulties are inevitable, and I don't think it's fair to punish people by taking prep for technical issues. That being said, please don't use tech issues as an excuse to steal prep. I shouldn't have to explain why that's unfair.

3. Invest in a headset or a mic, if possible! I've found that resolves a lot of issues with clarity/sound and makes everyone's lives a bit easier.

If looking right before the round:

In most debates I've found that my ballot is mostly decided on impact calculus and impact framing. If you're winning that your interpretation of the world is true then the easiest way to turn that into a ballot in front of me is to turn that into how I should be framing the impacts and my ballots. Creative argumentation (specific PICs/PIKs, theory args like pre-empt bad or language PIKs, etc) are super fun debates to judge and will probably reward you with high speaks. To that same degree seeing AFF teams find super creative ways to spike out of those arguments will also probably reward you some good speaks. Here's some top level TLDR stances to make your life easier:

- tech over truth. this doesn’t mean i won’t evaluate truth claims! just win your truth claims on the tech level :)

- although i prefer judging k v k debates i'm perfectly capable of judging a policy oriented round. i did policy for 3/6 years I've been debating - I promise I can judge fairly lol.

- I make a lot of facial expressions, I can't help it. They aren't always reflective of whether or not I like or dislike an argument, sometimes I just look confused lol.

- I don't mind sass in cx/speeches, especially when y'all are funny. but, I'm getting super tired of watching white ppl talk over black ppl/poc/queer ppl in cx, especially when it escalates to y'all yelling over each other. sassiness =/= being disrespectful. once it gets to that point i'll probably stop caring about what's being said.

- dont be anti-black. (any other -ist/-isms will result in the lowest speaks tab will let me give you and an L. yes, calling black people "blacks" and making arguments like "police brutality is a media myth and doesn't exist" falls under the umbrella of racism.) I reserve the right to end the round and vote you down for engaging in any of the above :)

- I think TVAs should resolve the AFF and have a solvency mechanism/prove it's within the literature base

- fairness isn't an impact, it’s an internal link. education generally outweighs fairness but i've found myself voting both ways on framework. clash is also very persuasive.

- i like it when y'all write my ballot for me in the 2nr/2ar.

- the rest of my paradigm doesn't really matter b/c regardless of my individual preferences in debates i'm willing to vote on any argument off the flow so long as it isn't blatantly racist/sexist/homophobic/etc!

- **borrowed from Asya Taylor's paradigm** To incentivize better debate practices, I'll add .2 speaks if you opensource AND post cites, tell me before I submit the ballot. Just opensourcing is bad practice for small schools and we all know it.

- go for what you're comfortable with! GLHF

For prefs:


Theory debates are fun here. AFF should probably focus on taking out the net benefit bc it makes the perm much easier. CPs should probably have a solvency advocate. I'm not judge kicking the CP - either go for it or don't go for it but don't make me do extra work if you know you might lose that flow.


They're okay. As a society we have progressed past the need for the Politics DA. Let it go. I think impact turns and framing make or break the debate here. Tell me why your impact comes first and why it outweighs the other team's impacts. I have a pretty high threshold for extinction scenarios because y'alls internal link chain never makes sense.

K v K

I think I've become a lot more skeptical of the role of the permutation in K v K debates. Yes, the perm is a test of competition, but in method v method debates weighing the consequences of the plan versus the consequences of the alternative might be a better educational model and provides more clash in rounds. But, to that same degree, in a world where there isn't a strong link to the AFF there's no reason why doing both the plan and the alternative wouldn't be able to function together. I'm willing to be swayed in either direction.

I have a pretty high threshold for AFF solvency. I think very often most K AFFs are written to generate offense against FW and are generally just Ks of the rez and tend to be a bit lackluster in explaining what it is the AFF does or how it resolves the impacts. If AFF solvency is just the conversation generated in round or if the debate is an example of AFF solvency, that's fine, but you need to prove why that model is specifically good and how it does anything to solve/address/create a method of survivability for the impacts of the 1AC.

I think the role of the negative in these debates is usually to either prove that the AFF is bad (whether that be because of the 1AC's rhetoric, scholarship, method, etc) or to provide an alternative method to resolve the impacts of the 1AC. With that being said, I still don't think neg teams necessarily need to win that the alternative solves to win the debate. Proving the AFF is bad is sufficient. I don't go into debates with a role - I evaluate the debate however you tell me to based on the role of the judge/role of the ballot presented in the debate.

K v Plan Affs

Framework: Framework on the K is a question of what both teams justify, not what both teams do. I think "weigh the aff" usually doesn't make sense as a response to the FW on the K because you would be able to do that under both interpretations. The negative doesn't have the burden of meeting the resolutional question, it has the burden of proving the AFF is a bad idea or that they present an alternative method to solve the impacts of the 1AC. Education & clash > fairness.

Link: I think links can be generated both off the rhetoric in the 1AC and the specific action of the plan. The presentation of the 1AC and what the plan justifies are all parts of the "plan's actions" so I see no reason why negative teams shouldn't be able to criticize your scholarship/actions and why you've chosen to bring those things to the debate space. BUT I do still have a relatively high link threshold. I think links of omission are okay, but links to performance, scholarship, rhetoric, impact scenarios, specific lines to the aff etc create more substantiative debates that are generally easier to adjudicate and much more interesting to watch. I don't think the AFF takes advantage of the potential for link turns.

Perm: Perm do both is not a perm text. The AFF needs to isolate what a world of the permutation looks like and how exactly it resolves the impacts of the K and overcomes the links. Perm "you do you, we do us" is also not a permutation, it is just the status quo and makes literally no sense. I'm torn on "all other instances". I think if you win that the AFF isn't a significant enough contributor to the link scenarios presented and therefore your specific engagement isn't enough to trigger the impact I might be willing to vote on it. This usually requires winning the impact framing and link debate, though.

Alt: Alts should probably solve the aff. If they don't I'm also willing to judge kick the alt and evaluate the links as case turns. Alts generally suck so I have a high threshold for alt explanation if you go for it in the 2NR, especially in Cap and high theory debates. If I can't imagine what the world of the alternative looks like then I'll probably have a really hard time voting on it.

Progress/Reform: **Specifically in the context of the ontology debate** Y'all have GOT to stop using Loving V Virginia as an example of progress. The legal fetishization of black bodies is not progress but rather proves black bodies as fungible beings for white consumption - this argument makes me ridiculously uncomfortable. I think the AFF has to win that an ontological framing is bad and have specific warrants as to why ontology fails to explain anti-black violence. I generally have a pretty high threshold on this question because you would have to win that even if reform can solve material violence that reform can do something to shift the metaphysical violence black people face. It'll be hard to prove to me that black folks don't experience psychic violence from anti-blackness. **In all other instances** I think the neg just needs to prove that the state is probably bad as an actor (even when t's negative state action) and that reform won't solve the impacts of the K and the AFF just needs to defend that their specific engagement with the state is good rather than winning the state is good in the vacuum.

K v FW/T

I'm pretty torn on this debate. I think framework is generally a tool used by uncreative policy debaters to prevent having to have discussions about race/identity/anything not standard util debates, but I do think there are some cases in which it's probably true that there is potentially substantial NEG grounds lost so idk. I think the NEG has to win that the 1ACs model creates a poor stasis point for debates, and the AFF has to win that their stasis point creates stable neg grounds and educational debates, as well as having warranted reasons as to why the resolution is a bad starting point. I'm usually bought by arguments that T is arbitrary and incentivizes races to the margin, and that it's possible to be topical and not meet the resolutional question. I promise I don't have side bias, even if I dislike framework debates.

Plan AFFs v T

I actually really enjoy topicality against policy affs. You've chosen to engage the resolution in a normative fashion so I would hope you'd do it right considering you probably read framework against K affs. I think clash and grounds are probably the best internal link to education in these rounds. I think reasonability probably isn't a good stasis for T debates because there's no brightline for what "reasonably topical" is.

email me any other questions!

Full Judging Record

Tournament Lv Date Ev Rd Aff Neg Vote Result
CDL Tournament 5 Blue Silver Conference HS 2021-02-19 Var Elim1 Kenwood Sam Libenson & Ava Lyon-Sereno Von Steuben Marcel Bieganski & Jackson Wentland Aff Neg 2-1
CDL Tournament 5 Blue Silver Conference HS 2021-02-19 JV R5 Von Steuben Azan Malik & Layla Cuenca Brooks Andre Sutton & Maxwell Thompson Aff
CDL Tournament 5 Blue Silver Conference HS 2021-02-19 JV R4 Lincoln Park Gianna Ledesma & Russell Keske Phoenix Military David Huerta & Samantha Rodriguez Neg
CDL Tournament 5 Blue Silver Conference HS 2021-02-19 Var R3 Phoenix Military Anna Martinez & Julia Garcia Thomas Kelly Kelly Lin & Lisa Gao Neg
CDL Tournament 5 Blue Silver Conference HS 2021-02-19 Var R2 Lincoln Park Nico Wahl & Daniel Oatarola Von Steuben Ian Vanswearingen & Michael Gergeni Neg
CDL Tournament 5 Blue Silver Conference HS 2021-02-19 Var R1 Chicago Ag Jillian Kaczynski & Ty Green Pritzker Gregorio Chavez & Emiliano Torres Neg
The Cougar Classic at the University of Houston HS 2021-01-14 Pol Finals Jesuit MR Reagan AG Aff Aff 3-0
The Cougar Classic at the University of Houston HS 2021-01-14 Pol Quarte Jesuit MR Westwo YN Aff Aff 2-1
The Cougar Classic at the University of Houston HS 2021-01-14 Pol Octos Westsi KS Westwo YN Neg Neg 3-0
The Cougar Classic at the University of Houston HS 2021-01-14 Pol Double Dulles JD ArcMit KB Neg Neg 3-0
The Cougar Classic at the University of Houston MS 2021-01-14 Pol R3 YGBA PC Grace ME Aff
The Cougar Classic at the University of Houston HS 2021-01-14 NCX R2 Westwo GS Jesuit FC Aff
The Cougar Classic at the University of Houston HS 2021-01-14 Pol R1 Westwo CH Westsi RY Neg
The Paradigm Dowling Catholic HS 2020-12-11 CX R3 North Allegheny DT Northside HK Neg
Glenbrooks Speech and Debate Tournament HS 2020-11-21 VCX R6 West HS SLC AP College Prep TH Neg
Glenbrooks Speech and Debate Tournament HS 2020-11-21 VCX R3 Berkeley Prep TiZi Wayzata SP Aff
Glenbrooks Speech and Debate Tournament HS 2020-11-21 VCX R2 Eagan AM Oak Hall GZ Neg
CDL Tournament 1 Blue Silver Conferences HS 2020-10-16 Var Elim Thomas Kelly Lisa Gao & Kelly Lin Kenwood Sam Libenson & Ava Lyon-Sereno Neg Neg 3-0
CDL Tournament 1 Blue Silver Conferences HS 2020-10-16 JV R5 Pritzker Josue Martinez & Carlos Espinoza Phoenix Military Brandon Lozano-Ramirez & Rafael Cortez Aff
CDL Tournament 1 Blue Silver Conferences HS 2020-10-16 JV R4 Von Steuben Layla Cuenca & Azan Malik Pritzker Jose Pacheco & Adamaris Cazares Aff
CDL Tournament 1 Blue Silver Conferences HS 2020-10-16 JV R3 Kenwood Ameshadai Apprey & Amanti Washington Chicago Ag Ty Green & Elijah Spencer Aff
CDL Tournament 1 Blue Silver Conferences HS 2020-10-16 Var R2 Thomas Kelly Lisa Gao & Kelly Lin Von Steuben Michael Gergeni & Jennifer Moran Aff
CDL Tournament 1 Blue Silver Conferences HS 2020-10-16 Var R1 Phoenix Military Dietrich Daichendt & Anna Martinez Pritzker Emiliano Torres & Gregorio Chavez Neg
CDL Tournament 2 Silver Conference HS 2019-11-22 N CX R4 Kenwood Knox & Easley Kennedy Carrasco & Mendoza Aff
CDL Tournament 2 Silver Conference HS 2019-11-22 N CX R3 Kenwood Apprey & Lewin Bogan Clopton & Jurado Neg
CDL Tournament 2 Silver Conference HS 2019-11-22 N CX R1 Kenwood Washington & Cullum Bogan Narvaez & Smith Aff