ISD Session Two Tournament
2021 — Online, LA/US
Lincoln Douglas Paradigm ListAll Paradigms: Show Hide
Hey everyone. My name is Elias Altman (he/him).
I currently debate for Yale (’25). In high school, I debated LD and won the 2021 NCFL. I focused on traditional LD, although half-way through my senior year I did a bit on the circuit and qualled to the TOC, so I have decent familiarity with progressive debate. Lastly, I dabbled in World Schools towards the end of my career, and I really liked it. Give me a persuasive Worlds-esque narrative, and it'll boost your speaks.
don't assume your opponent's pronouns. either ask for them or just refer to ur opponents as aff/neg.
TLDR: I'm a traditional flow LD judge who has decent understanding of progressive.
Please include me on the email chain: email@example.com
Also, I agree with everything Anthony Berryhill says.
Run what you want. I'll do my best to evaluate it. Communication comes first though. If I can't understand your arguments and warrants, that's on you, and I have no problem making that my RFD.
I like it when debaters collapse effectively on arguments. Crystallizing the round goes a long way with me. I also like to see debaters cede the true parts of their opponent's case but give nuanced analysis on why they outweigh.
Humor is always appreciated and will boost speaks.
Lastly, if possible, make me care about your arguments. Tell me explicitly who you help, and why that matters. Judges aren't robots. If you can give me a convincing narrative tinged with passion, it goes a long way.
traditional debate - 1
identity Ks - 1
High theory Ks and phil - 2 if explained well but 4 if it's incomprehensible. always better to err on the side of explaining.
LARP- 2 (please no weak internal links it'll make me sad)
T/theory- 3/4. this is generally boring to me, but I'll certainly vote on well-warranted/egregious violations. Also fair warning: I'm inexperienced with T. Run it if you need to, but make it easy for me to understand/vote for you.
Tricks - 4/strike. Tricks generally decrease accessibility in debate. If you must read them, do them right. Tricks should be interesting, well-warranted logic problems that encourage (not discourage) thoughtful responses. I don't vote on one sentence blips. I also think spikes are bad, and while I won't drop you for it, I'll tank your speaks. They should be clearly identifiable in your underview or otherwise accessible to your opponent and me.
I decide debates through layers. Framework, observations, burdens, etc are all crucial to structuring the debate. I look to what operates at the highest ground, decide who won that point, and move to the next layer. Rinse and repeat until the debate has a winner. Thus, it would benefit you to try to structure the debate in such a way that you have a win condition.
Here are some things that’ll make voting for you easier for me.
1. ENGAGE WITH FRAMEWORK. Weigh frameworks against each other. Even better if y’all haven’t agreed on a FW yet, tell me how you win under both your FW and your opponents (if you do this, I’ll boost your speaks).
2. Weigh. Weigh. Weigh. If you don’t weigh offense, I have to guess at the end of the round whose impacts are more important. You don’t want that because it makes the round very subjective on my end. Instead, go the extra mile, avoid that, and tell me explicitly why your offense is more important than your opponents.
3. Please do extensions correctly. Do not just say "extend my second contention" or "extend Warren 13" and then move on. Extend the ev or arg, rebut any arguments they made, explain the impact of the extension, and THEN move on.
4. I like numbered responses and overviews. They make the debate easier for me to flow/understand.
5. Round narrative is very important. Don’t lose sight of what this debate is really about because you’re too busy focusing on an irrelevant tangent that won’t factor into my decision. Tell me overall why your world is better than your opponents. Tell me who you help, why they need help, why you’re the person that best helps them, and why that matters. That’s how to win in front of me.
6. Voter issues. Do them. It makes evaluating the debate much easier. A bit of advice. Negative, if you correctly predict what the Aff voters will be in NR and tell me why I shouldn’t vote for it, that’s a great strategic move, and I’ll boost speaks. Affirmative, in the 2ar, interact with the Neg voters, and I’ll boost speaks. They literally just handed you on a silver platter the arguments they’re hoping to win. So attack or (better yet) turn their voters! Outweigh their voters with yours!
I'm in between on the tech vs. truth debate. Obviously, tech matters because full truth would justify me voting for Aff just because I personally believe that side. Full tech justifies the race to the bottom we see right now with debaters throwing out unwarranted blips and expecting to win because their opponent dropped a single sentence. I'm somewhere in the middle probably slightly leaning towards tech. No one is tabula rasa. You trust me to use my agency to make a decision about who won the round, so trust me to use my agency to decide whether tech or truth matters more in a specific round.
Things I like: increasing accessibility in the debate space (i.e being inclusive to small schools & new debaters), interesting arguments about identity/geopolitics, warranted out link chains, probability>magnitude weighing. Also, I will always prefer logical analytics over poorly contextualized evidence. Lastly, please weigh.
Things I dislike: when debaters read literature they don't understand and can't make comprehensible in round, shady disclosure, friv theory, arguments that are (either implicitly or explicitly) exclusionary, racist, homophobic, sexist, etc. That will get you dropped.
Speed: I probably wouldn't be able to flow finals TOC, but with that said, I can handle decent levels of speed. We should be good if there's a doc. I'll yell clear if there's a problem.
Flex prep is fine. CX is binding.
Anthony Berryhill Judge Paradigm (NEW PARADIGM AS OF NCFL 2021 - PLEASE READ):
- Assistant LD Coach for Isidore Newman (my alma mater); Former Managing Director for Victory Briefs (2018-2020)
- Stanford BA Political Science 2004; Previous PhD Candidate (MA/MPhil) at Yale in Contemporary Political Theory, dissertation on intersectionality (2004-2011); MBA Quantic School of Business and Technology
On how I judge:
How I vote (in brief): I vote for the debater who -- through the appropriate decision rule (values, burdens, argument layer) -- convinces me that I should vote for their side of the resolution (and/or performance) above the other debater.
Signposting (specific on the flow reference to areas of the case/cards) will help you win rounds. Identify and outline specific arguments you are answering. Not signposting = dropping an argument even if you 'talk about' a point.
Extending is a big plus as well. Use the word "extend" and highlight which impacts you are going for and how they specifically refer to the framework(s) in the round. In an ideal RFD, I look at arrows in my flow, look at the framework, and then use that to write my decision.
It is also in your best interest to explicitly weigh between scenarios in which you lose/win. It is better to admit/account for what you may lose than to ignore it. Debaters who do this round analysis win my ballot with shocking consistency, unless there is a technical error.
You must vary your voice, speed and avoid monotone at all costs. National circuit debate like spreading puts me to sleep and I stop flowing.
My max is fast conversational speed. If you spread and you aren't college policy champion level clear/decipherable, I will not be able to flow you (and won't yell clear).
What I won't vote for:
1. Blippy arguments, esp. on theory. If it's bad English, not warranted, etc. I won't vote for it, or I'll look for reasons not to. "It's obvious" is not an argument and I won't vote for an "obviousness" claim even if extended.
2. "Tricks" debaters are bad people and don't get my ballot. Don't hide arguments or lie.
3. POWERTAGGED evidence/tags that are lying or exaggerating the claim made by the author. If your tag says more than your card does and I catch it, I'll intervene and not vote for the argument.
4. No skepticism, no disclosure theory cheap shots, no impossible burdens, no arguments that are contingent on the identity of your opponent, no misgendering theory, and don't ask me to save society or debate with the ballot. Just debate the topic--or if you don't defend it well.
5. I will stop rounds and consider a Loss/0 if a debater is being inappropriate in content, performance, or language. TLDR: If you wouldn't do it in front of your mom, principal, or the scholars you are citing, don't do it in front of me. Just debate clean and we'll all leave happy!
I debate for Dartmouth in Policy. I have been both 2A and 2N in college.
I debated 4 years in LD and 3 years in Parli for Brentwood. In LD, I was the runner up at the 2018 NSDA National Championship and had 4 TOC bids my senior year. I also coach LD and Policy at Durham.
Conflicts: Brentwood School and Durham Academy.
Please add firstname.lastname@example.org to chains.
*2021-2022 Update* I have come to the conclusion that speaker points are arbitrary and probably negatively influenced by individual judge's implicit biases. To mitigate this, I have decided that in Policy I will give the winning team a 30 and 29.9 and the losing team a 29.8 and a 29.7 (higher points to the last rebuttal). In LD, the winner will get a 30 and the loser a 29.9. If you think this model will skew seeding, you are probably right. A quick fix would be tournaments using opponent wins to decide seeding instead.
For online tournaments, please record your speeches. I will ask you to send recordings if there is an issue that leads to my missing parts of speeches.
I will say clear if I cannot understand you. I do not flow docs and I will not flow what I cannot hear so it is in your best interest to be clear.
It is your burden to explain arguments. I will not vote for positions if I do not understand your explanation of them.
You should extend your arguments, specifically their warrants. I will not evaluate arguments that are not in your team's final speech.
Do not cheat. If the opposing team or I catch you, I will vote for the opposing team. If you accuse the opposing team of cheating and I determine that they did not cheat, I will vote for the opposing team.
My judging vision is very similar to that of my Dartmouth coaches and teammates. Specifically, you may want to look at the paradigms of John Turner or Raam Tambe.
Note for online debate:
- without a doc - please go like 80% of max speed because internet connections are wack
I'm Bennett Dombcik (he/him or they/them), I'm currently a sophomore debating for the University of Michigan.
Add me to the email chain: email@example.com
DAs - yes these are great. I am persuaded more by quality link cards than I am by a large amount of random links that could possibly apply to the aff (that is the case for pretty much every single argument)... OV at the top of the DA that explain why the DA ow the case and (hopefully) how it turns the case is very helpful, however, if the turns case arg is not supported by evidence, I am unlikely to be very persuaded.
I am sympathetic to 0% risk, but it does take some work to get there. I am somewhere in-between probability ow and extinction ow, and will default to the debating that is done, if no one says anything about it somehow, I will default to probability most likely (assuming that your impact has at least some, well, impact).
CPs - also great, however, I'm not yet caught up on the vast majority of weird process cps that basically get recycled as generics, that doesn't mean you cannot read them, but be prepared to explain what the mechanism of the CP actually does. In terms of the more generic process cps (consult, courts, etc.), I'm fine, same with pretty much everything else.
Theory stuff - everything other than condo is a reason to reject the arg, condo is a reason to reject the team. I am not unwilling to vote on condo bad but tend to think that anything less than 4 is fine. The more absurd it becomes (k, process cp, 12 plank adv cp, uq cp at the top of every DA...) the more willing I am to vote on in-round abuse.
Case debate - the best! Impact turns are wonderful to judge (same with putting a DA on case as a link turn) - aff teams tend to underestimate the time they need to spend on case in the 2ac which is not ideal to say the least.
topicality - these debates are fun to judge, but admittedly, they do get blippy and I am likely to default to whichever team does the best impact explanation. I think precision is important, but debatability is probably more important given at least a ~reasonable~ defense of the words in the topic. this does not mean I think reasonability is better than competing interps - decking the topic because you want to read ur aff is not a good idea.
ks - these can be great to judge if done well - neg teams should probably have links to the plan or a very very good defense of an alternative framework. Be warned, I am not well versed in a lot of the literature, so err away from using the big buzz words to explain your position, because I am unlikely to be able to explain an RFD to the affirmative team if I don't know what the words in the 2NR meant. I am most likely to vote for the kritik if the negative explains why the link turns the aff and takes out solvency at some level.
k affs - similar thoughts to a lot of the k stuff above - teams should be close to the topic if you want to beat T in front of me and you probably know your aff way more than I do, so please explain it. Other than that, you do you.
T vs K affs - these debates can be very good, but can also be very bad. If you're neg in these debates in front of me, I would prefer to see a strategy more focused on clash/testing more so than procedural fairness as the impact (but you can still win that if that's your jam). I think that debate is a competitive activity and that activity is good, arguments that it is bad will not do well in front of me. Instead, I think affirmatives should focus on why their model of debate set up by the aff is good, predictable, and solves a lot of the negatives offense. Very persuaded by TVAs...
TLDR: if you explain arguments, do impact calc and card comparison, and don't make technical drops, you should be fine.
Elise Matton, Debate Coach at Albuquerque Academy since 2016
Email chain: firstname.lastname@example.org
Note pre-NYC Bronx: This is the first bid tournament I've judged since last season, and while I worked on a lot of debate over the summer, it was mostly administrative content for my team. This means:
1) it's also my first tournament on the Sept/Oct res, so I won't be 100% up-to-date on key strats for the topic (don't assume background knowledge, and allott a bit more time for things like analytical warrants or overviews at the top of any positions you want to go for)
2) My ear/pen will be rusty from lack of especially fast rounds recently. You can definitely still feel comfortable spreading, but my upper brightline for speed/clarity may be a bit lower as I adjust back, especially if I have you in any of the first few prelims. Happy to unmute with "clear" and/or "slow" to help you find that brightline and adjust accordingly, especially in the first minute or so of you speaking. Thanks!
Things to Note
· Speed is fine generally so long as it's not used to excessively prohibit interaction with your arguments. I do think there is a way to spread and still demonstrate strong speaking ability (varying volume, pacing, tone etc) and will probably reward you for it if you're doing both well. Go slower/clearer/or otherwise give vocal emphasis on taglines and key issues such as plan text or aff advocacy, CP texts, alts, ROB/ROJ, counter-interps, etc. Don't start at your max speed but build up to it instead. If you are one of the particularly fast teams in the circuit, I recommend you slow down SLIGHTLY in front of me.
· Put me on the email chain (email@example.com) but know I don't like rounds that REQUIRE me to read the doc while you're speaking (or ideally at all). I flow off what I hear, not what I read, and I believe that your delivery and performance are important aspects of this activity and you have the burden of clearly articulating your points well enough that I theoretically shouldn't need to look at the docs at all for anything other than ev checking when it's requested.
· The most impressive debaters to me are ones who can handle intense high level technical debates, but who can make it accessible to a wide variety of audiences.
· Tech>truth GENERALLY, BUT- Just because an argument is dropped doesn't necessarily mean I'll give you 100% weight on it if the warrants aren't there or it is absurdly blippy. I also have and will vote for teams that may be less technically proficient but still make valid warranted claims even if they aren't done formatted in a "Tech" manner. Ex: if you run some kind of obscure theory argument against a less technical team, but they make arguments about why this strategy is harmful and you should lose for it, I will treat that like an RVI even if they don't call it an RVI. Etc.
· Use my occasional facial expression as cues. You’ll probably notice me either nodding occasionally or looking quizzically from time to time- if something sounds confusing or I’m not following you’ll be able to tell and can and should probably spend a few more seconds re-explaining that argument in another way (don't dwell on this if it happens, use the cue to help you!) Note the nodding doesn't mean I necessarily agree with a point, just following it and think you're explaining it well. If you find this distracting please say so pre-round and I’ll make an effort not to do so.
· Use Content warnings if discussing anything that could make the space less safe for anyone within it. Use them as needed and be willing to adapt for opponents or judges in the room.
Role as a Judge
Debate is incredible because it is student-driven, but I don't think that means I abandon my role as an educator or an adult in the space when I am in the back of the room making my decision. I believe that good debaters should be able to adapt to multiple audiences. Does this mean completely altering EVERYTHING you do to adapt to a certain judge (K judge, anti-spreading judge, lay judge, etc etc)? No, but it does mean thinking concretely about how you can filter your strategy/argument/approach through a specific lens for that person.
HOW I MAKE MY RFD: At the end of the last negative speech I usually mark the key areas I could see myself voting and then weigh that against what happens in the 2AR to make my decision. My favorite 2NR/2AR’s are ones that directly lay out and tell me the possible places in the round I could vote for them and how/why. 2NR/2AR’s that are essentially a list of possible RFDs for me are my favorite because not only do they make my work easier, but it clearly shows me how well you understood and interpreted the round.
Part of me really loves the meta aspect of T and theory, and part of me loathes the semantics and lack of substance it can produce. I see T and Theory as a needing to exist in debate as protective measures, but I also have a fairly high threshold. Reasonability tends to ring true to me for the Aff on T, but don’t be afraid to force them to prove or meet that interpretation, especially if it is a stretch, and I can be easily persuaded into competing interps. For theory, I don’t have a problem with conditional arguments but do when a neg strat is almost entirely dependent on running an absurd amount of offcase arguments as a time skew that prevents any substantive discussion of arguments. This kind of strat also assumes I’ll vote on something simply because it was “flowed through”, when really I still have to examine the weight of that argument, which in almost all of these cases is insubstantial. At the end of the day, don’t be afraid to use theory- it’s there for a reason for when you need it, but the key word in that is the “need” part. If you’re going to run it, please spend time in the standards and voters debate so I can weigh it effectively.
I love a really good DA, especially with extensive impact comparisons. The cost/benefit aspect of the case/DA debate is particularly appealing to me. I don’t think generic DA’s are necessarily bad but good links and/or analytics are key. Be sure your impact scenario is fully developed with terminal impacts. Multiple impact scenarios are good. I'm not anti nuke war scenarios (especially when there is a really specific and good internal link chain) but there are tons more systemic level impacts too many debaters neglect.
I used to hate PICs but have seen a few really smart ones in the past few years that are making me challenge that notion. That being said I am not a fan of process CPs, but go for it if it’s key to your strat.
Love them, with some caveats. Overviews/underviews, or really clearly worded taglines are key here. I want to see *your* engagement with the literature. I ran some K’s in high school (mostly very traditional cap/biopower) but was pretty abysmal with them. They weren’t as common in my circuit so I didn’t have a ton of exposure to them. However they’ve really grown on me and I’ve learned a lot while judging them- they’re probably my favorite kind of debate to watch these days. (hint: I truly believe in education as a voter, but this can work in aff’s favor when terrible K debates happen that take away from topic education as well). Being willing to adapt your K to those unfamiliar with it, whether opponents or judge, not only helps you in terms of potential to win the ballot, but also vastly increases likelihood for real world solvency (that is if your K is one that posits real world solvency- I'm down for more discussion-based rounds as theoretical educational exercises as well). I say this because the direction I’ve decided to take my graduate school coursework in is directly because of good K debaters who have been willing to go the extra step in truly explaining these positions, regardless of the fact I wasn’t perceived as a “K judge”. I think that concept is bogus and demonstrates some of the elitism still sadly present in our activity. If you love the K, run it- however you will need to remember that I myself wasn’t a K debater and am probably not as well versed in the topic/background/author. As neg you will need to spend specific time really explaining to me the alt/role of the ballot/answers to any commodification type arguments. I’m open to lots of aff answers here as well including framework arguments focused on policymaking good, state inevitable, perms, etc.
Flash time/emailing the doc out isn’t prep time (don’t take advantage of this though). Debaters should keep track of their own time, but I also tend to time as well in case of the rare timer failure. If we are evidence sharing, know that I still think you have the burden as debaters to clearly explain your arguments, (aka don’t assume that I'll constantly use the doc or default to it- what counts is still ultimately what comes out of you mouth).
I will yell “clear” if the spread is too incoherent for me to flow, or if I need you to slow down slightly but not if otherwise (aka don’t expect me to yell it to help speaker points). If I have to say it more than twice you should probably slow down significantly. My preference while spreading is to go significantly slower/louder/clearer on the tagline and author. Don’t spread out teams that are clearly much slower than you- you don’t have to go incredibly slowly, but you should adapt slightly to make the round educational for everyone. I think spreading is a debate skill you should employ at your discretion, bearing in mind what that means for your opponents and the judge in that round. Be smart about it, but also be inclusive for whoever else is in that round with you.
I don't judge PF nearly as frequently as I do CX/LD, so I'm not as up to date on norms and trends.
Mostly when judging PF I default to util/cost-benefit analysis framing and then I evaluate clash and impacts, though the burden is on you to effectively weigh that clash and the impacts.
Final Focus should really focus on the ballot story and impact calc. Explain all the possible paths to the ballot and how you access them.
Compared to LD and CX, I find that clash gets developed much later in the round because the 2nd constructive doesn't involve any refutations (which I find bizarre from a speech structure standpoint). For this reason, I appreciate utilizing frontlining as much as possible and extending defense into summary.
Impressive speaking style = extra brownie points for PFers. Utilize vocal intonation, eye contact, gestures, and variance in vocal pacing.
Grand Crossfire can be fun when done right but horribly chaotic when done wrong. Make an effort to not have both partners trying to answer/ask questions simultaneously or I'll have a really hard time making out what's going on. Tag-team it. If Grand Crossfire ends early, I do not think that can get converted into additional prep time. It simply moves us into Final Focus early.
I have a much lower threshold for spreading in PF than I do for CX/LD. I can certainly follow it given my focus on LD and CX, but my philosophy is that PF is stylistically meant to be more accessible and open. I don't mind a rapid delivery, but I will be much less tolerant of teams that spread out opponents, especially given email chains/evidence sharing before the round is not a norm (as far as I've seen).
I am often confused by progressive PF as the structure of the event seems to limit certain things that are otherwise facilitated by CX/LD. Trying to make some of the same nuanced Theory and K debates are incredibly difficult in a debate event structured by 2-3 mins speeches. Please don't ask me to weigh in on or use my ballot to help set a precedent about things like theory, disclosure, or other CX/LD arguments that seem to be spilling into PF. I am not an involved enough member of the PF community to feel comfortable using my ballot to such ends. If any of these things appear in round, I'm happy to evaluate them, but I guess be cautious in this area.
Please feel free to ask any further questions or clarifications before/after the round- my email is firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any specific questions or need to run something by me.
Hi! My name is Sierra, my pronouns are she/her/hers, and my email is sierraromero002 @ gmail.com for the email chain.
Bio: I've done 3 types of debate (ld, cx, pf), but most of my judging has been in LD. In high school, I competed at Albuquerque Academy and I got an at-large to the TOC in LD senior year. I'm a sophmore at Columbia, and I've done parli once.
1. truth > tech. I have no tolerance for racist/sexist/homophobic/transphobic/ableist etc. and I will comfortably vote you down if these arguments are made. I also think that you should be mindful of the impacts you are talking about if you do not belong to that group of people. Debate has material impacts for the people in it, and winning tech arguments will not change that.
2. Layering sets up my ballot. The top of the 2NR/2AR should start with a sentence about how I layer my impacts. Framing/ROTB is one of the best ways to do this because it tells me how to evaluate each impact/why I should prioritize certain impacts. Tell me specifically which pieces of offense you win and why that's a reason you win the round. (impact calc is also very important with layering!)
3. Speed- Please don't spread through analytics if you aren't flashing them (please flash your interps too!!). I think that it's strategic to go a little bit slower than your top speed especially in online debate to make it easier for everyone to follow. Otherwise, just go with the speed your most comfortable with.
General: (these are somewhat in the order of what I prefer to evaluate)
I am most persuaded by links to the specific action that the aff takes. If the neg proves that the action the aff takes links to the K, then it makes it much harder for me to grant the aff a permutation. I'm fine with Ks that don't have alts as long as you are winning that aff is bad (link debate is rlly important for me). If you do want to read an alt, I need a clear explanation for how it solves for the impacts of the K. Winning your theory of power/having a clear explanation of your lit is really important.
For K/performance affs, tell me why your interpretation/rejection/framing of the topic comes first. I also need to know what the world/methodology of the 1AC is for me to vote for it which entails a clear explanation of your lit. For T/FW vs K affs, it's most strategic to go for education as your impact in front of me. I don't recommend going for procedural fairness bc I will be very hesitant to vote on it. Also, engage with the substance of the aff meaning negs need to win whatever layer of offense they want me to vote on comes first.
For affs hitting Ks, I need a brief explanation for what the world of the permutation looks like starting in the 1AR. If you end up going for the permutation, make sure there is a very warranted explanation for 1) why the perm is possible (win the link debate), and 2) what the world of the permutation looks like (impact calc). I am hesitant to grant perms on performances/methodology. The other route to go would be disproving the K's theory of power. If you are going this route, I would expect that you are very familiar with the lit in order to understand its specific problems.
I feel pretty comfortable with anything in the policy spectrum except theory debates (I am not the best judge to go for theory in front of). If you are going to read more than 4 off, don't do it for the time suck. I enjoy policy debates that are built with good strategy, where any off case position could be in the 2NR. Good DAs/CPs are some of my favorite arguments to hear. DAs should have a clear link to the aff and internal link story in the 1NC and good impact calc/weighing throughout the round.
I am most persuaded by arguments that tell me why your model of debate is better for education. I love, love, love, impact turns on T, and I think that that is one of the most strategic answers to T. BUT you have to be winning the fairness debate for me to evaluate the impact turn or tell me a reason why your impact turn layers before fairness does on my ballet.
For T vs LARP affs, I need a very clear/warranted explanation for why your interp produces better clash and why that's better for education. In T/FW vs K affs, I want to hear why your model of debate is better and doesn't exclude the aff's education. If you want to go for T in front of me, make sure to warrant all of your arguments really well/sequence how I should evaluate the round (i.e. tell me why T comes first or smt).
I am not too familiar with phil authors, but a clear explanation of your author and weighing will make the round much easier for me to evaluate. This means that you have to be winning your framing, but also contextualize it to the rest of the impacts in the round. Tell me how to weigh specific impacts through your framing or why specific impacts come first.
I definitely have the least experience with theory/tricks. If you go for either of these in front of me, you need to tell me why procedural arguments come first (i.e. why does it come before fiat, pre-fiat, etc.). Please explain what the impact of your shell is and weighing it against the model of debate that your interpretation excludes (impacts are very important for me if you want me to vote on the shell). Lastly, if you're going for theory make sure to extend the entirety of your shell, meaning that you should extend your interpretation and violation, otherwise I won't feel comfortable voting on it.
Do whatever you are comfortable with, and I'll do my best to evaluate.
Director of Speech & Debate
Isidore Newman School, New Orleans
Please slow down! It is much harder for me to hear online. Go at about 75% rather than 100% of your normal pace!!!
Relevant for Both Policy & LD:
This is my 18th year in debate. I debated in high school, and then went on to debate at the University of Louisville. In addition, I was the Director of Debate at both Fern Creek & Brown School in KY, a former graduate assistant for the University of Louisville, and the Director of Speech & Debate at LSU. I am also a doctoral candidate in Communication & Rhetorical studies, with a Graduate Certificate in Womens, Gender, and Sexuality studies.
I view my role as an educator and believe that it is my job to evaluate the debate in the best way I can and in the most educational way possible. Over the past several years have found myself moving more and more to the middle. So, my paradigm is pretty simple. I like smart arguments and believe that debates should tell a clear and succinct story of the ballot. Simply put: be concise, efficient, and intentional.
Here are a few things you should know coming into the round:
1. I will flow the debate. But PLEASE slow down on the tag lines and the authors. I don’t write as fast as I used to. I will yell clear ONE TIME. After that, I will put my pen down and stop flowing. So, don't be mad at the end of the debate if I missed some arguments because you were unclear. I make lots of facial expressions, so you can use that as a guide for if I understand you
2. I value effective storytelling. I want debates to tell me a clear story about how arguments interact with one another, and as such see debates holistically. Accordingly, dropped arguments are not enough for me to vote against a team. You should both impact your arguments out and tell me why it matters.
3. I will not vote for arguments that are racist, homophobic, transphobic, sexist, or ableist in nature.
4. Do what you do best. While I do not believe that affirmatives have to be topical, I also find myself more invested in finding new and innovative ways to engage with the topic. Do with that what you will. I am both well versed and have coached students in a wide range of literature. I believe that there are implications to the things we talk about in debate, and believe that our social locations inevitably shape the beliefs that we hold.
5. If you do not believe that performative/critical arguments have a place, or that certain argument choices are “cheating,” I’m probably not the judge for you.
6. Know what you’re talking about. The quickest way to lose a debate in front of me is to read something because it sounds and looks “shiny.” I enjoy debates where students are well read/versed on the things they are reading, care about them, and can actually explain them. Jargon is not appealing to me. If it doesn’t make sense or if I don’t understand it at the end of the debate I will have a hard time evaluating it.
7. I will listen to Theory, FW, and T debates, but I do not believe that it is necessarily a substantive response to certain arguments. Prove actual in-round abuse, actual ground loss, actual education lost (that must necessarily trade off with other forms of education). I do not believe in neutral education, neutral conceptions of fairness, or even ground, or limits. If you run theory, be ready to defend it. Actual abuse is not because you don't understand the literature, know how to deal with the argument, or that you didn't have time to read it.
8. Be respectful of one another and to me. I am a teacher and educator first. I don’t particularly care for foul language, or behavior that would be inappropriate in the classroom.
9. Finally, make smart arguments and have fun. I promise I will do my best to evaluate the debate you give me.
If you have any other questions, just ask.