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Binghamton Speech & Debate

Proposition: Clara Harding (Wood River High School) vs. Opposition: Kanon Matsunaga (Shorin Global)

Judge: Joe Leeson-Schatz (Binghamton University)

Resolution: THBT: An overriding ethical obligation to protect and preserve extraterrestrial microbial life and ecosystems should be incorporated into international law.

  • Clara Harding
    Clara Harding
    vs.



    Kanon Matsunaga
    Kanon Matsunaga
    Click to begin

    Speech Details

    Click on the other tabs to watch watch that speech.

    Posted at April 18, 2016 11:45:27AM EST by Clara Harding

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    Cockell, Charles. "How the Search for Aliens Can Help Sustain Life on Earth." CNN. Cable News Network, 04 Oct. 2012. Web. 04 Apr. 2016.

    Glaser, Sarah M. "NASA Astrobiology Debates Interview." Interview. NASA ASTROBIOLOGY DEBATES. NASA, 2015. Web. 05 Apr. 2016. Dr. Glaser earned a PhD in Oceanography at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography and specializes in fisheries, food web ecology, and complex systems.

    Posted at April 20, 2016 02:55:11AM EST by Kanon Matsunaga

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    None available for this speech.

    Posted at April 20, 2016 06:36:46PM EST by Clara Harding

    Citations

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    Cockell, Charles. "How the Search for Aliens Can Help Sustain Life on Earth." CNN. Cable News Network, 04 Oct. 2012. Web. 04 Apr. 2016.

    Posted at April 22, 2016 09:09:48AM EST by Joe Leeson-Schatz

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    None available for this speech.

    Posted at April 22, 2016 09:11:26PM EST by Clara Harding

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    In the beginning of my speech I accidentally said "my opponent provided no evidence" instead of "my opponent provided no defense", sorry! Just wanted to clarify that :)

    Status

    This match has been completed. Show the Decision.

    Submitted at April 23, 2016 07:52:37PM EST by Joe Leeson-Schatz

    Category Clara Harding Kanon Matsunaga
    Use of evidence: 3.9 2.5
    Delivery skill: 3.9 4
    Coherence of arguments: 3.7 3.9
    Responsiveness to opponent: 4.2 3.9
    Identification of key points: 4 3.9
    Comments: I like how you start with definitions, and how you explain how we can study microbial life without destroying it at the same time. The allows you to make your exploration arguments without running into too much tension, which has been the problem for props in a bunch of other rounds I've watched.

    Good job starting out by answering the opp's arguments. You should be more clearly extending your arguments about how we can explore/study life while protecting it. You should also do more proving solvency for using international law. I would also drop another source or two while making this speech to answer some of the opp's arguments. You opponent doesn't completely drop something when they have arguments that answer it and you need to extend your initial evidence to respond (at the end of your speech).

    "For those reasons and many more" is a bad way to end your speeches. What are the more? That time is better spent fully impacting out or doing impact analysis for the reasons that you do provide.
    I like how you target international law and interrogate what it means to have a definitive moral obligation. I think it would be good to run a counter-plan where you had each nation decide a policy itself, or one where the ethical obligation wasn't overriding but contingent. That way you could capture the benefits of both sides.

    You need more warrants/evidence to explain why the proposition's policy will make it impossible to study ET life since the prop is reading evidence and explaining how protection is key to preserving the microbial life in order to study it. Without answering that warrant you can't win the argument that the prop will prevent studying space. I like your moral absolutism argument still. However, you need to do a better job at explaining why that means I should vote for you. Or, run a counter-plan that passes the prop's plan without an absolute moral regulation.

    The decision is for the Proposition: Clara Harding

    Reason for Decision:

    I buy the prop's argument that we need to protect microbial life and ecosystems in order to study it, otherwise it will be destroyed. This turns the majority of the opp's arguments since it means that we need the plan to protect the unknown microbe that can extend human life for thousands of years. Even if we don't know what happens in space or everything out there, that only functions as a reason for why we need to protect it ahead of time in order to have a chance to study it. The opp could win me over if there was a counter-plan, or an alternative about how we can better protect/preserve/study when adopting a non-absolute moral obligation. Zygmunt Bauman writes a lot of philosophy on this question and outlines other ways to promote a form of contingent morality instead of absolute. However, absent this, the prop's policy turns the the opposition's arguments since preservation is a prerequisite to doing anything with the potential life that exists outside earth, etc.


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