Lincoln Douglas Debate Overview Lincoln-Douglas Debate is a VALUE debate, meaning it is a debate about what ought to be rather than specific policy. It is usually a topic regarding the conflict of rights or moral obligations Time Limits Affirmative Constructive (AC)
Negative Cross-Examination (NCX) Negative Constructive Affirmative Cross-Examination (ACX) First Affirmative Rebuttal (1AR) Negative Rebuttal (NR) Second Affirmative Rebuttal (2AR) Prep time 6 min. 3 min. 7 min. 3 min. 4 min.
6 min. 3 min. 4 min Words you need to know debate refutation Affirmative Negative proposition of fact proposition of value
proposition of policy core value value criteria clash constructive speech rebuttal speech cross examination contention observation flowing a debate burden of proof
Lincoln-Douglas debate format OBJECTIVE 1: General Background Debate=a regulated discussion of a proposition by two matched sides. Proposition=an agreed upon topic of discussion, open to interpretation, for which reasonable people may accept arguments on either side. The Affirmative always supports/upholds the proposition. -The Negative always opposes the proposition.
General Background Proof in a debate can be either evidence or logical reasoning. Evidence is the preferred form of proof. Value propositions invite argument that is more philosophical [than policy debate]; the foundation of the debate is often some moral or ethical premise. Lincoln-Douglas debate is more conceptual as a result. Its anecdotal (or narrative) evidence is often persuasive but hardly conclusive, real-life examples may illustrate some philosophical truth, but do not prove it.
Core Value In Lincoln-Douglas the selected standard of judgment is the Core Value. Value Criterion In L-D the Value Criterion is the test that must be met in order to have the core value. The answers to the question How do you know you have the core value? are the value criteria. What is a value? The "value", "core value", or "value premise" represents the most important goal for the round and are usually nebulous
and somewhat vague The wording of certain resolutions may implicitly prescribe the best value for the round For example, the resolution "Democracy is best served by strict separation of church and state" implicitly suggests a value of "democracy Since the wording of the resolution guides the selection of values the two debaters may have identical or similar values In these circumstances focus is usually shifted to the criterion. Common Values Justice Freedom/
Liberty Sanctity of Life vs. Quality of Life Human Rights Free Expression / Speech Democracy Equality
Societal Good / General Will / Society Majority Rule National Interest / National Security Legitimate Government Individualism / Autonomy
Safety Progress Privacy 2 types of value propositions: 1. Propositions that make some declaration of value or importance about a single entity. Example: Laws which protect citizens form themselves are justified. 2. Judgments of comparison between two entities. Example: An oppressive government is more desirable than no government at all.
How to Establish and appropriate Value: Step 1 Provide an adequate and appropriate definition of your value. Most values are abstract, and can have different interpretations by both debaters Thus when you give a value a specific definition needs to be given. Conitnue Step 2
Show the values resolutional implications: Resolutional implications show why your value is essential to the resolution. As a debater you must link how the value is related to the resolution. Burden of Proof Whoever initiates a particular argument has the burden of proving the truth of the premises and the validity of the argument. In academic debate, it is not enough to assert something as true and demand that the opponent prove the assertion false. The debater who initiates the argument has the
responsibility of providing proof in support of the argument. If no proof is provided, the opponent can defeat the argument by labeling it a mere assertion or unsupported statement without merit in the debate. Each argument in the debate carries with it this same obligation of support. Burden of Proof In L-D the Affirmatives job is to argue that the proposition is reasonable for anyone to believe. The Affirmative has the burden of proving the reasonableness of the proposition. The Negative has the burden of proving the proposition false or
unreasonable. In other words, both sides share the burden of proof equally. Neither side is assumed to be true at the beginning of the debate. The Affirmative or the Negative may claim that the opponent has not met his burden of proof, but that alone will not win the debate. The side making the claim must have met its burden of proof. In other words, you dont win just because the other side did not do its job; you must meet your burden of proof to win. Burden of Rejoinder Burden of Rejoinder or Refutation simply means the obligation to respond. Once an argument is made by one side, the argument
demands response from the other side. If the opposing side does not respond, the initiator of the argument can claim victory by default. Since both sides have burdens of proof, both sides have burdens of rejoinder. Since the Affirmative initiates the debate, the negative has the initial burden of rejoinder. Closer look at the speeches 6 minute Affirmative Constructive. This speech is prepared ahead, rehearsed and should be perfectly timed. It is a presentation of the affirmative's position and establishes his/her stance. 3 minute Negative Cross Examination. The Negative asks for clarification,
asks for repetition of certain points, and tries to set up the affirmative to admit damaging information. 7 minute Negative Constructive/ Rebuttal. This speech really has two parts: The first part is a written, rehearsed speech that builds the negative case and is about four minutes long. In the second part, the negative must attack his/her opponent's points. The attack takes the last three minutes. 3 minute Affirmative Cross Examination. Now it's the affirmative's turn to question the negative, asking for clarification and trying to lead him/her down an ivy-covered path to destruction. Continued 4 minute Affirmative Reconstructive/Rebuttal. The affirmative doesn't have much time here, so she/he has to talk fast. She/he must go down the
flow (outline) of the argumentation, hitting any arguments against her/his own case and then attacking each of her/his opponent's arguments. Again, two parts: Rebuild and Attack. 6 minute Negative Reconstructive/ Rebuttal. This speech has three parts: Rebuild, Attack and Crystallize: about two minutes to rebuild any arguments against the negative's own case; two minutes to attack the affirmative; and two minutes to summarize the voting issues for the judge. 3 minute Affirmative Reconstructive/Rebuttal. This is a very short speech--time only to argue the most important points, attack the negative's voting issues, and crystallize the affirmative's own voting points. EVIDENCE
Supporting evidence adds to the persuasiveness of the reasoning and argumentation of the debate. WHENEVER A DEBATER QUOTES AT ANY LENGTH THE WORDS OF ANOTHER, THE FACT MUST BE PLAINLY STATED. There must be full source citation even if not orally delivered. Required Documentation Oral Requirements. Where a quotation is ascribed to a particular individual(s), the name of the author(s), a reference
to the qualifications of the author(s) (e.g., professional title or level or expertise in the subject area), and the date of the publication are required. Written Requirements All participants submitting evidence in competition shall have it available in written form. This written form must display full bibliographic source citation, even if the full citation is not orally delivered. Formulating debate cases
Step One: The Resolution. The resolution is a statement of the topic of the debate. The entire debate is a test of the validity of this statement. Therefore, wording and semantics are crucial. Each important word must be defined from different angles. After a brief opening paragraph using the resolution as the thesis statement, or in the case of the negative, its antithesis, you will state your definitions. Continued Step Two: The Value Premise. Remember that we said that Lincoln-Douglas
Debate is a VALUE debate about what ought to be, right? Each debate speech will center on a value that you choose as the cornerstone of your position. I know this seems very, very vague. Lets clarify using a simple analogy: Formulating debate cases Pretend the Resolution is: Resolved: A cheeseburger ought to be valued above spaghetti. vs. Before you can start arguing about which of these two yummies is the more
valuable, you need to figure out what yardstick to use to measure them: Is it Good Taste? Nutritional Value? Ease of Preparation? Aesthetic Presentation? Continued The yardstick you choose is called your Value Premise. Naturally, you will choose the yardstick that you think will help you win! If you're debating for the cheeseburger, you might take "Good Taste" as the most important value; if you're taking the side of spaghetti, you might claim that "Nutrition" must be the value by which to measure foods. In this debate, the affirmative might claim that if food doesn't taste good, no one will eat it. The negative might claim that
nutrition is prime and that if it's not good for the body, it's not good food. From this example, you can see that the debate should go back and forth. Formulating debate cases The value is achieved through certain Criteria. After you state your value premise, you will name the criterion or criteria that you will use to achieve the value. For example, for the value of Nutrition, your criterion might be the Four Food Groups, as set up by the U.S. Dept of Health, Education and Welfare.
Continue Step Three: State arguments as main points. You will need two or three main points. The cheeseburger affirmative might be: Value: Common Good Criterion: Quality of Life Contention One: The cheeseburger provides one of the basic needs of mankind,
according to Maslow's hierarchy of basic needs. Contention Two: The cheeseburger provides nutrition from all four food groups. Contention Three: The cheeseburger provides advantages that the negative cannot provide, including portability and ease of use. Formulating debate cases The spaghetti negative might be: Value: Life Criterion: Nutrition Contention One: Spaghetti provides a high standard of nutrition needed for life. Contention Two: A cheeseburger is fat-filled and therefore fails to provide nutrition.
Continue Step Four: Use evidence to back up each point. Evidence can consist of quotes, reasoning, or analogy. Step Five: Find a good opening for the speech. This can be an apt quote, startling statistics, or interesting example. Step Six: Time the speech. (Six minutes for the affirmative exactly. About three to four minutes for
negative.) LD debate will give you the opportunity to explore your beliefs, values, and intelligence. Remember you didnt start out running you crawled, toddled, and walked first. You will get out of debate exactly what you are willing to put into it.
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