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Bill Batterman

DADT Strategies for "Traditional" Judges

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Hi all,

 

I don't use the argument forums much but I thought I would give them a try... we'll see how it goes. Any comments/thoughts are appreciated.

 

For those of you that debate in "conservative" areas and in front of "traditional" judges, what arguments/strategies have you found effective against DADT affirmatives? Perhaps more importantly, what arguments/strategies have you found ineffective? All of our DADT strategies are probably non-starters in front of judges that are not receptive to critiques or counterplans, and case defense plus the readiness DA puts the negative on the wrong side of the debate (especially given the exceptional, recent evidence that seems like it would be very appealing to traditional judges). Is topicality a feasible option? Are there other case/DA strategies that have been successful?

 

DADT is one of those "true" cases that necessitates some flexibility on the part of the negative, I think. Any guidance from those of you that debate in front of "traditional" judges all season would be greatly appreciated.

 

Thanks,

~Bill

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just run some stuff that everyone can understand.

 

Budget, Backlash, and if you want you can use a gay marriage cp--its pretty simple to explain and traditional judges will like it more than others--especially ban the military

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if you want to beat DADT with traditional traditional judges [i.e., more than one off and you're anathema to them; will vote on purely defensive args] use circumvention arguments on solvency and mitigate harms as much as possible. and bring up lots and lots of alternate causality stuff on harms. if the case is hegemony geared, use cards saying dadt won't make a large effect in terms of military effectiveness. if it's not hegemony geared, you need the cards saying stuff like 'theres no proof of lesbian baiting' or whatever their harms are.

 

in front of judges who are fine with multiple off but aren't wild about contemporary stuff like K's or even CP's, put pressure on the aff to leverage case against your disads. and run several. cmr seems to work well with these judges. i would also use the circumvention stuff as a response to their case extension on your disads. also, T-subs has been effective for us before.

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Thanks, all. Chris's comments, in particular, are very helpful... thanks much. We'll be beefing up our case arguments, but I still have a hard time wrapping my head around judges that vote neg on defensive arguments. The fact that eliminating sexual orientation as a negative criterion for admission to the Armed Forces might face implementation problems or will fail to remedy homophobia in all instances just doesn't seem like a reason to maintain the status quo DADT policy. Alas, you gotta do what you gotta do to get the job done.

 

Any additional thoughts would certainly be appreciated... please share if you've got experience debating DADT affirmatives on a more traditional circuit.

 

Best,

~Bill

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The last time I debated against DADT with a traditional judge was when Rumsfeld was around. If its not a heg oriented aff, then all you need is a small impact to win. The judge's RFD that round was, "I vote neg. The aff impact is making me feel better about myself while the neg has impacts of war." The DA we ran was General's Revolt, but that obviously no longer applies. I guess you could just go with an adventurism DA like Iran Strikes or Iraq Surge. If you just mitigate the case with arguments like Changing the military won't change society.

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if you really want tips on generically winning defense minded judges send me a pm. i'm just going to respond based on the assumption that that portion of your post was more of a vent about disliking their paradigms and less a plea for help whenever faced with said judges, and move on.

 

that said, offense can be a great asset in these rounds. assuming you debate someone else with similar background to yours [i.e., screw defense--offense ftw] you can soooo use these judges to your advantage. simple:

 

1ac: yay dadt

1nc: t-subs, cmr, rma, one card on circumvention, harms takeouts

 

whats the 2ac do? spend allll the time on t and the offense.

whats the 2nc do? t, circumvention extensions, harms extensions

the 1nr then spends time on both disads, or even better, simplifies to one disad.

most 1ars still dont get it and will overinvest their time on T and the disad, functionally ignoring the solvency and harms oncase and not defending them well.

2nrs job, then, is very easy. briefly extend t in literally a sentence. then, circumvention/harms defense for 5 minutes.

 

 

the most important part of employing this strategy is getting a solid read on the judge and being able to lie through your teeth about how it's prima facie for cases to have 100% harms and 100% solvency. you must ascertain that the judge will vote on defense and, if you're going to try to screw with the affirmative's time like this with the offense, you also need to try to disguise the fact that you're open to going for defense and, in the 2nr, nail the 2ar to the words of the 1ar and NOTHING MORE.

 

it takes balls to try for people who aren't used to these debates, but if you read the judge correctly and sucked the other team into their normal style, you win. period, end of discussion.

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whats the 2ac do? spend allll the time on t and the offense.

whats the 2nc do? t, circumvention extensions, harms extensions

the 1nr then spends time on both disads, or even better, simplifies to one disad.

most 1ars still dont get it and will overinvest their time on T and the disad, functionally ignoring the solvency and harms oncase and not defending them well.

2nrs job, then, is very easy. briefly extend t in literally a sentence. then, circumvention/harms defense for 5 minutes.

...

it takes balls to try for people who aren't used to these debates, but if you read the judge correctly and sucked the other team into their normal style, you win. period, end of discussion.

 

hmm, where have i seen this before? bastard!

 

but seriously, when this is done right you can get a really damn good block spread and make it pretty tough on the aff in the rebuttals to get good coverage. this is something chris is right about, and pretty good at executing.

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I'm sure this is what others meant when they said: T-increase:

 

I think a traditional judge would be receptive to an argument that the plan does not gain its advantages from an increase in participation in the armed forces, only from a shift in who participates. A hypothetical counterplan illustrates the point:

 

CP: Repeal DADT but keep military size exactly where it is.

 

The CP captures all the Aff sexual/gender/rights advantages but specifically repudiates the topic. You don't have to advocate the CP, just argue it to show the abuse in the plan.

 

I've only heard one team argue that position consistently in the round but it was easily enough for me to vote on.

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why thank you bret

 

and also, off the coach's point, you can make that argument effectively with DADT despite the other team's answer in the 2ac of 'we increase by 40000' or whatever that number is--or even if they claim hegemony off an increase. read like one card that just explains what end strength is, and then argue that they don't explicit in plantext that they cause an increase. traditional judges do find this argument very compelling because, hey, "allow people to join despite their sexual preferences" really and truly does not imply increasing the amount of people that come in. it just shifts the targeted demographic. true arguments like this one, while generally frowned upon as poor debate on the national circuit, are very very compelling to the judges you're worried about. and this would work perfectly if you wanted to try out the strategy i stated, because you could easily sum that up in the 2nr with just this and no more:

 

"extend our analysis--they never prove that plantext uniquely causes an increase in servicemembers, only that different people are allowed to join--the only way they get an increase is how they describe plan, but you need look no further than their own plantext. because they never prove their prima facie burden of topicality, they lose the round."

 

that only takes like 15 seconds if you're talking at a conversational speed. if the 2ar treats it like the blip that it is, though, you win on t; if not, they will undercover elsewhere. see? traditional judges can be your friend.

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The problem is, I don't think that argument is really right. The reason we haven't met end strength now is because it's hard to recruit enough people who are interested in joining the military. It's not like we don't want people to join, but there just are not enough eligible people.

 

Repealing DADT would dramatically increase the number of people who could potentially join, meaning new people would join.

 

If you win that somehow we're consistently at end strength now, then it's a moot point. But I don't think you'll win that allowing additional people to join compared to what we have now constitutes as effectively the status quo.

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you're conceptualizing the round based on offense/defense and 'winning' arguments. you can't do that with these judges. the argument that sounds true is the winner. when you frame the arg as saying that the affirmative doesn't explicitly cause an increase based off plantext, the affirmative is immediately losing that argument and must explain very persuasively what you're attempting to explain.

 

and, the argument is not that plan is effectively the status quo. the way to frame it for a traditional judge is that plan does not equal increase in persons in the armed forces compared to the status quo.

 

*holds arm up, indicating a level* "This is the amount of people recruited and implemented into the armed forces over a period of a year in the status quo."

*leaves arm in same place* "This is the amount of people recruited and implemented into the armed forces over a period of year post plan. The only difference is that now there are gay people under my hand. And their plan gives no indication to the contrary."

 

speed read your standard answers to t-increase after a traditional judge hears that and see where it gets you.

 

furthermore, in front of traditional judges, the argument that topicality must be established in the 1ac is persuasive for some reason [the latin buzzword for that is either a priori or prima facie. don't remember. leaning towards a priori]. thus, the analysis you give on end strength would be ignored by judge who buys that argument. and again it takes 5 seconds to say "this is a priori, they didn't establish in the 1ac, they lose". much longer to answer.

 

even a small reminder in the block that "even if their answers are true and they do increase, there's no reason to believe its a SUBSTANTIAL one so still vote for us", while the other team will want to drop kick you to hell and back, can be extraordinarily effective. keep in mind this will all happen to you when you're affirmative with this type of judge, so use it.

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Sure, but don't confuse "traditional" judge with "stupid" judge. I'll grant that if you're winning the argument, you're in good shape, but just making the argument doesn't mean it's correct.

 

Your arm analogy just isn't correct. Post-plan, exactly the same number of people join who were going to join before plan, plus homosexuals.

 

If 5,000 people join in 2007, and at the end of 2007 DADT is repealed, then 5,000 would be recruited in 2008 just like normal, plus perhaps 5,000 more that couldn't have joined in 2007. The aff will probably win that there will definitely be a net increase in the number serving.

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if the aff concedes that the same recruiting effort is expended then the aff pretty much has to read a card saying that, even if the same recruiting effort is expended, more people would join if homosexuals were allowed to join if they want a ballot. at worst for the negative, the aff has to explain how the recruiting process isn't like college sports recruiting where time invested in one individual trades off with the rest.

 

also most teams have an FX standard on increase violations, which most of your w/m's would feed.

 

i'm not saying it's an unwinnable argument, but when the aff doesn't have the luxury of blip answers, it puts a *ton* of pressure on the rebuttals. especially if you've got other stuff going for you in the round. which you should against dadt.

 

and if i'm negative, i'd love for the aff to win t. because then they inevitably lose elsewhere.

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That's not as hard as you make it out to be. The evidence the aff reads indicates that the homosexuals who don't join would if they could. That college sports analogy is not true, because recruiting is not the only way people join. People are recruited, and people can sign up at a local office. Also, even if the same recruiting effort is expended, since more people want to join, the recruiting will be more efficient, meaning the same effort will get more people to join.

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if u look it up...dale v. boy scouts is an amazing strat for more lay judges...b/c most people can understance the need for solvency from the children up...and whatever of the BAGILLION NBS 2 it u wanna run

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