Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
vladlock

Switch Side Debate?

Recommended Posts

This maybe what it sounds like or something totally different. Can anyone give me a definition and explanation of what Switch Side Debate actually is?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The arguments purpose is based on the idea that there is a correct reading of the resolution and the position of the affirmative is set in that reading. I.E. any aff that does not (for the sake of argument) affirm an instrumental affirmation of the rez is not debating both sides of the topic. aff = instrumental affirmation of USFG policy and action, neg = anything else. Even in cases where the affirmative seemingly goes in the direction of the topic but does not defend an instrumental affirmation is considered to be adopting a position that is negative ground and thus "not engaging in switch side debate".

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Aside from switch side debate good arguments being used against affs that aren't affirming the resolution (often times, kritikal affs), it's also used in debates against topical counterplans, because in those instances the neg is just debating the aff side of things.

 

The most interesting answer to switch side debate good I've seen is from a team that claimed they only ran topical counterplans on the neg, and a kritik of the resolution on the aff. Switch side, sure, but definitely the wrong side.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Every debater gets approximately the same number of aff and neg rounds throughout the year. We switch sides. This fact shows up in several common arguments.

 

An argument against "fairness" standards in T debates

It's okay if a resolution is biassed toward the aff or the neg. If everyone has a 70% chance of winning on the aff and a 30% chance of winning on the neg, so long as we all debate both sides of the resolution, the activity is still fair. We don't need to interpret the resolution in a way that gives the aff and neg perfect 50/50 odds.

 

An argument against reciprocity in theory debates

The aff and neg don't need perfectly balanced burdens for the same reason the resolution doesn't need to be divided perfectly down the middle. Who cares if the neg is allowed to have a conditional counterplan but the aff is stuck with their plan? Who cares if the neg gets presumption and the aff gets nothing in return? You'll get to be neg next round and then you can have your revenge. Theory debates shouldn't hinge on giving the aff and neg even-money chances of winning. We switch sides to make this unnecessary.

 

A generic critique turn

While everyone agrees that it's the aff's job to uphold the resolution, it's hard to hold them personally responsible for it. This causes minor problems for some critiques, especially those that demand some kind of activism on the part of the debater giving the critique. Obvious question: can we really take someone seriously who, just last round, was upholding the very resolution they're so vehemently criticizing? Doesn't that make them just as sexist or racist or neohypercolonialist as the aff, and a hypocrite on top of it? This is a rather generic argument, but it often helps put the critique in perspective by forcing the neg to more clearly articulate how the critique actually fits into debate.

 

An argument that the aff must be topical

Sometimes the aff will outright refuse to be topical and instead critiques the resolution. In this case the aff will have to argue that switch-side debate is bad - they're refusing to switch sides. If the neg chooses to attack this, they could argue (1) that switch-side debate makes the activity fair by eliminating the sting of the activity's inherent aff-bias or neg-bias (2) that switching sides each round makes the activity more intellectually profitable by forcing us to take both sides of an issue seriously and debating it out.

Edited by Tomak
  • Upvote 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
Sign in to follow this  

×
×
  • Create New...