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fromthemitten

Calling Out The Arcadia Speech And Debate Team

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No, it's not. That merely turns debate teams into elitist societies where debaters who already have done well are prioritized over those who show great potential but have little to no experience debating.

By that view any selection process is elitist because the chosen few are superior at whatever criteria are used.  What creates what you call elitism is the existence of a cap on the amount of debaters that can be accepted, which I agree is not optimal.  Given the finite resources of a school, it is sometimes necessary to impose those types of caps.  In that situation, it seems pretty logical to accept the best candidates and it also seems like proven success should be a pretty big criteria.  It should not be required, since not everyone has the ability to compete im middle school, but it should still be taken into account.  My real issue is that they are focusing on attitude over success, since (as many have pointed out) one's attitude is never the best in 8th grade.  On the other hand, debate success, especially success as great as KW and JW, seems both pertinent to the policy debate selection process specifically and also a good indicator of who will have the best ability to teach new novices and bring more success to the team.  You can argue about how much influence success should have, but it should probably be weighed more heavily than attitude, especially in this case.

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Not just any student's attitude. An eighth grader's attitude. Because, you know, it's not like middle school is a cesspool of hormones and immaturity or anything.

 

I still had "attitude problems" in freaking 11th and 12th grade. Yelled at multiple partners about rounds. Said "I would have done better if I'd been allowed to maverick" in the presence of another partner. Behaved poorly on Cross-X (just check my posting history from 2008-9).

 

I may have had the diplomatic skills and social cognizance of an iguana, but I also took leadership of the team and kept it together during a transition period where I was the only varsity debater on the squad. Those are not mutually exclusive things. The novices from my senior year went on to do great things. The novices from the year after I graduated did some incredible things.

 

If you're letting perceived "attitude problems" get in the way of this kid's—or any kid's—potential contributions to your squad, you're doing it wrong.

But you're still an asshole, so maybe there's something to this.

 

:surf:

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Its definitely a high school kid running Arcadia's Cross-X account because a coach from anywhere other than LNU would have been smart enough to make one post and run, or better not to respond at all.

 

If someone could contact the actual coach, that might make a difference. But if the coach has been contacted and the decision is final, then there's little use in wasting more air about this. Its legitimate to say that debate skill is only one of many relevant skills for a debate team. While middle and high school kids are a cesspool of hormones and attitude, thats not just true of KW - its true of the other debaters too. If this kid walked in cock-sure and was likely to demean other debaters or otherwise disrupt team morale and functioning, it doesnt matter how good he is. He could be policy jesus and not make the squad because talent is not the only criteria coaches consider, nor is it the only one they should consider. If putting this kid on the team would likely hurt other debaters, it is reasonable to cut him. 

 

I'm not saying that cutting this kid was or wasn't a good idea. It is not, however, as objectively unreasonable as this thread would make it seem. 

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It's almost like there are people making important decisions that aren't qualified to do so. I sure am glad nothing else is run like that.

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That email changes my perception. I had been assuming that "attitude problems" was coded language for cussing out the coach or something on similar magnitude. However, since that debater didn't mention anything like that happening, my assumption was probably wrong. It's now looking like this is basically just traditional circuit bias against other styles combined with a dumb selection process and perhaps a tint of jealousy from debaters who couldn't even understand his 1AC. I'll try weighting stupidity higher on my list of go-to explanations next time similar stuff happens, especially when high schoolers are involved.

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He apparently spread, and when they told him to stop, he slowed, but continued to go at a pretty quick speed (to people not accustomed to spreading). Then, he did not entirely engage their questions, saying that their questions were not relevant in his case/research (you have already talked about that). Also, apparently, after he finished the tryout, before the door closed he told people outside that the tryout was easy and that he most likely made it in. This is not the fault of KW; he was unaware that Arcadia was predominantly a "lay" school. He treated the debate tryout as if it were an actual debate round. KW does not have a Facebook, so he was unaware of how Arcadia's tryouts work. He worked hard to prepare for the tryout, and again, he treated it like an actual round (as it should be). So overall, the officers made their decision because they thought he was an "asshole", and they didn't want a stuck-up person who only craved winning on the team.

Straying away from my original point, I want to say that I know KW personally, and he is far from being an "asshole". He is kind, considerate, willing to help, and a hard-worker. Sure, he wants to win, but that's a mentality that drives his work ethic. He's a great kid, and the officers' perspective of him is not one that should be his identity.

So to underview (sorry this message is going all over the place), the e-mail that you have (ArcadiaSpeechDebate@gmail.com) is the e-mail for the officers, who probably will not regard this issue at all. The e-mail I have provided you (anovak@ausd.net) is the school e-mail of the coach. Hopefully we can resolve this issue and rightfully make KW an Arcadia debater."

 

 

I'll defend the Speech/Interp/Lay people in saying that they weren't at fault. Comparing his actions to someone who had a completely unmemorable tryout, I would've (Assuming I didn't understand Policy debate) chosen the other person. Once he realized that the people weren't policy debaters, he should've tailored his actions to them. Of course, whoever had the bright idea to set up the interviews like that is an idiot. I just don't think the Speech/Interpers should receive any of the blame. 

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I'll defend the Speech/Interp/Lay people in saying that they weren't at fault. Comparing his actions to someone who had a completely unmemorable tryout, I would've (Assuming I didn't understand Policy debate) chosen the other person. Once he realized that the people weren't policy debaters, he should've tailored his actions to them. Of course, whoever had the bright idea to set up the interviews like that is an idiot. I just don't think the Speech/Interpers should receive any of the blame. 

You have reached your quota of negative votes for the day

 

Aww, This is a post i seriously would like to downvote for quite a few reasons.

 

Let's go to  your idiotic post that just made me so much angrier towards this situation.

 

1st (addressing the underlined text), you obviously failed to read the full email. KW DID practice and attempted to get ready for the tryouts. However, because he lacked a Facebook account, he had little to no knowledge that the actual tryouts would be "lay". You act as if his actions were completely unnecessary to the point where he should not be allowed to debate. Does that not seem too harsh to you? The only part of your underlined "card" i should say that has any relevance to your post is the part where he said the tryout was easy, this gives him a few attributes which the Arcadia team clearly takes for granted, one being pride and the ability to hold one's head up high (obviously not looking down upon others). The second is his sportsmanlike qualities, that which makes him a truly hardworking debater, who believes in himself. Arcadia clearly took both of these attributes and twisted them into, "this kid's full of himself" and "this kid is a rude asshole" which we don't know to be true, however judging from everything given we can assume KW isn't an asshole. Although one could argue we here at cross x are being to critical of this situation, the same could be said about the Arcadia speech team's views of KW. 

 

2nd - Let's go to "I just don't think the Speech/Interpers should receive any of the blame. ". I hope to god you clearly read the email and you just blatantly decided to remain ambivalent to the actual situation at hand. The Arcadia Speech and Debate members (interpers and debaters) whom are juniors and seniors are given a very high position of power in being able to pick and choose 40 out of the 150 members (yes I realize they are not the only ones, but there has been no word from the coach or assistant coach's on the issue at hand, so we are going by what we know). According to the newly posted email, which is probably the most insightful piece of information, an actual Arcadia Speech and Debate member came forward to affirm our views of the team, clearly these interpers and debaters have a large say on the matter and CAN be held accountable. Although one could simply blame the coach the blame game clearly starts at the speech and debate members who view KW as an "asshole" and do not wish to have him on the team for personal reasons regarding his actions rather than his passion for debate or his teamwork and ability to cooperate with others. 

 

3rd- The "arcadiaspeechdebate" member on cross x was a student (or students) from the Arcadia speech and debate team. We cannot entirely trust such biased information regarding KW (including each email regarding how applicants are viewed and selected) without an actual response from the coach, which we may never receive, because as Snarf said, any smart coach would simply ignore this or post once and then leave. The recent email posted by an anonymous Arcadia member however can be trusted in terms of the valuable information given regarding Arcadia speech and debate (even if you do not believe the information about KW)

 

4th- You assume that "they" don't understand policy debate. Who doesn't? The interpers? Sure, but what about the debaters? Remember, they are at a 50/50 split (if that information is to be trusted) and clearly it was very one-sided regarding KW. 

 

5th- The fact that you refer to them as "lay people" is a mockery of defense. Your only making this case worse and strengthen the point of "fearing that which we cannot comprehend". KW clearly struck many of the debaters as beyond their skill level, and they saw it as a threat, as posted by another cross x member on this thread. 

 

This was rushed and sloppy, and I'd love to write a long essay on the idiocy of your defense, but this will have to suffice for now. 

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1st (addressing the underlined text), you obviously failed to read the full email. KW DID practice and attempted to get ready for the tryouts. However, because he lacked a Facebook account, he had little to no knowledge that the actual tryouts would be "lay". You act as if his actions were completely unnecessary to the point where he should not be allowed to debate. Does that not seem too harsh to you? The only part of your underlined "card" i should say that has any relevance to your post is the part where he said the tryout was easy, this gives him a few attributes which the Arcadia team clearly takes for granted, one being pride and the ability to hold one's head up high (obviously not looking down upon others). The second is his sportsmanlike qualities, that which makes him a truly hardworking debater, who believes in himself. Arcadia clearly took both of these attributes and twisted them into, "this kid's full of himself" and "this kid is a rude asshole" which we don't know to be true, however judging from everything given we can assume KW isn't an asshole. Although one could argue we here at cross x are being to critical of this situation, the same could be said about the Arcadia speech team's views of KW. 

 

 

 

His actions aren't that big of a deal. But they say they can only accept 35-40 of about 150 applicants every year. That's about 1 out of every 4. YES his actions shouldn't mean much and YES they shouldn't stop him from debating, but I can see them having at least a little ill effect. Out of 150 applicants, I'm going to assume that at least 35-40 didn't do anything that would bring them DOWN in the rankings. And if the spots can be filled with people who didn't NOTHING negative, then it would make sense for a person who did something, even something SMALL, wrong, to be beaten out by those people. 

 

2nd - Let's go to "I just don't think the Speech/Interpers should receive any of the blame. ". I hope to god you clearly read the email and you just blatantly decided to remain ambivalent to the actual situation at hand. The Arcadia Speech and Debate members (interpers and debaters) whom are juniors and seniors are given a very high position of power in being able to pick and choose 40 out of the 150 members (yes I realize they are not the only ones, but there has been no word from the coach or assistant coach's on the issue at hand, so we are going by what we know). According to the newly posted email, which is probably the most insightful piece of information, an actual Arcadia Speech and Debate member came forward to affirm our views of the team, clearly these interpers and debaters have a large say on the matter and CAN be held accountable. Although one could simply blame the coach the blame game clearly starts at the speech and debate members who view KW as an "asshole" and do not wish to have him on the team for personal reasons regarding his actions rather than his passion for debate or his teamwork and ability to cooperate with others. 

I don't understand what you're saying that they did wrong here. They saw a kid that they perceived to have an attitude. A person on the team with an attitude probably wouldn't be a very good team player. I don't know him at all, but I'm going to assume from the posts from the people that do know him, that he doesn't have an attitude. From how his interview went though, it makes sense that they might think he had an attitude. (Not his fault). But to the juniors/seniors that know nothing beyond what they saw in the interview, they see a kid that might potentially have a bad attitude. Statistically, 75% of applicants would need to display some form of attitude to justify letting him on. 

 

 

 

 

3rd- The "arcadiaspeechdebate" member on cross x was a student (or students) from the Arcadia speech and debate team. We cannot entirely trust such biased information regarding KW (including each email regarding how applicants are viewed and selected) without an actual response from the coach, which we may never receive, because as Snarf said, any smart coach would simply ignore this or post once and then leave. The recent email posted by an anonymous Arcadia member however can be trusted in terms of the valuable information given regarding Arcadia speech and debate (even if you do not believe the information about KW)

 

4th- You assume that "they" don't understand policy debate. Who doesn't? The interpers? Sure, but what about the debaters? Remember, they are at a 50/50 split (if that information is to be trusted) and clearly it was very one-sided regarding KW. 

 

 

 

According to the most recent email "Arcadia was predominantly a "lay" school". So most of the people judging him were lay. For the policy debaters, I'm not defending them. If there were some on the "panel" or whatever, they should've stepped up and said he should be in. I'm just defending the people that have no idea what goes on in policy debate.

 

 

 

 

5th- The fact that you refer to them as "lay people" is a mockery of defense. Your only making this case worse and strengthen the point of "fearing that which we cannot comprehend". KW clearly struck many of the debaters as beyond their skill level, and they saw it as a threat, as posted by another cross x member on this thread. 

 

Why would the speech/interp people seem him as a threat? The policy people, maybe. That makes them bad people and whatnot. That doesn't mean anything against the speech/interp kids. To someone not in policy debate, his interview would'e seemed bad. The people in Speech/interp can't be blamed for seeing things that way, due to the fact that they don't do policy. That's the only thing I'm arguing. 

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Just let it die, people. Arguing about this on a cross-x post isn't going to help anyone.

But... but... I thought discourse frames reality.

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Since I have 6 downvotes, I'd at least like to know what I said wrong. I'm saying we shouldn't blame the speech/interp people. They don't know how policy debate goes. They can't be expected to understand KWs actions that were tailored towards policy debate. What part of this merits the dislikes? 

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Well now it's the caring about "downvotes".

That's an extremely unfair assessment. Downvotes don't mean nothing, they're a solid indicator of your contributions to the site - the difference between 1,254 and 152 reputation points is significant; they're called "rep" for a reason. But JosephDebate wasn't even whining about being downvoted, he noticed that they indicated wide disagreement, and wants to know why everyone that downvoted him did so. Ragging on him for mentioning the fact we have a voting system doesn't do anything, and the voting system isn't meaningless.

 

Between everyone brandishing their pitchforks over middle schoolers and this recent beef with Arcadia, the fact that dismissive and haughty comments like these get the positive recognition just seems like uncharacteristically uncritical behavior for a debating community to engage in.

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so the fact that I have more than twice as many reputation points as posts means I'm hot shit, right?

 

Here's a dismissive and haughty comment: the Arcadia coach is unrepentant and doesn't give a shit about policy debate, let alone any speech and debate activity and seems like an absentee coach who lets the inmates run the asylum and they're petty little shits who are ruining the future of a very promising debater and it is a god damn shame.  My only advice to Kirk (if he reads this) is to seek legal recourse.  Everybody who has messaged/contacted me regarding this had nothing but nice things to say about Kirk.  He's an exceptional straight-A student, a team player, and his work evidence is evidenced in that he spent 8 hours a day prepping for the NJFLs.  So the fact that ArcadiaSpeechDebate (who I suspect is the coach--an IP address check would go a long way in proving this) would go as far as to bury one of their most promising students on a public forum is beyond the pale.

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That's an extremely unfair assessment. Downvotes don't mean nothing, they're a solid indicator of your contributions to the site - the difference between 1,254 and 152 reputation points is significant; they're called "rep" for a reason. But JosephDebate wasn't even whining about being downvoted, he noticed that they indicated wide disagreement, and wants to know why everyone that downvoted him did so. Ragging on him for mentioning the fact we have a voting system doesn't do anything, and the voting system isn't meaningless.

 

This sums it up

 

I don't care about votes as in wanting to have the most to brag or anything. I'm just asking because I want to know what I did wrong and why people disagree

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so the fact that I have more than twice as many reputation points as posts means I'm hot shit, right?

Haha pretty much. But for the rest of your comment, I'll refrain from opining, and really that's all beside the point. JosephDebate wanted an answer, one person gave him one to which he responded but no one else; very little distinguishes this from any other bandwagon.

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uncharacteristically uncritical behavior for a debating community to engage in.

I think your perceptions of the characteristics of debating communities might be skewed.

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Haha pretty much. But for the rest of your comment, I'll refrain from opining, and really that's all beside the point. JosephDebate wanted an answer, one person gave him one to which he responded but no one else; very little distinguishes this from any other bandwagon.

 

I wasn't really responding to his comment, but to address it: the speech kids ARE NOT THE ISSUE HERE.  Yes, they are acting petty and screwing over a kid who, according to all reports, loves debate simply because they don't like him.  The main culprit in this case is the coach who obviously doesn't give a fuck about her students, team, etc by not rectifying this issue and has been quite rude and dismissive in emails and posts on this thread.

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This sums it up

 

I don't care about votes as in wanting to have the most to brag or anything. I'm just asking because I want to know what I did wrong and why people disagree

 

I only down-voted your second comment for asking about the down-votes. Sorry. Reflex. But I can explain why I don't like your first post and assume that it is how others feel too.

 
Two problems.
 
1) You blame KW for not tailoring his audition to the speech/interpers, but leave them blame-free. They are team officers at a school that has policy debate. I'm sure they aren't great at it, if policy debate is combined with public forum on the website. But unless the team doesn't offer policy, the officers have a responsibility to understand the event if debaters are auditioning to do it in high school. Certainly they have more responsibility than he has to know what they don't know.
 
2) According to ArcadiaSpeechDebate, the decision was because of perceived poor attitude. But the Arcadia student that fromthemitten quoted said that KW's supposed bad attitude consisted only of saying he thought he had made the team. So I think the perception is that the speech/interpers just didn't like the kid. Either because of a bias against policy or for their own reasons. So people are down-voting you for sticking up for them because they don't think he did anything to justify cutting him. Bad audition, sure, given his audience. Bad attitude? Why?
 
TL;DR version- You could have just deflected blame onto the coach. Instead you deflected much of it onto the middle-schooler, which could be seen as victim-blaming.
 
But I up-voted another one of your posts to balance my down-vote out.
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The website for their debate team says that you can still go to tournaments even if you're not in the class...

I believe that assumes that you are part of the team and happen to not be able to take the class.

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