CIS Debate Club Leading the Way
The CIS Debate Club celebrated its first event of the semester on November 5th. We were delighted to be able to collaborate with RFK Human Rights. Anthony Verrecchio, director of RFK Spain, was on hand to introduce our special guest speaker, Karen Robinson, director of the Speak Truth to Power program (STTP). We were thrilled to have Karen with us and to be able to hear her speak so passionately on issues such as income inequality, community service and social responsibility.
Karen’s words appropriately led the way into our debate where the motion was “Billionaires should not exist”. As always, our club members were placed into teams at random, with their stance (for or against) also being left to chance. At a time in which there is so much polarization and division, we are proud to have a debate club which promotes the values of reason, research, and respect.
Our members often find themselves on a side of an argument with which they do not personally agree. However, they understand the value of debating as a sport and the importance of always considering the contrary perspective. While so many people live in an echo chamber, our members research issues and inform themselves fully, to see the issue from every angle. This is the key to reaching an informed opinion.
Our teams did themselves proud, debating in the virtual realm in the presence of 45+ attendees. In the end, the audience were tasked with choosing the winning team – no easy feat. Indeed, it was a close call with just four votes separating our teams. The most impressive thing was the respect shown by the teams towards each other. This sets a wonderful example for all CIS students and exemplifies the core values of our debate club: tolerance, respect, and good sportsmanship.
By Patrick Doherty
CIS professor and Debate Club Coordinator