mountain dude wrote:
Especially when the amount of money involved was the grand total of $33 (3 bucks per person with 11 entries). There is no merit for punishment, and little merit for prohibition either. #Bracketgate
Forgive me if I'm wrong, but I think you're leaving out a key element and missing a big point.
First of all, as a disclaimer, I feel the actions taken by the NCFCA leadership in response to this crisis were too extreme for the crime. Seeing as there is no official rule on gambling in the NCFCA, and not all Christians believe gambling to be morally impermissible, I think that exacting punishment on those involved (especially to the extent that they did) was wrong.
Second disclaimer, I don't live in Region V. I did have a discussion (at length) with a wonderful Region V debater, though. She gave me lots of information and also opposed to the punishment.
But as I thought about it, I realized something critical.
You all are competitors.
In the 1919 Baseball World Series, the infamous "Black Sox" (the nickname for a particular team of White Sox) players, largely favored to win the World Series, bet on themselves to lose the series. They then proceeded to bomb the series on purpose
because the rewards of the gambling were greater than those of winning the games.
Unlike the NCFCA, MLB (Major League Baseball) had/has a rule against players, coaches, etc. gambling on the results of games, and the players were banned from the MLB forever.
All competition is a search for the best. In debate, we search for the best ideas, or the truth. In this effort, we must try to minimize roadblocks to that goal. Similarly, the NCFCA, in its goal to become an increasingly reputable organization, must ensure that its competitive results are of the utmost integrity.
Do I think anyone purposely lost to win $33? No. I don't. Do I think $33 is a big deal? No. Do I think gambling is inherently wrong? No. Do I think the NCFCA leadership was correct in how they handled the situation? No. From what I know, I do not.
But the NCFCA, and we as debaters, really need to think about this activity (gambling) and the effects it has on our performance, or could potentially have if it was of greater magnitude.
So while I don't agree with how NCFCA handled it, I do think they're correct to shut down that kind of activity. But I'd love to hear if any of you have thoughts otherwise.