I replied to your comment on the Monument Publishing website. You can link to the response
, or read it below.
I’m glad Monument Publishing has been able to help you improve your debating this season. I hope to elucidate the rationale for publishing “Addressing Sin Nature” through addressing each of your arguments—first, your point about it being in complete opposition to the spirit of NCFCA, second, your point about affirmatives only having three possible ways to respond, and finally, your point about the case being unethical.
In regard to your point about the case being diametrically opposed to the spirit of NCFCA, you merely asserted this point without providing any justification. Furthermore, the NCFCA’s website explicitly suggests otherwise. According to their “Vision of Forensics,” (found on their website at http://www.ncfca.org/who-we-are/our-mission/
) “while others may pursue speech and debate for the sport, NCFCA aims to use forensics to teach life skills. For this reason, NCFCA supports a real-world, conversational style of speech and debate and advocates the use of content and strategy that ultimately upholds a biblical worldview.” Their words, not mine. By this standard, it’s your position of expunging Christian notions from debate rounds that is antithetical to the spirit of NCFCA.
You say that the affirmative debater will only have three recourses. This is the fallacy of false trilemma. There are, in fact, other ways to refute the case—such as attacking the tenuous resolutional analysis, refuting the underlying pragmatism, or noting that Colson did endorse some rehabilitation programs. Several of the formidable arguments against the case are included in the thorough opposition brief at the end of the case.
Finally, you’ve referred to the case a number of times throughout your as “unethical,” and imply that the reason for this designation is because it forces debaters to argue against their consciences. First, I’ve already suggested that there are ways to debate the case without violating one’s conscience, which in and of itself renders your objection a moot point. Moreover, violating one’s conscience is invariably a product of debate, regardless of whether or not Scripture is an element. I’ve had to debate against my deeply-held philosophical and political convictions on a number of occasions, in LD and parliamentary debate rounds. The fact of the matter is that you can’t have a debate without two sides. And you can’t have two sides without inevitably generating some form of disagreement with one's personal ideals. Furthermore, in arguing that the case is “unethical,” what standard of ethics are you referring to? Scripture? If that’s that’s the case, I’d like to see some biblical support for your contention that we shouldn’t talk about the Bible.
If you don’t take my word for it, take fifteen minutes and watch this video by nationally acclaimed debate coach Isaiah McPeak. Isaiah has won innumerable tournaments in over ten formats of debate (both high school and collegiate), and has coached a number of national champions. He propounds a case for integrating Christianity into debate rounds: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ltiE66v0PI
Last weekend, I attended an NCFCA qualifier as a coach and alumnus. A fellow coach of one of the largest LD clubs in the region approached me and informed me that her students were having difficult developing negative strategies, and that the “Addressing Sin Nature” case had enabled them to grapple with alternate negative philosophies and inspired them to debate negative.