The Lightning Letter

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The Lightning Letter

The Lightning Letter

Lawson Debate Team Qualifies for Nationals for the First Time Since 2015


With Lawson’s first year coming to a close, it’s only fitting we celebrate the incredible achievements our Debate team have accomplished, and how great they truly are debating. Well first, what do they debate about?

“Policy debate… we have one topic for the whole year, and every team has the same topic for that year,” said the debate coach, Amanda Clarke. “You must learn to debate both sides of the argument, affirmative and negative, each debate round is a two versus two, each round lasting around an hour, and there are three rounds per tournament.”

There are two teams opposing each other in a debate competition. The topic of debate is called “the motion.” The team in favor of the motion is called “the proposition” or “affirmative,” and the team arguing against the motion is called the “opposition” or “negative.” The burden of proof lies on the proposition, which is why the proposition team both opens and closes the debate. 

Junior Christine Tran and sophomore Patrick Miranda managed to qualify for Nationals for the first time since 2015, traveling to Chicago with Clarke.

I took Christine and Patrick to Chicago to compete in Nationals, and it was an amazing experience! We got to compete against some of the best debaters in the nation, and since we are a novice team, we were able to gain invaluable knowledge and skills that will help us a lot next year. Then we got to spend the last day exploring downtown Chicago and enjoying some Chicago deep dish pizza! It was an exciting and meaningful experience!” Clarke said.

Eight people were on the debate team, and every single one of them did a spectacular job. The debate team had four pairs: each pair, according to Clarke, averaged top 3 in every debate tournament this year. They also placed 1st and second in the city. Credit to these amazing debaters; seniors Sam Harrison and Laurence Quimbo, juniors Chaz Covington, Ethan Oakley, Christine Tran, Mia Mirsaidova , and sophomores Patrick Miranda, and Abby DeWeese.

Lawson has a gifted debate team, and they’ve earned many great awards as well as getting a trip to Chicago. 

 We started this year as a brand-new novice team and have worked really hard to reach varsity level with a very bright future ahead of us!” Clarke said.

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Branden Perez
Branden Perez, Staff Writer
Branden is a senior at James Lawson who enjoys lifting weights.  He is pretty active, participating in JLHS Varsity Soccer team. He enjoys buffalo chicken with mac and cheese.
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