'This house would make smoking illegal'
This was a bitterly argued debate by both teams involved. Arguments from the proposition were based on the idea that smoking is harmful to one's health, so why should the health service be expected to foot the bill for people who smoke. Emma C mentioned talked about passive smoking and why should our health be affected by someone else's actions. Cliona spoke about the fact that it is the government's job to make laws/rules that protect us, for example, the wearing of seatbelts, not speeding in our cars so it follows on, that we should make smoking illegal because it is harmful. Rian spoke about all the health dangers of smoking and that when we accept something we are normalising it, saying it's ok. From the opposition, Tyra spoke very well on being a democracy and freedom. She spoke about how the government shouldn't be allowed to dictate to people what they should and shouldn't do. Where will it end? she asked. Will the government be allowed to say that you can't get a tatoo, or that you can't eat a certain food because it has a high sugar content. She said that people should be allowed to make their own decisions. She spoke very well about what's happens if smoking does become illegal- are the guards going to arrest someone who is addicted to nicotine. 'Get real' she implored us, and said that the guards, many she felt confident in saying smoked cigarettes themselves. Tyra said we need to focus on real crime and punishing someone for doing something that they're addicted to is not the way forward. Her closing argument focused on the need to offer more support to people who want to give up smoking; the answer is not to put them in jail. Finally for the opposition, Katie argued that people should be allowed to make their own decisions with their body and health. If they want to smoke, so be it. It is not the government's or society's role to pass judgement. She said that when you make something illegal you create the problem of the black market and this in turn leads to more crime. She stated that when you tell young people not to do something, they do it because you are glamourising it and making them into a rebel. They want to appear 'cool'. Both teams made really good arguments but the winning team on the day was the proposition because their team members made effective use of rhetorical questions and imperative verbs. Their presentations were a lot more engaging. Well done Emma, Cliona and Rian.
Today's debate resulted in a draw. The motion being debated was 'Plastic surgery should be banned'. Arguments from the proposition in favour of the motion included the following:
Equally convincing arguments came from the opposition who made the following points:
Well done to Katie and Emma who took on St. Ciaran's College of Ballygawley in the Knights of St. Columbanus. The girls chose to speak on the following topic: 'We should have a profound respect for each other and this should be reflected in the way we speak and behave'. Well done to both girls who were commended by the adjudicators for the high standard of their presentations.
The Matheson Junior Debating National Mace is holding "The Speech" competition. Secondary school students (first to sixth years) are invited to submit a video of them delivering their favourite speech. Further information available here. The Matheson Foundation is also proud to support the Belvedere Mace Debating Competition and the school’s participation in the Oxford and Cambridge Union International Competitions. Matheson employees volunteer to participate in the judging panels during the preliminary rounds and finals of the debating competition.
See more at: http://www.matheson.com/about-us/matheson-foundation/junior-debating-national-mace#sthash.6MX1HHZ8.dpuf
The motion for today was 'This house believes that students should be penalised in state examinations for poor handwriting'. The opposition won this debate by 10 points. Well done everyone.
Well done to Phoebe, Ruth, Josie, Katie, Mia, Aoife, Emma C, Emma H, Emma M, Cliona and Rian on their poetry recitals in Mulligar Arts Centre on the 27th of October. Everyone in the junior category had to recite 'Lament for Thomas MacDonagh' by Francis Ledwidge and one other poem of their choice, whilst the intermediate category had to recite 'The Wayfarer' by Patrick Pearse and one other poem of their choice. Congratulations to Emma Clarke who qualified for the semi-finals in November.