The burdens of a debate
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The Burdens of a Debate. What to prove and how do I do it. What is a burden?. A burden is one of the things you need to prove for your side of the motion to be true It is NOT a specific argument – burdens are proved by them

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The burdens of a debate

The Burdens of a Debate

What to prove and how do I do it


What is a burden
What is a burden?

  • A burden is one of the things you need to prove for your side of the motion to be true

  • It is NOT a specific argument – burdens are proved by them

  • Prop and Opp will have different burdens – Prop will often have to prove all these things, Oppmay only need 1 or a couple

  • It is still a good idea on Opp to hit as many burdens as possible


Why are burdens important
Why are burdens important

  • That you prove all the things you set out to prove in your speech does not mean you will win

  • You will often be told another team beat you for fulfilling their “burdens” better

  • Teams will sometimes try to tell the judge what your burdens are, they often lie about this

  • Thinking about burdens in prep time keeps you relevant to the debate

  • List them during prep on your page and build arguments around proving them


Example thw reintroduce corporal punishment to schools
Example: THW reintroduce corporal punishment to schools

Prop burdens:

  • Chosen educational outcome(s) (academic results, life skills) are important

  • Corporal punishment is more effective than current methods of punishment at furthering that/those outcome(s)

  • The violence will seldom if ever be excessive (potential for abuse is non-existent or low)

  • Hitting children is a justifiable way of instructing

    Not Prop burdens:

  • Bad class control leads to bad outcomes in education

  • Bad educational outcomes lead to bad life prospects

  • Teachers want this power


Example thw reintroduce corporal punishment to schools1
Example: THW reintroduce corporal punishment to schools

Opp burdens:

  • Hitting children is never justified

  • Hitting children leads to poor educational outcomes

  • The system will be so open to abuse that good outcomes are outweighed by abusive ones

    Not Opp burdens:

  • Most teachers will not use this

  • Parents will disagree with it


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