Be Prepared Come Out On Top

1262 words - 5 pages

Be Prepared and Come Out on Top When you come to the podium of debate, having an idea of how your opponent is likely to argue will render you more prepared. Logic states that the more prepared you are for a task the higher your chances are for success. This directly applies to debate and argument. In class we are reading a book called Perspectives on Argument. In this book the author, Nancy Wood, gives generalities on different debate styles based on culture, gender, and race. She made statements about African Americans, Asians, and women. All of her statements pointed out general weaknesses in argument style of each of these groups. Many of the members of our class took her statements as insults and declared that they were wrong. I, being a Caucasian male, was given no stereotypes, and was able to view these reactions and generalities objectively. The class, lead by the professor, took all credit out of her argument and simply declared it wrong and that it should not even be a part of the book.The mood of the class was that these were quite simply stereotypes. They felt that they were oversimplified and were therefore wrong. They did not attack her evidence nor did they attack the credibility of the expert opinions she brought up. Yes, I do agree that stereotyping a person based on there appearance, cultural background, race or gender is a bad thing. They should be allowed to present themselves, free from prejudice, before any conclusions are drawn about them. I am not saying that stereotyping has any benefit in debate, because by definition stereotypes are oversimplified. Oversimplification is definitely a bad thing. This is why Nancy Wood uses statements like generally, many, and often. In using these terms she is avoiding oversimplification. This is why you can not diminish her statements a simply stereotypes. It is only obvious that when you are to interact with a person on a competitive level, knowing how they will probably debate will raise your probability of success.Suppose that you are to debate or argue with a person that lowering the taxes on the wealthy is good for the economy. As it stands you have a fifty-fifty percent chance of convincing the audience that you are correct. If the audience is more democratic then you would probably have to convince them that their stance on the topic is logically wrong. You would also probably not want to make yourself sound like a right-wing republican. You would probably benefit mostly by seeming to relate to them in as much as you can. Although if the audience is more republican you would probably have to strengthen their beliefs on the issues and give them enough proof as to not allow them to be swayed by the other debater. You probably would also benefit by declaring yourself a republican and trying to create an atmosphere of a brotherhood with them. You would most likely benefit by building on their beliefs in economics rather than trying to completely rebuild their logical process as you...

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