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Tuesday, June 02, 2020

For the sake of argument...

Debating should be revived and made a required course throughout Junior and Senior high school... with the subject being given as much weight as mathematics, history, civics, and the hard sciences. 

The rules of polite disagreement, logic and persuasion have become scorned anachronisms in today’s climate of ‘I feel, therefore my views are as valid as your facts’. 

As a result, kids grow up unable to think critically, evaluate news and new information for logical consistency,  or test out new ideas with confidence among their peers. 

Kids must learn how to argue facts with detachment and respect for those with whom they disagree. 

They must internalize from an early age that disagreeing with someone does not make that person evil or an enemy to be neutralized or defeated. 

Oh, and ‘Robert’s Rules of Order’ should be introduced in Elementary School, and used throughout every year of education, up to and including university studies. 

Honest, respectful debate can’t take place outside a safe framework that provides unimpeded access to expression for even the soft-spoken and unassertive. 

A ‘bully pulpit’ can’t exist in a setting where rules of logic and decorum are integral threads in the fabric that clothes the intellect and instincts of a well-educated citizen.

Posted by David Bogner on June 2, 2020 | Permalink


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