News Category: Arts & Poetry
From Margaret, a News Team Contributor
Loud cheering as every winner’s name is announced, still ringing in your ears days later. Smiles plastered on the faces of every competitor basking in the glory of their latest win. Rows and rows of glistening trophies, medals and gavels as far as the eye can see. This is an image that is commonly associated with Speech and Debate, one of the most popular extracurriculars in the nation.
On a national scale, Speech and Debate is cultivating fundamental skills in America’s future poets, authors and excellent speakers through events including Public Forum, Lincoln-Douglas, Original Oratory and countless others. It is also a testament to the progression of our society since its establishment in 1925.
During every competition, I am exhilarated to see more and more female competitors in my chamber alongside me. As a girl who grew up seeing little to no individuals able to represent my half of the American population in Washington D.C., I longed and still do long for a female president. The beauty of Congressional Debate lies in the fact that it is providing a platform for the next generation of female politicians and facilitating further gender equality in the government. After all, a woman’s place is in the House, Senate and someday the White House. From the bottom of my heart, I believe that a current female Congressional Debater can eventually take her oath in the Oval Office, while the rest of us fill the seats in the Supreme Court and Congress as Justices, Senators or Representatives.
While victories are a certain advantage to the club that lures many individuals in, it soon becomes so much more than that on a personal level. As a member of Amador Valley High’s Varsity Congressional Debate team, I can attest to this fact. After my first competition, I fell head over heels in love with my event, an emotion that my fellow teammates also experienced. Every single one of us poured our blood, sweat and tears into it-not for the honor of winning, but in the name of doing what we love.
The general public only sees the glory of the end result. They never see the endless nights of writing and memorizing speeches or the early mornings rushing to our respective chambers. We leave the comfort of our homes before the sun rises and come back accompanied by the twinkling stars of the clear night sky. We debate, cross-examine, discuss and vote on modern-day issues while our counterparts in the nation’s Capitol are also doing the same.
We are the people. We are the future. Listen to our voices today, and don’t ever underestimate our potential to incite change for the better.
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