School Affiliation: Brookfield East and West Bend High Schools

Debate Experience: I have judged LD solidly for the last two years. Before that it was fairly sporadic as I saw more PF than LD. I was a Policy debater in high school for all 4 years at West Bend East. I have been judging both Debate and Forensics since graduating from high school in ’03.

In Debate I began with Policy since that’s who most were looking for. I judged for Cedarburg HS, Rufus King, Brookfield East, and West Bend. For the last three years (at least), I have been judging PF and LD with sporadic Policy rounds if a fill-in judge was needed. I have judged for Brookfield East the last two years in PF and LD. Last year I judged PF at the NCFL Grand National Tournament in Albany, NY.

For Forensics, I have judged for West Bend East and West. I have judged all range of categories, and have been a Scorer and Parliamentarian in Student Congress. I also competed in Student Congress while a Forensics student.

Communication:

Speed
The first question I am always asked is, “What do you think about speed?” The answer: Having been a Policy debater and judge, I’m ok with speed as long as I can understand you. If you use speed, you must be clear when speaking! If I cannot understand you, I will not flow what you are saying. If it isn’t on my flow… it did NOT happen!

General Skills
Please follow all basic rules of grammar. Try to avoid filler words like: ah, umm, like, etc. It is annoying and makes you look/sound like you were unprepared or have no clue what you’re talking about. One here or there in your speech or C-X is forgivable, but not through your entire speech every speech. After that eloquence is always extremely enjoyed.

Persuasion
Isn’t that what part of LD is? What I look for is for someone to prove to me their side is the better side. You must persuade me that your option is better than the opponents. Evidence is always welcome. While logic and philosophy are “heavy hitters” in LD, if you say something (especially along the lines of quotes, stats, studies, etc) that cannot be followed/concluded by pure and simple logic – you better have the proof to back it up. I can be persuaded by both logic and evidence, and considering old habits die hard, I do tend to lean towards evidence just a bit more.

Cross-examination
This is first and foremost your time to ask questions. Please do not start a debate about evidence/logic/arguments etc… here! You suck up your time to ask and the other debaters as well. It truly isn’t fair in my eyes. If this happens I will stop you and get you back on track.

Debate:

Value/Criterion
I am sure both opponents values and valid and important. Please just accept both as end goals and leave it alone. I hate Value arguments because they always seem to get the debate nowhere. Criterion is open for debate since it is a core basis of your case arguments and such. If you lose your criterion, however, fear not, just adapt to your opponent’s and “beat them at their own game” so to speak. Basically, make the world better/happier than your opponent and I’ll like you better even if you have to use your opponent’s criterion to do it.

Definitions
I hate this type of debate/argument! Usually, the case is that the two definitions differ by one or two words, and though they still mean the exact same thing, it somehow creates chaos. Unless the difference is great and/or the resolution is greatly impacted, leave it alone.


Voters
Yes please! This is your round. Yes, I flowed it and have listened, and followed along, but you need to be the one to tell me what is of greater importance. Please analyze the round and tell me how to vote, so I know what you view as important.
----- Weighing The Round
As well as handing me the voters, please weigh them in. Tell me how they impact and thus why I should vote for your side.

Arguments I Won’t Listen To
Besides my dislike for Value and Definitions debate this is the rest of what I don’t want to hear:
  • Nuclear War – save it for the Policy kids (even though I won’t listen to it from them either).
  • Civil War/Genocide – Unless you’ve got a LOT of very strong proof… leave it at the door.


Other General Need To Know

  • I hate stupid arguments. If it sounds like not even you truly believe it, then trust me… I don’t. Please be logical in what you say. Actually think about what you’re going to say and then speak.

  • I like my debaters to be nice, polite, and civil. Not snipping and snapping in C-X. No sarcastic comments directed at your opponent.

  • I don’t care whether you sit or stand for C-X, it’s up to you. You also do not need to stare at me while in C-X. I know a lot of judges/coaches want you to, but I find it annoying. During C-X, you’re not asking me the questions, you’re asking your opponent.

  • Do what make you comfortable during the round. Don’t want to wear your jacket – take it off. Need to take a deep calming breath before beginning your speech – go ahead, I don’t start timing you until you begin speaking. Watch out though! Abuse of this will result in an equal amount of prep time lost. Take 30 seconds too long to begin = lose 30 seconds of prep. 10 seconds is all you should really need. Girls, those high heels making your feet hurt – take them off and debate bare foot.

*There are exceptions to the above: see-saw movements - I don’t mind you taking a few steps while speaking, but please don’t rock back and forth/ side to side in place. It’s very distracting, as is: playing with your jacket cuffs, hands in pockets, foot tapping, finger tapping, playing with your tie, and spinning your pen around in your fingers.

  • Lastly, I will not hold up rounds to disclose my decision or give oral critique. The ONLY time I will give oral critique is if I find it is important enough to your education as debaters. In that case I will provide a very brief explanation and answer brief questions. If I don’t initiate the comments, please don’t ask for them. If you spot me after the round, and there isn’t another starting or some other time constraint, please feel free to ask me about your round then.

Any other questions? Feel free to ask. I will be at the tournament in Appleton this weekend, you can reach me through Wikispaces (Ashley_S24), or e-mail is ok by me too: a_e_sexton@hotmail.com

For those of you who might not know me right off and don’t get the chance to e-mail me, you can ask just about any debate coach or a student from Brookfield East or West Bend, and they can point me out.