A history of high school parliamentary debate from 2012-2018.


Round 1A.

THW impose harsher sentences on celebrity criminals.

THS reduced criminal sentences for those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

THW not allow out of court settlements for workplace discrimination and/or harassment.

Round 1B.

THBT police officers should be punished more harshly for their crimes.

THW prohibit criminals from publishing accounts of their crimes.

THW require all defendants in criminal trials to be represented exclusively by public defenders.

Round 2A.

THW abolish permanent members on the UN Security Council.

TH, as Iran, would cease all support for military activities in other Middle Eastern countries.

THBT assassination is a legitimate tool of foreign policy.

Round 2B.

THW give the International Criminal Court independent universal prosecutorial authority.

(Currently the ICC may only prosecute crimes committed in countries who are a party to the court, or

crimes referred to it by the UN Security Council. Not all countries are members, and some have

withdrawn when faced with likely prosecution.)

TH, as the US, would withdraw its military forces from the Middle East.

THBT the US and its allies should actively retaliate against cyber attacks.

Round 3A.

THW require all non-managerial workers to be unionized.

In the event of another financial crisis, THW not rescue private firms.

TH supports job security legislation. (Alternatively: THW limit the right of corporations to fire workers.)

Round 3B.

THW permit members of the armed forces to unionize.

THW require firms that outsource should be required to see these workers receive the same pay and

benefits as direct employees. (“Outsourcing” is the hiring of temporary workers or subcontracting

workers through another firm to do the same work as employees on the corporate payroll.)

THW not offer government incentives to private firms to relocate.

Round 4A.

THW require all politicians to publicly retract false or misleading statements.

THW require all eligible and able adults to vote.

THBT all political campaign activity should be publicly funded.

Round 4B.

THBT politicians should be required to open their private lives for review prior to seeking office.

THW give all able adult residents the right to vote, regardless of citizenship.

THW require all campaign and/or election activity and advertising to be funded by individual donations

(with corporations and other organizations not considered as “individuals” in this instance).

Round 5A.

THBT the largest internet firms should be broken up. (E.g., Amazon, Google, Facebook, Alibaba, Twitter,


THBT the source code for the software in any consumer product should be publicly available.

TH, as a parent of a school-age child, would see that their child spent more time reading books than

using electronic devices

Round 5B.

THBT social media firms should not censor users unless posted content violates the law.

THBT the algorithms used by internet firms should be available for public inspection and review.

TH, as a parent of a school-age child, would allow their child to decide how much time to spend using

electronic devices.

Octofinals A

THBT legal rights organizations (e.g., the ACLU), should refuse to defend the rights of those who deny

the rights of others (e.g., white supremacists, neo-Nazis).

THBT technology is more of a threat than a benefit to human rights.

THW prioritize national security over individual rights.

Octofinals B

TH prefers the US approach to free speech over the European approach to free speech. (The US

approach only suppresses speech likely to result in imminent violence, e.g., yelling fire in a crowded

theater or inciting a riot. The European approach permits the suppression of speech likely to be

harmful, e.g., “hate speech”, insults to religion, Holocaust denial.)

THBT government surveillance of public spaces is always justified.

THBT repression of civil rights justifies violent action.


THBT cultural appropriation is appropriate.

THBT art and artists should be judged on the work only, not the person.

THBT government should not support the arts financially.


THW limit religious schools to religious instruction. (I.e., K-12 students would be required to attend nonreligious

schools for required secular education.)

THW remove the tax exemptions from religious institutions and organizations.

THW bar religious leaders from advocating for political causes or candidates.


THBT elected officials should not be subject to criminal indictment and/or subpoena while in office.

TH, as a senior government official, would resign in protest rather than stay and influence policy.


Round 1, Flight A

THW immediately normalize relations with Russia.
THBT residence confers citizenship.
THBT the UN is a failure.

Round 1, Flight B

THBT the European Union is a failure.
THW hold China responsible for any military attack by North Korea.
THW expel immigrants who do not assimilate.

Round 2, Flight A

THBT voting power should vary by income and/or wealth.
THBT anyone running for office should be required to pass a competency test.
THBT referenda cause more harm than good.

Round 2, Flight B

THW give parents the right to vote for minor children (i.e., cast an additional vote for any child under
the voting age).
THBT eligible voters who fail to vote should lose the privilege.
THBT media should be required to provide equal exposure to all candidates.

Round 3, Flight A

THW require anyone who discovers a security flaw to immediately disclose it.
THBT industrial espionage by less developed countries is justified.
THBT the US should retain control of the internet.

Round 3, Flight B

THBT all software in consumer products should be publicly available for review and customization.
THBT “sharing economy” companies like UBER or AirBNB should be held to the same standards as their
regular economy competitors.
THW ban the use of software developed in Russia or China.

Round 4, Flight A

THBT overregulation threatens our future.
THBT overpopulation threatens our future.
THBT artificial intelligence threatens our future.

Round 4, Flight B

THBT surveillance technology threatens our future.
THBT environmental degradation threatens our future.
THBT economic inequality threatens our future.

Round 5, Flight A

THW not penalize companies that raise prices during a natural disaster.
THW tax religious organizations.
THW not permit families to transfer significant wealth between generations.

Round 5, Flight B

THW eliminate the advantages of wealth.
THW ban the purchase of lottery tickets or gambling by the poor.
THW require all workers to be represented by a union in wage negotiations.

OctoFinals, Flight A

THBT parliamentary democracy is superior to presidential democracy. (Parliamentary democracy
combines the legislative and executive powers; presidential democracy separates them; e.g. United
Kingdom compared to the United States.)
THBT free trade is not fair trade.
THBT restricting internet access does a country more harm than good.

OctoFinals, Flight B

THBT Chinese style “state capitalism” is superior to Western style “free market capitalism”.
THBT soft power is superior to hard power.
THW forcefully replace dysfunctional regimes is other countries.


THBT a government single-payer healthcare system is superior to a competitive free-market system.
THW price medical care according to the value of the cure.
THW permit any medical treatment agreed between a patient and their doctor.


THW require colleges to accept students strictly on merit.
THBT students should be required to work for at least one year before attending college.
THBT everyone should be required to pass a citizenship test to graduate.


THBT the legal system is inherently unfair to the poor.
THBT violent protest is never justified in a functioning democracy.
THBT the legal system should favor reasonable solutions over strict adherence to the law


Round 1, Flight A

THBT politicians should be permitted to designate a limited number of specific campaign promises that will automatically become law if they are elected.

THBT women are superior to men as political leaders.

THBT political contributions and campaign spending should not be tax deductible.

Round 1, Flight B

THBT a system of government funded election campaigns is superior to a system of privately funded election campaigns. 

THW apportion legislative seats of socio-economic status rather than by geography.

THBT political parties are obsolete.

Round 2, Flight A

THBT jury trials are obsolete.

THBT a nation's high court should consider public opinion as a factor in their judicial decisions.

THW require all criminal defendants to use publicly provided counsel and ban the use of privately hired defense lawyers.

Round 2, Flight B

THBT incarceration prior to trial violates the presumption of innocence and should therefore be banned.

THW prosecute medical tourism by citizens of developed countries, that is, travel to foreign countries for medical treatment that is less expensive or unavailable in one's own country.

THBT a nation's a high court should be aware of and be willing to apply principles from foreign laws and legal systems.

Round 3, Flight A

THW ban modifications to the human genome.

THBT the potential emergence of machine intelligence is one of the greatest threats facing mankind.

THBT economic growth is the solution to the problem of global climate change.

Round 3, Flight B

THBT over-regulation is the greatest threat to long-term prosperity.

THBT patents are obsolete.

THW ban "killer robots", that is, weapons designed to make autonomous decisions whether to take human life.

Round 4, Flight A

THBT the West should reject the Iran nuclear agreement.

THBT economic sanctions are ineffective.

THBT the US is primarily responsible for the problems in the Middle East.

Round 4, Flight B

THW actively cooperate with Iran to solve conflicts in the Middle East.

THBT Iran should reject the Iran nuclear agreement.

THBT the US is the only country that can solve the problems in the Middle East.

Round 5, Flight A

THBT developing countries should subsidize daughters but not sons.

THW send only women and/or gay diplomats to countries that discriminate against women or gays.

THBT countries should require minimum quotas for foreign and/or domestic content in media (e.g. television, film, radio, newspapers, etc.)

Round 5, Flight B

THW mandate equal prime-time coverage of men's and women's sporting events.

THBT the government should not be involved in marriage in any way, i.e., treat everyone as individuals regardless of their domestic arrangements.

THBT important characters in film and television should be portrayed by actors of the same race, ethnicity, and gender preference.

Partial Double OCtofinals

THW require companies to provide benefits to all part-time and contract workers.

THBT anyone can succeed through hard work, regardless of background.

THW limit the maximum compensation any company could pay relative to that of its median salary.

Octofinals, Flight A

THBT corporations should be held responsible for the labor and safety practices of their suppliers.

THW privatize all major infrastructure such as roads, railways, airports, harbors, utilities, etc.

THW support gender quotas for management and executive positions in corporations.

Octofinals, Flight B

THW not permit foreign state-owned enterprises from buying control in private corporations.

THW permit corporations to discriminate on the basis of lifestyle factors like smoking or obesity when hiring.

THW require corporations to spend a minimum portion of their revenue on socially beneficial activities.


THW immediately return illegal economic migrants to their country of origin.

THBT assimilation is preferable to multiculturalism.

THBT the current wave of immigration is a net benefit for Western Europe.


THBT religion has a place in public education.

THBT elected officials should not be required to act against their conscience, even if the law requires them to do so.

THBT employers should not be required to accommodate employees' religious practices.


THBT government collection and storage of personal data including communications does not violate civil rights.

THBT the US should maintain control of the internet for the foreseeable future.

THW prohibit public shaming on the internet.


Round 1, Flight A
THW ban private schools.
THW assign students to schools on a random basis.
THBT standardized testing has had a negative effect on education.

Round 1, Flight B
THBT parents who are able to should still not choose to send their children to private
THBT teachers should be evaluated based on the academic performance of their
THBT gifted and talented programs should be directed to schools in poor
communities if educational resources are limited.

Round 2, Flight A
THW permit the free movement of workers among countries.
THW not permit doctors to emigrate from poor countries.
THW reject “birth right citizenship” (that any child is automatically a citizen of the
country in which they are born).

Round 2, Flight B
THW permit the free movement of people among countries.
THW require STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) students from
poor countries to return home after graduation.
THW require all immigrants to assimilate to the language and culture of their new

Round 3, Flight A
THW guarantee a minimum income to all citizens
THW implement a 100% estate tax.
THW require all welfare recipients to work.

Round 3, Flight B
THW limit total compensation paid to any employee by any corporation.
THW give more votes to the poor.
THW prioritize poverty reduction over environmental protection.

Round 4, Flight A
THW eliminate affirmative action.
THW deny non-profit status to churches that practice gender discrimination.
THW pay a living wage to stay-at-home parents.

Round 4, Flight B
THW require elected legislative bodies to meet gender and ethnic quotas.
THBT an unequal outcome with respect to gender or ethnic group is evidence of
illegal discrimination.
THW apply a lower rate of income tax to women than to men.

Round 5, Flight A
THW allow convicted felons to vote.
THW permit police to arbitrarily stop and frisk individuals in high crime areas.
THW permit vice and tax it.

Round 5, Flight B
THBT only violent crimes should result in prison sentences.
THW forbid employers from inquiring about the criminal record of potential or actual
THW decriminalize the possession of drugs.

Partial Octos, Flight A
THW criminalize smoking or alcohol consumption while pregnant.
THW permit payments for organ donations.
THW not permit the rich to pay for medical care for themselves that is not generally
available to everyone.

Partial Octos, Flight B
THW deny religious exceptions to vaccinations or medical care.
THW limit the amount of health care provided to the elderly.
THW ban tobacco exports to poor countries.

THBT rich countries should compensate poor countries for the impact of global
THBT rich countries should not be permitted to pay agricultural subsidies to their
THBT countries should require imports be manufactured under the same labor and
safety standards that they maintain domestically.

THW place surveillance cameras in most public spaces.
THBT individuals have a right to be anonymous.
THW permit schools to discipline students for their internet and phone activity.

THBT the US should treat countries who actively discriminate against women in the
same manner that it treats countries who participate in apartheid.
THW ban all media (such as music, films and video games) which glorify misogyny.
THW establish exclusive schools for the LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender,