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April 4, 2013 / compassioninpolitics

Arguments against a queer theory affirmative

This will probably only make sense in the context of its original thread. Before you go there, I suggest you bookmark the page or at least open it in a different window. Here it is.

I think the resolution requires them to defend a structure and a mechanism. Thats a very minimalist responsibility.

I think the failure to do is warrants a negative ballot. This is a negative argument. This is tantamount to running a counterplan on the affirmative.

I think the failure to do so is a cop out.

If they say they get to “queer” the rules. You should “queer” the rules or norms of debate back.

Your best bet may be finding out how even queer/gay groups need to form coalitions. They can’t always be breaking the rules. Queers need norms. Anytime they say “theory” or say claim priority or–it seems rational that queer theory would dictate that can and should be queered.

Everything they read to critique you… a rationale to vote negative. Its stuff they should be defending in the first place.

Also, you might want to demonstrate multiple ways they could:
1. represent queer(s)
2. do their project in a topical way

Here are some options:
There are a number of homelessness or poverty specific Ks that you could run. These are the most specific to what they do.
Savior-Victim-Savage as a test of their meeting the resolution
Transportation bad K as a test of their meeting the resolution
Normativity (Schlag)
Queer narratives bad (they may only be metaphorical narratives….so this may be a no go).
Queer theory (various approaches)
Speaking for others bad (this is all from one article).
Something along the lines of Nayar.
Think about how consistent any of this is with your current strategy. I wouldn’t run any of it off-case.

Other alternatives might be:
1. doing a better job of representing homeless/poverty/queer
2. doing a better job of queering & challenging

Ultimately, pre-write your 2nc stuff if possible. I think capitalism may be your best bet. But you have to win offense versus queer theory perhaps–as being a singular focus. I would go for:

1. capitalism = poverty
2. capitalism = hurts minorities (curious if this links to ID politics bad links). I don’t think so because you are talking about broad coalitions.

Both of which turn the case.

I think you need specific examples about how queer politics is coopted by capitalism.

Hyper-identity focus causes us to neglect the broader cause of anti-capitalism or to get distracted from changing the system of capitalism (their perm probably can solve the 2nd part–but any risk they would). The problem is they will probably say they queer identity theory–or that under their system its subject to constant critique. However, in my opinion–their 1ac shows no real evidence of that. Its presents a pretty singular vision of what life in that situation is like.



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  1. compassioninpolitics / Apr 4 2013 5:17 am

    You might also question what it means to be “gay”? And therefore pro-gay or anti-gay?

    This (ideally) commits them to an identity.

    If they don’t….so you can’t or won’t define gay–the very basis of your affirmative?

    If they can’t tell you what it is….I’m still confused how you can define who is against it.

    For instance, if you say there are democratic values–but can’t define what they are. There’s no way to define whats
    against it.

    If you have an apple pie eating contest…you have to be able to identify an apple pie or at least an apple + pie….before you can evaluate the results and render anything like a decision.

    Plus, the inability to define means:
    1. judge can’t evaluate
    2. teams can’t talk about or evaluate
    3. no way to generate offense

  2. compassioninpolitics / Apr 5 2013 6:59 am

    Justice dictates that both teams get to run the most radical strategy they can consistent with:
    1. the minimalist burden of defending institutional action in the direction of the resolution.
    2. fair treatment of the other side (aka basically just #1)

    I want to talk about my Scotch Irish heritage in debate and how that relates to the oppression I’ve experienced.
    • How are we to compare these two?

    • Which is most important? Which subjectivity should be prioritized over the other? Which psychic harm?
    • Or conversely…..what if I think telling my stories are too painful? Should I be forced to tell my story even though the resolution shows no predictability that will be relevant?
    • Or what makes me a better activist for minorities?
    • What if I’ve done clean water activism thats saved 1000 lives–how do we compare? (I haven’t–its a hypothetical) Or what if good I do spills over to those people?
    • It creates an infinite research burden, because I can’t possible know the stories of everyone on the circuit.

    Rainbow Coaltion:
    I agree with everything you. We are all gay. We are all minorities. We are all immigrants. We are all outcasts.
    Telling your story in the debate context…..without asking for a discussion, flipping a coin, or giving up the ballot or at least your quest for the ballot is disengenous. It forces identities to fight zero-sum between identities. It destroys the possibilities for a true rainbow coalition. By asking for the ballot, you polarize the issue unnecessarily. Letting go of the ballot. Letting go of desire. Letting go of power and ego would allow a more genuine and complex and honest and authentic discussion of priviledge and the issues you want to talk about. For instance, If you did that….we probably wouldn’t run framework.

    Why am I penalized in debate for not being uber or hyper-oppressed?
    Why am I less credible in debate because I am not an uber minority?

    It sucks to be you. I’m sorry. Debate should be better. I don’t have control over that. Changing one ballot doesn’t fundamentally change that either. Your tactical approach to change is absurd. Its like protesting airlines when the government is the one committing the problem–especially when you haven’t made efforts to actually change the system.

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