The Instigator
Pro (for)
3 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
0 Points

The Supreme Court Proceedings Should Be Televised

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Post Voting Period
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after 1 vote the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/19/2013 Category: Politics
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,119 times Debate No: 30399
Debate Rounds (1)
Comments (2)
Votes (1)




First, I would like to state my narrowing. I would like to narrow this topic to state supreme courts, because it is already favored by 34 out of the 50 states. Now I would like to state my plan. Supreme court proceedings will be only on cable, on a pay per view basis, 5 dollars per proceeding. This will go to governmental funding. Also, supreme court proceedings will only be directly televised if there is direct permission from the people in the room. If there is no permission, names will be changed, and faces will be blurred. Now I would like to state my points. First, these proceedings play a huge role in people's lives, and if we want, we can know what is going on. This will increase political awareness, which many people need. According to, 5 out of the 9 Supreme Court Justices say that the supreme court proceedings should be televised. Politics affects everyone in the United States. In a positive or negative way, it determines everything important in the world. Secondly, Supreme Court Proceedings should be televised because it can be used for educational purposes. People in law business can use this for real world examples. According to the University of Pennsylvania, the use of media for education is strongly encouraged. This is an added bonus for education. Judges will know this is for education. Therefore, they will not be pressured by people on television watching them. Lastly, the televising of the supreme court proceedings abides by the Bill of Rights and the Constitution. The first amendment states that there is a right of press, and "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech or the press"- The Constitution. Televising the supreme court proceedings is still within the limits of the law. Therefore, it is of extreme importance that the citizens of the United States have the right to view state supreme court proceedings. Now I would like to go over my points. First, viewing the supreme court proceedings plays a very important role in our lives. Second, these proceedings can be used for educational purposes. Lastly, supreme court proceedings should be televised because it is within the limits of our law. Our forefathers of the United States.....237 years ago.........had a vision......that one day......people would be view supreme court proceedings on television. Thank you.


So everyone knows where I'm going on this, I will first attack on technical arguments, and then attack the substance.

While perhaps in principle I agree with you, your plan cannot work. First, You say you want to limit the scope of the debate to the states, but all your evidence talks about the US Supreme Court and how it would work on that level, so the debate is lost for you on that alone by violating your own standard. Second, you say this is a plan, but you have no administration, weak funding, no execution of the plan, and no solvency to show where this has worked. Therefore, you again lose as you have presented no plan in fact. Now that the two main technical arguments are out of the way, it is time to actually begin attacking the 'plan'.

First, last time I checked, Court Proceedings at any level were matters of public record that could be reviewed by the pubic at any time. To impose the requirement that these proceedings are now broadcast live with the weak financing of $5/buy-in would create an undue burden on our judiciary.

Second, by bringing in cameras onto the proceeding concerning questions of law, there is now the question of possible comprise of the judiciary from three directions. First, by making court cases from keeping the judges busy with administering the broadcasting, since your plan didn't talk about who would actually run this pay-per-view network or on the fact that it could unfairly determine which cases the justices take up, since the question will now be what cases will bring in the most buy-ins. Finally, with the cameras on, the justices could become more worried about popularity, they could vote not based on the merits and law of the case, but rather on the thoughts of the public.

Third, no matter the possible level of education provided, if schools would have to pay money for each case, which you did not give an exception to in your plan, the likelihood that this would be used for educational is limited, especially since educational budgets getting so tight.

Fourth, concerning your interpretation of the Constitution the wishes of our forefathers, in his discussion of Televising and Broadcasting Trials, Paul J. Yesawich Jr. argued that the requirement of a public trial was created and satisfied at a time when television DID NOT EXIST and newspapers were fewer. I put the part of Television not existing in all caps since you seem to think Washington and Jefferson could imagine high speed audio/visual transmission at a time when the fastest news traveled was on horseback. Also, there have been established standards of limits on the freedom of the press and speech, such as during time of war the press' release of information is limited.

Now, for voters:
1) Pro went outside their own scope of the debate, making it unfair from the beginning on Opp.
2) Pro said they had brought a plan, but left out key requirements of the plan, such as Administration, Execution, and solvency of the plan. Without those you have no plan, but wishful thinking.
3) Court proceedings are already open to the public and have their records open to the public, thus requiring broadcasting is unneeded and an undue burden.
4) Cameras can compromise the judiciary by wasting their time with unneeded administration, not choosing cases based on merit, and not voting based on the law but on the public view.
5) The possible benefit to education would be negated by the fact that school budgets are already tight, and likely could not afford an additional cost.
6) The courts already fulfill the right of the accused to a public trial, and appeal proceedings have never been required to be public. Any change would require a constitutional amendment across the states and the US.

The courts have always had the privilege of deciding what is allowed in their courtroom, from what evidence is allowed to what testimony can be presented. This again remains in the hands of the courts and my opponent has not presented a viable reason for change. It is for these six reasons I urge you to vote for the Opposition.
Debate Round No. 1
2 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Posted by DWolf2k2 4 years ago
I would like to note that kylemoto presented this as a plan or policy debate, and as such my job as Con was NOT to show why we shouldn't televise the proceedings, but to show why his plan, as presented, WOULD NOT WORK. As such, I ask that future voters consider that in their voting.
Posted by kylemoto 4 years ago
that was a good debate
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by imabench 4 years ago
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: con focused mostly on attacking what pro would do to televise Supreme Court hearings rather then actually give arguments about why they shouldnt be televised.... Even though this was a one round debate a lot of pro's points went unrefuted or were stronger then the con's counter arguments.