In a debate, It doesn't matter who's right. It doesn't matter who is best backed-up by science. It matters who can move the audience best. In reality, All it serves to do is to reinforce people's prejudices when they are forced to so vehemently defend them, Because they can't just say, "Oh, Sorry, I was wrong! " In the middle of a debate.
Debates are, At their core, Completely decoupled from the actual issues being discussed. It's not about learning something new, It's about making your side look better through good one-liners and rhetorical "gotcha" questions. A climate change denier and a climate scientist having a debate is completely useless because there is actually an outright correct answer. All a climate scientist would do is give notoriety to the denier. And even if they lose, They are still objectively correct.
Debating is an art form one can learn, It has nothing to do with facts. And way too often, Especially in today's world, We have dangerously coupled these two.
Debate is argument for argument's sake. It is saying "my points are stronger than yours" when in fact it is equally possible that both parties debating have weak and incorrect points compared to the truth. The only time debate is viable is for resolutions that have no correct answer -- for if they do, no debate is required! Furthermore to argue a resolution with no correct answer is literally argument for argument's sake. No one can be right, only more persuasive. I think we generally value truth over a strong argument.
Expressing ideas and challenging personal beliefs is very important. Debates also demand people to interact in a conflict rich environment while maintaining composure. In and of itself this skill is valuable, but it also allows people to express ideas effectively and analyze decisions deeply. The skills, information, and different perspectives gained from debating absolutely makes debates have a point.
The reason i say yes is because debate's last a very long time and never get to the point, well, most of the time. What i am saying is is that maybe they should make it so they have very limited time to talk. Also, the debates usually make no sense sometimes.