The 135th Annual Richard T. Merrick Debate

The Philodemic Society, distinguished guests and honored judges convened this morning for the 2010 Merrick Debate, “Resolved: Humanity demonstrates greater nobility in war than in peace.” Judging this competition were the following honored gentlemen: U.S. Senator George LeMieux (R-Fla.), USMC General James Mattis, Retired USN Rear Admiral James McPherson and Mr. Peter Schechter. Keynoting for the Affirmation, Mr. Dustin Walker boldly articulated his conviction that the noblest profiles in courage are in the arena of war. Fellow keynoter Chancellor Randal Drew concurred, forcefully arguing that the greatest virtue is the hardest-won virtue. Meanwhile, on the Negation, keynote speaker Mr. Drew Peterson used the Cuban Missile Crisis, Martin Luther King and Lech Walesa to craft a compelling illustration of the nobility of peace. Keynoting with him, Mr. Tyler Hale reminded the Philodemic that war provides the opportunity for valor at the expense of choice. Floor speeches ranged from Mr. Desnick’s application of Aristotle to President Wagner’s vignette about guerrilla violence in El Salvador to Mr. Cantirino’s reminder that man must make ideology and not the other way around.

At the end of an indescribable Merrick experience, the Philodemic negated the resolution with 34 votes to 22 affirming.

Congratulations to Mr. William Downes, who was selected for the Father Ryder Award by the keynoters due to his terrific floor speech.

And most importantly, congratulations to Mr. Drew Peterson, whom the judges selected as the recipient of the 2010 Merrick Medal.

Please join us in the Philodemic Room on Thursday, April 29 at 8 pm for the final debate of the year. See the Philodemic Society group on Facebook for more information.



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