We urge the presidential candidates to have debates — “real” debates, not debate/Q&A exchanges, but ones with resolutions to be proven or disproven. And that these debates be not necessarily between the candidates, but between advocates selected by political candidates. And we urge that these debates not be oral, but in writing — conducted over the Internet.
We do not urge such debates to replace the present debate/Q&A oral exchanges, but rather to supplement them; to precede them — in the same way that legal briefs precede oral arguments in a trial.
We also urge that political parties themselves engage in such “real” debates, in the same fashion.
We urge that the various states enact parameters for political debates by candidates and/or political parties that, if met, would would become required reading (or, with audio files, required listening) for voters. That is, such transcripts would be made available to voters, and, prior to voting, they would be required to attest to having read or listened to such material. Waivers, including waivers for conscientious objection, would be available. Should a citizen not comply, and not seek to avail him- or herself of any waivers, or to qualify for them, then such citizen is nonetheless still be free to vote, but be subject to 12-hour daytime solitary incarceration, with only voter materials (ones presenting opposing views) available for diversion.
FOSTERING CRITICAL THINKING AND FREE SPEECH
We urge that the content of secondary school textbooks be approved not by a single state authority, but by two — one representing the political majority, and the other, the political minority, with each having sole authority over an (electorally) proportionate amount of the curriculum. To put it another way, it is a replacement of “winner-determines-all” education with “winner-determines-the-greater-part” education. Such competing educational authorities could lead, on some matters, to competing curricula within the same classes, particularly with respect to classes for civics, history, economics, biology and English. Such a dual approach would allow more freedom in addressing sensitive or controversial topics, foster greater critical thinking by the students, and lay the psychological foundation for free speech. (This is a later proposal, and is not discussed further at this website at this time; links to any future publications, however, will be provided on this page.)
Fireworks image courtesy of FreeFoto.com
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