Posted by Allan Vester on Sep 09, 2018

Holyoake Debate: Featuring Edgewater College and St Kentigern College

The 2018 Holyoake debate presented the very topical moot,

“That freedom of speech is a threat to both social harmony and political stability.”

After a long break Edgewater College was back at the debate with an inexperienced team debating against the cup holders, St Kentigern College.  St Kent’s, in a display of good sportsmanship also brought a more junior team.

Despite the relative youth of the teams there was no shortage of good arguments, extended vocabulary and some great oratory  flourishes.

St Kentigern, debating for the  affirmative based their arguments on three main points:

  • Freedom of speech can lead to dire social consequences.
  • That rules and conventions set down in the past that allowed free speech are now out of date and should no longer hold.
  • If limits are placed on what people can say then there is no true freedom of speech.

The negating team, Edgewater College, based its case on the arguments that freedom of speech is:

  • A fundamental human right set down in the constitutions of countries and in the founding documents of the United Nations.
  • A pillar of democracy and without freedom of speech democracy is undermined.
  • A vehicle for transformative change in society.

In a split decision the debate was won by St Kentigern College with Conor from Edgewater College taking the award for the best speaker on the night.