Michigan high school students will receive unique resources and training on national debate topic

For Immediate Release

MIDLAND — The Mackinac Center for Public Policy, an independent, Midland-based think tank, today announced the venues for its 17th Annual High School Debate Workshops:

    Midland – September 20, Valley Plaza Resort

    Grand Rapids – September 21, WMU Conference Center Downtown

    Jackson – September 22, Commonwealth Commerce Center

    Livonia – September 23, Burton Manor

The workshops are designed to provide high school debaters with powerful intellectual resources and training for their debates on the National Forensic League’s resolution for 2004-2005. This year’s resolution reads as follows:

"Resolved: That the United States federal government should establish a foreign policy substantially increasing its support of United Nations peacekeeping operations."

High school debate coaches throughout the state will receive formal invitations to these programs during the next two weeks. This is the 17th year the Mackinac Center has hosted Michigan’s students and debate coaches at nominal fees for intensive study of the Forensic League’s annual resolution.

Each workshop will feature a panel of debate experts ideally suited to this year’s topic:

    June Arunga is director of youth outreach at the Inter-Regional Economic Network in Kenya and has lectured in Europe and the United States on such topics as globalization, trade and economic freedom in Africa. She has produced a BBC documentary on the African diaspora and is a first-hand witness to U.N. peacekeeping operations.

    Doug Bandow is a widely published syndicated columnist and a foreign policy specialist for the Washington, D.C.-based Cato Institute. His work at the institute includes a variety of studies involving United Nations policies.

    Gregory Rehmke is a program director at Economic Thinking/E Pluribus Unum Films, a nonprofit organization in Seattle. He has spoken and written on each year’s national high school debate topic since the 1980s.

This year’s debate topic is particularly timely. Michael LaFaive, the Center’s workshop coordinator, notes that "with Iraq, Afghanistan, and the horrors of Sudan in the news daily, this year’s debate workshop is perfectly positioned to increase our students’ knowledge of world affairs."