FORT PIERCE — On Saturday, Dec. 2, 2023, students from Brevard, Saint Lucie, and Okeechobee counties competed at the Incubate Debate’s second regional competition of the 2023-2024 school year. At the competition, middle and high school students debated the merits of a federal carbon tax, a potential TikTok ban, and whether or not the United States should reinstate the “Remain In Mexico” policy.
Veterans of the American Legion and college professors from FIT and IRSC evaluated students not only in their ability to give a speech but also in their civility and aptitude for respectful disagreement. Incubate’s program manager, Yurit Santos, described Saturday’s final round as “the most competitive debate I’ve seen. Our competitors were smart, engaging, and civil as they debated Remain in Mexico in the final round.”
A special congratulations to Colton Collins from Okeechobee High School who won second place in the final round in Saturday’s competition. Colton argued in favor of reinstating the “Remain in Mexico” policy stating, “It’s not about keeping people out, it’s about first making sure it’s safe for them to come in.”
Adrielle Bass from Independence Classical Academy and Joshua Billman from Pietas Classical Christian were awarded our E.M. Hemingway Nobility Award, a distinction named in honor of Ernest Hemingway and his profound quote: “There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.” The EM Hemingway Nobility Award is awarded to the students who demonstrate the most personal growth throughout the competition.
If students or schools are interested in participating in Incubate Debate, their next competition is Saturday, Feb. 10 at Independence Classical Academy. Students will be debating the benefits of the International Monetary Fund, daylight savings time, and the choice to drop the atomic bomb on Japan. Students or schools can learn more at Incubatedebate.org.