So Mr Menick is jealous of the CFL PF topic, and I’m jealous of the LD topic. I think the solution is clear; let’s trade! His major objection to the LD topic is the lack of a conflict; there’s nothing inherently oppositional about arts education and athletic education; and in the realm of LD that may be true. However, there’s a little thing called a budget; I’d say that pragmatically, arts education and athletics are in constant competition for the same extra-curricular pot of money. Neither is part of various state testing procedures, so neither is required per se; but both need resources and therefore are head to head with each other when it comes to building a school district budget.
That’s all very detailed based and pragmatic for your average LDer, but in PF it would make plenty of ground for debate. Massachusetts in the age of Prop 2 1/2 has felt this acutely, and usually to the detriment of the arts.
Meanwhile the Native Americans question has all sorts of fascinating angles that stem to sovereignty, the responsibilities of an occupying government towards a technically subject people, how much aboriginal Americans are in fact members of our society and how much they’re something else entirely, what is owed, and to whom. It’s also a milder and less emotional way of attacking those issues, due to the fact that most Native Americans tend to be a step outside of mainstream and therefore their affairs aren’t as hot button as say, talking about slavery reparations to African Americans, or the Palestine/Israel crisis. LDers can get away with far more with an LD style negative than PF teams will be able to on the aboriginal question.
So the solution is clear: trade you! Hell, I’ll even throw my next Scrabulous game to sweeten the deal.