Debate Team Argues Their Way to Victory

By Nursat Jahan ’19
The Debate Team brings yet another trophy home, this time from a tournament held at Bronx Collaborative School. With almost 20 schools, such as High School of American Studies, Worldview, and Bard Queens, the team argued about the topic of capital gains tax and whether or not the United States should abolish it.

According to The Balance, “The capital gains tax is a government fee on the profit made from selling something you own.” It is calculated as the total sale price minus the original cost of the property. So if the sale price is less than it was purchased, the government deducts these losses from the tax returns, which means lower tax payments.

“The resolution we listed suggested the elimination of the capital gains tax, which was one of the most topical resolutions we have debated for sure in light of the re-
cent tax plan passed by current administration in the past week,” said Margarita Potapova ’18, who won first place at the tournament with three wins and zero losses and an average of 29 speaker points.
The team only had one week to prepare for the debate with the other schools and had a “difficult time” understanding the topic, said Sanjida Choudhury ’19. They all conducted detailed research and debated against one another in order to practice.
“Almost every day, after school, for a good week, I spent a good hour or so, researching the topic and learning about the opposing viewpoints,” said Choudhury. “It was difficult for me to balance school work and the extra work for debate, but I love it so much, that it is all worth it at the end of the day.”

Kai Brady ’19, who won first place alongside Potapova for the open public forum category, said, “As for my experience, this topic was more difficult than others, so I had to work harder to understand and be able to debrief for the novices.”

The team worked hard and presented the argument in front of the “intimidating judges,” said Choudhury.

Brady said, “Most of the judges were parent judges, so we had to explain more in depth because they would get confused, but some of them were coaches and were easier for us to speak as fast as possible and use debating terminologies.”

“But overall, we have an amazing team because we work good as a team and we are always there to help each other out. because after all, we win and lose together,” said Choudhury.

As for the future of the team, the team is practicing every day after school to face more challenging schools such as Bard Manhattan and Sunset High School,
and hope to go to the city championships in March.

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