Monday, November 03, 2008

Amcor's US Election Debate Slight Review

The US Presidential Election 2008 is approaching. No wonder its echo pumps up on every corner of US allies and partner country, wishing the crisis would be wiped out by the new governing regime. The clash between Democrat and Republican had been represented by tight campaign of both parties since last 3 months on some sensitive issues. On academic level, Gadjah Mada University had responded the presidential race atmosphere by conducting English Debate Competition “US Election Debate 2008” in cooperation with American Corner and US Embassy in Indonesia. The event was held on October 31 until November 1, 2008; and it took place on the University Library and American Corner. The participants consisted of representation of the universities residing in Jogjakarta and around.

UMY speaker delivering his case

I was first of all excited to enroll on the tourney but I guess I never attain much time to prepare and to get teammates. So I kept that wish inside by telling myself that it’s time for a thorough regeneration ^^. My resignation from EDS UGM was definitely much of such regret for me, but I later began to enjoy my choice gracefully. The tourney were attended by one special adjudicator from US Embassy/ETA named Ms. Christy [sorry I forget her surname] who had surprisingly cute voice like those voice actors who dubbed for anime series…

The issues debated on the competition are related to what are being disputed inside the presidential campaign on the US recently, like the motion or topic on the quarter final round “This House Believes That Releasing State Assets to The Market Will Help Stabilizing the Economic Crisis”. The round was between UII B as the Democrat, versus UMY B as Republican senators. Lame though, but it was quite favorably when I found that they were noobs with maximum courage to grow up. A close round with margin of 1, that was just common, since both teams had provided their own determination, which was close to each other’s stance. On debating, you cannot play safe and justifying something from what is currently instable although it is feasible. Came with an idea of selling stock for 30% to the private companies wouldn’t be the answer, because you as an incumbent still get your hands dirty there. And aduh mak, they were debating about American ideology, was it capitalism or liberalism? Huhu.

Another quarter final round that I was involved in as chairperson [again from the latest round], team UGM showed up, played Republican role. They were on the position of pro-life side of abortion on the debate of whether or not the reversal of Roe vs. Wade would bring a balance of human rights. This was a quite clear debate and UGM B won against Atmajaya A by proceeding with more excellent judgment on how government of the state would faithfully help raising the babies even they were undesired. And the pro-choice couldn’t make it against the affirmative team when they couldn’t provide argument on how it is justifiable to take out one’s life by certain legal bases.

second speaker from Atmajaya University

I sat as chairperson on that cloudy Sunday for times, and when it came to the semi final round, UGM B met UMY if I’m not mistaken. To pierce it straight to the point, UGM B took another victory by beating them with close margin. I was kind of interesting to the motion “This House would Maintain US Military Presence in Iraq” because I had debated about it previously with team from Akademi Militer Magelang and it recalled the funny times out there. UGM won as Republican representatives by exacting the importance of US troops to maintain transitional government and meanwhile protecting US interest in middle east.

UGM won, and UII stood as runner up.

Trivial moments were when I got the opportunity to hang around with my colleagues in EDS, to greet Ms. Christy from US Embassy, and to have a slight talk with Jonas, debaters from UMY team who was from East Timor. Christy was a nice girl and she thought that the competition was better on the second day. On the other side of the adjudication table, Jonas told an interesting stories to me, Satrio from UNDIP and Ascana from American Corner; about what’s hot on his country recently. He spoke a lot about the East Timor’s Fretilin, a left-wing party which came with rather soclialist view, and also, the scandals within. We also shared thoughts on how East Timor struggled so hard in this transitional democracy state. He also had his view about developing the country to the future. Oh yeah, and I was so envious to the participants, they got books and CD about US politics to be taken with them. I just wanted one and there was no further respond from the committee ;P

Panel Adjudicator : Ardhy from UMY, Satrio from UNDIP, and Christy from US Embassy

I just felt nostalgic that I surprisingly left debate for such a long time. One year unfortunately took my skill away, while I’m now trying to embrace the feeling of winning once again. I’ve never made such a feat to be proud of on the podium, until that time I won and everybody showered me with compliment as they encouraged me to reach righer. I definitely treasure the moment.