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What makes good debate evidence?

When you choose evidence it is common sense that you would want good evidence. So what makes a good piece of evidence? There are four basic traits that good pieces of evidence share. First, the evidence should come from a good believable source. Second, the evidence should be to the point. Third, it should make a persuasive argument on that point. And fourth, the evidence should give strong support to the point its making and never contradict itself.

Good Sources

There is a big difference between the New York Times and TV Guide. First off the evidence must be written and published in a publication people trust for facts. Second it helps if it is also a well known source. If a judge hears one person use the Washington Post and another teams use the Washington Digest the judge will more often then not believe the source he has heard before no matter how impeccable the Digest standards are.

Being Concise

Now we come to the second trait of being concise. A good piece of evidence should be 2 or 3 to 8 lines long. Anything longer takes too much time in the speech and probably more vague then it needs to be. Also avoid evidence that includes irrelevant ideas and/or arguments. A good piece of evidence should make its point and then end. If your evidence makes more than one point then you need to cut out parts that are not irrelevant to your case and make more than one card out of it.

Persuasiveness of the Arguement

The third trait is that your evidence should make a strong and persuasive point. You want evidence that unequivocally supports your side of the topic. Your evidence MUST get your point across. Skip evidence that includes "maybe," "if," and any other kinds of information that your opponents can and most likely will use against you.

Supports Itself

Last and most important of all, your evidence should give solid, clear support for whatever point your trying to get across. If your evidence said, "nuclear war is not a serious threat to mankind," your judge and opposing team will need proof to support that argument. Good evidence offers solid support and give reasons why it should happen or not happen. If your evidence does not give any reasons then it is unfortunately a useless piece of evidence. If your evidence does include a reason make sure it is a good reason. Avoid the illogical and absurd reasons. Last of all evidence is what you make of it. A great piece of evidence is nothing if you don't know how to use it.