Dinner Debate -- November 2016

Donald J. Trump and Hillary R. Clinton. Two of the most divisive candidates for the American presidency in recent history. In an increasingly partisan political atmosphere aided by the rise of social media 'bubbles', we sought to bridge the gap between the left and right by holding a debate that pitted the characters, positions, and legacies of each candidate against one another.

Each candidate had an equal number of advocates, who argued passionately for their respective sides. We tried to square the reprehensible characteristics of Donald Trump with some of his more agreeable policies, such as the promise to break up the political gridlock of Washington. Advocates for Clinton sought to shed the baggage of the Clinton name, and focus on the tangible  policies of hers that they believed would create widespread change for the better in America.

The debate proved to be surprisingly evenly-matched, with each candidate receiving fair amounts of both praise and criticism. We found it enlightening to work our way through the thought processes of supporters of both candidates, and closed our debate with a discussion on how the Internet and mass media have facilitated the widened chasm between the left and the right in American politics.

Jonathan Short