Saint Anselm’s Hosts GHS’s Debate Club


GHS Ethics, Speech and Debate members at St. Anselm

Sarah Beaudoin, Staff Writer

On Wednesday September 28th, 2022, the Ethics, Speech, and Debate club boarded a bus and went to Saint Anselm’s College for a day of adventures. Members went to talk about the ethics of resistance in WW2 with Professor Dubrulle and to be introduced to how the Ethics Circle works which they will be participating in later in the year. This trip could happen because Saint Aselms was kind enough to host for the club, being the ones running the Ethics Circle program, and the club has been participating for the past three years.

Going into this as a freshman can be a little nerve racking, but the participants had a lot of fun. Emma Bird says that, “Yes, it was worth missing school for. While the debate and purpose of the trip was still very intellectual, I also had tons of fun with my friends and learned and saw new things. Getting out in the world and having new experiences is important.” While the students did have fun, Bird says, “We had very intellectual conversations, such as what it means to be ethical and why it is so important.” She continues with, “To take the morality and obligations of humans into consideration,” and comparing it to “ ‘the golden rule,’ treat others the way you want to be treated.” Now if the students are talking about how they want to be treated in this day in age, then why talk about WW2? Technically there are two answers, one answer being that in WW2 people had to make a lot of decisions without knowing the outcome, so talking about it makes kids of this generation think about what it could have been like, and answer those questions and come to a compromise because there are multiple answers to some questions. Professor Dubrulle was the only professor available to meet with us at the time, so he chose the topic, which is the reason they really talked about WW2.

While anyone can be part of the club Mr. O’Brien, an advisor of the club, states that, “We ask that the students who attend our field trips are active members of the club. This means regularly attending our weekly meetings and actively participating in our preparation for both Ethics Circles and Model Congress.” Another reason why the club went during the school day was because it was the only time they could go, though other trips will be on the weekend, and this is for the New Hampshire Youth and Government Program. Mr. O’Brien explains the program by saying, “This program has students draft potential legislation for the NH state Legislature. Students then adopt various political positions, such as Representative, Senator, Governor, ect, and participate in a 2-3 day session at the State Capital Building in April. The session takes place over the weekend, but students who participate will miss that Friday for the field trip ”

After this trip the students found it interesting how their expectations and views of ethics may have changed. Bird says her expectations going into it was, “A big theater like in the movies” and continues with, “I didn’t know whether we would be debating in front of everyone or just listening.” Later when asked if her expectations were met she says, “Yes definitely! The lecture with Mr. Dubrelle was very engaging and interesting. The group of kids there were all very invested and motivated.”  At the end of the day the club walked out with a more in depth understanding of what they are doing and their view of ethics has changed for the better.