ERIC Number: ED340076
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Nov-2
Reference Count: N/A
Legal Presumption and Equity: Applications to Propositions of Value.
Presumption has played a major role in the administration of justice since ancient times, and has a venerable tradition as a component of debate theory. In Cross Examination Debate Association (CEDA) competition, however, the locus of presumption is uncertain. Some authors would place the presumption with one side (typically the negative), while others would leave that determination to the auditor. The test of a legal principle's relevance to debate is whether that principle makes debate more equitable or enhances debate's educational value. In debate, a presumption requiring one side to prove its position beyond a reasonable doubt would be arbitrary and would not improve the educational value of debate. The proof standard of civil litigation, that a proposition be proved by a preponderance of the evidence, would be a better rule for debate. Legal presumptions in favor of values would be difficult to resolve in debate and would be of ambiguous educational value, but would not be inequitable to either side. CEDA could adopt the legal concepts of conclusive presumption, rebuttable presumption, and inference, but should only do so if such rules would improve fairness and increase debate's educational value. (Twenty-three references are listed.) (Author/SG)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Burden of Proof; Cross Examination Debate Association; Debate Theory; Presumption (Debate)
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Speech Communication Association (77th, Atlanta, GA, October 31-November 3, 1991).