WHAT FRESHMAN DEBATING IMPLIES.
A Freshman debating club contains more unexplored possibilities than most people give it credit for. The fact that a man does not have to be a debater at all to join the club puts it at once on a broader basis than most first-year organizations, and in that way it becomes a desirable institution for widening a Freshman's acquaintance. The Freshman club is essentially a beginner's organization and a large part of its most valuable work lies outside the field of formal debating. Rather than ponder subjects of international policy or political significance, the club would do well to discuss subjects of college importance. Such a program would help in forming an intelligent public opinion and it would bring out those men who can get up on their feet and talk sound sense in a convincing way without preparation.
Too often a Freshman debating club wastes most of its time on points of order and other academic formalities, and all but the few members who are interested in the highly specialized art of debating become disgusted and drift away. A certain attention of course must be paid to form and procedure, and the development of a Freshman team to meet the Yale freshmen must be considered. Still, a fair proportion of the meetings should be devoted to open discussion of topics which interest not only debaters, but scholars, athletes, and everyone else. This arrangement gives practice in clear thinking and speaking to a large number who have neither time nor inclination to go in for strictly academic debating, and makes the club of much more vital importance.