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Bring Debate Back to Campus! Three Benefits Students Are Missing

Enjoy this DVD Extra from "The Coddling of the American Mind" movie

Those of you who have watched The Coddling of the American Mind movie will recognize the young man in this clip.

Aryaan Misra came from India to the US for college, and was quickly enveloped by a twisted campus culture that was exacerbated by social media. Aryaan found himself embroiled in the Three Great Untruths, but not like some of our other interview subjects who then became strident activists. If you live in an environment where Three Great Untruths have taken hold, they can make you miserable—even if you don’t fall prey to them.

Aryaan’s college experience would have been even worse if he had believed the Three Great Untruths (referred to in the movie as: 1. You Are Fragile, 2. Always Trust Your Feelings, and 3. Us vs Them).

One factor that helped him stand strong was his background in high school debate (an institution that is suffering in the US).

To help turn things around on campus, please consider becoming a free or paid subscriber. Paid subscribers enjoy bonus content and other perks. They also support our nationwide campus tour (38 stops and counting!). We’ll soon be heading to Harvard, Cornell, Princeton, Wake Forest, the University of Toronto, and many other campuses.

The sad state of debate — in high school and beyond — is a topic we will explore in a future film!

In this clip from my interview with him, Aryaan reflects on three benefits to participating in debate teams.

Perhaps he was being humble, but he didn’t explicitly mention what I highlight here—his background in debate gave him the mental fitness to see through harmful ideas. It helped him avoid groupthink, which is a huge temptation to any undergrad, especially one who is thousands of miles away from home. 

I hope you enjoy this DVD Extra, and if you’d like to learn more about Aryaan’s story, check out The Coddling of the American Mind movie.