Speech team to host public debate


Sarah D. Gonzales

Debate team member Taylor Gonzalez preps during practice for the April 27 public debate.

The Los Medanos College Debate Team will be holding a public debate at the Pittsburg City Hall inside city chambers April 27.

The 6:30 p.m. debate will cover the contentious issue of California’s minimum wage increase. A bill signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown earlier this month will see the state’s minimum wage increase by 50 cents each of the next two years before increasing by $1 per annually until it reaches $15 per hour in 2022.

Businesses with fewer than 25 employees will have an extra year to comply with the law.

“I really like that the students have the opportunity to show off their public speaking skills in addition [to] their debating skills,” said Marie Arcidiacono, adviser for the team. “This is actually a cool opportunity for faculty and students to come and see what the debate team really does.”

The LMC debate team spends 10 days prepping for the public debate. Eight members of the team participate during the event — four members on the proposition’s side who are for the measure and four members on the opposition side who will be arguing against the wage increase.

“I’m just excited about this discussion … it should be fun,” said Collin Brown, who has been on the team for two and a half years. “But whatever happens — we’ll still be a team at the end of it.”

“It’s amazing,” added Genaro Mauricio. “It’s the best experience I’ve had so far. It challenges me…It’s always fun to have a debate like this, it gives us exposure.”

In addition to the public debate, Aricidiacono has also planned a negotiations tournament May 6 in the LMC Library, Room L-109 at 1:30 p.m.

Students and LMC faculty alike are welcome to participate.

“I really hope the entire campus community will come out to the city hall. It will be a riveting discussion and a good time for everyone involved,” said Aricidiacono.