Reflections on the “Debate”

Last night, like many others, I stayed up late to watch the debate and the various commentaries that followed. One thing seemed clear—this was called a “debate,” but it was anything but! Yet, no commentator said anything about the fact. Other than a brief scuffle between Christie, who seemed and anxious to really debate and Paul, there was nothing even to resemble a true debate.

Instead of a debate where back-and-forth propositions and rebuttals upon various topics continue for a substantial amount of time, what we had was a slight opportunity to learn something of the opinions of each man (and one woman—who was outstanding) always closely guided by the questioner from Fox News. Obviously these questions did not always correspond to that which a contestant wanted to speak about. Consequently, he had to hedge on it, then try somehow to weave his own concerns into his answer.

Now it is understandable that with 17 individuals participating in two tiers there could be no real debate—where issues were really discussed at some length. It was physically impossible to do any such thing. Probably, then, we could be treated only to the question-and-answer evening that we experienced.

So be it. My protest is that the label that was affixed upon this—a “debate”—was false advertising. Frankly, I’m still waiting to hear one. Perhaps one or two of the candidates could elsewhere at another time really debate. How I’d like to hear that!

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