The mission of Statesman Debate can be expressed in two ways.
First, in general terms, our mission is to promote the national interest and toward that end we stir the critical thinking and creativity of Americans.
To better understand what we aim for, start with the definition of a statesman.
Statesman: A person who exhibits great wisdom and ability in directing the affairs of a government or in dealing with important public issues, according to dictionary.com.
Notice that any citizen could qualify as a statesman (or stateswoman)! You don’t have to be in government to qualify.
Ideally, all citizens should qualify as statesmen or, at a minimum, aspire to statesmanship.
This brings us to the statement of our Mission in the round: First and foremost, to cultivate, teach and instill statesmanship in adults and youth alike. Moreover, to promote critical thinking on public issues. Specifically, to teach public speaking and debate, public policy and history, in debate camps, model congress and model united nations conferences, adult workshops and private coaching.
What in our view qualifies as a statesman or stateswoman? Surely, such heroic figures as Patrick Henry, Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln qualify. See photos above. A great many Americans who never hold office or even seek office qualify or could qualify, too. Here are a few examples. A teacher thoughtfully instructs his or her students. A parent, on behalf of his or her child, carefully weighs the merits of the various, available academic programs. A student reads widely and cares deeply about learning. A housewife thoroughly researches public issues and thus well armed participates in this or that political or public meeting. An executive not only grows his or her business, thus benefiting the economy, but also does his or her part to better society as a whole.