The Great American Think-Off is Americaâ€™s premier amateur philosophy contest. Possibly Americaâ€™s only premier amateur philosophy contest. Itâ€™s an essay contest in its 17th year started as a way for ordinary citizens to express their opinions on weighty matters.
These are some topics theyâ€™ve had in the past:
2007: Which should you trust more â€” your head or your heart?
2006: Which is more valuable to society: safety or freedom?
2005: Competition or cooperation: which benefits society more?
2003: Do we reap what we sow?
2000: Is democracy fair?
1999: Which is more dangerous — science or religion?
1998:Â Is honesty always the best policy?
1996:Â Does God exist?
1994:Â Does life have meaning?
1993:Â The nature of humankind:Â inherently good or inherently evil?
The 2009 essay and debate question is â€œIs it ever wrong to do the right thing?â€
If you want to enter THEIR contest, just submit an essay of 750 words or less by April 1, 2009. Their website states, â€œThe key to writing a successful essay is to ground your argument in personal experience. The judges are looking for essays that address this central problem of moral philosophy by speaking about personal experience rather than abstract philosophical reasoning. Tell a good story that shows a firm standing on one side or the other of this philosophical divide.â€
Not to be outdone, here at BeckyLand my crack team of extraordinary thinker-types have put together a BeckyLand Essay Topic â€¦.
â€œMarching band is the only worthwhile extra-curricular activity.â€
Here are the rules:
â€¢ Answer yes or no, then support your position. You can use scratch paper and a calculator, but show your work.
â€¢ Prizes are as follows:
First place: Nothing
Second place: Nada
Third place: Zip
Good luck and let the bickering begin!