PHS debated against Cannons Creek in a preliminary round of the Rotary Debating League on Tuesday (5 April 2016). The junior team opposed the motion "This house would allow performance-enhancing drugs in sport" and performed very well for such a new team, but lost narrowly.
The senior team proposed the motion "This house would not allow parents to decide the genetic make-up of their children". It was an exciting debate, full of passionate rhetoric and incisive arguments, and ultimately Pinelands was victorious! The winning argument was that if we allow parents to choose the genetic make-up of their children, the cost of the procedure will mean it is only available to the rich. This will widen the gap between rich and poor, by making the rich not only socially better-off, but also genetically superior to the poor. Cannons Creek argued that the benefits of being able to prevent hereditary diseases outweighed this, but we explained that if fewer rich people have rare diseases like ALS, there are fewer incentives for pharmaceutical companies and private donors to invest in finding a cure, thus leaving the poor (and broader society) worse off in the long run.