From the Archives: Debate of the Issue

As we survey the contributions of this Class of 2020, we would be remiss to not highlight the contributions made to our own newspaper by graduating seniors. Two writers, James Markis ’20 and Jake Pappo ’20 held the important duty of writing the Debate of the Issue for Volume 68. Along the way, they discussed important topics such as Baby Sized Adult vs. Adult Sized Baby, Is Santa Real?, BH-Winsor Comparisons. While many of their first drafts did not make it into the final edition of the paper, we Panel Staff enjoyed their comedy greatly. Their voices will certainly be missed on Layout Days and in article planning meetings. We wanted to republish one of our favorite debates they wrote, Brains versus Brawn in a Zombie Apocalypse. As the world reels with the turmoil of the COVID-19 Pandemic, we thought it especially relevant to consider. Thank you Jake and James for your work this year and good luck!

James Markis ’20: Pro-Brawn

Einstein vs. Hercules. Edison vs. Achilles. Newton vs. Serena Williams. The clear denominator with all of these hypothetical matchups is that there is an overwhelming winner. The strength and brawn of Hercules, Achilles, and Williams would be able to completely overpower the nerds that oppose them. Nothing would change when a zombie apocalypse hits the world in 2054. These flesh-eating devils would immediately destroy the scientists and brains of the operation, and thus would keep preventing humanity from finding a cure. The only way to fight back would be through brute strength. Who are we really going to trust with an AK-47 in the heat of the moment, Thomas Edison and his lightbulb or Serena Williams? It’s pretty obvious the zombies would be horrified to go against Serena but would lick their chops to get a shot at Edison. This is the same with regards to people who are both decently athletic and nerds. The resistance needs pure animals out there with no desire to think but instead attack and kill the invading zombies. Furthermore, in history, brute strength has always overcome the smart, knowledgeable nerds. The most successful people on earth are not those who are smart but those will athletic and physical capabilities. From Floyd Mayweather to Lebron James, to Patrick Mahomes, and even Jameis Winston, athletic success tops all in society. We shouldn’t forget about these people when a zombie apocalypse hits the earth and threatens to end mankind. The final point for why we should choose brawn over brains is in fact the zombies themselves. Everybody knows that zombies love one thing – brains. If we take our best athletes and force them to focus solely on their brute strength and not their intelligence, then the zombies will have no true desire to attack us. We possess nothing they desire, and thus we would be able to create a false peace treaty, before bringing them all together for a peace offering and nuking them all. Brawn would win in a zombie apocalypse, and people who believe in fact know that’s the answer. If we sent a bunch of nerds onto the battlefield, there would be no human race left to tell of the massacre. Invest in brute strength, and there is a chance. Invest in the nerds, and it’s all over for humanity.


Jake Pappo ’20: Pro-Brains

Brains would utterly annihilate brawn. As evidenced by my past debate of the issues, I always win because of my superior intelligence. This is the perfect example of how a zombie apocalypse would end up. This would be the same for anybody competing in a zombie apocalypse. If the goal is to survive the invasion, you need the smartest people to plan out specialized attacks and create enhanced technology to defeat them. In addition to attempting to survive and create technology to destroy these animals, a cure needs to be created. Humanity can only outlast the zombies for so long with brute strength, but a cure and vaccine would be able to save humanity indefinitely. Based on calculations from the video game “Plague Inc”, it would take humanity roughly 8-12 months to create a cure. Assuming humanity did not realize the severity until 6 months in, a full cure within 18 months from the first attack, would allow millions if not billions to survive. The brains clearly have the advantage but I also feel the need to dismantle the brawn argument. These zombies are just as athletic and strong as the greatest our planet has to offer, but imagine the normal man from Minnesota. He is absolutely screwed if we go with the brawn approach. By finding a cure though, we allow many more people to be able to contribute to the war effort and work our way slowly to ending the invasion. The only advantage over these zombies is our intelligence, and we need to put it to good use. Take advantage of their inability to walk in a straight line, and use it against them. These zombies are not going to be killed by the hands of our best athletes but instead by the brains of our smartest men and women. If we invest in brute strength, we will put up a good fight for a couple of months, but the ultimate outcome would be a slow and painful death for mankind. If we invest in technology, protection, and a cure, it would be an unbeatable combination against the zombies.


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