Oratorical

The American Legion High School Oratorical Scholarship Program

"A Constitutional Speech Contest"

Congratulations to Jack Smith, a senior at Detroit Catholic Central High School, The American Legion Department of Michigan Oratorical Champion.

l-r Department Commander Wood, Jack Smith, Ella Enquist, Sophia Hugh, Paul Prokhorov, Education Chairman John Bradford

The American Legion Oratorical contests can be financially as well as educationally rewarding. High School students who are U. S. citizens or lawful residents can hone their speaking skills while learning about the U.S. Constitution.

Department-level scholarship awards range from $1,000 to $2,000, with Zone Winner receiving $500 and runner-ups receiving $200. At the National level, they range from $20,000 to $25,000.

A contestant must register with their American Legion, Department of Michigan by November 12, 2021.  The Zone Chairman will notify you of the dates, times, and locations of all contests at the District and Zone level.

District Contest to be completed by January 24, 2022

Zone Contest to be completed by February 7, 2022

The State Contest will be held on March 5, 2022, and the location to be determined

The Department contests click here: Registration Link

 

There will be opportunities to take photographs at the awards ceremony, but not during the actual contest. If space permits, an unattended, tripod-mounted video camera may tape the entire contest, but not a single contestant.  The American Legion, Department of Michigan reserves the right to preclude any videotaping if it prevents the audience present from fully enjoying the contest.

Assigned Topics for 2022 Oratorical Contest

Amendment III

No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Amendment VIII

Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Amendment XIV, Section 3

No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each House, remove such disability.

Amendment XXV, Section 4

Whenever the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President.

Thereafter, when the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives his written declaration that no inability exists, he shall resume the powers and duties of his office unless the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive department or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit within four days to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office. Thereupon Congress shall decide the issue, assembling within forty-eight hours for that purpose if not in session. If the Congress, within twenty-one days after receipt of the latter written declaration, or, if Congress is not in session, within twenty-one days after Congress is required to assemble, determines by two-thirds vote of both Houses that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall continue to discharge the same as Acting President; otherwise, the President shall resume the powers and duties of his office.

Questions:  Contact American Legion, Department of Michigan headquarters at (517) 220-2754 or email at legion@michiganlegion.org.

What does a winning speech look like?

Aaron Seibelink, the 2018 Department of Michigan Oratorical Contest winner gave his speech "1984=2018" at the Departments Annual Convention.

2022 Oratorical Tri-fold