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Open Borders: The Mock Trial
From FreedomFest 2023
I’ve done scores of public debates, but my last mock trial was the case of Hansel and Gretel back in Ms. Niederreiter’s 7th-grade English class.
Until FreedomFest 2023, when I was an expert witness for Open Borders. The full line-up:
Michael Shermer (judge)
Larry Elder (prosecution attorney)
Jim Geraghty (prosecution witness)
Jan Janielek (prosecution witness)
Catherine Bernard (defense attorney)
Bryan Caplan (defense witness)
Jacob Hornberger (defense witness)
The trial was a weird but thrilling experience. Weird, because unlike a debate, I never got to speak to the expert prosecution witnesses (except pleasantries in the green room). Thrilling, because my teammates were much better than me. In private, Jacob Hornberger is a mild-mannered guy. On stage, he’s a rock star. Enjoy the full video. And defense attorney Catherine Bernard was cinematic. A legal personage straight out of Paths of Glory or Inherit the Wind.
Spoiler: I don’t know how the jurors were picked. FreedomFest audiences are known for leaning right, but jurors had to avow their own open-mindedness on the issue of open borders. The exact vote was never revealed, but my team won. Enjoy!