Descriptions for the badges- Please read them:
The badges are there to be awards for users who have organized tournaments, helped with the main site, followed the rules in the debate forum, etc.
I'm not addressing the merits of the different people who have posted on this topic, but I do have to point out one thing. The description for "Certified Debater" does not say it is for following the rules. It says it is for those who've proven to be core Debaters on the Debate Forum.
That isn't obvious just by looking at the green marker. Only when you move your mouse over it does a message display indicating a somewhat higher amount of rep. You may still have a point, but it is certainly true that these awards are more prominent.I have more points than the average user, yet people still attempt to start discussions with me when they disagree with a post I've made.
And does anyone else find it intriguing and somewhat humorous that the three people who have questioned whether the Debate Forum mods will handle these awards in an unbiased manner are someone identifying as LDS, someone identifying as a Jehovah's Witness, and someone identifying as a Satanist?
Once again, I'm not addressing the relative merits of the arguments on either side, but it is interesting.