Headlines have gone from covering the election to steadily adding language that reflects the growing animosity between both the left and right. The us versus them mentality has grown and spread with the results of the election, the increase of distaste for the right is drastically more apparent. However, it is time we stop being rude to the right.
We already know we do not like each other. Research reflects this. According to a 2016 study by the Pew Research Center 58% of the left and 57% of the right say the opposite political party makes them frustrated.
This frustration is only one facet of negative feelings that were surveyed between parties.
We have different views and are passionate about them. However, on a campus like HIU, we come in contact with various thoughts often and are taught how to critically think about such ideals.
It is easy, when explaining our own thoughts, to get into a me versus them mentality. When we speak in classes about our views in open discussion, we are tempted to lump everything together. It is fine to state disagreement to a position, but another to act on animosity and hostility and insult the other side. These statements or jabs are made at the expense of generalization. It can easily be forgotten that the student sitting next to you may actually be a part of the right.
These students are then left silent and unheard.
While it may be more common for the left to silence the right in universities like CSUF, HIU is still a liberal Christian college. When expressing such views we must not silence those who differ from us. I doubt we would say such things we do in generalizations straight to the face of the right student next to us, lumping them into the right and in turn as people who deserve such harsh words. We should instead see those in our classes for who they really are, in turn we must speak accordingly.
We have already discussed better ways to argue a point in a debate in an earlier issue. Now, it is time to apply that and add other skills to it.
We must drop the stereotypes. The rise of the alt-right has changed the perception on those who are simply a part of the right. This extremism exists on both sides. Plus, it is unlikely that someone next to you in class is the definition of that stereotype. Even if a student is alt-right we must shed the assumptions and generalizations. We make our own choices and can let go of the negative mentality and our actions to the right.
It is time we stop limiting ourselves by using generalities for the collective whole. Rather than run our mouths in anger and irritation we need to take a moment to breathe and see people for who they are. We should be able speak our minds rather than bring others down. It is time we stop being unnecessarily rude to those around us, including the right.