Respect political differences

A mentoring system has been implemented at the Middle School in which freshmen counsel new seventh graders, and this program should be a model for the creation of such a system at the Upper School.

The political majority on campus should instead follow the popular slogan from both campaigns this season and “change” their approach.

Students in the majority should be striving to create as open an environment as possible. Too many times, students have been dismissed with ignorance that is not only hurtful but also regressive. Students should take advantage of the fact that they are surrounded by intelligent and involved peers from both ends of the political spectrum.

And rather than dismissing opposing views, students should be strengthening their own by questioning why they support what they do.

Teachers should also be conscientious of how they lead their classrooms. Teacher-guided political conversation can be one of the best opportunities for students to really listen and learn. But if the teacher seems biased, it can damage what will inevitably be an already unbalanced conversation, given the left-leaning environment at our school.

Though a comment evaluating the war or the economy might seem innocuous, it may be confirming a student’s preconceived notion of a teaching bias or encouraging a hostility built up against certain students.

The decision to be outspoken about political views, whether with a sticker in the office or a comment in a lecture, should also be carefully considered because it truly affects a classroom’s environment.

The effects are not necessarily always negative and can stimulate informative and open-minded conversation, but there should always be attention paid to make sure the conversation is not one-sided and doesn’t make assumptions about every student’s political views.

The atmosphere nationwide leading up to Nov. 4 will undoubtedly be exhilarating because of its historical significance. Let the atmosphere on campus be just as exhilarating with a new open-mindedness and willingness to listen.