This week’s topic: Recently, interpretations of the First Amendment, our freedom of speech and peaceable assembly, have been differing among Americans, especially between political ideologies. In the national sphere, many people have become outraged that NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick exercised his First amendment and refused to stand for the national anthem. Most people complaining about Kaepernick are the same people that usually say things like “This country gets offended too easily.” In the local sphere, many CSU students have proposed that we ban the overly zealous Christian and abortion preachers from campus.These are also the same people who say “We should have an environment that is inclusive of all ideas!” In either case, each side of the political spectrum thinks that those exercising their first amendment rights in an offensive way are assholes for doing so. The question is: Which side of the political spectrum actually gets offended the most?
Against the Left: I would argue that the left gets offended much too easily. The left are the ones creating “safe spaces” and “trigger warnings”. Our generation has created a society that is so easily offended and so focused on petty problems like what comes out of someone else’s mouth which takes away from the real problems in this country like illegal immigration, rising unemployment rates, the military, the rising threat of terror, rising debt, rising deficit etc. need I really continue?? All of those problems I mentioned are problems that are at the forefront of the rights agenda. Without solutions to these problems, we will never be able to tackle those problems paramount to the left like free healthcare, free education, income inequality, LGBT rights etc. The left likes to be looked at as “liberal” and “progressive” so why are they so obsessed with what people say? I think that by being able to control what Americans say, they can more easily control what Americans do. We have to tiptoe around words that could be easily offensive because the left will jump at any chance to attack. So yes, the left is more sensitive to what people say because of the community they have created. Was it just the right that was taught, “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”?
-Anonymous, Senior, Political Science
Against the Right: Republicans are the first and loudest to shout that the liberals and by proxy liberal America are too sensitive. Liberals seek safe spaces, gender-neutral bathrooms and pronouns and maybe would rather the Redskins be called “The Washington BallSport Team” than anything that has to do with white people benefiting from Native American heritage. And Republicans would say all of that is the result of the liberal ever-growing list of things offensive.
But what if they are just the ones vocally taking offense to what is offensive on a grand scale instead of just having a voice for our backyard? If it is a threat to ‘traditional’ American culture, the republican won’t hesitate to voice his opinion. Look at the Kaepernick controversy, it shows that if it impacts a beloved pastime, it is worth an opinion. Guaranteed your uncle who routinely posts crooked Hillary memes had something loud to say about it, but thinks bathrooms that simply say “Toilet” instead of “Men and Women” is indication of our nation’s decline.
Liberals focus on themselves as a part of the whole- How does what I say and do, malicious or not, impact the stranger next to me and their values. While Republicans can focus more on how the whole impacts them- Racial sensitivity means I can’t be proud to be white. Or religious openness means my children can’t say “One Nation Under God” anymore. Ultimately, maybe republicans are just more offended over people being offended differently than them.
-Anonymous, Senior, Applied Computing Technology
Next week’s Topic (9/13): With rush week approaching, we will soon be inundated with cheering, singing young women and dudes wearing pastel shorts and croakies all over campus.
Our question is this: Are Greek letter organizations (sororities and fraternities) beneficial to the community and society as a whole, or are they a detriment to the University and a stain on our reputation?
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