The War on College Republicans
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Politics

The War on College Republicans: A Reflection

It wasn't until I had actually spent a good couple months in college that I realized I was scared to say that I was a Republican.

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The War on College Republicans: A Reflection

It has taken me a while to even consider writing about an issue that, in the eyes of so many, might seem so minuscule. I'm not going to turn a blind eye to the other issues that are arising in our country, whether it be the debate on gun control, the war on terrorism, or even just the debate over immigration policy. All of those discussions have taken the initial spotlight of the media for numerous reasons, as they are more focused and narrowed topics. That being said, it's important to discuss one of the reasons that no progress is being made when it comes to discussion.

I'm about to be a sophomore in college. Like myself, any young individual going into college knows what to expect: it's a very open and accepting, liberal environment. There are safe spaces for those who need them, and groups to support certain identities. I thought there would be open hearts to any person who might identify as something other-than-the-majority.

It wasn't until I had actually spent a good couple months in college that I realized I was scared to say that I was a Republican.

This wasn't a really big issue for me, considering I didn't talk much about politics, and I didn't have any interest in going into the field of government, whatsoever. However, college is an extremely politically driven environment, students learn that as they grow, their involvement in the decision of national issues becomes part of their lives. The more time I had spent there, the more I'd hear some pretty horrible things, such as, "I have no interest in being friends with someone if they're a Republican."

This confused me. I had been born and raised by a Republican family, and never in my life had I seen anyone in my family commit an act that was discriminatory, or prejudice. Yet, that was the poster image of a Republican here: a prejudice, racist, sexist, completely immoral student. Being that many of my own friends were Democrats, this discussion would frequently come up among different acquaintances. It confused me a lot, but instead of hiding and agreeing with their assumptions, I'd ask-

Well, why?

This questioned stirred the pot often, and the typical answers would swirl around the table, coming full circle to where they began: they're racist, they're homophobic, etc. There was never any solid proof as to why these statements were true to them because I didn't identify with any of the labels they were throwing towards my political party. And sure, I knew that there were people out there who could be racist, and be registered as a Republican, but I sure as hell knew that not every Democrat would wish to be bunched in with the same labels as some others.

Still, that's what was happening here. Why are so many Republicans being considered immoral? Is it because of the media- and the hard turn to the left that so many of its platforms turn to? Is it because of Trump, the offensive things he said and the supposed qualities of the man that reflect on the rest of us?

But it is this "I don't like you if you're a Republican" or vice versa mindset that absolutely demolishes any chance of progress this country has when it comes to polarization. I don't surround myself only with other Republicans, I learn of other opinions around me, and I listen and consider them. Not one sense of morality is correct over the other when it comes to so many of these issues. Take abortion, for example, one mind might believe that from the start, a life is a life, and it should be given a chance. Another person might not consider the child to be a child until it's heart is beating, etc. These issues are all based on our own ethics and our own beliefs, and if we don't at least learn and consider the thoughts and feelings of those around us, how are we going to be able to unite and make a right and balanced decision?

It's discouraging to identify as a Republican with many liberal social views, and somehow still be villainized. It's that idea that every person is the same as the rest in their political party that is simply not true, but it's separating us to no end. We're so focused on making social progress and bringing forth equality, and somehow, we're getting farther and farther from it by staying within safe, echo chambers.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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