True Diversity Also Includes Diversity Of Political Ideology

True Diversity Also Includes Diversity Of Political Ideology

I should not be ridiculed by those who refuse to attempt to understand me only because I am a Republican.

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The right to vote for what we believe is truly an incredible gift. My vote is my choice, and it is not fair that I should have to fear cruelty from my peers because of the choices I make, and how I decide to utilize my right to vote.

My voice deserves to be heard just as much as that of the Democrat standing next to me; just because I am a Republican does not mean that the First Amendment guaranteeing freedom of speech does not apply to me. Whether or not you agree with my political ideology, like you, I truly want nothing but the best for the future of the United States.

I will support whoever holds the Presidency because whether I voted for them or not, I want this nation and everyone in it to succeed.

Contrary to Michelle Obama's claim at the Inbound 2017 conference, that "any woman who voted against Hillary Clinton voted against their own voice," I am empowered as a woman and as an American by exercising my voice and my right to vote however I believe is right, rather than succumbing to societal pressure.

I am not any less of a woman for considering myself a Republican, and being a Republican does not mean that I am any less supportive of gender equality. No one has the right to define my political beliefs, or any of my beliefs, for me because of my gender.

My experiences with political discussions in high school and college have convinced me to keep my opinions to myself in order to avoid feeling like the elephant in the room.

During the 2016 election, because I stood up for what I believed in like how I was taught throughout my entire life, I was labeled as a "racist Republican" by a fellow student, and my biased teacher did absolutely nothing to prevent this name calling. I felt like I could not defend myself and I had to sit there and listen to someone who did not know me make assumptions about my ideology.

Classrooms have become a place of hostility, and a place where we are taught to stand up for what we are passionate about unless we are a Republican.

Anti-Trump and Anti-Republican protests are some of the most prevalent topics that appear on my Instagram feed, and I hate that I cannot express my own beliefs on social media.

I am unable to publicly voice support for my candidates of choice in fear of judgment from those who shame me and label me as a stereotype rather than asking why I believe what I do. Rather than having a conversation with each other, hate and animosity towards the other party is welcomed, and name calling has become a prominent defense strategy in politics; this is evident from both Democrats and Republicans.

I do not understand why some refuse to be friends with those who disagree with their political ideology. We should not define ourselves and others by our partisanship; that is only one small dimension of who we are. The majority of my friends disagree with my views regarding politics, but we have so much more to talk about beyond how we feel about President Trump.

If politics do happen to come up, we can discuss our differences while still remaining respectful of each other. Mutual respect should be the standard.

Diversity should be celebrated and respected; it is crucial to our growth as a society and as individuals. We must remember from all ends of the political spectrum that in order to be truly tolerant and encouraging of diversity, we cannot silence those whose perspective challenges us by differing from our own, as diversity also applies to our thoughts and political beliefs.

We cannot pick and choose what aspects of diversity to welcome in others. By pressuring those whose opinions we deem as "wrong" into silence, we are playing a role in accomplishing the very task we claim to fear, and are portraying the message that hating those we disagree with is justifiable.

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I Might Have Aborted My Fetus When I Was 18, But Looking Back, I Saved A Child’s Life

It may have been one of the hardest decisions of my life, but I wouldn't be where I am today if I hadn't had done it.

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Due to recent political strife happening in the world today, I have decided to write on a very touchy, difficult subject for me that only a handful of people truly know.

When I was 18 years old, I had an abortion.

I was fresh out of high school, and deferring college for a year or two — I wanted to get all of my immature fun out so I was prepared to focus and work in the future. I was going through my hardcore party stage, and I had a boyfriend at the time that truly was a work of art (I mean truly).

Needless to say, I was extremely misinformed on sex education, and I never really thought it could happen to me. I actually thought I was invincible to getting pregnant, and it never really registered to me that if I had unprotected sex, I could actually get pregnant (I was 18, I never said I was smart).

I remember being at my desk job and for weeks, I just felt so nauseous and overly tired. I was late for my period, but it never really registered to me something could be wrong besides just getting the flu — it was November, which is the peak of flu season.

The first person I told was my best friend, and she came with me to get three pregnancy tests at Target. The first one came negative, however, the second two came positive.

I truly believe this was when my anxiety disorder started because I haven't been the same ever since.

Growing up in a conservative, Catholic Italian household, teen pregnancy and especially abortion is 150% frowned upon. So when I went to Planned Parenthood and got the actual lab test done that came out positive, I was heartbroken.

I felt like I was stuck between two roads: Follow how I was raised and have the child, or terminate it and ultimately save myself AND the child from a hard future.

My boyfriend at the time and I were beyond not ready. That same week, I found out he had cheated on me with his ex and finances weren't looking so great, and I was starting to go through the hardest depression of my life. Because of our relationship, I had lost so many friends and family, that I was left to decide the fate of both myself and this fetus. I could barely take care of myself — I was drinking, overcoming drug addictions, slightly suicidal and living with a man who didn't love me.

As selfish as you may think this was, I terminated the fetus and had the abortion.

I knew that if I had the child, I would be continuing the cycle in which my family has created. My goal since I was young was to break the cycle and breakaway from the toxicity in how generations of children in my family were raised. If I had this child, I can assure you my life would be far from how it is now.

If I had carried to term, I would have had a six-year old, and God knows where I would've been.

Now, I am fulfilling my future by getting a BA in Politics, Philosophy and Economics, having several student leadership roles, and looking into law schools for the future.

Although it still haunts me, and the thought of having another abortion truly upsets me, it was the best thing to ever happen to me. I get asked constantly "Do you think it's just to kill a valuable future of a child?" and my response to that is this:

It's in the hands of the woman. She is giving away her valuable future to an unwanted pregnancy, which then resentment could cause horror to both the child and the woman.

As horrible as it was for me in my personal experience, I would not be where I am today: a strong woman, who had overcome addiction, her partying stage, and ultimately got her life in order. If I would have had the child, I can assure you that I would have followed the footsteps of my own childhood, and the child would not have had an easy life.

Because of this, I saved both my life and the child's life.

And if you don't agree or you dislike this decision, tough stuff because this is my body, my decision, my choice — no one else.

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