Tim Kaine Stops At Davidson

Tim Kaine Stops At Davidson

The vice presedential nominee paid the College a visit this past week.
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On Wednesday, October 12th around 3:00 pm I headed to the front of Chambers, awkwardly navigating the caution tape and thin, white ropes requesting that people not step on the grass. I finally made it into what looked like a line, hovering, unsure how to proceed.

Luckily, I was approached by an older woman, a volunteer tag draped around her neck, who explained to get into the rally I would need to fill out a volunteer form, which would serve as my ticket. I checked a few boxes, despite knowing that I definitely do not have time to phone bank or go door to door asking for votes.

When they finally let people into the area in front of the stage, I rushed to the front. And then the waiting began. I hadn’t really thought about how the line started at 3 but Kaine’s speech wasn’t due until 5, but it suddenly hit me while standing in the bright sun in a long-sleeve shirt. Once my friends got there, I finally conceded and just sat on the ground. I wasn’t the only one, there were people nearby me watching Netflix on the ground.

Around 4:30 is when things actually got started. After the National Anthem led by the Nuances and the pledge of allegiance led by Dana Ferguson, a Davidson alum and member of the electoral college came out and spoke. He was followed by a member of congress, then Dan Blue III who was running for North Carolina Treasurer, and finally, Alma Adams, another member of congress, who at one point, speaking of Donald Trump, said “Bless his heart”. They each spoke about their own feelings on government, particularly in the state of North Carolina, and how they feel Hilary Clinton is a better choice over her opponent.

Then the clock struck 5:00, but nothing happened. We waited. And waited. And waited. Then finally, nearly half an hour late, Kaine came out. He greeted everyone with a wave, and then asked us if we’d seen the recent presidential debate. He spent the greater part of his speech unpacking the debate and the differences in policy, focusing on economic plans, college and important issues. He spoke eloquently, seeming a much different person than during the Vice-Presidential Debate. He pointed out how independent analysts have said Clinton’s plan will be better for the economy than Trump’s. He explained that Clinton intends to make college debt-free and free for families who make under $125,000 a year. He then attacked Trump for his recent comments about women, and asserted the need for reforms to ensure equality, especially for people of color and members of the LGBTQ+ community.

Kaine ended his speech by encouraging attendees to vote and then he stepped off the stage. I expected him to retreat inside, but instead, he walked up to the crowd and began shaking hands and signing autographs. I managed to shove my hand out between two people, and actually got two handshakes on accident. Kaine smiled at me and thanked me for coming.

While Kaine spoke about information that could have been easily found online (as Clinton and Trump’s policies and opinions are fairly well-known), and the rally involved a lot of cheering and booing at appropriate moments, I still felt it was a beneficial experience. Reading information online is one thing, but hearing it specifically from the candidate running and getting a sense of the community’s feelings on each topic felt somehow more informative and valuable. If you get a chance to attend one, I highly recommend it, if just to understand what goes on.

Cover Image Credit: Emi Moore

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This Is How Your Same-Sex Marriage Affects Me As A Catholic Woman

I hear you over there, Bible Bob.
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It won't.

Wait, what?

I promise you did read that right. Not what you were expecting me to say, right? Who another person decides to marry will never in any way affect my own marriage whatsoever. Unless they try to marry the person that I want to, then we might have a few problems.

As a kid, I was raised, baptized, and confirmed into an old school Irish Catholic church in the middle of a small, midwestern town.

Not exactly a place that most people would consider to be very liberal or open-minded. Despite this I was taught to love and accept others as a child, to not cast judgment because the only person fit to judge was God. I learned this from my Grandpa, a man whose love of others was only rivaled by his love of sweets and spoiling his grandkids.

While I learned this at an early age, not everyone else in my hometown — or even within my own church — seemed to get the memo. When same-sex marriage was finally legalized country-wide, I cried tears of joy for some of my closest friends who happen to be members of the LGBTQ community.

I was happy while others I knew were disgusted and even enraged.

"That's not what it says in the bible! Marriage is between a man and a woman!"

"God made Adam and Eve for a reason! Man shall not lie with another man as he would a woman!"

"Homosexuality is a sin! It's bad enough that they're all going to hell, now we're letting them marry?"

Alright, Bible Bob, we get it, you don't agree with same-sex relationships. Honestly, that's not the issue. One of our civil liberties as United States citizens is the freedom of religion. If you believe your religion doesn't support homosexuality that's OK.

What isn't OK is thinking that your religious beliefs should dictate others lives.

What isn't OK is using your religion or your beliefs to take away rights from those who chose to live their life differently than you.

Some members of my church are still convinced that their marriage now means less because people are free to marry whoever they want to. Honestly, I wish I was kidding. Tell me again, Brenda how exactly do Steve and Jason's marriage affect yours and Tom's?

It doesn't. Really, it doesn't affect you at all.

Unless Tom suddenly starts having an affair with Steve their marriage has zero effect on you. You never know Brenda, you and Jason might become best friends by the end of the divorce. (And in that case, Brenda and Tom both need to go to church considering the bible also teaches against adultery and divorce.)

I'll say it one more time for the people in the back: same-sex marriage does not affect you even if you or your religion does not support it. If you don't agree with same-sex marriage then do not marry someone of the same sex. Really, it's a simple concept.

It amazes me that I still actually have to discuss this with some people in 2017. And it amazes me that people use God as a reason to hinder the lives of others.

As a proud young Catholic woman, I wholeheartedly support the LGBTQ community with my entire being.

My God taught me to not hold hate so close to my heart. He told me not to judge and to accept others with open arms. My God taught me to love and I hope yours teaches you the same.

Disclaimer - This article in no way is meant to be an insult to the Bible or religion or the LGBTQ community.

Cover Image Credit: Sushiesque / Flickr

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Yes, You Can Be a Democrat And A Christian

We all have our reasons for identifying with the political party we identify with.
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To some people who are on the same boat as me, it might seem pretty obvious.

Yes, you can be a Democrat and a Christian.

As a matter-of-fact, my church back home and a majority of its members voted Democrat in the past elections.

As a proud northerner, it might come as no surprise to those who don't come from this part of the country that I am so "open-minded". But really, I'm not. It's not open-mindedness when I choose to support LGBTQ rights. It's not open-mindedness when I choose to vote Democrat despite their controversial stance on abortion, as many on the opposite side often argue and use as their focal point of criticism.

The answer is, I'm not being as "open-minded" and as liberal as I seem – nor is the Christian minority that votes Democrat like me. God taught me to love everyone regardless of their sexual orientation, their religion, or their political views.

The Bible says "Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself," truly, if we reject, ostracize, and spew hatred upon those who are not like us as our current President does by vilifying immigrants and refugees, and banning those who do not fit his heteronormative vision of a man and a woman from the military – are we truly living up to the Great Commandment?

I don't think we are.

And just like that, I refuse to support a party that backs a man who has almost twenty accounts of sexual assault against him. A man who has generalized that all Mexicans, like me, are rapists and drug dealers. A man who refused to condemn the neo-nazis who killed a woman in a violent and hateful protest, and instead, claimed that there were "very fine people" on both sides.

A man who has been sued by the Justice Department for racial discrimination dating back to the 1970s. The list goes on, and on, and on. Our President, and as a result the party that supports him have shown that they are just full of flaws as they criticize the left of being.

My response to the latter is that Christians must work to remove the stigma associated with being either a Democrat or a Republican. I have my reasons for not supporting President Trump, and the vast majority of Christians that voted for him have their reasons for doing so.

The solution to all of this? We need to stop basing the quality of other people's Christianity based on their political views.

Cover Image Credit: Instagram - @christiandemocrats

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