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Civility campaign tackles politics and identity

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Civility campaign tackles politics and identity

Antonio Pequeño IV, Staff Writer

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The Cross-Cultural Center held it’s third Civility Dialogue on Oct. 4 and addressed the social intersection between politics and identity.

 

The Civility Campaign aims to “engage CSUSM students, faculty and staff in learning opportunities to create a community that navigates social justice issues and multiple perspectives through self-reflection, care, respect and empathy while acknowledging the culture and humanity of others.”

 

These values were exemplified professionally as the meeting began with Civility Committee members Nick Mortaloni and Floyd Lai, speaking with attendees to establish guidelines that would encourage civility throughout the discussion.

 

Both Mortaloni and Lai moderated the discussion and began by proposing a question: what role has identity played in politics?

The discussion began and students in attendance conveyed their points by speaking about how elements such as race, gender, age and socioeconomic status tend to spark stigmas on how individuals politically identify.

 

One attendee made an argument about age by saying, “a lot of people don’t really hold college students or first time voters to a great standard. It really shuts people off.”  

 

The student’s argument characterized an overarching theme within the dialogue. With so much judgement and negative connotations surrounding voter interaction, the real issues and concerns are being overlooked.

 

Another student put the spotlight on the fact that voters should try their best to ignore insignificant fallacies when deciding who to vote for.

 

“Yes, all the candidates may not be that great, but, if you’re able to vote … then vote, let your voice be heard,” the student said.

 

The attendees agreed on the fact that one should vote for a candidate based on how their personal values align with their preferred candidate’s policies.

 

The meeting reached its final minutes with a conversation about the controversial Black Lives Matter movement.

 

Floyd Lai asked, “What are some thoughts about these movements?”

 

The general consensus was that the recent shootings and movements in response to said shootings have led to quite a polarizing experience for our country.

 

One student in particular, who had studied abroad last year, told the group that she discussed these shootings with foreign students.

 

“It is terrifying what other countries think of us. We look really scary from an outside perspective,” the student said.

 

The meeting concluded with Mortaloni thanking attendees for a successful and open-minded discussion.

 

The next Civility Dialogue will take place on Nov. 1 in the Cross-Cultural Center and focus on the subject of politics & ballot initiatives, just in time to spur political discussion prior to election day on Nov. 8.

 

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