Politics are one of the most loaded subjects that can be talked about in today’s day and age. Which is exactly why I’m writing about this. Today, politics create some of the most heated debates seen in the history of mankind. With the relatively recent splurge of information that has become widely available to anyone with internet access, it’s obvious that people are going to be more well-informed about the people they want to put into office. At school, there are clubs that students can join, depending which way they lean politically, The two major ones, obviously, are the Young Republicans and the Young Democrats clubs. These two clubs create a safe haven for people to share and express their political beliefs safely and without a fear, harassment or criticism. These clubs truly give people a way to get politically informed, so I personally recommend joining both and trying to learn about as many political views as possible if you’re interested in learning about politics. It’s important to try to not see something from just one side as well, as most biased news sources can lean a certain way and obscure things that they do not agree with.
Being in both clubs was interesting, and there was a stark contrast in the people that inhabit both clubs. Both clubs have group chats for their own political views, but they’re not equally populated. The Republican Club has 36 total members in its chat, while the Democrat club has 142. It seems that both clubs have mostly inactive members, however, and that there is mostly an outspoken minority that populates the actual chats in these group chats.
Club meetings for both of these clubs are radically different. While I could not personally find any meetings that the Democrat hosted on a regular basis, the Young Republican club meets in Dr. Mazur’s room every Tuesday morning before school. While the Democrat club didn’t have in-person meetings, the group chat was much more active than the Republican club. However, the Republican club was much easier to follow with events.
Attending the Republican Club meeting was interesting. I had no idea what I should’ve expected. I had friends that told me how much more ‘sane’ republicans are over democrats, and I had friends that told me that it would be filled with racist bigots who don’t know what they’re talking about. So, I decided to go in with absolutely no expectations.
Walking into the meeting, I was met with an interesting sight. There were far fewer people than I expected, and I seemed to be one of the only ones. About ten to fifteen more people showed up later right before the meeting started.
This Republican meeting was about fake news, and it was certainly interesting. We all know the notion of people claiming fake news, but this was surprisingly very different. The club president, Nate Greve, was very respectful the entire time and acknowledged concerns that people might have over the issue. I personally thought it was very interesting, although I am neither very knowledgeable nor interested in politics.
I was curious as to what both club presidents thought of their political parties and their opposite, so I decided to ask. I’d like to say that these two people’s opinions do not reflect on the group as a whole at all, and that these people should not be judged for their definitions of what was said. Currently, the president of the Young Republicans club is Nate Greve, and the president of the Young Democrat club is Ellie Wade.
“I would say that a Republican is a member of the right wing Republican Party, which is based on more conservative values that pertain to the idea of a small government/little government intervention,” said senior Ellie Wade, when asked about what a Republican is.
“The Republican Party was established in 1854 by opponents of the Kansas-Nebraska Act, which expanded the legalization of slavery further west. The first Republican President was none other than Abraham Lincoln. The entire platform of the Republican Party can be summarized as one mission: preserve and protect the Constitution. The Constitution embodies the core values of conservatism. Republicans seek to protect Americans and democracy as a whole,” said Nate Greve when asked about what a Republican is.
Again, these people do not represent the beliefs of every person in those groups at all, and they are simply stating their personal opinions and definitions with their political parties.
“I would say that in simpler terms a Democrat is a member of the left-wing organization, which is based on progressive ideas such as equal opportunity, accessible and affordable healthcare, pathways to immigration and other things,” said Ellie Wade when asked to define a Democrat.
“Many of today’s leaders in the Democratic Party are all about control. They want to control your speech by calling speech they disagree with ‘hate speech’, and what you read through censorship on social media. This is in addition to controlling your education, healthcare, and right to bear arms. While a lot of their proposed policies such as free healthcare, free education, and increased minimum wage sound great, they don’t work as promised in practice. In our meetings, we discuss many of these issues and seek to help students view politics with an open mind, and not with indoctrination,” said Nate Greve when asked to define a Democrat.
Both political parties’ clubs were very interesting to see. It opened my eyes about being aware of both sides in any sort of political climate, and it helped me with realizing how different people’s views on things can really be.