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The Carletonian

The Carletonian

The Carletonian

Fostering open political dialogue on campus

Thnd reflective conversations are a cornerstone of the Carleton experience. Ours is no different. Since the day we (Liv and Nathaniel) arrived here two years ago we have been impressed by the willingness with which students have engaged difficult ideas with incredible fervor and intelligence. So far, there has been one glaring exception—election season 2006. That election had some intoxicating effect on the student body. Students, reasonable only weeks earlier, pushed each other to the breaking point. Republicans were denied access to voting vans, and poor out of state voters were driven into hiding for fear of being asked for the 15th time if they had voted for Klobuchar yet. Some cried. We don’t want to relive those dark times. So we found ourselves writing together—a liberal and a conservative, a Democrat and a Republican (they do exist here)— to call for a better election season. And we do not think we are alone. Carleton purports to be an enlightened place, and the student body should act accordingly. Debates should be heated, but they should be just that—debates, not attacks on one another. After all, ideology is no substitute for knowledge; rather, it is a mask for ignorance. If we are really serious about this election, let’s show it. Let’s demonstrate what democracy should be about: in depth understanding of the issues and candidates. This goes beyond the national elections. We need to know about the local candidates—we owe it to the citizens of Northfield who live with them long after we vote for them. Why don’t we start with the mayor? Did you know that one of the candidates works for Carleton? We consider ourselves lucky to be on such a vibrant campus during an election as significant as this one. We are excited! We are excited for the loud and tempestuous arguments, but also for the content of those arguments. Maybe this is a utopian dream, and like all good utopian dreams they should start with a meeting. So, if you feel the same way we do, and want to avoid a replay of 2006, let’s get together and chat. We can work for Change We Can Believe In . . . um that is . . . believable change.

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