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Conservative in a Liberal Art School

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conservativeillust

By Savannah R. Ervin

“You know what would be great? If someone assassinated Bush!” This shocking comment was made in the elevator of the dorms by a student in the First Year Program.

Okay, I know that going to an art school, I should expect extreme liberalism. But this is ridiculous. Should Kerry want these kinds of kids voting for him? And really, will this kid vote anyway? With any luck he won’t. Yes, I have a problem with what the kid in the elevator said and, once again, I know that I’m attending an art school. I don’t want my parents to come to visit me and hear these stupid comments and have second thoughts about spending their money to send me to this temple for Kerry or better yet, the ANYONE BUT BUSH house. My father is offended every time he comes to visit me and picks up F Newsmagazine. I know that there are quite a few conservative Republicans in the school and I have met some. When I do, they talk in low tones and are extremely vague about where exactly they stand. When I stand up for my beliefs I get immediately berated, but later, in the secrecy of the bathroom, I get complimented by the same students for standing up for myself. Sometimes I feel like a bug on the windshield of life when talking to a liberal student.

One response I got from pronouncing my favor for Bush is, “Oh, so you’re for killing innocent Iraqis?” What am I supposed to say to that? “Yes, we should turn Iraq into a parking lot, in my opinion.” “No,” for you who asked that brilliant question, I do not want to kill innocent Iraqis or turn Iraq into a parking lot. Way to start a conversation! I don’t know if my fellow conservatives feel the same, but I feel backed into a corner when confronted by a fastidious liberal student…or staff member.

Yes, I am offended by Robert Loescher’s lectures. if you are thinking right now, “Well, she must hate Loescher,” I don’t hate the man, I hate that he has to incorporate his political interjections into a lecture about Greek Art. I hate the lectures so much, that I actually emailed the man the instant I got home from my first class. Little did I know at the time that Mr. Loescher is a beloved member of SAIC faculty and what I did could be grounds for a public beheading. I wish that staff and faculty and students could be a little more sensitive to conservative students. Every single class I’m in this semester, I have experienced the instructor bashing Bush in an extreme way.

In the much hated Core Studio classes of the First Year Program, I am not only offended by the constant unprofessional comments that I KNOW I’m not alone in experiencing, but also the anti-Bush rants. I wonder if any of these people realize that there has to be at least one conservative in the 60-some kids of the over-crowded class. I know that there will never be a point at the SAIC when conservative students will feel welcome in their beliefs. And the anti-Bush rants get more and more ridiculous. I feel like the students and staff members are trying to “out-liberal” the other Democrat.

An example of a rather stinging comment can be found in the October 2004 issue of F Newsmagazine. The political cartoons of Bush are enough to send a conservative’s blood boiling but the articles themselves have anti-Bush propaganda galore. Here’s a tasty little tid-bit that William Upski Wimsatt said in an interview with Manda Aufochs Gillespie: “The Republicans want to strangle all federal government programs that benefit working-class and low income people. The Democrats at least don’t have an institutional imperative to kill, wipe out or get rid of the black people, as Republicans do.” Whoa. Where did that come from? That’s a little broad-handed isn’t it? And what about this school anyway? Aren’t the majority of the school’s population rich, non- African American students? I feel like I’m living in a parallel universe sometimes when I read the stuff that F publishes. I feel that F only publishes those articles that lean to the extreme left because it’s believed that all who read F are, in fact, Democratic liberals.

I think it’s time that SAIC opens its eyes to the fact that there are conservative and even (God forbid) Republican students attending the school. A survey that F Newsmagazine printed suggests that 20 percent of the schools population is conservative or right-leaning. It blows my mind, once again, that even with this information I get the anti-Republican outbursts from instructors. They (instructors) will first say, “Sorry to whoever likes Bush but, (insert cutting Bush bash here).” If they were really sorry, they would not try to become “bestest buds” with their students and teach art, not pointlessly rant on-and-on ad nauseam about how awful and FASCIST President Bush is. I love that one, “fascist,” like he’s Hitler or Mussolini.

I couldn’t imagine hating anyone as much as these people hate Bush. I don’t even hate Kerry. I don’t agree with him and I don’t believe most of what he says. I couldn’t even imagine wishing ill upon the man or calling him a Nazi. Maybe a communist, but that’s a different story.

Okay, so I’ve said my piece. What else can I do but write this? At least you as the reader can’t interrupt me with stupid questions (oh yes, they do exist) about my political beliefs. If you desire to “tear me a new one,” then you can get a hold of me through email or write me hate letters if you will. I need all the ammo I can get. But why do that when we can be friends? Yes, I do have many friends here who do NOT share my politics. In fact, we get along famously. I’ve never had better friends than the ones I have now. We don’t talk politics and that’s fine with me. Just come on up to the residence hall if you want to play Spiderman 2 on the PS2 or watch a funny movie. If you have some beef with me, maybe I should make you some White Castles and we can watch a Mystery Science Theater 3000 movie. I don’t know why I have to be an oddity in the school where I’m a student. Don’t ask me about my politics when you just want to fight. You can’t ever change my mind. You think you’re right, I think I’m right. Lets “agree to disagree” and get a damn pizza.

December 2004

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