I’m not a political science major, but of course, I have a huge interest in politics, especially elections and campaigns. When I found out my medium sized, Southern university was offering a course in political communication this semester, I jumped at the chance to take it. I am a strategic communications major.  Analyzing campaign strategies, polls, and the media’s interpretations of campaign happenings is something I love.  I knew this class would be interesting and benefit me in the long run.

This class requires a lot of discussion. We sit around a conference table and discuss a new topic each week for two and a half hours. I was surprised to find out that most of my class leans to the far left. I know that many college students typically identify as liberal.  But, in south Alabama, I didn’t expect it to be the majority of the class. Many students made negative jokes about Republicans, especially those who support Donald Trump. Although I am not the most avid Trump supporter, I am a proud Republican.  I was in awe of the remarks they made. A few were along the lines of “all Republicans are old, racist ,white men” or “Republicans are rich people who don’t care about the lives of anyone else.” I could deal with hearing those.  Although I know they aren’t true, it didn’t bother me.  I was sitting right there in front of the class, breaking that stereotype. I continued to contribute to all class discussions, sharing my conservative views and hoping to inspire others who may have been too afraid to speak up and share theirs.

The following week, however, one comment caused me to raise my hand and address the class. “Republicans are dumb.” Someone literally had the nerve to say that in a class.  They knew there were many people with different ideas and opinions surrounding them. I couldn’t be silent.  I took some time and talked to them about how proud I was to be a Republican, that I wasn’t “dumb”, and I didn’t think any less of them or question their intelligence just because of their political views. Most of the reason that people believe what they believe comes from their families and hometowns.  It’s not fair to call someone dumb because of reasons outside of their control.

I probably could’ve done a mic drop after I got done speaking, because I could see the look of surprise on their faces. That surprise quickly turned into apologies.  I know they were sincere. I’ve been told multiple times by other students that they have a lot of respect for me for sticking up for what I believe in. I’ve made some good friends in that class.  Before class starts, they are often asking me about my work with Future Female Leaders or my work on various campaigns. We’ve agreed to disagree on certain things, and on others, we can have healthy debates.

So, even when it seems like you are standing alone, make sure to still stand up for yourself and what you believe in.

Sarah G
FFL Cabinet Member
You can find me eating Mexican food, talking politics, and wishing Hogwarts was a real university.