Stand up and raise your voice in order to make a difference in the world

Julia Duran, Staff Writer

For many people, 2017 started off as a nightmare. In the United States of America, unity should be one of the most important focuses. However, the new administration has focused on acts that could potentially cause greater divisions between individuals. From one executive order to another, groups such as the LGBTQ, Muslim and Hispanic communities are being deeply affected.

“I think Trump’s actions and policies [such as the proposal of the wall and immigration policies] will only make a small percentage of the country happy,” junior Ava Maghouli said. “However, other groups, including women, people of color, [the] LGBTQ community and immigrants, who together make up the majority of the population, are all going to suffer the negative consequences of Trump’s reckless actions.”

The immigration ban has affected people’s lives by preventing some from entering the country  Not only that, but putting a discriminatory policy into place contributes to spreading hatred against others.

“As we’re witnessing right now with [the] ‘Muslim Ban,’ these executive orders already have immediate negative consequences for those traveling into the United States from [Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen],” junior Jayce Nguyen said. “Indirectly, it contributes to the growing intolerance and ignorance in the country, fueling hate and judgement.”

The proposed policies may not affect people right away, but they will in the future.

“The whole content of American freedom, justice and our Constitution is to recognize that our freedom is [linked] with the freedom of others,” senior and Muslim Student Association vice president Omer Yousuf said. “So, rather than looking at this as an issue affecting other communities, look at it from the perspective that it is, in reality, affecting all communities because it is impacting [those specific people].”

Regardless of where people fall in terms of politics, there are many different ways to help make a difference and let one’s voice be heard.

“I think it’s important to speak out during these times, whether it be calling our representatives or protesting against injustices because it shows that we care,” Nguyen said.

Additionally, there are some simpler and smaller steps that can be taken in order to raise awareness and get involved.

“As students, I would say that [great ways] to be an activist and challenge authority in the political sense [are] to start petitions, join a political club [and even] put a button on your backpack,” senior and Young Republicans president Randy Weidman said.

The best time to get involved is now, and there are many ways to inform yourself and advocate for what you believe.

“We have so many resources at our disposal thanks to the internet, and I think it’s time everyone make use of that,” Nguyen said. “We can either choose to be ignorant or choose to do something.”