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Tiger Questions: North community shares evolving views on presidential election

by Laura Schmidt-Hong and Hannah Liu
[divider]November 2016: Moving Forward[/divider]
How can the North community and the country move forward after the presidential election?
“I believe in this country, no matter what, and I think people need to remember that we are the home of the brave. We can overcome anything, and no matter what party you side with, I think we need to support one another and stand united. That is what the country was founded on, and I believe we’ll continue to fight for this right. A great way that we can do is to support minorities and one another, to feel empowered, and to believe it’s not just white men who can continue to have power, but in fact anyone who can achieve anything that they want to achieve.” – Senior Carolina Fernandez
“If you are talking about politics, don’t passively listen. Don’t listen to someone tell you their views so that you can tell them your view. Listen to their view so that you can understand it.” – Senior Kat Brock
“I honestly don’t know. I’m really disappointed that we have a Trump presidency. I don’t want to be represented by him, but I think we need to accept it and move on with our lives. It’s important to respect him, but at the same time, I really don’t want him to be president.” – Junior Elizabeth Dallaire
“I’m going to be honest, I’m not really sure how. I’m not sure there’s anything people can say that will make it better. I personally did not wear black and orange on Unity Day. Of course I have Tiger Pride, but today’s just not the day, and I’m not going to pretend to be okay with something that I’m not.” – Junior Sarah Shapiro
“I think just by talking to each other about it, respecting other people’s opinions, and trying to stay calm. We’ll get through it somehow.” – Senior Ellie Kharasch
“Try to see what changes people want to make, and see what people want to do to. Just keep trying to make positive change, even if you disagree with the people in charge. Try to fight for what you believe in, and try to see the good in other people’s decisions. It’s probably going to be hard for a lot of people, but I think if we can try to do that then it’d be better.” – Senior Tobin Gevelber
“I don’t see what the problem is. I support President Trump, and I just think you have to see what happens. I think it was the best decision America could have made, and it’s better than having Hillary Clinton in office. She’s a criminal, and we would have gone to war.” – Junior Matthew Brambilla
“Especially since the country isn’t going to be a particularly safe space for a lot of different minority groups, it’s important that North creates a safe space for those minority groups and that they also don’t throw Trump supporters under the bus. Although Trump is a horrible human being, I think it’s important that we understand where people are coming from and we won’t make a new minority from Trump supporters.” – Senior Emily Ecker
“By putting our opinions aside and respecting each other.” – Freshman Christina Butera
“I don’t know. I think it’s going to be tough because I think that there are a lot of divided opinions, but I think we got to remember we are also still people, and we are a community despite the fact that we have very different opinions, politically. We are still people, and we still have to accept that everybody is entitled to their own opinion, and I think we need to spread the love and a little more kindness because the entire world is lacking that nowadays.” – Senior Cassandra Taylor
“I think the Tiger spirit day was a good idea, so maybe just by continuing to do that kind of thing. I think talking about it and letting everyone put in their opinions is a good idea.” – Freshman Aoife Stauton
“Go with the flow. Try to do the best we can and just keep pushing forward.” – Senior Dom Lorusso
“I feel like we have to be positive moving forward rather than go against each other, like some people who oppose the Trump side or the Hillary Clinton side are doing. Just move on.” – Sophomore Aiden Chamberlain
“I think it’s really important that we all just share our opinions. A lot of people think that Newton North is one-sided, that we all believe the same thing, that we all are Democrats, and that we all want Hillary. Even though that might be true for the majority, I think that we should all just be honest with each other. If you do have an opposing opinion to someone else, just share it, then we can grow together. I think that throwing all of our opinions out there will help us, too. Just be more aware because I think that we are not as aware as we should or could be.”  – Senior Njioma Grevious
“Unity day, like today with the orange and black, is a good first step. I’m not sure where we go from here, but I think we’ll figure it out.” – Junior Spencer Notick
“Stop talking about it. You’re in class saying or hearing, ‘Oh my god, Trump won,’ and it’s just a pain because everyone who is trying to move on from it is reminded of it, and everyone who is happy Trump won is now upset, so just not talk about it anymore.” – Senior Ivan Suriel
“I’m not sure. I think that since basically all of us are students, we really shouldn’t be concentrated on it that much because while we are going to be affected by it, I think everybody in the school will be able to vote in the next election. I think we should pay attention to it, but we shouldn’t devote class time to it unless it’s for something like Close Up.” – Sophomore Joseph Gross
“I think we just have to unite as a community, support everyone, and be able to accept the difference of opinion as well.” – Junior Joita Diecidue
“Know that we all have different opinions and it’s all okay. I think a lot of people are a little dramatic.” – Junior Julianna Standish
“I guess over time we’ll just accept that it’s a fact and stop being stunned by it.”  Junior Ted Brodhead
“I think that there are a lot of opinions on both sides about the candidates, but I think people need to give Donald Trump a chance, and people need to move on from it. I know a lot of people are angry and mad about it, but I think they should see the good side of him.” – Freshman Aiden Newman
“Stay together. Keep your comments to yourself, and just be positive.” – Freshman Alijah Burton
“I think that we just have to accept what happened. That’s how our government is set up. That’s how a democracy works, so we just have to make sure that cycle continues.” – Sophomore Will Kritzer
“Just don’t worry about it all that much. Just deal with more pressing matters, like whatever you have going on in school.” – Junior Albar Shahnoor
“I think unity is important. It’s important to stay together.” – Sophomore Jack Farley
“You have to accept the fact that what happened and how everybody voted and move on.” – Sophomore Jonas Vorbau
[divider]September 2016: Analyzing the First Debate[/divider]
How did Clinton and Trump perform at the first presidential debate? Who won the debate?
“I think it was really interesting, statistically, to see that, again, men spoke more than women. From what I read, Trump spoke 68 percent of the time, and when Clinton tried to talk, she had to wait for him to stop. Sanders was my first choice, by a long shot, but Clinton is the much less contradictory candidate, and at least she’s a Democrat.” – Senior Elise Miller
“I thought both candidates sort of won in different ways, but it wasn’t a spectacular performance for either of them.” – Freshman Rafael Feldman
“I think Hillary won. She had a strong performance, kept the ball in Trump’s court, and focused on his flaws as a person and a candidate. I think debates are really about the ability to present oneself in political theater rather than presenting elaborate plans.” – Senior Max Bennett
“I think Hillary won just because she was more composed and articulate, and Donald Trump didn’t really fire on her very much.” – Senior Elinor Graham
“I think Hillary won. I didn’t really watch it much, but overall, she made better points than Trump did.” – Freshman Karalina Shoal
“I think Hillary Clinton won. Donald Trump did a better job of playing to the people who already support him, but Hillary reassured people with doubts, including me. I’ve always supported her over Donald Trump, but I sometimes felt iffy about her. Now I am more confident that she’ll make a good president.” – Junior Finn Flaherty
“I would say that Hillary won. She didn’t avoid the questions like Trump did, and she gave more substantial answers.” – Junior Karl Adrianza
[divider]June 2016: Forming Opinions[/divider]
How do you form political opinions, and where do you get your news? Why do you think other students support the candidates that you do not support?
“I think a lot of the time I get my political news from my friends who follow the news more than I do. However, I also listen to the radio a lot, and sometimes I read the newspaper if it looks particularly interesting. I think I generally form my political opinions by seeing headlines. So if someone has said something particularly outrageous, then I’ll read it and form political opinions about it. It’s probably not the most informed way to do it, but I find it’s the easiest way, and I don’t spend as much time on it when I have other stuff to do.”
“I guess Trump has a lot of charisma. He’s a good showman, so maybe a lot of people are attracted to the brashness and bluntness that he’s trying to project.” – Sophomore Eve Martin
“I usually get news from the New York Times app, and I read a lot of headlines on the Globe. If something about an article interests me, I’ll read into it. In terms of my opinions on the elections, there are definitely some familial opinions and what my family has raised me to believe. A lot of it is also from the communities that I’m a part of, and their opinions on issues. I feel like I form a lot of my own opinions off of the news and what I think I want in a presidential candidate.”
“I think Trump supporters feel like they have somehow been at a disadvantage, and he speaks for people that feel they’ve been wronged by the government. Or he speaks for people who don’t read news or aren’t educated about the news or the government in general.” – Sophomore Anna Solomon
“I get news about political elections by hearing people talk in school about it. I also hear about it on the news. For political opinions, I kind of base it off my parents’ views and what I hear on the news.” – Senior Meggie Thompson
“My political opinions are formed basically as a combination of my parents and what I hear from my friends. From there, I sort of form my beliefs. However, I don’t have a strong opinion. Personally, I don’t think that any of the candidates are good for our country. I think this election is just going to be about choosing the candidate that causes the least amount of damage.”
“I think people support Trump because the ideas that he puts down, while unrealistic, are what people want to hear. I think a lot of people convince themselves that they want to believe that; they want to believe whatever he’s saying. At the same time, they haven’t agreed with the political system in the past, and they want a big change.” – Senior Alex Rabinowich
“My political opinions are formed by my parents’ opinions and some from my friends’ opinions. It’s also me going online, doing my own research: reading policies, seeing what candidates have to say. I get my political information from my parents or from the BBC or other news organizations.”
 “It’s clearly going to be Hillary and Donald Trump, and out of those two, I support Hillary. I think some people support Trump because they believe what he says about the economy and immigration, and they don’t necessarily do as much research as they should about how things work politically. I also think they might just ignore racist things and sexist things that he says and say, ‘He doesn’t mean it.’ But just because he doesn’t mean it doesn’t make it acceptable.” – Sophomore Lilly Hacsi
“I like to think that I form my own independent decisions, but that’s probably not the case. I typically look at news online and talk to people about the news. Sometimes I think about how I would argue for each side of an argument and see which is easier to argue for.”
“I support – in this order – Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, every human in existence, Donald Trump. Trump’s message is that things need to change, which can be appealing to some people. But I really don’t think he’s the right person to do it, though I do see the appeal in having a more uncorrupted person in office.” – Junior Finn Flaherty

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