Some things aren’t political

Common courtesy and respect are not partisan issues.

As the DailyâÄôs Editorial Board, we discuss many kinds of issues related to students and the University of Minnesota community. Many of those issues are political and require us to take some kind of ideological stance. But with the help of the current uncooperative political climate and anonymous discussion boards, we think there are nonpolitical, everyday issues that have become distorted and overpoliticized. Rather than discussing things on a human-to-human level, weâÄôve seen people avoid thinking deeply and let the conversation devolve into partisan politics.

For instance, last week anonymous commentators on the DailyâÄôs website attacked a young woman for wanting to be allowed a larger desk in lectures. Rather than continue to drop classes in which she couldnâÄôt find a comfortable seat, she spoke to her professor. For those without her courage, there happens to be an office that will help provide a seating option.

Many who chose to post their opinions on the story name-called and pointed their fingers, calling it her problem and saying that no one else should have to pay for it. This reaction was deeply disheartening. One person was honest enough to say he or she considered the issue âÄúthe same as every other liberal vs. conservative argument.âÄù We disagree.

There are some things we encounter daily that have nothing whatsoever to do with a personâÄôs political leanings. A community the size of the University requires cooperation and friendliness, not selfishness and hostility. Respect and courtesy are not the domain of one political party or the other. Standing on a partisan soap box at every opportunity will have the same outcome in everyday life as it does in Washington (or St. Paul): Nothing will ever change.