I had an interesting experience the other night – one which I hope will be repeated often. Some friends and I were discussing politics jovially and passionately (not to mention loudly) outside my house around 11 P.M. or so. All of a sudden, a couple from the neighboring apartment complex popped their heads out and joined the discussion. We ended up talking well into the night about all sorts of things, and from many very different perspectives. When we were done, we all still disagreed, but we were no longer simply people living next to one another on isolated little islands — we were friends who understood much more about one another in serious (and fun) ways. We were neighbors in the best sense of the word.
This is what I hope to create in the opinions section at the Review. As opinions editor, I strive to avoid one-sidedly lecturing my readers with my own views (though I’ll never hesitate to express them) — I want real, deep, serious discussion on issues from every relevant perspective: right, left, gay, straight, conservative, liberal, socialist, capitalist; any and all views. There will not always be agreement, a consensus, or a clear path. However, this is not the job of the opinions section — our job here is to get people talking and to make good arguments. I want it to create not only good discussions, but to make our community better and friendlier, especially when we seriously disagree. If there is something happening at the V, this is the place for everyone to bring it.
This doesn’t always mean that everyone can speak at once. There won’t always be a pro side and a con side of every issue on every page because ideas deserve to be heard on their own terms and as fully as they can be, independent of the burned-in heuristics which we use to make decisions on a regular basis. But there will always be an opposing side or a different take on something as long as there is someone there willing to write it on the page, and as such, every idea should eventually be expressed.
So, I implore every reader out there to pick up a pen, or start typing, and join in the fantastic discussion which is the opinions page. Show others why they are wrong, why they are right, or explain what issues really mean for our community. Here we can all make good arguments, disagree, agree, expand our understanding, and have a lot of fun doing it. Check out the little box at the bottom of the page for info on how to submit letters or join the staff, and then do it!