Letter: Reader responds to, “What does it mean to be an American?”

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What it means to be an American:

If you asked me this question five years ago, I would have confidently told you that I am proud to be an American citizen, that the hardships my family faced in order for me to live in a safe, and comfortable environment were worth it in the end. I would have told you that I wished everyone could experience the same wonderful opportunities I had after being born. 

Today, I can tell you with certainty that I am, in fact, ashamed to call myself an American. Our country has severely degraded in a matter of five years. In five, short years, I faced xenophobia, sexism, and multiple other forms of prejudice. In 1,825 days, I realized that I was considered inferior because of my skin color. I learned to acknowledge that the “flaws” in my genetics needed to be hidden in order to ensure my safety. I accepted that I could no longer freely express my opinions, and stand up for the racist attacks on my asian community. In a matter of months, a pandemic spread globally and became the top news in every city, country, and continent. However, what I didn’t expect was that COVID-19 would become the reason why I was avoided in the grocery store, and given rude stares everywhere I went. I was no longer a victim, but instead a target because of my skin color.

I had to accept that I was “lesser” because I simply was not white. Because my last name was Lee, and not Smith, people felt the need to tell me to go back to my own country. What country? This was my home from the very beginning; however, I felt alienated, like I was a mere stranger to the place I once called home. I felt like I no longer belonged. Instead of uniting in this time of crisis, the world became divided. Our own president failed to acknowledge the issues in our society, and allowed for these supremacists to gain support, and spread their ideas.

Moral, and simple human beliefs soon became political and controversial topics. Our country turned against one another. Over the course of 43,800 hours, I lost my identity, sense of security, and pride to be an American.

I wish I could tell you that, one day, I’ll take satisfaction and pride in our country but if change fails to occur then my opinion will not, and can not change.

Tori Lee

Letter to the editor: Reader finds flaws in political correctness critique

Editor & author of “My Country Tis of Thee Analysis”:

I strongly disagree with the opinion that political correctness “silences actual discussion of ideas and strengthens people’s abilities to be dogmatic and illogical” and that it “enables hypocrisy.”

Most importantly, what kind of political speech can people NOT do under political correctness? The only things that come to mind are racism, bigotry and other forms of hate. If this is what political correctness silences, so be it. I’m glad to be living in a world where there are certain rules of decency that people–both inside and outside of the political arena–are expected to adhere to. Chances are, if you are worried about what you have to say not being “politically correct”, then there are pretty well-argued reasons why you should rethink what you are about to say. I think the “political correctness” movement that conservatives love to use as a weapon against a liberal strawman is just a way for victim-complex conservatives to justify having terrible views about the world and to push back against those who are trying to change said views.

I encourage you to expand on what exactly you mean by the certain people to whom political correctness grants immunity, as well as the kind of people that it denies the freedom of speech to. Without a culture of political correctness, I argue that the world would not be as inclusive of a diverse set of people and would marginalize traditionally discriminated-against groups, like the LGBTQ+ community and POC. If being a nice person and refusing to say bigoted things make me “dogmatic and illogical” and hypocritical, then I’m happy with being all three.

– Matt K.

Dear Reader,

At Ethic News, we encourage writers to express themselves through their writing so that they can share their thoughts and viewpoints on various topics.  In the case of opinion pieces, all perspectives that are submitted are welcome. Ethic News holds no biases towards any topic and hopes that the publishing of such articles will serve its readers as a way of becoming acquainted with the various stances that others hold.  

Not everyone will always agree with the opinions our writers put out, and we appreciate those who are so impassioned by our articles- such is the nature of some of the topics the writers touch on- that they express their viewpoints as well.  Taking note of someone’s stance and expressing concerns over it only serves to better enhance the debate upon it.

To censor any ideas, even if disagreeable to some readers, would be to prevent the spreading of ideas and viewpoints, which would be deemed highly unfair to those who do share common sentiments to the writer of such an article.  

The ideas expressed in the article entitled “My country tis of thee analysis” are an example of such controversial opinions.  We appreciate the writer for expressing their own opinion on the ideas of political correctness expressed in the article.

Ethic News is a medium where readers may take the information we upload, think upon it, and decide for themselves what they believe; Ethic News does not seek to influence any individual’s opinion.  As such, we thank the writer of the concern and hope that it broadens the scope of discussion on the ideas expressed in the article.

Respectfully,

Ethic Editorial Board

To read the full “My Country Tis of Thee’ analysis” article, click here: ‘My Country Tis of Thee’ analysis

Letter to the editor: Reader raises concern on anxiety article and photo

I am writing concerning the article “Anxiety disorders explained.” As a parent of a student that suffers from panic attacks and anxiety I was disturbed by the idea that the disorder could be explained in just 5 paragraphs and using an “Artistic interpretation of an anxiety disorder ” as the photo for the article. I appreciate the attempt at addressing mental health issues but found the article unsettling and some what offensive. It is my opinion that not enough research, scientific data and empathy were considered before publishing.

From an anonymous reader

Dear Reader,

We would like to thank the author of this letter for bringing the issues found in the article entitled “Anxiety disorders explained” to our attention.  At Ethic News, we provide a way for students from various backgrounds to express their interests via writing, video production, photography, and other forms of art.  We aim to provide content that is relevant in the context of the world today and gives accurate portrayal of the subject matter. In the case of this article, the title inaccurately claims that the article can simply explain such a complex medical condition as anxiety disorders that can vary from person to person in how it affects them.  That is why we at Ethic News have decided to change the title of the article to “The scientific processes behind anxiety disorders,” as the article covers more of the scientific side of anxiety disorders. We would like to apologize to any and all readers who may have been offended by the title and what it implied. Ethic News strives to provide content that is strongly grounded in factual information and such a title was a breach of this.  All the information in the article itself is well-based in scientific fact from reputable sources, and still does provide an accurate description of anxiety disorders from a scientific point of view. The photo accompanying the article has also received concerns. It has been removed as it was not a true representation of the symptoms of anxiety disorders displayed by each afflicted individual, as no cases of anxiety disorder are the same. Although an “artistic interpretation,” we have decided to take it down to avoid further offense.  We would like to thank all those affected by errors on our part for their continued viewership and support of Ethic News and its continued mission.

Respectfully,

Ethic Editorial Board

Click on this link to view the updated article: The scientific processes behind anxiety disorders