Op-Ed: You Know What, I’m Just Going to Go Ahead and Make a Sweeping Generalization

February 25, 2013 12:01 pm
Views: 1327

I have something on my mind, and I need to see my opinion in print. While I acknowledge that this issue I’ll be discussing has enormous complexity that I can’t even begin to bridge given with my limited word count, someone has to come out and reduce the issue to matter of black and white. That someone is me. In order to do this efficiently, I’m going to go ahead and make some sweeping generalizations about people and institutions that I don’t fully understand.

Lately, there’s been a lot of talk around campus about things like “privilege,” “sensitivity” and “not saying things that demean people with backgrounds that are different from your own.” That’s all fine, I guess. Whatever makes you feel better, but just warning you now, I’m probably going to be getting some flak from these lefty, PC-freak-types for what I’m about to say. I know that as soon as this gets posted, there are going to be angry comments from outsiders with fringe political beliefs. They’re going to say that it’s “offensive” and “startlingly ignorant.” I already know this is going to happen. But you know what? I’m going to say it anyway.

I have great confidence that I speak for the majority of the Stanford student body and, probably, most of the country. Everyone I know — my parents, my friends from high school, my draw group, the members of my clubs — agrees with me and supports my views. Given this sample size, I think it’s safe to extrapolate that there is a whole “silent majority” that shares my dismissive, reductionist take on this issue.

It seems that I’m running out of space — damn word count — and I haven’t had a chance to fully develop my position. But that’s fine. This piece was more about provoking discussion anyway. I’m sure that what I’ve said will lead to plenty of reasonable conversations between people with differing world views.