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Bella Vista Students Face the Question of Losing Friends Over Politics

Lately there has been a lot of tension regarding political climate. People are becoming more and more divided as quarantine pulls us further and further apart. The current political climate has become very heated and polarized, causing many, including family members, to cut ties over opposing political stances. This week, I interviewed three Bella Vista students, each supporting different political affiliations in order to determine a controversial question: Is it acceptable to unfriend people based on opposing political beliefs?

Out of the three affiliations, liberal, conservative, or moderate, which do you identify with and why? “I identify as moderate. I am that because I feel like you can’t really be completely one sided. You have to look at both sides and see what you do and don’t like and that’s why I’m moderate.” (Ethan Durling, Sophomore)

“Liberal because I believe everyone has the right to basic human needs without having to pay for it (i.e. healthcare, water, etc.) and equality for everyone.” (McKenna Worthington, Sophomore)

“I identify as a conservative because most of my political views are conservative, but I still do have a little of liberal views, not a lot. I mainly try to keep an open mind and see what is the most logical decision” (Ryan Bollinger, Sophomore)

Do you have family members or close friends with opposing views as you? If so, has your relationship with them changed due to tension in the current political climate? “My family has pretty much the same views as me. And I have liberal and republicans friends and our political views haven’t affected our relationships at all.” (Ethan Durling, Sophomore)

“Yes I do and it totally has. Admittedly there are other factors too but I no longer talk to one of my parents due to differences in political ideals and I just stay with the other.” (McKenna Worthington, Sophomore)

“Most of my family is conservative and I do have friends with different views than me but I pick my friends who will always have an open mind and think about what I say and see if it makes sense to them politically wise and I do the same. (This occurs when we're talking about politics).” (Ryan Bolliger, Sophomore)

Have you personally unfriended someone in your life based on opposing political views? “I have not.” (Ethan Durling, Sophomore)

“I have. People who don’t value every human life and instead value capitalism and hate aren’t people I want close to me.” (McKenna Worthington, Sophomore)

“I would never befriend someone because they think differently than me.” (Ryan Bollinger, Sophomore)

Has anyone in your life (that you know of) unfriended you based on opposing political views? “No.” (Ethan Durling, Sophomore)

“Not that I know of.” (McKenna Worthington, Sophomore)

“Sadly yes.” (Ryan Bollinger, Sophomore)

Do you think it’s acceptable to cut ties with someone due to opposing political views? Why or why not? “Well you can do whatever you want, but I personally don’t agree with that. We shouldn’t define ourselves to one faction and hate the other without getting to know them or understand them. If you unfriend someone only because of different political views, then maybe you were the problem in the relationship. You can unfriend them if they’re just not fun to be around. I get that, but politics shouldn’t decide who we can or can’t be friends with.” (Ethan Durling, Sophomore)

“Totally! There’s of course differences like favorite ice creams or colors or whatever that’s okay to not agree on, but when it comes to political views that harm other people, that’s not okay. You should always do what is best for you.” (McKenna Worthington, Sophomore)

“No. because having your own opinion is nothing to be befriended off of and if you have a problem with their views then you can talk to them and explain your point of view on things and see if they understand where you're coming from.” (Ryan Bollinger, Sophomore)

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