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Friday, September 29, 2023

Who reads the editorials in The Alligator? I do. Or, at least, I did. A free campus newspaper has a unique opportunity not available to major outlets. The writers of the Alligator are (or should be) beholden to no one, except their audience. The Alligator is funded in part, I assume, by subsidies from UF or associated student organizations. Yes, there are ads in every paper, but few are from major corporations. So there should be little worry over losing advertisers. Yet, the editorials are often bland, middle-of-the-road noise. If you want life advice, then read Dear Abby. More importantly, if you want to give life advice, then provide reasons why your advice is valid. Editorial pieces should not be so agreeable. In fact, I suggest that op-eds be divisive. The Alligator had an editorial writer about a year ago named Michael Beato who wrote largely on matters of interest to conservative students. I abhorred 99 percent of Beato’s writings, but my roommates and I read his editorial each week to a discuss the reasons for our beliefs. I am not suggesting that the Alligator needs more diverse viewpoints; I am saying that the writers need to take a firm stand on issues more often. Writing should evoke a response other than “Mhm.” Not a shock response, but one that contributes to the moral, philosophical, educational, and, yes, even political discourse that should be taking place on this campus. Write something worth discussing in a classroom.

-Kissel Goldman


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