Non-partisan club’s debut

Goal of club to create safe space for political dialogue across the spectrum

Non-partisan club is not much different than Republican or Democrat club, however it provides a safe place where students are encouraged to seek compromise between partisan ideas instead of focusing on differences.

Non-partisan club has many different ideas and goals on how to bring together different political views from opposing sides.
Junior Ethan VanGosen, one of the heads of the non-partisan club, stated that his goal was to help create a place where people feel comfortable expressing their own opinions.

“The goals of our club are more to unite partisan perspectives from the Democrat side, moderate side and Republican side. We really want to create a space where people can express their views and things that they are really interested in, in a safe space,” said VanGosen.

The Republican club believes that their club is necessary because they wanted students in their club to be able to focus on just one agenda.
“This club is necessary because it allows students who identify with Republican views a chance to express themselves. It also serves the purpose of giving NT students a way to explore certain views and ideas in politics today,” said head of Republican club, junior David Cisneros.

Although the ultimate goal of the club is to have a space where students can express their views, the discussions within the club often lead to debates over certain topics.

Ben Yang, sponsor of the non-partisan club, said the club is less about debate and more about understanding.

“As a teacher I would want it to be more educational and less of a debate. Usually students like to come in and debate and argue and win and I would really like them to learn and understand different perspectives. But mostly I am trying to support the leaders,” stated Yang.

Yang said that having a non-partisan approach can lead to a well rounded discussion.

“I do feel that having a non-partisan approach to discussion can be very beneficial and that most of the discussion we hear from our leaders are pretty partisan,” explained Yang.

At the meetings each week students have a discussion based on a topic they are interested in.

“Usually we will have a specific topic for that meeting that is a relevant or current issue, whether it is the border wall or specific climate change agenda and we will just talk about it and we will bring in different perspectives from the democratic side or republican side,”

said VanGosen.
With the growing focus on civics and the need to unify the country, the goal of the non-partisan club seems self-evident.

“I think as we’re growing, we should be exposed to multiple perspectives. Like probably in our families we get exposed to only one party, but it is important to get exposed to multiple views,” said VanGosen.

Cisneros believes that while multiple perspectives are important, there is an unspoken stigma against certain views, specifically Republican views.

“Some people have told me that they have been judged by others after voicing their opinions in class. I believe that we should be able to agree on subjects, but it shouldn’t come to the level that we are afraid to voice our views inside of class” said Cisineros.

VanGosen has been to Republican and Democratic clubs before and didn’t really like the fact that they focused on their own agenda.

“Those clubs really try to show those one-partisan view points and we really wanted to create a club where people could come and talk about their views and it would be a safe space for all,” explained VanGosen.