Readers’ Forum: Nov. 3

155

Learning Suite: beneficial or detrimental?

After two hours of waiting, I look up excitedly only to see the blank white page turn into yet another blue error page informing me, “Some critical university systems are currently unavailable. Learning Suite cannot function without these systems and will also be unavailable until the issue is resolved.” BYU needs a reliable platform that doesn’t crash when students need to submit assignments so students’ learning is enhanced rather than interrupted.

The BYU mission statement says its mission is to “assist individuals in their quest for perfection and eternal life.” That assistance should provide a period of intensive learning in a stimulating setting where a commitment to excellence is expected and the full realization of human potential is pursued.” How can I get “intensive learning” or “commit to excellence” when I can’t even access my homework assignment on the school’s website?

— Andrew Barlow

Salt Lake City, Utah

America and political correctness

In the early 19th century the United States was a country for the people, run by the people. American citizens fought for what they believed to be correct, regardless of popular opinion or international social norms. Today, issues such as racial discrimination, gender discrimination, sexual orientation, and equal rights for men and women are the subjects of many of our political and social debates. Rather than the “stick it to the man” country of decades ago, America has shifted to the political correctness leader in the world. Our culture screams, “Careful what you say and how you say it, you might offend someone.” People are too concerned about being addressed in a politically correct manner. And just the opposite, people are too concerned about addressing someone in the wrong manner.

As guaranteed in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, American citizens are entitled to freedom of speech, which includes free expression of ideas and beliefs. Our freedom of speech has never been limited, but one could definitely argue that it has been hindered by a constant fear of being politically correct.

We should stop being politically correct in order to shift back to the culture that the United States was founded on. Let’s restore the place where we can say what we want and not care who disagrees or dislikes our opinion.

— Tyler Hobson

Boise, Idaho

What if it was you?

This past week the ROC decorated the entire student section with pink shirts while all the football jerseys had pink accents to recognize breast cancer. What if other life-threatening diseases received the same amount of support during their month? What if teal covered the football fans during the month of September for ovarian cancer? Sports teams and student sections should show support for various diseases through clothing and jerseys in order to spread awareness for other significant illnesses affecting the lives of so many today.

With the ever-present popularity of sports, teams have so many opportunities to say something to those unaware of these serious diseases and to support those who suffer from them. Seven years ago I didn’t know anyone with cancer, but in a matter of days my world was turned upside down when my 2-year-old sister was diagnosed. It finally clicked: whether we are affected or not, these illnesses exist.

People can become aware. Color-coded clothing and game jerseys can make a difference for people fighting for their lives. We are all more aware of breast cancer because of the various contexts we’ve seen athletes wear pink in over the past few years. We can do this for childhood cancer, autism, Down syndrome and so many more. These diseases are affecting real people, and there is something we can do about it.

— Taylor Purvis

West Jordan, Utah

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