Waunakee school community should seek unity after the election

School and politics have always been something to keep separate, however it is no secret that this recent election has brought a storm of emotion on social media and into the classroom. Everyone heard Principal Kersten’s announcement calling students to come together and remind them of Waunakee’s tolerance principles. Waunakee is a school tolerant of every race, religion, and sexual orientation; however following Tuesday night it seemed that our school represented everything but.
Kersten’s announcement addressed the fact that our school was, “sharing feelings in a manner that is disrespectful…and will not be tolerated.” He went on to mention that WHS works hard to promote tolerant and respectful behaviors towards each other and the community. Many can probably recall groups of students chanting “build the wall,” at numerous lunches in addition to a plethora of apparel advertising political opinions, some shockingly offensive. Students even seemed to neglect Trump’s own acceptance speech where he stated that he will be a “president to all Americans,” and that he wants to reach out to the people who did not support him in order to “unify our great country.”
Since the election there have been cycling opinions about how the United States is being divided essentially between Trump supporters and non-Trump supporters, which quickly translates into the halls of WHS. For example, just this week students began to form the Young Progressives Club, which many believe was simply created to challenge the already existing Young Republicans Club. Now this may not be the case, but in such a tense time it does not seem to just come out of the blue.
What is important for Waunakee’s students to remember is that this election should not change what occurs in school. It should not change how students view one another, and it certainly should not change how students treat one another. A new political figure does not mean a new school chemistry, or a divided student body. No one should be promoting divisiveness or intimidation from either political view, and we all must think back to Kersten’s announcement, “to treat others as we like to be treated ourselves.”
No matter who our leaders are, basic respect and decency should still stand. If we as a society throw away our own values, we are no better than blind followers who cannot think for ourselves. No matter who voted for whom, love for one another should still be paramount.