My brother and I are very alike. We watch the same shows, listen to similar music and have a lot of the same mannerisms. Apparently, if I buzzed my hair off, I would look exactly like him. Even though he’s eight years older than me, our similar interests have allowed us to have a close relationship. 

When I had a political awakening and started forming my own ideology, I was surprised to find out my brother did not agree with me. It was frustrating to think that he did not have the same views as I did. I began to realize that not everyone, even people close to you, are always going to agree with you. 

Because of these differences, I had to become comfortable with people disagreeing with me. This new understanding has taught me to be comfortable with the uncomfortable. I am not saying you should be complicit, but people should have more understanding when it comes to those who differ from them. It’s okay to be frustrated, but it’s what you do with that frustration that counts. Seeing someone else’s side and then communicating your own makes for valuable discourse. 

While I call the Historic Neighborhood home, I did not see the National Rifle Association flag hanging out the window of Smith Hall. I did, however, hear buzz about it in the dining halls and before classes. The debate about gun control is one that is relevant in American society today. So the controversy surrounding the flag and the organization that it represents is understandable. According to Gallup Inc., 42 percent of Americans have unfavorable opinions towards the NRA. With such a narrowly split view on the organization and what it stands for, disagreement is bound to occur.

If items hanging outside windows wasn’t a violation of Residence Life policy, those students would have a right to display the NRA flag. Just as anyone would have the right to display a flag of their own ideology. We have to be respectful of the rights of others, but we do not have to accept the message conveyed by those rights. Even though I do not agree with the NRA, I respect the rights of those students who want to share their opinion, because I would want to share my own.