Faculty consider election

Christina Garcia
Copy Editor

In a recent informal election survey among 10 University of La Verne faculty, eight faculty members said they plan to vote for Democratic Presidential Candidate Hillary Clinton, one will vote for Republican Donald Trump, and one was undecided.election2016

“I absolutely plan on voting for Hillary Clinton,” said Sean Bernard, associate professor of creative writing and director of the honors program. “There are a lot of reasons for my decision, the main one being that the other candidate seems insane.”

“I’m voting for Donald Trump,” said Adjunct Instructor of Photography Jason Smith. “The reason is because he is the anti-establishment candidate. He hasn’t been in government, but he runs a good business.”

Faculty members expressed various reasons for supporting their candidate of choice.

“I liked Clinton’s Global Health Initiative,” Director of Forensics Robert Ruiz said. “I also like her support of Planned Parenthood. She supports teachers also. I know she’s human by looking at what she stands for.”

“I’ve preferred Clinton over Sanders,” Professor of Political Science Richard Gelm said. “One of the most important things is about qualification. Clinton has Trump beat on all the key qualities necessary.”

“Clinton’s economic plan is a good one,” Bernard said. “She’s also becoming more progressive.”

“A vote for Clinton is a vote for stability,” added Dane Sawyer, senior adjunct of religion and philosophy.

Gelm also provided many reasons why he believes Trump’s demeanor and policies make Trump an unfit candidate for president. Delving into various policies such as education, global warming, campaign finance and immigration, Gelm addressed the issues that are at stake in this election.

“The idea of the wall (along the Mexican border) itself is preposterous on many levels,” Gelm said. “Walls have been irrelevant since the Middle Ages, so it won’t be enough of a deterrent. There are also environmental questions with building the wall, as it has the potential to damage wildlife and cut them off from the Rio Grande River.”

Faculty members also shared criticisms unique to this election, as both candidates are less than favorable in some of their opinions.

“Trump will take us to a wall 100 miles per hour,” said Jay Jones, professor of biology and biochemistry. “Hillary will take us at about 50 to 70 miles per hour. I’m going to vote for Hillary but not with joy.”

Professor of Religion and Philosophy Richard Rose said that he remains undecided.

“I was leaning toward Clinton for the stability she can provide,” Rose said. “I like the platform but I don’t have the confidence that it will be done. I also haven’t looked at the independent candidates as much as I would like to.”

Most faculty interviewed believe voting is a critical civic duty, especially with this election, for which so much is at stake.

“People today tend to vote on the endocrine level and not the cognitive level,” Jones said.

Gelm expressed concern about voting and the carelessness that some people show toward it. He said that although the candidates from the Democratic and Republican parties are not the most favorable options for most, a decision still has to be made.

“It’s time for the American people to grow up and be adults,” Gelm said. “We never get perfect choices in life, so to say that because this election doesn’t offer an easy choice is not an excuse to not vote.”

The last day to register to vote in California is Oct. 24. More information on voter registration can be found at sos.ca.gov/elections/voter-registration. Registration can be completed online at registertovote.ca.gov.

Christina Garcia can be reached at christina.garcia2@laverne.edu.

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