Photo courtesy of Hotel Presidente
People sure love complaining, don’t they? Every week I skim through the opinion pages of this rag and see nothing but folks complaining about this, that or the other thing and why the world is burning down around us. Well I’m here to chill the “ire” in Newswire, and as a prestigious member of the Pretentious People Program
(PPP), the student handbook says you have to listen to me. So sit back, relax and let me mansplain to you why everything is actually fine.
Our campus climate is an issue many on this page like to point to as evidence of a general unsettled feeling around Xavier. But feelings are just that, feelings. I like facts much better, so I’ve done some digging into the numbers from the landmark climate survey, and I have some hard truths to lay out for your consideration. Fact: 60 percent of students said they felt disrespected on campus, and 50 percent of students feel ignored and isolated by peers.
Now in a vacuum, these numbers don’t feel great, but the campus climate isn’t about feelings, is it?
So let me offer some alternate facts: 40 percent of students did not say they felt disrespected, and 50 percent did not say they felt ignored or isolated by peers. By my highly professional calculations, that amounts to a 45 percent approval rate for Xavier’s campus climate. Not bad eh?
Now, let’s compare that to some other newsmaking approval ratings. Congress currently sits at 15 percent, traffic jams somehow have a 44 percent non-disapproval rate and genre-defining Canadian rockers Nickelback have clawed their way to 39 percent approval (mostly on the back of Sports Editor Luke Feliciano). Hand to my copy of the Henry VIII Bible, these are all real numbers. Compared to these idealistic mainstays of American culture — and Nickelback — I’d say we’re doing pretty damn well at 45 percent. Meanwhile, we’ve just barely been beaten out by a 47 percent approval for root canals and — somehow — the 67 percent approval garnered by head lice (I swear to God these numbers are true, check Public Policy Polling’s archives).
Meanwhile, opinion contributors all over campus continue to take potshots at hallowed Xavier institutions and practices. Well, as I like to say, naysaying is easy, conformity is hard and naysaying naysayers is a lot of fun.
The bottom line of all this is that things are fine-er than the cynical upstarts on this page would have you believe. The silent-not-exactly majority on campus knows this to be true, and we would all be well served to embrace that. For as we all know, sitting and passively studying for four years in college without questioning the conditions around us and others is a sure recipe for a better world.
So, everybody just chill out, everything is just fine.
Also, the shield X is better than the power X. That one’s not a joke. MarCom come find me.
Brian Kambitch is a White guy from suburbia with an opinion. He also studies PPP in his free time.