The Silenced: Conservative Voices at B-CC

The television whirs to life as it comes to focus on the current media coverage. Multiple news anchors and reporters wear fake white smiles and Ann Taylor dresses as they discuss the upcoming 2020 presidential election.

Before their school or workday, thousands, if not millions, listen in to

hear any updates on the Presidential Bethesda average political opinion Democratic debates and primaries, but

some teenagers merely want to eat their breakfast or catch up on homework before heading off to school. Some teenagers feel misrepresented, or not even seen at all, as they watch members of Generation Z protesting against President Trump. Often times, especially at a school like

B-CC, which is typically viewed as very liberal and open-minded, members of Generation Z are seen as very progressive and aligning with values of the Democratic Party. However, for those of Generation Z who feel differently, discussions about politics can become awkward or uncomfortable, especially when many teenage Republicans agree that people often “try to demonize people on the right and silence any opposing viewpoints.”

In talking to young Republicans at B-CC, the word “monster” was repeated in many conversations: “Some people think Republicans are monsters, and they’re just like normal people like it doesn’t define who they are. They’re just a cool group of guys and girls who have different political views,” one Republican said.

With the nation so politically divided, future voters of Generation Z “feel like to win the presidential race you have to be… you have to be [more] polar than moderate, so it’s kind of difficult for the perfect candidate to win.” A perfect candidate, it seems that to most, would be an individual with the absolute balance of Republican and Democratic ideals. This is unfortunately almost impossible as so many of those ideals conflict. Several of the main hot topics for presidential candidates are polarizing. For instance, the subject of gun control legislation is a very popular issue both on the national stage and among the average American citizen. A senior at B-CC, John*, named gun control as the Democratic belief which he is unable to agree with. John's view is that background checks are very intensive and that eventually, restrictions will become so intense that guns are ultimately banned.

Another common fear in the Republican Party is the emergence of socialism. Both John and Gabe, seniors at B-CC, cited their fear of socialism as being a major concern, especially Bernie Sanders’ proposed health care plan.

A similar trend appeared when interviewing those who met our demographic of interest; specifically the state of political sidings in their homes. It seems that even within these households, there is MoCo Voting in the 2016 Election political polarization. It

is not just around their peers do those that identify with the Republican Party face political division and conflict but within their own families. It seems that the prevailing trend has been the father identifying as a Republican and the mother identifying as a Democrat or other political party.

Additionally, compared to households with singular political party affiliation, families with party divisions "don’t talk about politics at the house." At B-CC, the political atmosphere can feel oppressive and restrictive to those who don't fall in line with its progressive and liberal views. Students have created a democratic slant within the school, which unintentionally restricts and causes harm to those who don't align themselves with liberal views.

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