The opinion section has historically been a grab bag of miscellaneous topics and eye-catching headlines. But beyond flashy titles and catchy hooks lies the potential for thought-provoking conversations. Indeed, this safe space for deep dialogue is the opinion section that we, as editors, hope to cultivate.
As the opinion section of a newspaper, we are in a unique position, both as editors and in terms of our content. We must balance free speech regarding expressed opinions with wanting to keep the Nexus and UC Santa Barbara as a whole a safe space to enter two-way dialogues.
In order to truly cultivate a space for comfortable and safe dialogue, it is imperative that we prioritize diversity not just in content but in who is writing said content. As editors, our individual experiences limit our critical lens and, therefore, our published content. Consequently, diversifying the voices contributing to our section is imperative in widening the scope of our coverage.
However, safe and diverse spaces are earned, not declared. In the past, our organization’s reporting styles, phrasing and overall atmosphere have alienated various UCSB communities and organizations. Part of the student body simply does not trust the Nexus to represent their views or opinions.
We do not at all expect members of these communities to feel safe starting a dialogue with any of our sections. As long as the Nexus as a whole is not perceived as a safe space, our newsroom will not properly represent the diversity of our campus. This applies to all sections, including us here at opinion.
In the past, this section’s commitment to free speech has often contradicted this effort to cultivate safe spaces. When articles are repeatedly given consideration despite their potential to directly or indirectly alienate communities in the name of free speech, we fail as a section and a publication as a whole.
Pieces that directly infringe on the safety or sense of security of any individual or group do not have a place in our section.
There’s only so much we can do as opinion editors to make the whole Nexus a safe space for people of all communities and identities. We can, and will, work hard on making our section a place for diverse dialogue in collaboration with our continuing and future diversity and inclusion chairs. We encourage our fellow editors and sections to take a critical (and potentially uncomfortable) internal look at themselves in the process of improving the Nexus’ reporting and editing practices.
Moving forward, we recognize the responsibility that accompanies being editors for one of the most prominent campus and community publications and are actively making the effort to be more thoughtful in publishing pieces. While we still value being a platform for varying perspectives, we want to ensure that pieces differ in their views while keeping our values of upholding diversity and creating safe spaces for dialogue intact.
We want to hear your opinions. Reach out to us at email@example.com.
A version of this article appeared on p. 14 of the December 2nd, 2021 print edition of the Daily Nexus.
So if an opinion makes anyone feel uncomfortable you’re not gonna publish it?
there’s also this thing called diversity of opinion but guess that’s just not the kind of diversity u want
‘diversity of opinion’…isn’t that redundant?
This letter from you opinion editors makes me very uncomfortable.
What bullshit. The role of published opinions is to get people thinking. Sometimes you have to get uncomfortable to start thinking about an issue. Guess what, kids? In real life people will say and write all sorts of things that may make you uncomfortable, and you won’t be able to do anything about it. Also, the “sense of security” is highly subjective. Something tells me you may have been more comfortable writing for the old Soviet Pravda, or today’s North Korean Nodong Sinmun (Labor Newspaper). Everything they printed toed the Communist Party line. Grow up, get ready for the real… Read more »
This is not journalism
“In the past, our organization’s reporting styles, phrasing and overall atmosphere have alienated various UCSB communities and organizations. Part of the student body simply does not trust the Nexus to represent their views or opinions” So you’ve decided to enshrine that as the explicit editorial policy of this newspaper by ensuring that the Nexus will not represent the views of conservative students. “As long as the Nexus as a whole is not perceived as a safe space, our newsroom will not properly represent the diversity of our campus.” If “a safe space” equals someplace where opinions that disturb or offend… Read more »
As long as you adhere to a policy that allows only leftist opinions to be published and not conservative ones under the guise of creating a “safe space” or for any other reason you are not a newspaper. You are a propaganda sheet.
“We open our editorial pages to all opinions and make our views clear only in the editorial pages, from which editorial decisions are based only on substantiated facts.
We defend the rights of any member of the university communities if those rights are abridged, and present all sides of the case.”
This is from your “Donations” page under the “About” tab. Please edit it to reflect your current editorial policy.
If I had to guess, an 86’ing of opinions via the forced uniformity of diversity and the exclusive application of inclusiveness will catch on at campuses across the country. If words are violence and speech is harm, the mere mention of an opposing idea is comparable to a crime.
Everyone deserves to be safe — and safety, evidently, can’t be had if thoughts run amok.
Back to UC Santa Barbara, here’s to hoping no one gets injured by the letters printed on a page.
Maybe look out especially for G’s, N’s and Z’s — those can surely snag easily.
LMAO from a school that takes federal money to not abide by federal laws… I’m guessing this is going to backfire on you in a bad way.
Karl Marx would be proud of you.
Your opinion? Nah. OUR opinion. *USSR anthem starts playing.*