Student opinions: what’s changed


Although with each decade the world around us changes, the opinions of KO students have mostly lasted throughout the years.

Inside the dusty pages of the October 1933 edition of The Kingswood News, lies an article titled “Shoulder to Shoulder.” The editorial outlines the duty one has to elevate the rest of humanity.

“The world properly despises anyone who is lazy or selfish enough to believe that he has the right to complain of his fair share of hardship and difficulty,” the article reads. “At this time such a person is apt to injure his society as well as himself.”

Current senior Dan Carroll agreed. “Communities need to help each other,” he said. “It’s good to not be lazy or selfish, but at the same time you can’t work all the time and never think about yourself.”

Dan also said jokingly that he appreciates these qualities to an extent. “I like laziness,” he said. “Being lazy is fun.”

Jumping to the 1950s, morals were the key focus. In the 1951 October issue of the newspaper, one editorial described why a boy educates himself.

“After all, a person doesn’t go to school merely to see what kind of marks he will obtain,” the article stated. “He goes to mold his character and to broaden his knowledge. By cheating in an effort to obtain impressive marks, he succeeds only in breaking down his own character. What cheater can possibly be proud of a high mark if he himself knows to what resources he has had to stoop in order to receive them.”

The article went on to state what cheating truly means. “Cheating is a contagious and habit-forming disease that must be fought against with all possible energy,” the article reads.

Current junior Remy McCoy agreed. “I think cheating is terrible,” she said. “You just feel guilty if you cheat.”

Not everyone KO student held cheating to the utmost detestation. “If you cheat you get a rush of excitement; it’s bad but sometimes it happens,” an anonymous student said.

Onward to an October 1960 editorial. KO students saw the value in learning about local government.

“If Kingswood provides any kind of barometer of how well American teenagers are informing themselves now, we will have no worries about ignorant voters when these people become 21,” the article reads. “Although this type of interest among non-voters may seem unimportant, it has two noteworthy results. First, student questioning and discussion serves to keep actual voters on their toes, and second, the experience in choosing a candidate will have obvious good results when the students become voters themselves,” the editorial stated.

Current junior Sidney Taffe agreed. “I think that we should know what’s going on in local government and legislation that’s going on in our towns because it’s going to affect us,” she said.

On May 18, 1973, KO published a news article called “Unfounded Prejudgement: A Threat to Civil Rights” by Buzz Hauss. The Watergate scandal, a break-in by five men into the Democratic National Committee headquarters in Washington, D.C., had just exploded across every newspaper front page.

“The press has employed sensationalism and semantic techniques to imply direct involvement and guilt on the part of men whose implication in the case is based on no more than hearsay,” he said.

Buzz firmly held his position. “The courts should be allowed, under due process, to determine guilt or innocence; trial by headlines is not the American system,” he said.

In terms of the Watergate investigation, Buzz said that the public should wait until the investigation is over to make an accusation. “And so, now, as the courts can conduct the judging of Watergate fairly and effectively, it is time for the press and the rest of the country to return to working for the nation’s welfare, both domestic and international, and reserve judgement on Watergate until all the facts are in,” he concluded.

When asked if we should listen to investigations rulings, current senior Charlotte Cyr related her answer to current investigations. “I think people shouldn’t always believe the decisions,” she said. “Sometimes it’s not right, like in the Kavanaugh investigation. There wasn’t enough hard evidence so they claimed he wasn’t ‘guilty.’”

Flashing forward to around our generation, Jonathan Cohen wrote an article titled “Dress Down Day” in the KO News published on May 24, 2002.

Jonathan acknowledged that the easiest way to give money to a cause is through dress down days but said that this strategy is flawed. “We should be careful to focus on the actual acts of charity along with the financial aspect; throwing money around the cafeteria devalues the spirit of altruism,” he said.

To provide a solution, Jonathan suggested making one’s actions sincere. “We should be conscious as a community to make sure that everything we do is with utmost care and that we don’t push aside issues with our affluence,” he said.

When asked about dress down days, junior Emily Lemkuil said she has mixed feelings.

“I think it’s fine,” she said. “Now dress down days might not be the best because you’re not taking time out of your day to help other people, but you are doing it for a cause.”

KO students have always been individuals with differing opinions on controversial issues. Although not everyone agrees, the KO community will continue to be open-minded enough to discuss what we might disagree on for many years to come.