Opinion Editor

Hold yourself accountable this week – we have a lot going on.  Stay true to your commitments. Why didn’t you make the meeting?  Why were you late to chapter? Are you going to work on your column tonight?

I’m 21 years old and just like way too many of my peers, I’m committed to a massive slew of sh*t on this campus.  I am sorry for the vulgarity.

Just last week my good friend wrote an opinion editorial on the over commitment of Denison students – being overly involved does not make you an anomaly on this campus or maybe even in this world.  In other words, everyone has his or her own stuff to deal with day in and day out.  Take away academic responsibilities, athletic and extracurricular commitments, and sometimes you’re just having a hard day. 

Who are we to judge what’s important to other people? At 21 years old can I not prioritize my own life?  Over the past semester I’ve grown increasingly more frustrated by the judgment we place on one another for not upholding each and every one of our never ending “commitments.”

Yes, I agree that everyone must be held accountable to a certain standard.  Sometimes things just have to get done, and there’s little room for excuses.  But for the other 99 percent of the time, I’m a firm believer in personal responsibility.  If we spent half the amount of time worrying about ourselves as we do worrying about what other people should be doing and aren’t, we’d be much better people, undoubtedly. 

I respect a professor without an attendance policy. There’s a reason that people drop a sickening amount of money to go to this university, and it’s not to sit in our dorm rooms all day.  College students should be held responsible for their own learning – if showing up is important to you than you’ll be there, and if it’s not that’s unfortunately your own problem.

Last week I overheard two of my peers speaking to one another in Slayter. One of the students told her professor that she wouldn’t be in class on Friday due to a funeral she would be attending. This professor had the audacity to tell her that this would only be a valid excuse if the deceased was a family member, and if she returned to class Monday morning with the prayer card as evidence of her absence.  This is absolutely disgusting.

The constant judgment is what I can’t seem to look past. Why are we always looking for some sort of validation?  I just want to know what happened to trust. Sometimes we fail on commitments because something else is occurring at the same time; sometimes we fail on commitments because something else is more pressing, our mental health, our family, our friends.

If it’s important to you you’ll be there, and if you’re not then something is more pressing at the moment. There’s no way to truly know what someone else is going through or experiencing, so if they tell you they can’t make it just say OK. Forget the judgment and don’t ask why.  It’s time we started trusting people and allowing them to prioritize their own lives for themselves.