Renegade Roundtable: A discussion about hate in today’s political climate

Katalina Quintanilla, Reporter

Reggie Williams, director of the Levan Center, developed the idea of the Renegade Roundtable to create a conversation in today’s political, social, and economic issues. The first roundtable was held on Sept. 26.

Michael Harvath, Steven Holmes, Erin Miller, and Neal Stanifer were four BC professors that participated in the roundtable. The topic they chose for this series was “Do We Hate Each Other More in America than We Used To?”

Katalina Quintanilla
From left; Michael Harvath, Steven Holmes, Erin Miller, and Neal Stanifer ready to begin the Renegade Roundtable.

“[It is] an hour and half conversation, 10 to 15 minutes from each professor and then an answer question portion,” Williams continued. “They [roundtable] will always start with some sort social, political, current issue that affects us as a campus, a community, as a nation, as a planet etc…”

Harvath was the first to speak on the topic and proudly said that we don’t hate each other more than before. He suggested three concepts on how America is more vulnerable now than 20 years ago.

“Political party alignment, Twitter, and mobilization of our major institutes,” Harvath said. His point was that before race and color was the issue many had with each other, whereas today, people are hating others for their political views.

Stanifer went next and made his point to why he thinks America hates each other more today than before.

“Our political divide is widening, that median is being constricted, the people that get along with everybody is getting restricted,” Stanifer said.

He used statistics to demonstrate the hatred going on in today’s world. The tail of a bell curve graph are the people that are controlling everything.

Stanifer continue, “We are seeing the consistent Conservatives, the consistent Democrats…they are the only ones that matter. They are the base, they vote in primaries, they seek out people to argue with. They are the people you see on your television.”

Katalina Quintanilla
Students of Bakersfield College gather outsisde to join the roundtable discussion.

Katalina Quintanilla

Holmes was third to join in the conversation and presented a quote from English philosopher Thomas Hobbes that summarizes the fact that we are constantly at war with one another.

“He talks about the subtle wars between us on a daily basis whether they are consciously or subconsciously,” Holmes said.

Lastly, Miller finished off the event with her point of view on the topic.

“I don’t think we hate each other [more] than we used to because we get along with each other, we talk. But what we are becoming are enemies,” Miller said.

She emphasized on how people who think are doing good are the people that are “victimizing” themselves to others.

The next Renegade Roundtable will be on “Does Our Society Send Too Many People to College?” It will be held on Wed. Oct. 24 from 6:00-7:30 p.m. at the Levan Center.