Final debate screening at BC

Aims to encourage BC student community to vote

Trump at one of his rallies. Photo Courtesy of Wikimedia

On Wednesday, Oct. 19, Bellevue College hosted a screening of the final presidential debate in room B204. Multiple instructors from the arts and humanities department brought their classes in to watch the debate. The screening included live fact checking via Politifact and invited students to join the political discussion and become more involved in their political community. John Kissoondyal, Arts and Humanities Program assistant at Bellevue College said he “wanted to invite instructors to promote the screening for students that would be engaged in this type of discussion and promote student discussion and involvement.”

Beverages and cookies were provided at the screening. “We wanted to give them an opportunity to come together and watch together,” said Taylor Dalrymple, an employee at the English Language Institute at Bellevue College. “I think we had both a good turnout and good mix of students that came to this event.”

Among the students who attended were international students who were learning English as a second language and came to the screening to become more informed regarding American politics. “It would be wonderful if they could go through the process to become citizens of the U.S.,” said Darlymple. “Being a citizen should also mean being informed of what’s going on in the country, so this gives them an early start on that.”

The main impact that the screening was meant to leave on the students was to teach the importance of taking part in the voting process. “If you don’t exercise your right to vote, you are left out of the process and you may end up with a president that you do you not approve of, and therefore it is of the utmost importance to be involved and to exercise that right,” said Dalrymple. “A lot of young people are just disenchanted with the process or disinterested, but your vote does count.”

The students were able to share their reactions to the debate and discuss opinions about the presidential candidates. “It was interesting to see how other people take the things they say and who seems to agree with what,” said Quinn Good, one of the students who attended the screening. Good felt that they benefitted from watching the debate in that environment because they were “able to watch the fact checks live, which was an awesome experience because I didn’t have to go back later and check facts.”

As is always the case when the presidential candidates face off, students held very strong opinions about the statements of the candidates. Aside from the outbursts of laughter after Trump’s claims of the bad hombres entering America or his unwavering respect for women, some students felt that the entire presidential race was nothing short of a complete joke. “I’m really annoyed with Trump getting this far in the races,” said Good. “He does not seem like a good candidate at all for the presidency, he’s just the human embodiment of the word yikes.”