Do you consider yourself to be “political”? Why or why not?
I would consider myself “political” because I am incredibly interested in politics related subjects. In particular, I am politically aware of things that are happening around us. I read the news every morning to catch up on any new information; I hold opinions on abortion, women’s rights, human rights, etc. I am also comfortable speaking out and standing up for my views. Furthermore, I’ve also been involved in MUN for the past five years, where I partake in conferences to discuss global issues worldwide. Although MUN is a “Model” UN where our resolutions would not be implemented or considered by the UN whatsoever; however, conferences like this make me more globally and politically aware of the issues around us.
What does it mean to be political?
I think that being political means both acting and thinking politically. People act politically by being directly involved in political decision-making, such as being active in a party or a public effective or proactive group. We think politically by being well informed with the political state, holding an opinion, and sharing individual perspectives on some issues.
Is everything political? Why or why not?
I think that everything is political; there is no way to escape politics. As mentioned before, being political doesn’t always have to be directly involved in a country’s government or public affairs; rather, it can also be people’s thoughts and opinions. Everyone has a stance on specific subjects; everyone has a position on the political compass. Additionally, some may argue that they are not political because they are simply not interested in politics. However, I believe that is not a sufficient excuse for them not to be political. Those who are not interested are political in the sense that they grant others the ability to do whatever they wish with politics. They demonstrate their political side by merely allowing others to carry out political actions. Politics is all around us: the system we live in, the laws we follow, the frontiers, the people in government, etc. They are there and make the rules for everyone; they affect us even when we choose not to engage.
How important do you feel it is to be aware of what is going on in politics?
I think that political awareness is crucial. As mentioned in my responses to the previous questions, politics affect everyone; it dictates everything around us. You may think that certain politics may not affect you directly, but it is undoubtedly changing the very future of the people around you, ultimately affecting you as an individual. Therefore, politics keeps you accountable, both for yourself and for everyone else. Saying that they don’t care about politics is as if they’re saying, “ignorance is not bliss.” It is the highest form of selfishness. Understanding politics, harnessing the simple notion of carrying about what’s going on in the world, is how human beings can feel for one another.
What are the political issues that you believe are most important right now, and why?
In my opinion, the most important political issues are the US elections and the trade war between China and the US. The US elections are critical because, though it is the US presidential election; however, in a globally interconnected world, the result of this election could potentially affect all of us. For countries such as Saudi Arabia, China, and North Korea, a Biden victory would likely result in closer scrutiny of their human rights records and military actions. Whereas in Iran, many are hoping for a Biden victory since it would introduce a new nuclear deal and relief from the crippling sanctions that Trump introduced. Whoever wins, there are plenty of pressing challenges that require international cooperation, and the leader of one of the major powers, the US, is of vital importance.
The trade war between China and the US is crucial due to multiple reasons. First of all, my family and I currently live in China; therefore, the process and results of the trade war could directly affect our lives. Secondly, the trade war could significantly weaken the global economy. Both China and the US are major economic powers in the global financial system. The trade dispute has diminished trade flows between the US and China, which could, in turn, present both challenges and opportunities for other countries.