Over the past week, there have been stories published containing a magnitude of sadness. There is confusion and anger that comes with the words we have read and the things we have seen.
In the days to come, Texas A&M and its students will yet again be forced to put the weight of a national issue on its shoulders. After witnessing the events in Charlottesville, VA it can be frightening to think of what might happen during the white lives matter prostest on Sept. 11. However, Aggies were made for times such as these.
When things are dark, people look to the words of the those who have done great things for guidance. As a student newspaper in the United States, The Battalion is partial to a few of those words from our Constitution.
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
This passage is included as a reminder. A reminder of when you restrict the words of a hateful few, more restriction will follow. A reminder that you cannot pick and choose when people are allowed to speak freely.
It is also a reminder that those who speak will be held accountable for their words and actions. If those who speak go further and commit crimes, they will be presumed innocent until proved guilty and judged by a group of their peers.
These are not easy ideas, but they are beautiful ones. They are the ideas that have prompted us to be a country in which people will sacrifice their lives to defend. A country that people will uproot their lives to come to for a better future. A country of force and prosperity.
J.R.R Tolkien, who lived through times darker than ours, once wrote about those who find themselves in difficult situations and wish they never lived to see them, “and so do all who live to see such times. But that is not for them to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.”
You too have the freedom to act.
As members of the free press, The Battalion will be on the front lines of this issue to inform its readership honestly and accurately. It is a heavy burden to write about issues most would rather pay no mind or attention, however we believe that an informed people is a better one.
If you are lead to protest, do so in peaceful assembly. If you are called to pursue happiness by going about your business and ignoring the event all together, do your best to put some goodness in the world in whatever way you see fit.
If you feel a calling to participate on Sept. 11, but do not know how, come by our newsroom. We will be there during this protest, acting as the fourth estate — an uninhibited press, informing our student body and readership abroad, showing the world what we can do as student journalists.
This editorial is the opinion of the majority of The Battalion’s editorial board, and is the responsibility of the editor-in-chief.