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Retraction notice

The Daily has chosen to retract this article because the information it detailed was off-the-record and part of a private small discussion. The Daily did not indicate that it would be recording or reporting at the event and did not ask sources for quotes on-the-record. We regret this error.

Knowing your allies

I’ve been yelled at by wild-eyed debaters all my life, so my gut instinct tells me to avoid emotional political discussions. Yet, in wake of all the confusion and horror caused by the Paris Attacks I found myself stuck spectating the very type of discussion I dreaded. A Turkish man, who I just met, was proclaiming that the world was hypocritical about Paris to my American friend.

A storm of words

Stanford has always been a place that engenders discussion on a general smorgasbord of topics. This is one of the things I love most about the place — the diversity that begets awareness. Yet as I peruse comments and listen to perspectives throughout campus, I can’t help but feel overwhelmed by the specifics — the terminology and nuances of the everyday going-ons that are targeted.

Julie Winokur ‘Brings it to the Table’ with Stanford students

Bring it to the Table is an initiative Winokur started after her son accused her of being “intolerant” of other views, specifically those espoused on Fox news. Her solution was to sit down at a simple folded table with a patriotic cloth draped over it and talk with over a hundred different people with varied backgrounds and opinions about their political views.

I Do Choose to Run: On playing Taboo

Things get a little tougher, though, when we apply the same strategy to our real-life Taboos: things that are difficult to talk about because society deems them unsettling, controversial or potentially divisive. We have a lot of these at Stanford: race and affirmative action, multiculturalism, religious faith, political beliefs and sexual orientation prominent among them. And just like in the board game, there are a lot of words and concepts we can’t use, for various reasons, when talking about them.