Editorial | Perspectives, a new approach to opinions

By Nathaniel Langley, Opinions Editor

The Daily Illini’s opinion section has long held a rich tradition of communicating students’ viewpoints. Commenting on astronomical events and publishing countless ostentatious judgments, opinions has regularly been a habitat for debate and conversation.

However, this prolonged conversation is changing.

In a polarized age such as ours, it is more cumbersome than ever to pierce the veil of composure to understand one’s viewpoint. With ruthless shouting matches being a common occurrence — both virtually and physically —, society has lost its comprehension for recognizing and appreciating one’s perspective.

Therefore, with last semester’s launch of “Perspectives,” I am ecstatic to welcome readers to this new era for opinions.

An ecosystem for civility and personal perceptions, “Perspectives” pushes the boundaries of opinions through articulation and creative means. In contrast to the typical column, readers can expect perspective pieces to be profoundly personal in their narratives and deliver opinions through a more distinctive, intimate medium.

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Additionally, within “Perspectives,” the audience can anticipate two varieties of writing: DI Voices and downright Perspectives.

DI Voices will be — and have been — contributions from columnists who express “perspectives” on countless topics: the coping power of humor, the relationship with one’s mini-van, religious hypocrisy toward the LGBTQ+ and numerous more.

Correspondingly, a stand-alone Perspectives piece will originate from all Illini (past and present), community members and anyone who holds a formidable outlook. Furthermore, these writings pull back the curtain on opinions and disclose the formation of one’s viewpoints.

In this issue, readers may notice the prevalence of DI Voices within Perspectives. As this is a relatively new endeavor, currently columnists are the main sources of these works. If you wish to contribute or have questions about presenting your perspective, [email protected] is always available for your viewpoint and personal narrative.

Whether a DI Voices or Perspectives piece, each describes and informs readers as to why one possesses the values they do and where those are applied. Where columns, in their nature, are argumentative and compel the reader to question their stances, perspectives seek to reveal backgrounds and flatten the debate arena into more intimate terms.

An additional observation readers may witness with Perspectives is the reign of creativity.

The fashion of columns has continually attested that personal experiences and innovation distract from the arguments being made. With Perspectives, originality and individuality are encouraged for overpowering narratives demonstrating why someone occupies specific positions/values.

The art of argumentation is overdue for reform. In today’s world, personal experiences are undervalued and discounted from a debate. Columns still occupy the critical worth in elongating conversations, yet their purpose is to change one’s mind, not explain one’s rationale and level with the audience.

Likewise, what society neglects is that we — students, community members, etc. — hold a stake in the culture’s conversations. Perspectives is this space for appreciating one’s portrait in the vast cultural discussions. Without an acknowledgment of how/why one arrives at their conclusions, society is adrift in meaningless quarrels.

Nevertheless, the opinions section merrily greets you to this fresh outlook on opinions. If you feel inclined to provide your perspective, the previously stated email is continuously available to distribute your essential narrative. Thank you.

Nathaniel is a junior in LAS.

[email protected]