2020 elections having students stressed out

Throughout the week of Nov. 2, multiple conversation topics drifted towards the election, rather than schoolwork. Classroom discussions generally shifted to politics at least once throughout the day. 

Social Studies teacher Traci Lake said that in study hall multiple students would watch the election during the period, whereas they could have been working on homework. In some of her classes, students would change the topic of conversation to Biden or Trump for just a couple of minutes. 

Lake said her anxiety significantly increased during election week as well. “I definitely lost some sleep a couple of nights, just the unknown of the outcome. We’ve become so divided politically that I didn’t like the unknown,” she said. 

In Washington, D.C., construction workers were seen boarding up buildings in fear of riots breaking out. Lake said she hopes that violent riots will not result as an outcome of the election. She said, “We’re better than that, but that can be difficult when you have very strong feelings attached to a candidate. I hope people can understand that that is how a democracy works, we get to voice our opinions without others getting upset.”

Sophomore Megan Anton has never been too passionate about politics. The election week didn’t affect her mood or behaviors in any way. However, she felt strongly that citizens should only be turning in one ballot. She said that everyone deserves one vote for the results to be correct. Anton said it’s unfair that Trump is accusing the democratic votes of being fake.

 Anton said that downtown shops boarding up their buildings is smart because it’s good to take necessary precautions. “They shouldn’t be in that position though. That’s how our democracy works and people need to accept it,” she said. 

If protesting, Anton said she hopes people will wear masks to keep everyone safe during this pandemic. Anton said people are getting too comfortable with COVID; they’re not social distancing or trying to keep everyone safe, which is very scary. 

Sophomore Ariel Crew has been following along with the election throughout the week as well. She said, “I’m happy that Biden won just because I don’t agree with Trump’s beliefs.” Crew, who would take a few minutes out of her day to check the polls, wasn’t anxious over who would win. It wasn’t one of her priorities, so it wasn’t stressing her as much as it was for others. 

Crew said that Trump labeling the votes as a “hoax” isn’t necessarily an overall image of the government but more Trump not accepting the fact that he lost. 

She said that 2020 has been the most stressful year yet and COVID hasn’t helped at all. Crew also said she hopes that riots won’t break out in the future. “There might be some rioting in bigger cities, but I don’t think there will be any near us, in Iowa.”

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