Bring on the debate!

Hi, my name is Kate, and I’ll be your opinion editor this year! I’m writing this column to introduce myself and tell you about what to expect for the coming year. I’m really excited to be working at the Vanguard and I hope that the opinion section will inspire thought, debate and hysterical laughter.

You might wonder what qualifies someone to be an opinion editor. Well, I’m not sure. But here are some facts about me that might inform you as to what sort of diabolical genius is helming this section this year.

I am 25 years old, and a sophomore here at Portland State. I’ll be a junior this fall. This is only my second quarter at PSU. I was a journalist for four years in Monterey, Calif., and barely escaped with my sanity (too much writing about seniors-only line-dancing classes will do that to a person). I moved to Portland because I was very bored in Monterey. I am happy here.

I went through the California public school system for 10 of my 13 years of grammar and high schooling, dipping out for a bit to experience the joys of Catholic education for a couple years in my adolescence. I graduated from high school with very little distinction as a student, except that I sang the national anthem at commencement.

I’ve traveled around the world to places as diverse and exciting as Japan, London and rural Ohio. I’ve worked as a produce seller, a writer, a web designer, a bookseller and, briefly, the world’s worst babysitter. I hope someday to be able to afford a home large enough to house all my books. I am a smart-ass, a voracious reader, a cynic and an optimist. I have hopes for the world to get better, but I’m not holding my breath.

Other than the opportunity to wield tyrannical power over the writers who serve me, I took this job because I see it as an opportunity to make the opinion section something really cool. More than any other section of the paper, this is the area where people throw out ideas, blow off some steam and express themselves and their worldview.

I want to allow a lot of different viewpoints to be expressed in these pages, and I’ll do my best to allow a forum for intelligent expression of wildly divergent views. I want people to pick up the Vanguard and turn to the opinion page to see what crazy stuff we’re talking about this week.

I want to put you, the reader, in touch with current events and other students’ opinions about those events. And if you get fired up enough to have something to say about what you read in the paper, we provide a space for you to express yourself.

I don’t approach the Vanguard as being “just the school paper.” This paper and the opportunity I have to work here are two things I take very seriously. I know that the coming year will teach me a lot, and I look forward to all the challenges I’ll face.