Anita Kelleher Empathy Intervention

With the upcoming elections, I found this topic situation of ‘otherizing’ someone especially relevant. I’ll preface this explanation of my Empathy Intervention with the notes that my roommate is one of the leaders on the “YES on Measure G” campaign and my mother is an immigrant.
So, the media has been doing what it does best and using biases to sway our votes in the midterms. I have seen plenty of the “Yes on G” signs on peoples’ lawns in San Luis Obispo, but no sort of audio propaganda, unlike the “NO on G” campaign. The commercials and radio ads are all utilizing extreme pathos to appeal to their audience: me. My initial response to these messages was to just switch the radio station or mute the TV in frustration with people who are willing to sell their souls/principles, but the other day while I was on YouTube, I stumbled upon a “NO on G” commercial which I could not skip, and I actually felt inclined to watch. Upon watching, I observed two men, claiming immigrant heritage with clearly Hispanic last names, discuss their concerns about exporting jobs outside of San Luis Obispo. And now, I understand. When my mom first immigrated to this country, she found it difficult to find a stable and reliable source of income. If oil drilling is a stable sourec of income, I can understand why people have prioritized their job over the good of our Sweet Mother (Earth). I see the growing concerns about this measure and about what voting YES on G could entail. I do consider myself a conversationalist, however, I would be more likely to name myself a humanitarian. In my eyes, people are the best (and worst, yes) part of this life. To be clear, I am still voting “Yes on G” and I hope with all my heart and for future generations that this measure passes. However, I understand the concerns being presented and I can empathize with the works of the fracking industry. I wish that the City of San Luis Obispo or at least the “YES on G” campaign team could have done a better job reassuring the public that their jobs would be replaced or compensated for.

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