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Dear Professors, We Are Not Bricks in the Wall

By Emma Woodhead

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When I was a kid, my dad and I had watched a special about Pink Floyd and all they had accomplished during their impressive musical careers. In the show, the host talked about their song Brick in the Wall and showed the music video.

I still to this day have nightmares about the faceless children and the gigantic meat grinders, which is a shame because as the years went on, that song became my favorite out of all their discography.

I did not truly understand the song’s meaning until I had reached college, and the song’s appeal to me skyrocketed higher than it had previously been.

College, for me and many others, is thought to be a place of open debate and sharing of ideas. But oh, how the books and movies had lied to me. At least when I saw the high school musical genre of shows, I knew that it was fiction. But for college, I expected what I had been told about them to be true.

I didn’t even make it through my first class before a teacher and mob of students shut down an idea and refused to let another student speak because they had to audacity to disagree with them on a book.

Yes, you heard me. A book. A piece of fictional work.

This wasn’t going to be the last time this happened either. I was faced with it multiple times, whether it was due to political, economic, preferences, or anything else that led to differences in opinion ranging from how we would run a country to whether you liked Star Trek or Star Wars (and I have to admit it’s Star Trek for the win) you were expected to agree with your teachers and the majority of students whether you liked it or not.

This was not what college should have been like. College is meant to be an open debate of ideas and forum to stories, opinions, philosophy, ethics, and so much more. It is not meant to be anauthoritarian grasp that forces you to comply unless you want to fail your courses.

College used to be for people who wanted to break out from societail norms and make their own path, now you are expected to follow the same path no matter what.

Don’t you dare stray.

Put your mask back on.

Don’t share your opinion if it’s different than mine.

Burn that book.

Ban that movie.

Mute that music.

Riot when that speaker is there.

Don’t you dare think for yourself.

Just be another brick in the wall.

Well I have a reality check, professor, it will be hard than you think, because trust me, you have some students that refuse to be bricks and I am one of them.

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