The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

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Devil’s Advocate

Dear Devil’s Advocate,
I live in an off-campus apartment
with a few friends I met at St. John’s.
We share the same beliefs in religion,
politics, and music. However, a few
days ago, I overheard my roommate
talking on the phone about how he
does not appreciate when people use
the phrase “freedom vs. terrorism”.
He said that he felt it was wrong to
boil down all aspects of life into two
categories. I am a strong advocate of
freedom, and I believe it is every
American’s right to discuss freedom
and proclaim how great it is to be
free. I don’t think my roomate hates
freedom, but how can I talk to him
about being uncomfortable with him
discussing it in such a manner?
Please help!

-Freedom Fighter

Dear Freedom Fighter,
We’re usually taught to avoid topics
such as politics, money and religion
in certain environments. Politics
is a touchy subject and if it creates
tension in your household it may be
best to avoid talking about it. Not that
I’m saying it isn’t entertaining to
engage in a healthy debate from time
to time, but it may spark a full-blown
left wing vs. right wing battle that
would undoubtedly create tension in
your home. Obviously your roommate
is exercising his freedom of
speech which he is clearly entitled to,
but if it is bothering you it shouldn’t
go unheard. Some people are more
sensitive than others regarding topics
they are passionate about and while
he may not share your beliefs, he
should respect your right to have
them. Bring up the issue during a neutral
moment when you’re both calm
and mention that you would like him
to be more careful and sensitive to
others when expressing his stance in
politics. You may disagree with him,
but it doesn’t mean you guys can’t
live in harmony.

Dear Devil’s Advocate,
My girlfriend and I have been
dating for three years. But now that
I’m graduating, I have been thinking
about my future. I really don’t think
our relationship can go any further
than it has. It’s not that I don’t love
her, but I just think I’d be better off
alone as I enter the real world. Any
advice?

-Torn Lover

Dear Lover,
While I like to think I have an
answer for everything, this is a tough
one. Only you know how intensely
you feel about your girlfriend and
what you expect from the relationship
as you move beyond college. Is
she the greatest girl you’ve ever
met? Are you happy making plans
for the near future with her? Or do
you find yourself feeling limited,
desiring more independence, and
wanting to play the field? The most
important thing to do at this point in
your life is make yourself happy and
fulfilled-and to make decisions
about your future with clarity and
confidence. I can tell you two things
not to do. One, don’t break up with
her just because you feel like you
should, especially if you love her and
really cherish her company. Two,
don’t hang on to her if you only feel
partially committed-especially if
she is ‘gung ho’ that she wants to be
with you. Relationships only can be
healthy if both people are seeking
similar things from one another. If
the two of you seem to want different
things, you both should have the
opportunity to seek those things as
you enter a new phase of your
life-even if it’s really hard to let go
of each other.

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