The Kenyon Observer: Fall 2020

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Editors’ Note:

In the aftermath of a contentious presidential election, and as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to ravage the world, The Kenyon Observer is back with a new issue. With America and the world facing a global health crisis and a broad backsliding of democracy, we hope to bring some thought-provoking perspectives conducive to fresh and productive discourse.

Our first article, from Alice Tillman ‘21, focuses on the process surrounding the development and deployment of a COVID vaccine, and the associated issue of public trust of vaccination. Our second article, written by Molly Mclaughlin ‘23, is on the Good Friday Agreement and the implications of the recent presidential election on US-UK relations in the context of potential tensions between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Our third article, by William Yanek ‘23, establishes a framework for conceptualizing what he calls a “New Cold War” between Western democracies and China, as well as recommendations for how to approach China’s growing geopolitical power. In the penultimate article, Molly Orr ‘24 discusses enduring support for Donald Trump in her hometown of Clyde, OH, and why we are unlikely to see such support fade, even after President Trump leaves office. And, finally, an article from Graham Ball ‘21 focuses on dissuading misconceptions of and articulating the history and goals of the Black Lives Matter movement as it reaches a new height of popular relevance.

Additionally, we, the editors, present two opposing perspectives on the outcome of the 2020 elections. Philip argues that President-elect Joe Biden has the capacity to return the country to a period of bipartisan consensus-building. Harry argues that a return to normal is impossible and that President-elect Biden’s victory is more likely to be a mere respite from democratic decline in America, with further political conflict sure to follow.

From all of us at The Kenyon Observer, we wish all you readers very well as we approach the end of a particularly unusual semester.

Editors-in-chief Philip Brain and Harry Clennon

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