Point Park Globe

Leaving the Republican party: easy

Student with outside view reminisces on time as a conservative

Written By Gracey Evans, News Photo Editor

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I am no longer a member of the Republican party. This summer, I changed my party to Independent but as of last week, I am a Democrat. I happen to be the first Democrat in my family in decades.

After moving Downtown in 2015 for my first year of college, I realized that the world was a bigger place than I ever knew while living in “the Bubble” of Murrysville, Pennsylvania all my life. I learned that there were more than just hicks and your average rich suburban white
families.

I learned, but it took a long time to be accepting of everyone and realize what is wrong with the government as well as the views I had once known and grown up with. For heaven’s sake, my father mows “TRUMP” into the lawn.

Since living Downtown, I have made friends with all different cultural backgrounds and views. The biggest wake-up call took place  after I broke up with my conservative ex-boyfriend and began to really start leaning left. When I got together with my current boyfriend, I realized there was a lot more I had to learn.

I will not mention his name, but he did not have the easy life that I grew up with. He lived in attics before he moved to Pittsburgh. He had to learn everything the hard way. There was no easy path for him. And I mean everything. He has lived on his own for the past five years and learned how to take on bills and do everything himself without having a driver’s license or a car. I learned that not everyone lives with healthcare and that it’s a constant worry whether they will get sick or not. Sometimes they will do all they can to avoid MedExpress due to fees that haven’t been paid off from
years ago.

I can say the biggest thing I have learned since becoming a Democrat is that fact that women are no longer safe in America. We have a man that is now in the Supreme Court, tasked with enforcing the law of the land, that has been accused of sexual assault. And it’s all peachy and good.

Everything that women have worked for in the past century is seemingly slowly deteriorating away. I have learned that injustice is a big problem in America. Our rights as Americans are slowly drifting away for women and minorities.

But I have seen the power of women grow in my career thus far with being a sports photographer. The first time I shot professional sports was in 2016 with the Post-Gazette. I shot a Pirates v. Cardinals game. I was the only female photographer and I was looked at very differently than I had ever been used to.

Since then, I have seen a small growth in female photographers, but still, we are looked at differently than men. I personally experienced this summer with the Wild Things baseball team. The players always asked the male photo interns for photos and always had conversations but never directed them to me. I have learned to look past those factors and strive to get the best photos I possibly can.

Through these personal observations and experiences, I know that I have many different views now than what I did even two years ago, but I am still learning to be accepting. Most people know that I have “more conservative” views than many others. But what people don’t know is when I’m talking with my family, I don’t exactly agree with them.

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