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Being Open-minded and Hearing Multiple Points of View: Allison Carey, Maryland

As told by Allison Carey
Frostburg, Maryland

Story Narrative:

Allison Carey wears a dark shirt and has long, black hair as she chats in her home.

This snapshot was gathered in conjunction with the Maryland Voices initiative at Maryland Humanities, specifically to supplement the "Voices and Votes: Democracy in America" traveling exhibition from the Smithsonian's Museum on Main Street program. This collection, made up of stories of first-time voters between the ages of 18 and 24, showcases the experiences of young people as they wrestled with the 2020 presidential election, issues around social justice, the environment, immigration, and the pandemic. 

Allison Carey (00:00): My name is Allison Carey and I'm from Frostburg, Maryland, and I am a senior at Mountain Ridge High School. I'm a very, in the middle type person. I have views from both sides and I classify as a libertarian so that's right in the middle, basically. But I do have friends that are far-right, and I do have friends that are far-left. And I think that my friends and I just kind of decide that our friendship is more important than our political views and our political agenda, and we don't really get into arguments about anything like that, because like I said, friendship, and your relationship with somebody is not defined by your political views. I think that because of where we live, there are a lot of close-minded people and they don't have an open mind towards how others may feel and other people's views.

Allison Carey (01:07): And I feel that that causes a lot of tension, but I feel like what anybody could do is to just try to be open-minded and be kind to everybody, because you don't know what it's like to walk in somebody else's shoes so try to imagine doing that, and I feel like that could go a long way. There are definitely people in our democracy that want to shove their opinions down somebody else's for, rather than respecting their opinions, and that is a downside to politics because people, like I said, want their opinion to be everybody else's opinion, and that's just not how it is.

Allison Carey (01:53): Social media has definitely changed how I view politics because it's made me more compassionate for other people from different walks of life, different races, different sexualities. But I definitely do think that a major downside to that is not respecting other people's opinions that you might not agree with.

Allison Carey (02:16): I used to be a very far-right Republican, and now I'm not. I see things from a totally different perspective, and I feel like you have to look at things from other people's point of view and how they may feel when like, especially with the protests from this summer, especially that it was hard to watch, and I have family that doesn't agree with it. And I feel that you have to put yourself in those people's shoes that were protesting and how they felt attacked, and if the roles were reversed, how would we feel? That's how I try to think of it. My political views have changed a lot in the last year or so and I think that it has made me a better person and a more educated person, and I think that everybody should want to get more educated on politics instead of thinking that their views are right and not want to change them.

Asset ID: 2021.03.01.a
Themes: Voices and Votes, democracy, cooperation, friendship, politics, political parties, social media
Date recorded: January 26, 2021
Length of recording: 3:40 m
Related traveling exhibition: Voices and Votes: Democracy in America
Sponsor or affiliated organization: Allegany Museum, in partnership with Maryland Humanities
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