Photo by Elizabeth Anderson. Coleman Brockmeier, left, Caleb Hanlon, right
Room 313 is known to some as Mr. White’s AHAP classroom, but to others it is known as a room filled every Wednesday with students arguing about the latest governmental and social issues of our world. Discussion Club is the newest addition to the long list of student run clubs and organizations here at East and focuses on giving students a chance to speak their mind about debatable topics.
The club was founded by seniors Coleman Brockmeier, Caleb Hanlon and Michael Liesner after they were inspired by the confederate flag and gun violence debates put on by social studies teacher, David Muhammad. They wanted the chance to debate with other students on popular topics every week, so they started Discussion Club this fall.
“Everyone’s so opinionated that I feel like people don’t always listen to each other, so this is a great place to listen to the other side and find out what other people are thinking,” co-founder, senior Coleman Brockmeier said.
Each week, a new topic is nominated and voted on by the members. After the base topic is decided, the members can stay on that topic or expand to new issues to debate. The members have decided to kick off Discussion Club with a debate over immigration laws.
Brockmeier, Hanion and Liesner are hoping to get a variety of students involved in their club. From seniors to freshmen, and debate team members to athletes. They believe everyone has an opinion to share. They have marketed their club by word of mouth and made posters that they have hung up along the stairwells and hallways.
“All three of us are seniors so we don’t know if we can get this going into next year, but hopefully we can get juniors, sophomores and freshmen interested in Discussion Club.”
While their discussions are likely to resemble the Presidential Debates of Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, the boys are hoping that Discussion Club will be beneficial to everybody who attends.
“I think the goal is just to help people see beyond their point of view and hopefully expose them to other thoughts and hopefully we can all learn something from each other that we haven’t thought of before,” Brockmeier said.