This campus delves deeply into discussing certain issues. We talk endlessly about our D-Plans, meal plans and fraternity culture. This term especially, we have started to confront the complexities of race, class and sexual violence at the College. These issues are tremendously important, and it is phenomenal that we devote time and effort to understand them.
But there are others. There are problems, uncertainties and obstacles that exist completely under the radar at Dartmouth, affecting lives without a whisper of discussion or debate. HIV is one of those issues.
Before publishing this week’s Mirror, both of us were very aware of how underinformed much of campus is about something so pervasive. Erin took a course on HIV last spring, which made her realize just how little she had known about it before stepping foot into that classroom. Until this week, Marina understood only the surface-level basics and outdated stereotypes about a disease that has transformed in recent years.
Neither of us had taken the time to truly engage, talk to people or educate ourselves. Every campus issue, no matter how publicized or widely addressed, deserves a level of commitment and understanding. The past week finally gave us an opportunity to do that, and we hope this issue does the same for our readers.
And HIV is not the only campus concern that has flown under the radar for far too long. Both of us have realized, for the first time, just how rarely we come to new realizations. It’s relatively easy to contribute to discussions that are already happening on campus, and it’s absolutely critical that we do so. And it’s harder, but just as important, to start new ones.