Letter from the Editor: ‘In moments of great stress’

Opinion editor optimistic, excited for next few months

JACOB HERSH, Evergreen columnist

When I was a kid, my dad had a saying that I only found out later he cribbed from George Costanza’s father: “Serenity now!” He’d pull this one out intermittently and in moments of great stress, when our car would fail on the highway, or my brother threw up in the back seat, or on ill-fated fishing trips. It was his call-sign, a little prayer for, well, “serenity now.”

I’ve been using that one a lot recently. Maybe it’s a sign of growing up, maybe I’m slowly turning into my dad (or Frank Costanza, as the case may be.) But when you’re faced with explosions in the Middle East, a global pandemic hitting the fifth month of lockdown and a presidential election cycle that gets crazier by the day, sometimes a good loud “Serenity now!” is all you’ve got.

It’s in these tumultuous times that I’m entering the fall semester as the Evergreen’s opinion editor, and thousands of new WSU freshmen are entering the next chapter of their lives. A cynic would look at the maelstrom of chaos in the headlines and hang their head. This semester, I’m looking at it all as an opportunity.

Think about it: what newspaper in our lifetimes has had the opportunity to cover a pandemic, a hotly debated election cycle, and the biggest shift to online education in years? We’ve got so much to talk and write about, and that’s just what Opinion will be doing this semester.

As a political science major, I want to cover the presidential election in all its facets: from local all the way up to national. We’ll be covering the debates, the primaries, the candidates; it’s all going to be addressed and covered in Opinion.

You’ll be able to find hot takes and finely written arguments, all focused around WSU and this unique situation in which we’ve found ourselves. The pandemic is scary, and a lot of things are still uncertain, but there’s one thing I’m just as sure of now as I was in May — we’re going to be just fine as a school.

To the incoming freshmen, I have this to say: stay optimistic and stay safe. Take advantage of all the opportunities you can; just because we’re online doesn’t mean WSU’s clubs, student societies and extracurriculars aren’t running in some capacity. If you’re looking for something to do, you could even come write for the Evergreen!

To all of our readers: I appreciate everyone who makes the Opinion section a part of their day. I’ll be doing everything I can to make sure we keep delivering the interesting, well-written and diverse columns you’ve come to expect.

As Hunter S. Thompson said, “When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.” Well, the going’s gotten plenty weird, so I think it’s about time the inherent weirdness that permeates any college newspaper gets turned up to 11. I’m diving into the fall semester, and I hope you’ll join me because if my intuition’s right, the next few months are going to be ones to remember.

Serenity now, and as always, Go Cougs!