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Samuel Aftel


Campus ‘free speech’ is no excuse for enabling hatred

Free speech is at once a crucial foundation of a liberal-arts, truth-seeking education and a profound moral responsibility. Consequently, I encourage first-year Princetonians to consider this year’s Pre-read and the fundamental importance of free speech on campus — but more importantly, I urge the Class of 2022 to refrain from exploiting free speech as a mechanism of cruelty and hatred.

Donald Trump: our misogynist in chief

Donald Trump’s conduct is abhorrent, but by electing him as the leader of our country, we proved our complicity in — and our approval of — such abhorrence. Worse, by continuing to support the president in substantial numbers, we have allowed him to disgrace American life even more.

The unhealable neo-fascist scars of Trump’s family separation terror

Migrants have not been intentionally slaughtered by the U.S. government, but the state-sanctioned family separation and incarceration of migrant families as well as the racist dehumanization of migrants is terrifyingly similar to the institutional and ideological framework of the Holocaust.

Mercy should be the guiding principle of Honor Code reform

Compassion, reason, and mercy should be synthesized with a promotion of total academic integrity as core principles of the University’s Honor Code. In addition, faculty alone should not be the ones to establish the University’s principles — especially pertaining to the Honor Code, which has a direct and disproportionately substantial impact on student life. 

Mental health reform starts with students

The University — specifically, the University’s student body — needs to undergo a cultural reformation. That is, we need to be more conscious of how we contextualize and frame mental illness, as this will affect how students with mental illness are socially ranked.

Sophomore spring can be really stressful. Let's change that.

As a sophomore, I have seen how the obligations of this period have taken a toll on myself and on my peers. Many people I have spoken with recently feel like they need more time to make these important long-term decisions and believe that sophomore spring arrived too soon. 

Reject the misguided rhetoric of the Princeton Pro-Life “love” letter

Providing love and other forms of emotional support to survivors of sexual violence is unambiguously important, but survivors need more than just that — they need unfettered access to health care services, which necessarily includes access to medically safe and legally protected abortions.