Can opinion pieces be terrible? Well, let’s say that — imagine that I hit my head in this scenario — I’d want to take the position that dairy milk is terrible. Then, I decided to write an opinion piece on that. That would just be a terrible piece. Why? Because objectively dairy milk tastes amazing. You have all eaten ice cream right? Don’t lie because I’ve heard probably the entire student body talking about either Ashley’s Ice Cream or Arethusas. So don’t contact me about being lactose intolerant and therefore arguing dairy milk is bad. I probably am too but I just don’t care.

The milk opinion is a piece that someone could write — and that I, perhaps, am interested in writing someday. An opinion piece should be riveting. Arguments should try to sway you. Someone writing a milk opinion might make it as a joke, but if it included controversial takes — that type of dramatic effect is something I believe should be praised.

Take a trip down memory lane and remember the op-ed pieces you have read. I have a Twitter account, the feed on which most of you get angry. I can’t count the amount of tweets blasting the News after a new op-ed piece is published. The amount of people who complain about online school during a surge of Omicron is something to laugh at. Then there were those who complained about people who complained about online school. I laughed. I was not swayed. Peers who are immunocompromised were not happy. Imagine if the entire Yale staff read some of these articles. I would consider it a slap in the face to read that during a surge, I — a person who goes home at the end of the day to a family and a life outside of Yale — am a person who some wouldn’t mind getting infected because it;s not March 2020. I would say most of us look better with masks on. Please wear it.

Much to my surprise, I have seen many op-ed pieces that advance opinions I have never considered. I read them, however, and they were fun and exciting. Then there were also other pieces that had so much passion that I never thought of again. Why are some pieces picked up and not others? It could be judgment, or it could be the motives of unhinged Yale student minds. There are great pieces that highlight very important topics and questions to be raised on campus that I believe, should also go viral.

I think opinion pieces are a game. I know a little about games because my suite has taken games to such a level that we placed an Uno game bet where the loser goes bald. The opinion game here is to exude the most emotion. Specifically, the emotion that strikes a little dramatic cord, that pushes people to their keyboards and Twitter feeds to reply. I could write a piece about anything — be it the fake Melanie Boyd emails or the legacy process at Yale. I’m curious how many would read about Boyd, but I’m sure that the legacy piece would be read by every legacy and anti-legacy. Then, being inspired by the high volume of readership, the moderates would be forced to read it too.  

One step further — imagine writing a piece about other pieces. Again, I have Twitter. I know you all love drama. I don’t mean to discourage any op-ed pieces. If you haven’t noticed yet, I wrote one. The whole point is for you to read my opinion. And to think. Thinking is fun, but not forced thinking. I am talking about the type of thinking where you just sit there and think for absolutely no purpose. I remember some op-eds where I saw hearts and souls were used up in it. Those had me thinking. Conversely, there were also pieces that resembled the Google Doc for my paper due soon: blank, empty, filled with nothing. From the latter, I can definitely state that opinion pieces can be terrible. 

As I’m writing, a thought that just came to me is if we should want judgment? Some pieces receive some harsh judgment. I would know because I am usually one of the people judging. My answer is yes, it makes it more fun. It all depends on your positions and motives. What kind? Well, we can wake up each morning as haters, villains, or the most cheerful souls on the planet. Which stance should we take? It’s up to you, I really don’t care. 

We write opinions for whatever reason that happens to fly into our hearts — and probably brains.  Some are really awful, some are hysterical and some are the ones people will never know existed. I just hope that we can all unleash the “crazy” type of greatness in pieces. 

Israar Ahmed is a first year in Branford College. Contact him at .