We’re Jameel and Harrison. We met in at California State University, Northridge, where it took us a little over five years to earn our bachelor’s degrees in History. We were STERLING students.

Alright, so maybe not exactly Rhodes scholars. But we did manage to pick up a few skills along the way, including the ability to conduct credible research on topics that pique our interests and assess the factual reliability of the media content we’re consuming. Oh, and hunt down really good tacos.

Sadly, this skill (the research part, not the tacos) has not become as ubiquitous as the Internet itself. More disheartening are those individuals, all around us—even people we know and care about—who appear ready to knowingly disseminate misinformation as a means of currying favor within their own circles.

So what’s the problem? Laziness and complacency in our media diet have led to a new kind of obesity epidemic in the United States: an obesity of partisanship.

Then what’s the solution? We’re not totally sure yet. But we know one thing: nuance is our friend. It’s okay not to have hard-line opinions on every hot-button issue. The tension of unknowing can at times leave us feeling vulnerable, but getting outside our comfort zones is the only way to rid this world of alternative facts.

So with all due deference to Kellyanne Conway, Back of the Class Politics is how we’re going to help.

With Jameel back home in Los Angeles and Harrison living in London, we’ve started this blog to create a space for two people from different backgrounds to speak out about our passion for America.

We appreciate engaging in civil conversation without it devolving into a petty shitshow. Then again, we’d like to believe that’s true for most of us. Americans have way more in common than not; there isn’t as vast a gulf between us as we’re lead to believe.

You won’t always agree with us, but our promise is to avoid resorting to the kind of obfuscation that saturates social media. And who knows, maybe we’ll even play our part in advancing a more meaningful national dialogue.

Or we can all just go out for tacos.

Welcome to BOTC Politics!