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Politico: Why Is My Inauthentic Generation So Obsessed With Sanders’ Authenticity?

Pablo Zevallos '16Pablo Zevallos '16, political science major and past-president of the Student Government Association, questions a phenomenon that's on the minds of political operatives and journalists alike: why the seeming generational divide between supporters of former U.S. Sen. and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders? In a piece for Politico Magazine, Zevallos writes:

Wearing a Hillary Clinton T-shirt around campus counts as being provocative these days. My classmates approach me and ask me if I'm a Hillary supporter. After I confirm the obvious, I ask them if they, too, support Clinton. Seemingly without fail, they shake their heads politely, and, with a self-satisfied smile, say, "I'm for Bernie." When I ask why, I almost always get back some variant of, "He's authentic."

The conversation suddenly feels stale....

There are certainly thoughtful reasons for people my age to support Sanders. You may call yourself a democratic socialist, or you may disagree with Clinton's voting record. Among the weakest reasons we have to support Sanders, however, is this breathy assertion that he is "authentic." My generation is, in fact, remarkably inauthentic. Who are we as we curate our LinkedIn profiles and Instagram our yoga-on-the-beach photos, to be demanding that quality from our candidates?

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