In such a polarizing election, Democratic candidate Hillary Clinton gains supporters for her plans on campaign finance, education and the environment.

Some students have taken an active interest in following Clinton’s campaign.

“It’s time for a woman president,” junior Hannah Dolen said.

Dolen explained that she likes the fact that Clinton fights for the equal rights of all women.

Junior Alex Westley-Sherman said he also thinks it’s time for a female president.

“It’s really important for young women to have a powerful role model, one who isn’t based on looks or money,” he said.

Freshman Angelina Coles said one of the biggest influences on her political views is the fact that she’s African-American. Clinton’s support for the Black Lives Matter movement is one reason why Coles prefers her.

“A lot of times people think if you support Black Lives Matter then you don’t support the police, but that’s not true,” Coles said. “Hillary supports both.”

Clinton’s plans to combat police brutality will greatly affect her and other African-American individuals, Coles said.

Ohio’s Senior Advisor for the Clinton campaign, Aaron Pickrell, said Clinton is “committed to strengthening the bonds between police and communities to reduce violence.”

Senior AJ Copp believes Clinton is easier to relate to than Trump.

“There’s a fine line between an outsider and someone who’s just not qualified at all,” Copp explained. “Trump doesn’t even come close to that line.”

One of the major discussion topics of this election is the different immigration policies that the candidates have proposed.

“We’re a place people want to go for freedom,” Dolen noted. “[With Trump as president], we won’t be the accepting place we’ve become throughout history.”

Sophomore Alexis Turner said she thinks people should be admitted into the United States regardless of where they are from. Clinton is more accepting, whereas Trump has plans to build a wall along the United States’ southern border to keep non-citizens out, Turner added.

Along with immigration, criminal justice system reform is one of the big differences between Clinton’s campaign platform and Trump’s.

“Young people deserve a chance at a higher education and a good job without falling victim to a system badly in need of reform,” Pickrell said.

Pickrell explained that Clinton intends to reform mandatory minimum sentencing so that drug abusers will get mental health treatment instead of prison time.

Clinton also plans to increase school funding for social and emotional support for young people in correctional facilities, and improve the overly intense school disciplinary systems, Pickrell said.

Westley-Sherman also believes the United States is in need of judicial reform. He added that he supports Clinton’s plans to end private prisons.

“I think it’s truly sad that so many millions of young American men are in prison for non-violent offenses, and they’re treated so terribly in prison,” Westley-Sherman said.

The risk of violence is much higher if Trump becomes president, senior Meg Jaffy believes.

“A hateful president reflects a hateful country,” Jaffy said.

Dolen feels that this election is one of the most noteworthy elections in history because the country has never had a woman make it this far in the election before.

“It would be incredible to vote for the first woman president,” Dolen noted.

Westley-Sherman wishes he could vote in this election because he believes that, in Ohio, his vote could make a difference. He added that he volunteers with the campaign as a canvasser because he can’t vote.

Although Westley-Sherman supports Clinton, he is still concerned about the scandals that surround Clinton and her campaign. One of the most talked about controversies is Clinton’s use of a private email server for work-related emails while she was the Secretary of State.

The email scandal has become one of the biggest reasons people don’t support Clinton, Westley-Sherman said.

The email scandal is also a big deal for Dolen, but she said that people shouldn’t hold a grudge over it. She believes it doesn’t compare to Trump’s bad actions.

However, not everyone thinks that the email scandal is a problem. Copp believes it’s overblown.

“[The emails] shouldn’t be the highlight of every action, but it should be taken into account,” Copp said.

As a senior, Jaffy said that one of Clinton’s plans that she likes is her plan to make college more affordable.

“Her college plan includes free tuition for public colleges and universities for any family making $125,000 or under, which includes 89 percent of Ohio households,” Pickrell explained.

Pickrell said that Clinton is the best candidate for high school students and for all Bexley residents.

“Hillary’s plans will make the Bexley schools even stronger and make sure any Bexley student who wants to will be able to afford college,” Pickrell said.

Copp agrees with Clinton’s plans to create less student debt and fewer loans.

“I was originally a huge Bernie person, but his ideas were kind of unrealistic for a capitalist country,” Copp said. “She meets that halfway point from too far and not far enough.”

Copp said Clinton’s plans for college and her clean energy ideas are some of the things he likes most about her.

Her climate and clean energy plans will be beneficial to Bexley residents due to the fact that their city is one of the few that is classified as an arboretum, Pickrell added.

Clinton’s plans to raise the minimum wage, create jobs and eliminate the wage gap will have a serious impact on Ohio, Pickrell said.

“Since Obama, we’ve had a lot of slow positive change, and with her, I think that will continue,” Westley-Sherman said.

Published in the Bexley High School Torch Oct. 2016