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Guest Column by Oliver Stern | Stop attacking those you disagree with

(10/14/19 3:28am)

In her column “I'm a legacy student, and I'm not ashamed,” Agatha Advincula tried to show her pride in her legacy status and in her continued family connection to Penn. Advincula quickly faced backlash from readers for not “checking her privilege” in the article. In a Facebook comment section that reads like that of controversial social media influencer, people began deviating away from Advincula’s argument on legacy admissions and instead attacked her as a person. Particularly vicious comments called her “pretentious,” a “fraud,” and worst of all, not being worthy of admission to this institution. As uncivil as they were, these comments didn't actually make the effort to engage with Advincula’s argument. Rather, they smeared her reputation and questioned her right to be at Penn, all in an effort to delegitimize the person behind the article and avoid a conversation that could’ve resulted in a more nuanced dialogue.