In light of the presidential election , the topic of the week at Pizza and Politics was conspiracy theories. This topic was chosen to provide students with the opportunity to discuss something light-hearted while still being within the realm of politics.
“With everything going on and to have some comic relief, we felt like this was a nice break for students to discuss something light,” said Erin Burrows, a senior studying education.
Olivia Johnson, a sophomore majoring in nutrition, and Burrows moderated the event. The two presented a slideshow and shared research done beforehand on each of the theories, and also asked the audience questions about them.
The conspiracy theories discussed included the death of Princess Diana, the Apollo II moon landing, John F. Kennedy’s assassination, Tik Tok, Area 51 and President Trump being though of as a “time traveller,” as well as many others.
Laughs were heard throughout the auditorium as students shared their thoughts on these theories, some calling them “highly unlikely” and “fictionalized.”
While the theory about the Apollo II moon landing being staged was discussed, one student with a bright red ball cap yelled from the audience, “If it were fake, do you really think the Soviet Union would have stayed quiet about it?”
The conspiracy theory about Princess Diana’s death came from some people believing that the royal family was involved with her death after a messy divorce with Charles, prince of Wales. According to independent.co.uk, the theory claims that the car accident that killed her wasn’t an accident after all, but potentially premeditated. Tom Cloward, a sophomore studying political science, shared his viewpoint on the theory.
“I think the car crash was an accident, but I do think that it was the paparazzi’s fault from the camera flashes. They were speeding because the paparazzi held them up in a previous location,” Cloward said.
Southern Utah University’s Michael O. Leavitt Center hosts Pizza and Politics every Wednesday from 12-1 p.m. in the Sterling Church Auditorium.
“We talk about current issues, and feeling like you can be politically engaged as a college student is really hard,” Burrows said. “We are a non-partisan organization, so you’re going to hear both sides. It’s usually pretty fun and student’s can just come and learn something new and meet people.”
In addition to providing a light-hearted discussion to help SUU students deal with the stress of the election, students are invited to visit The Leavitt Center to participate in an election detox activity. The Leavitt Center will provide pads of paper for students to write down their feelings concerning current politics. Burrows advised the audience to bring their own pen or pencil to take part in the event that will be held until Friday.
On Friday, Nov. 6, The Leavitt Center will be hosting The Professional Closet, where students are invited to pick up free business clothes. The event will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and Johnson encourages students to attend if they are in need of professional attire.
The deadline for Spring 2021 local internships is Dec. 1 at midnight. Information on the internships can be found on The Leavitt Center’s website.
Story and Photos by: Elizabeth Armstrong