Two Boston College students recently established The Maverick, an independently run conservative newspaper, in an effort to give conservative students at BC an outlet to voice their political beliefs, according to a post by co-editor-in-chief Taylor Morales in The Official Boston College Class of 2023 Facebook Group.
Hailing from California, Morales, MCAS ’23, said in an interview with The Heights that respectful political discourse has been ingrained in the way she views politics and is something she wants to bring to campus.
“I always grew up being told that the best way to really learn about somebody and somebody else’s opinions was to engage in a respectful dialogue rather than to try and force your views on them,” she said. “I don’t think that there’s a lot of conservatives who have that same mindset.”
Morales said she hopes The Maverick can serve as an outlet for conservative voices to address pressing issues such as climate change, racial and class inequality, and criminal justice reform. She also explained how she believes many news outlets have overlooked the many issues young conservatives are passionate about.
“There was just like a lack of a Republican outlet that I think was having consciously productive conversations,” she said. “So to kind of foster an environment where you’re teaching young conservative-minded individuals to not yell and scream and push their beliefs on someone … news media was something that I thought would be really great to do.”
The Maverick, also founded by co-editor-in-chief Louis Gleason, MCAS ’23, will primarily focus on conservative policies, such as school choice, in order to destigmatize the common conception of what it means to be a Republican or conservative on campus. It will also work to counter the “excitatory and inflammatory” rhetoric often associated with conservatives, according to Morales.
The publication will focus on thorough fact-checking and citing sources, while being careful to do so in a respectful manner that will not pit young conservatives against each other, according to Morales.
“There’s so many things happening in the world right now, I think that it’s just going to be important to lend an open ear and to really be conscious and mindful about what we do,” she said. “I think that going into it, both myself and Louis are very considerate, courteous, and are aware of, you know, kind of the significance of starting a Republican newspaper in an election year.”
After an unsuccessful attempt to receive funding and recognition as an established student organization through the Office of Student Involvement in January, Morales and Gleason chose to move forward on their own, establishing The Maverick independently.
According to Morales, OSI’s decision not to grant the request was in part because other student publications operate independently. Additionally, Morales said OSI denied funding because of the publication’s similarities to other campus organizations, including the Boston College Republicans and the Boston College Network of Enlightened Women, neither of which The Maverick is affiliated with.
Because of difficulties associated with finding outside funding during the coronavirus pandemic, The Maverick will be publishing digitally for the time being, Morales said.
To Morales’ surprise, The Maverick had received over 20 responses to its staff application by the start of classes—a number that grows daily—though the founders are adopting a “quality over quantity” approach in staff selection.
“We aren’t trying to pick just anybody and everybody who wants to join,” Morales said. “I’m really not trying to get people who are going to be saying things that are racist, homophobic, [or] that are discriminatory.”
Morales said she hopes people will keep an open mind about The Maverick and at least look into it before forming judgments, and she said she thinks many readers will find themselves surprised by a “very palatable kind of conservatism.”
“I just hope that we can inform voters whether or not you decide to align yourself with what we believe in,” Morales said. “Maybe you’ll be informed about something that you really hate, but at least you’ll be informed.”
Featured Image by Jonathan Ye / Heights Senior Staff