Letters to the Editor

Florida elections: the battleground

Florida plays a critical role in each election cycle. While some call Florida a battleground, we see it as an open arena where different experiences, ideologies and ambitions engage in a peaceful and productive way.

The institutions of higher learning that we lead, Miami Dade College and the University of Miami, are proud to host the Democratic and Republican presidential debates on March 9 and 10, respectively.

Taking place a week before the Florida primary elections, these debates offer an opportunity to showcase Miami as a place where commitment to the democratic process is a strong foundation for tolerant and respectful exchange.

These debates also allow our students to have a front-row seat, literally, to our national political stage.

We urge our students, faculty and staff to tune in, participate and to register to vote.

Institutions like ours can and should serve as exemplars for society at its best — spaces where civil discourse and reasoned debate, regardless of political affiliation, occur daily.

It is only when we embrace diversity — of ideas as well as race, gender, sexuality, religion and ethnicity — that our decisions become enlightened, informed and effective.

Eduardo J. Padrón, president, Miami Dade College

Julio Frenk, president,

University of Miami