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Tuesday, September 29, 2020

Life + Arts

Snail Mail: students discuss state of USPS, letters


Gerald Sastra/The Cougar

Gerald Sastra/The Cougar

A way to exchange written letters, send postcards, deliver packages and more, “snail mail” is a process students at UH do not take for granted.

With it being an election year and the nation being in the middle of a pandemic, the U.S. Postal Service is in charge of receiving many mail-in ballots come early voting and election day, which students consider vital.

“I’m honestly very concerned that the USPS will be completely eradicated,” said English junior Danielle Bishop.  “It’s such a vital part of our society and government function because many people still use regular mail to receive bills, permits, legal documents, etc.”

Mailboxes have become a part of every living arrangement throughout the country, even the residence halls have mailboxes for student residents to receive mail as well as a place to pick up packages.

For college students who have family or friends far from campus, the mailing system can be used to communicate and exchange. Students can even send mail to those who aren’t on campus due to coronavirus at this time.

“I think it is really nice to be able to receive a palpable item like a mailed letter,” said Bishop. “And, because of the pandemic, I’ve invested in more stamps and even sent my own version of ‘care packages.'”

As #SaveUSPS trends on platforms such as Twitter and Instagram, there are activists and social media goers who are calling for people to buy stamps more often to help in saving the USPS.

“I only hope that the USPS can be saved by providing more funding for it,” Bishop said.

Bishop used to not mail letters in high school because at the time, all of her friends lived nearby whereas nowadays, she writes letters to her friends and sends them for the sole purpose of boosting them up, she said.

“To me, sending letters to people I care about makes me feel content because I get to make someone excited to be expecting something and vice versa,” Bishop said.

A portion of letter writing can be people who write to their pen pals, either long distance or just for fun to have something that they can physically receive and open.

Bishop said she gets very warm and very fuzzy feelings over writing and sending letters.

“I have always felt compelled to show people that I care about them by giving them hand written letters,” Bishop said. “I love it because it is much more meaningful than sending someone a text. When you’re physically writing something out, you give it more thought and heart I think.”

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