Government students hear ideals of a liberal democrat, conservative republican and a libertarian
Thursday, September 22, 2011
On September 15, 2011, NCS seniors gathered in the Middle School Explore Room to listen to the opinions of a conservative republican, a liberal democrat and a libertarian.
Mrs. Corrie Park, upper school history teacher and organizer of this event, first gave the students a general background of what was about to take place. “I had this bright idea about a week or so ago to reach out to our local community and invite our guests today to explain their particular party’s philosophy themselves,” Mrs. Park said.
Mr. Michael Cogar, the president of ODU College Republicans, was the first among the guests to speak. He explained to the students the basic values of the republicans, frequently quoting the Constitution to back up his argument.
Cogar believes the mission of the Republican Party is to minimize the control of the government, avoid tax increases and contain the deficit. He is strong supporter of former President Lyndon Baines Johnson’s famous quote “peace through restraint.”
Mrs. Terri Kurowski, a member of the libertarian party, showed the students a short video that explained libertarian party beliefs. The video said citizens have the right to live their own lives, and they should be prepared to do what needs to be done in order to keep their natural rights.
Kurowski is a firm believer that the only role of the government should be to “protect life, liberty and property.” She said that it should not be the role of the government to tell people how to lead their own lives because our basic rights were “granted by God.”
Mr. C. Luke Watson, secretary general of the 2012 ODU Model UN and an ODU Young Democrats officer, was the last to speak. Watson said the main things needed in order to be a liberal are to “believe the common man is the best gauge for the world, [and] people should be treated fairly." He said people should be involved in the government in order to make it better.
He believes that liberals focus more on the social good and prevent the common people from being taken advantage of by big businesses and the upper class. Watson said the government is responsible for keeping our food safe and protecting the elderly and the disabled. “If you lose your job, then we believe that you should not be left to fend for yourself,” he said.
He doesn’t believe in limiting the power of the people but rather in doing just enough to make sure that all people are being treated fairly. “I’m proud to say I’m a liberal because I care enough about people to not throw them to the wolves,” he said.
After all the speakers defined what it means to be part of their parties, students asked the panel members questions.
Students thought the political forum was a definite success. “I thought it gave a lot of information about the different political parties,” Dee Maddox said. “Mrs. Park should definitely do it next year.”