College Libertarians offer students third option

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Rakshak Adhikari

Staff Writer

Troy students who are interested in a third political party can consider the College Libertarians at Troy University.

According to Richard Fast, a graduate student in Economics from Berkeley, California, College Libertarians are the student branch of the Libertarian Party of Alabama, in the same way that College Democrats and College Republicans are the student branch of their respective state parties.

Troy University made history in earlier this year by becoming the first known host to a College Libertarians organization in the state of Alabama, Fast added.

Fast said that College Libertarians, in general, exist to promote the Libertarian Party on college campuses as an alternative to the two old parties.

“The fact of the matter is, libertarianism is neither right-wing nor left-wing,” Fast said. “It is beyond the traditional textbook left-right political paradigm.

“Libertarianism is sometimes referred to as ‘the radical center’ because the core values are common sense (don’t push people around). I maintain that most people are libertarian, but they just don’t realize it.”

“The two major parties have difficulty representing the full diversity of political views in America, which creates space for third parties to represent differing views,” said Daniel Sutter, a professor of economics and the faculty adviser for College Libertarians.

According to him, it is enormously important whether the two parties have their dominant positions protected through legal restrictions or must continue to effectively represent people against the efforts of “third” parties.  That is why the Libertarian Party is working to gather 500 signatures to get in the Pike County ballot. Today’s protest vote could turn into an important voice in the future and the most significant way to compete is through votes, Sutter said.

“I think this is a time where more people on both the left and right in America have been wondering if the two parties still adequately represent their views,” Sutter added.

“I was very excited to find that there was a libertarian presence here in Troy,” said Garrett Cotter, a sophomore economics major from Columbus, Georgia, and the treasurer of College Libertarians.

According to Cotter, the College Libertarians are planning to screen a documentary discussing the consequences of socialist policies in Venezuela and are also planning a group discussion on the Chinese government’s efforts to censor information about the Tiananmen Square Massacre.

Fast says College Libertarians is for anyone who feels let down by the mainstream parties and students of all political persuasions are invited to attend their meetings. College Libertarians meet every two weeks. Currently, that is first and third Sunday at 4 p.m. in the Trojan Center by Great American Cookies.

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