Adams County Holds Outreach Meeting
[The following article originally appeared in the March 2000 edition of Colorado Liberty. It was written by Ari Armstrong in the third person. Photos and captions are not included.]
Jay Carper organized an Adams County outreach meeting January 29 at the Ramada Inn off 104th and I-25. About a dozen members and speakers gathered to discuss libertarian ideas and plan the local growth of the party.
David Baker, LP candidate for US Congress in a two-way race against Democrat Mark Udall, spoke on the drug war, Social Security reform, and campaign finance. His theme was unintended consequences: for instance, campaign finance restrictions actually give more power to special interest groups.
Baker also emphasized the importance of distinguishing between a "libertine" and a "libertarian" for a general audience. Libertarians don't oppose the war on drugs because they favor drug use, but rather because the drug war leads to a violation of civil liberties. The Fourth Amendment is in tatters because of the war on drugs, and sometimes innocent people such as Ismael Mena are killed.
Baker said he hopes Boulder and Adams Counties can coordinate efforts for his campaign. In the question period, Joe Johnson said Boulder may be ripe for a Libertarian campaign, especially if Baker is able to capitalize on anti-prohibition sentiments. Issues such as the legalization of industrial hemp should also play well in environmentally-conscious Boulder, Johnson said.
Johnson also gave a presentation on the right to bear arms. He said that issue compelled him to join the Libertarian Party.
Ari Armstrong spoke on education. Armstrong, a private tutor and editor of the Colorado Freedom Report at www.freecolorado.com, said that government schools are inherently politicized. As an example, he discussed the recent state senate proposal to require government schools to post the 10 Commandments in classrooms.
"If you want to post the 10 Commandments in a private school, fine, but don't force me to pay for it," Armstrong said.
BetteRose Smith discusses her experience reaching out with libertarian ideas. BetteRose Smith, LP State Chair, gave insights on how to present libertarian ideas to newcomers. She said an effective way to approach people is to start with a commonly shared value, and explain how this value implies or entails a broader libertarian framework.
Carper explained his interest in the relationship between the Christian religion and libertarian principles.
To get involved in local politics, Adams County Libertarians can contact Carper at 303.252.7808.