By Alex Lontoc
A nationally recognized conservative charter has made its way on campus. Young Americans for Freedom, whose political stance contradicts the majority at LPC, claims to advocate for individual freedom and traditional values. The club was founded for similar minded people to gather and discuss issues and implement campaigns relating to our campus and politics.
The nationwide opposition between the left and right wing have made its way to Las Positas. It allows for students to explore their own political standpoint and meet with students who share similar outlooks. Going against the grain was once a taboo, but in a political landscape where each opinion differ from another, being vocal is just another way of expressing their individuality.
The conservative voice has become the unorthodox and are emboldened by a progressive Bay Area. That change has reached this school, which is committed to a diverse campus.
The right to freedom of speech constitutes the First Amendment. But society seems to give a group or an individual a bad reputation when they don’t fit into the mold like everybody else. There are people who have political views that we don’t agree with but that doesn’t make them any less different.
Some have the courage to say things most of us can only think of and are afraid to say. The Young Americans for Freedom are doing just that on campus here at LPC. They know their political views are different from others, and they are trying to get their voices heard.
The club is part of the larger, nationally recognized group Young America’s Foundation, YAF being the chapter affiliate on college and high school campuses. Turner Zischka, president of LPC’s YAF chapter, founded the club, as he has always felt he had a more conservative view on politics. Zischka said that the club is “doing things that are very helpful right now, that the greater society and political landscape is kind of going against and the Young Americans for Freedom is a counterbalance to some of these things happening.”
Founded in fall of last year, YAF’s establishment on campus was nothing but a rocky road. Some members of the ICC board were well aware of the charter and its reputation at campuses across the nation, citing the Michigan State chapter’s affair which was not officially recognized by the foundation.
Zischka had met with Don Carlson, dean of computing, applied technology and social sciences in order to get the club set up on campus. “He understood that basic college Republican clubs, like ours, are not a problem,” said Zischka and from then on LPC’s charter of YAF emerged.
The newly founded club has eight active members. One of the club’s goals is to recruit more members on campus. The club and its members want their presence to be known on campus, for more students to know about the conservative group and its political stance on events. “It’s about convincing people and their minds, even if they don’t join the club,” said Zischka.
“Most of the ideas we are fighting for are the right things,” said Zischka. An issue brought up was LPC being designated as a sanctuary campus. The club and its members disagrees with the proclamation, and is just one of the many things the club plans to acknowledge. Although Zischka is aware that YAF’s lack of presence on campus means that it would be a hard battle to fight.
LPC’s Young Americans for Freedom has more plans for the upcoming school year. From campaigning to organizing events, this conservative group is just starting. Being a conservative group at a community college, whose views are not always accepted by many is a challenge and Zischka ensures that the club has no affiliations whatsoever with violent, hateful crusades.
“We are not a bigoted club, we don’t want to deport all immigrants, we don’t want to instigate Jim Crow across the entire nation, it’s not at all what we want to do.”