Sun. Jan 23rd, 2022

A few weeks ago I was in my hometown. It’s a small central Pennsylvanian borough that hugs the Susquehanna River. One night, while meeting some friends for dinner at a local bar and grille, I saw a classmate I had not seen for some time. On the way in, he looked at my car plastered with two “Ron Paul-Hope For America” stickers and innocently asked, “Who is Ron Paul?” After explaining briefly who, exactly, Paul was, this friend of mine went into a long expository dealing with several particle board signs he had been seeing around town. These were homemade signs (I saw them too), clearly done without any official Paul campaign help or financing. I told this friend of mine that Paul is a Republican running for president and that he is a Texas congressman. Mid-way through these remarks he cut me off and said, “You’re voting for a Republican?”And so it goes. I have been a registered Democrat since I was able to choose a partisanship. I have not been able to vote in a presidential election yet, though would have never considered voting for a Republican if I were able to. With my shoulder-length dirty blond hair and a sense of style that certainly does not shout Republican, I find myself backing a candidate in a party I had long ago decided was evil and corrupt. Wherever I go sporting my “Vote Ron Paul” t-shirt, the story is the same. “Who is Ron Paul?” and “Why are you backing a Republican?” I tell everyone the same thing, “Look into him a bit more, and you will find the answers to both these questions.”

If you are not familiar with Paul, let me fill you in. Dr. Paul is a 10-term congressman from Texas. He is an OBGYN who has delivered over 4,000 babies. Congressman Paul also served in the Air Force as a flight surgeon for five years. While in the House of Representatives, Paul has fought tooth and nail to keep the federal government limited. He believes that the federal government’s role in our lives should be to protect our personal freedoms and liberties, not to constrict them. Beyond that, Paul is known as Dr. “No” in and around Washington for his strict voting in line with the Constitution. If it is not explicit in the Constitution that you can do it, Paul says you cannot. He has never voted to raise taxes, have an unbalanced budget, spend unconstitutionally, go to war without a declaration or finance the war in Iraq. Dennis Kucinich and Paul were the only two Congressmen to vote “no” for permission to go into a conflict with Iraq.

If this is the first time you have heard of Paul, I am not surprised. The media has done a fantastic job in keeping his message of freedom, peace and prosperity to a very limited amount of airtime. In the face of all of this, Paul has managed to raise a ton of money from grassroots supporters and has beaten one-time frontrunner Rudy Giuliani in every state but New Hampshire. With the Republican field down to four, I would be looking for Paul to start making an even bigger splash than he already has. There is a quote going around the Internet that states, “Dr. Paul cured my apathy.” In my case, and in that of thousands of others, the previous statement could not be more true.

Kevin Conner is a third-year student majoring in communications with a minor in creative writing. He can be reached at KC651660@wcupa.edu.

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