By: Allyson Mitchell – Staff Writer
University of Dayton College Libertarians hosted Libertarian gubernatorial candidate Charles Earl on campus Tuesday, Nov. 12, to discuss what the Libertarian party is and why students should vote for Earl for governor in November 2014, according to club president Daniel Zink.
“The UD College Libertarians’ mission is to promote the ideals of libertarianism and the Libertarian Party and allow students to meet with others who share their ideals when generally they are outcast in the political sphere,” said Zink, a junior marketing major. “We promote the Libertarian Party, fiscal responsibility, and the freedoms and civil liberties of everyone on campus. We also strive to get everyone included politically rather than just the big two, Republicans and Democrats.”
Libertarians believe in more freedom for all people in all aspects, less government involvement, and restoring the equal relationship between states and the federal government, according to the club’s Facebook page.
Zink said the views presented during Earl’s speech last Tuesday don’t represent the views of the University of Dayton community, and Earl is not endorsed by UD.
“Individual liberty is the foundation of who we are,” Earl said. “And I don’t mean that as Libertarians or Ohioans, I mean that as people, as humanity. Individual liberty is what drives us and motivates us. We all have dreams and aspirations and the desire to determine our own outcome. I think that’s why the libertarian philosophy is so in tune with what we stand for as people.”
Earl was a former Republican member of the Ohio House of Representatives from 1981 to 1984, but retired from politics because he disliked where the government was headed and how it functioned, he said. The government became “too big” with constant regulations, so he said he conducted research for two years and became a Libertarian.
“We oppose big government not just because it’s big government, but because it limits your choices,” Earl said. “It takes all the oxygen out of the room. Government is constantly encroaching on us, telling us they’re doing things for our own good, when at the same time they’re cutting the legs off our liberty.”
An example Earl provided during his presentation in Kennedy Union to the UD community was the controversy over the ability to sell raw milk. Some babies and adults cannot handle the pasteurization of regular milk and would prefer to have raw milk, but government health regulations prohibit the sale of raw milk, Earl said. Farmers can give raw milk to their neighbors, but they cannot sell it to them, and this demonstrates just how intense government regulations are, Earl said.
“You don’t ship raw milk from California to Ohio,” Earl said. “It’s a next door neighbor type of thing. If someone wants to get raw milk from a neighbor, they’re going to know if that dairy farmer is clean and takes care of everything. They ought to have the right to do that. Just little things like that that the government regulates.”
Earl said he also opposes the use of force behind all government actions.
“Government is by its nature, force,” he said. “As Libertarians we believe you have the right to do anything you want to do as long as you don’t harm others or their property. You have the inherent right to make bad choices, but at least on that small scale, you can recover from them and learn from them. When government makes bad choices, we all suffer and we never recover.”
Earl used the recent controversy over the Affordable Healthcare Act as an example. Even though the act now states people will be able to keep their current healthcare plans if they want to, thousands of health plans have already been cancelled, and we can’t go back and fix that, he said.
“I’m not thrilled about where our country is going, but I feel powerless to do anything about it,” he said. “But I do feel an opportunity here in Ohio to maybe make a change. And if people here in Ohio can recognize the importance of liberty, and what it means to be able to make your own decisions, I believe Ohio will be a better place.”
Earl said if elected, he would work to privatize the energy sector so Ohio won’t depend on interstate commerce, which would keep jobs and money in state.
“Charles’ visit was important to the club and the UD community as a whole because it shows people that there are more than just two choices,” Zink said. “There are issues that the big two agree on that smaller parties and candidates want to bring up, like the use of the thorium reactor [to privatize the energy sector]. I think students should support Charles’ candidacy because he wants to expand freedom to as many people as possible and allow people to learn from mistakes and generally increase quality of life by removing a lot of red tape. Freedom to make your own decisions without big government interference is really the biggest thing that he stands for.”