For Freshmen. By Freshmen.
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Feb 10 2017
by Karly Matthews

6 College Republicans React to President Trump's Third Week in Office

By Karly Matthews - Feb 10 2017

Even though they may be a minority on most college campuses, young conservatives and Republicans are still paying attention to current events, especially those surrounding the 45th president. The week, the Trump Administration confirmed both Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos and Attorney General Jeff Sessions while the battle over Trump’s immigration executive order raged on among other events. Young conservatives around the country have their own opinions about recent events, and Fresh U caught up with some below:

Hannah Carlson, University of North Dakota, Political Science & Classical Studies major

“Betsy Devos' support for school choice is probably the primary reason why I'm glad she has been confirmed as Secretary of Education. Opening up the market within education would, in my opinion, be one of the simplest ways of improving the dire situation that our nation's schools are in today. Rather than have pupils stuck in inadequate, failing schools, parents can transfer their children to schools that are better suited to their needs, instead of being trapped on the sole basis of where they happen to live. Greater levels of competition will force schools to compete with one another, breaking the power of the teacher's unions, who only care about the salary of their members, not the future of the students who they teach. I am concerned about her support for Common Core. Educators must be granted as much flexibility as possible within their remit, and greater diversity within the curriculum can only result in brighter minds. However, this is a small drawback compared to the change that she can bring to our broken education system, and I look forward to seeing the great results I know she is capable of.”

Brianna Cicero, Temple University, Journalism major & Cognitive Neuroscience minor

“I actually have some opinions on the whole ordeal with Ivanka's [clothing] line being dropped. It has also been reported that her line has been placed in less prominent spots in many of the stores that sell her clothing line. While I don't think Twitter was necessarily the right way to speak up, I do think the Donald Trump's reasons for concern are totally valid. While they are claiming that sales dropped - it's unclear about whether or not the store fed into that. And as a parent he is obviously going to be proud of his daughter's successes. It's only natural. Seeing her line being dropped is going to cause him to speak out in one way or another. Just because he's the president doesn't mean he's no longer a father. Plus, if you have an issue with him you should address it with him, not take it out on his daughter. He was merely doing what any parent would do--defending his daughter when he felt an injustice had been done.”

Erik Ramirez, University of Texas at San Antonio, Economics major

“For Betsy Devos, she is definitely Trumps weakest pick but ultimately, she's going to run a department that, like Energy and the EPA, is going away. She's clearly not the best choice due to her inexperience, but I'm not sure I'd want someone with experience in our broken and failing public school systems to manage education for the country. I think the decentralization of education is a good idea and very few people who made careers out of administering that system, who would have been more qualified for that position rather, would be trusted to dismantle the agency. As for the court appeal [of the immigration order], I think Trump has to. Getting over this early challenge to his administration successfully will set the tone if in the future other parts of government wish to contest his action. At least Trump is going through the court system rather than using administrative tactics to silence or rebuff legal challenge like Obama did. It’s a gamble but it will pay off if he wins or if the courts back down. I think the executive order is more than fair, it's clearly not a Muslim ban, and the hyperbole around it has been ridiculous. And this may be just speculation but I think Trump is going to benefit more from this challenge than the people challenging him.”

Matt Deegan, East Stroudsburg University, Political Science major

“In reference to President Trump's Education Secretary pick, while many believe she is unqualified, she appears to be the perfect pick to follow through with the Republican Platform for Education. Now Secretary Betsy DeVos has the intelligence and leadership experience to give this country and Federal Department of Education what it needs. I believe DeVos will make sure that School Choice is followed through with and that Common Core standards, which are destroying our education system, will finally be gotten rid of. DeVos is ready to lead the DOE and give every America the opportunity they need to exceed in our education system.”

Elizabeth Vesper, Florida Atlantic University, Nursing major

“My opinion is that according to the U.S. Code, it's within the president's power to suspend immigration from countries that are threatening the safety and security of the United States. Former President Obama once signed a law that restricted visas for people in specific countries, called the Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act of 2015. Trump's immigration order is simply a way of temporarily stopping immigration from certain countries until a better plan can be put into place to protect our nation.”

Sylvain Batut, Temple University, Journalism Graduate Program

“I believe President's Trump executive order is perfectly legal, as it is only temporary and does not ban any religion or ideology. The President has the constitutional duty to protect the American people at all cost. We have seen that previously, and while the implementation has been rather chaotic, it only aims at protecting the people. During WWII, Germans and Japanese were vetted, the same way Soviet citizens and people from Communist countries were vetted during the Cold War. No country, regardless of politics, should welcome people with open arms while aware of the presence of potential terrorists among them. I come from a country that has done that exact mistake (namely France), and the results are clear: it has only damaged racial relations. If America wants to preserve its national security and its sovereignty, it has to be able to protect itself. The ban is, anyway, only temporary, in order for the Department of Homeland Security to find a way to properly vet citizens and refugees from these 7 countries. Out of these 7 countries, 6 of them are undergoing a revolution or a civil war which could result in a terrorist state, while the only stable regime on the list is Iran, which stability comes from an authoritarian government which promotes hatred towards the United States and Israel.”

When looking into politicized events, it’s important to also look at the issues from another perspective because you can either learn a new way to see issues, or your own beliefs could be strengthened. Bipartisan dialogue is only becoming more and more valuable.

Lead Image Credit: Stefan Fussan via Flickr Creative Commons

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Karly Matthews - Temple University

Karly Matthews is a political science and journalism major with a Spanish minor at Temple University. In high school, she was editor-in-chief of her school's online newspaper, a member of the yearbook staff, a Spanish Club officer and a dancer for 12 years. In her free time, Karly drinks too much coffee and follows politics with an obsessive passion. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram @karlymatthews_!

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