John Gordos and I arrived at Miami University to meet up with Josh Bryant around noon. Where we decided we would stay until every Constitution was passed out. I had reserved the Slant Walk area to table and chose a shady intersection with high traffic to distribute material.
The table was set up on the grass, so as to not obstruct people walking by on the sidewalks between Harrison Hall, King Library, and uptown. The weather was as perfect for tabling as it was terrible for my fair skin, no clouds or wind all day.
Overall, those on campus seemed interested and pleased by our tabling activities. Older people appeared especially enthusiastic and most always accepted a Constitution and other materials.
Of the college-aged individuals: 60% took a Constitution and continued on, 10% excitedly asked more questions and/or signed up, 20% appeared to be engaged with their electronic devices (earbuds, cellphones, etc.), and 10% saw what we were handing out and said “No Thanks,” though a few men said it was because they already had one. To this, Josh Bryant would approach, saying “I bet you don’t have this!” and handed them the “How to Deal with the Police” cards.
Most people seemed to respond even more enthusiastically to those cards, though there was one girl who, when Josh mentioned police brutality, said “Those people the police were going after should have just stopped when the police told them to,” and walked away from the awkward, stunned silence she’d left at the table.
My moment of the day occurred when I handed a Constitution to a girl in a group of five young ladies who appeared to be exercising together. As she was walking away and reading the fliers I had given her, she emphatically told her friends, “See! This is what I was telling you guys about, like, how they’re taking away our rights and stuff!”
This newly gained faith in humanity, though, was diminished a bit a little while later, as I handed a Constitution to another girl saying, “Would you like a mini-Constitution?”
“Umm… I, like, don’t even know what this is…”
“It’s just a tiny Constitution. Miami Young Americans for Liberty is passing them out because today’s Constitution Day!”
“Of, like, America?”
I answered in the affirmative, then handed her some much-needed materials about liberty, the political system, and YAL before she hurried away.
There were also a few strange interactions: a strange man with a white hat and yellow sunglasses who was walking with a boy who I assumed to be his son. He passed by twice, keeping himself between us and his boy, and refused a Constitution both times with a strange, possibly smug, smile.
There were also a few ladies walking our way on the sidewalk who, upon seeing our table, stopped walking, took some pictures, and then went the other way. Near the end of the day, a young blonde woman approached the table, asking if we had to ask the University for permission to table and if a lot of people had passed by and taken the materials. I answered “Yes” to both questions, at first a bit worried that this would be a repeat of the last tabling event, where I almost got kicked off the Seal (a place, not an animal) for issues with the online event request submission. Fortunately, she said that she was just asking because she was thinking of doing the same thing for her own event and then continued on her way with a new Constitution and a few fliers about YAL.
In the end, it only took an hour and a half to go through the whole box of Constitutions sent to Miami YAL. In that time, five people signed up to get e-mails about future meetings and event, while at least twice that number asked about the student organization and its message of liberty on campus.
Most of the interactions were incredibly positive and receptive, most likely due to the fact that Oxford is already a very Conservative, patriotic place. We at Miami YAL look forward to tabling again soon!Published in