Last week, as the Young Americans for Liberty chapter at Stephen F. Austin State University prepared to table for our Generation of War activism event, we received word that an aggressive group of people was being arrested on the other side of campus for pushing their beliefs a little too loudly. Not satisfied with being the second-most provocative activism event of the day, we knew we would have to work a bit harder to turn heads with our tabling event.
Fortunately, we came prepared with an equally loud means of protest: bright orange prisoner jumpsuits.
Donning suits and bearing information, we set out to inform the campus of the fiscal and human costs of war. The orange jumpsuits proved to be a criminally good conversation starter, serving a dual purpose as a reminder of both the loss of our liberties at home and the human costs incurred at Guantanamo Bay.
While some members manned the table outside the student center, talking foreign policy and recruiting new members, several of our “prisoners” walked the campus armed with signs and handouts. Many people stopped us to get a closer look at the facts on our sign and ask about our jumpsuits, and we jumped at the chance to tell them more about what it has really meant to live in a generation of war.
Overall, our event went extremely well. Many students went out of their way to thank us for our efforts to spread information, while many more walked away knowing much more about our wars, our foreign policy, and their effects on everyone.
Nevertheless, there were a handful of “pro-military” detractors who, certainly misinterpreting our intentions, voiced their opposition to our efforts without sticking around to hear what we had to say, making this our most polarizing activism event to date. However, this distinction is certain to change, as we will be tabling on war of a different nature next week: the War on Drugs.Published in