Editor’s note: Yahoo News asked young libertarian-minded voters to share why they’re drawn to the either the Libertarian Party or to libertarian political principles in general. Here’s one first-person account we received this week.
FIRST PERSON | It has been years since I first considered myself a libertarian.. I’m 28 and live in Oklahoma City, which, from my point of view, is filled with non-libertarians.
I discovered this newfound me about four years ago when I began my college journey at the Oklahoma City Community College. I majored in political science mostly because I wanted to do something with the law, but I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do, so I thought that this major was a good place to start. It was there that I discovered what it truly meant to be free. Freedom doesn’t come free; it is something that you must work toward and, in my mind, being free means that I shouldn’t have to ask my government about things that I affect my life.
I am not registered with the Libertarian Party, but this is due to my military background. I’m a specialist in the Army Reserves out in Mustang, Okla., and I am told to remain apolitical, which is kind of what a libertarian does, if you think about it. We don’t really side with any one established political party. Instead, we take bits and pieces from each. I don’t vote for either party but what I do do is find a common ground that fits what I believe and vote for that. A libertarian’s goal is to make sure that the rights of the people are granted, but we also believe that the law should never be broken unless it is unjust.
A libertarian lifestyle appeals to me since I am after freedom and we can’t really be free if we constantly have the government looking over our shoulders and prying into our lives and in situations that doesn’t concern them. For instance: If my gay friends want to get married, that is their business and the government shouldn’t be able to tell them that they can’t. Being a libertarian means being open to all cultures and religious views.
Henry David Thoreau was one of my favorite influences. In particular, I think of these passages: “I ask for, not at once no government, but at once a better government” and “‘That government is best which governs not at all.” Thoreau was an anarchist, but he influenced libertarianism with his words. He wanted the government to govern but wanted it to govern better and realized people needed the right to be truly free and they couldn’t be truly free if the government kept stepping into their lives.
I used to be a Democrat, but then I realized that both the Democrats and the Republicans were out to satisfy themselves and they didn’t see the bigger picture of satisfying everyone’s needs. I am out to satisfy everyone’s needs as a whole instead of just picking and choosing the things that would only benefit a few individuals. I favor some Democratic and some Republican efforts, but I am a libertarian. I am not an extremist though so please don’t confuse me with one.
My family is mostly Democratic and they often say that they are for the middle class and the less fortunate. In my opinion, this is a wrong way of looking at things. I agree with a lot of democratic views but not in the sense that you would think. I agree with them but only when it is for the equal rights of people.
I tend to debate a lot of issues even when we both agree on the same things but I debate the reason that they agree on it. I have always said that if you are going to vote for something or do something then you need to know the reason for why you are doing it; if not then you shouldn’t be doing it to begin with.