“You’re a Republican in Boulder?”

Editor’s Note: Mitchell Whitus is the President of University of Colorado Boulder College Republicans. The opinions expressed herein do not represent CU Independent or any of its affiliates.

I have been asked countless times, “What’s it like to be a Republican in Boulder?”

My answer is always the same: Yes, there are certainly crazy things that happen here, I have seen a student group organize a communist “redistribution” center in the University Memorial Center plaza. I have been accused of trying to take women back to the 1950s. But those sorts of events are few and far between.

I explain to people that the one thing that really frustrates me about being a Republican at CU is apathy. Many people have told me that they do not care about politics or voting. “It doesn’t matter who I vote for,” they say. “Things will not change.”

Nothing could be farther from the truth.

(CU Independent Illustration/Josh Shettler)
(CU Independent Illustration/Josh Shettler)

At the state level, many bills are being considered this year because both the House and Senate are under Democratic control. The more notable bills this session include introducing new regulation to firearms. There is also talk of repealing the Tax Payers’ Bill of Rights within the next few years. Regardless of your ideological persuasion, it is clear that the absence of a slim Republican majority in the House this session makes a huge difference in the discussion at the state capitol.

On a federal level, U.S. debt per person is now over $50,000. It is difficult to fathom the burden our elected officials are putting on future generations and us. I do not want to think of the number of hours I would need to work in order to pay off my share of the money the U.S. government has borrowed.

Because of the debt, and many other reasons, it is imperative we have principled elected officials. But good politicians only get elected by knowledgeable voters. For the sake of our country, our generation, and future generations to come, we need to realize that the political process does matter.

The political atmosphere is probably one reason why people stay away from political issues. The drama we often see play out in our nation’s capitol can be frustrating and, quite frankly, confusing.

For that reason, I am glad to see that a College Democrat presence is developing on campus again. Having “friendly competition” will no doubt make both organizations stronger. More importantly, the dialogue and thoughtful debate between College Democrats and College Republicans will hopefully get more people engaged in the issues. I think that both organizations can have a productive exchange of ideas without the vitriol we often see flying around in Washington.

The issues at stake for our generation are too important to ignore. Apathy is too costly. I do not think everyone needs to be politically involved, just politically aware. So many issues affect our generation on the local, state and federal governments, and it is important to know what they are.

I thought being a Republican at CU would be frustrating because of a dominating liberal ideology on campus. Instead, I am frustrated that people are apathetic to the political process. Through my affiliation with the College Republicans, I hope to help change this.

 Contact Guest Writer Mitchell Whitus at Mitchell.whitus@colorado.edu.

Elizabeth Hernandez

Elizabeth Hernandez is a news-editorial major who sees the world in terms of satirical material. She can usually be found reading the news with her head in her hands, furiously writing op-eds, watching cat videos, or judging people's Instagram feeds.

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