Fox News visited Drexel University’s Main Building today for a live broadcast of the online forum program “Freedom Watch: With Judge Andrew Napolitano” Oct. 28.
The program, which was available live on FoxNews.com, was hosted by Judge Andrew Napolitano, a leading voice in the American liberty movement, a faction better known by its major political face, the Libertarian Party. Freedom Watch is an online only show where the Judge discusses issues that pertain to individual freedoms in America with various guests that include many prominent politicians.
The episode at Drexel focused in part on the relevance of the liberty movement to college students and the growing focus on the freedom movement after the recent presidential campaign of Republican candidate Ron Paul whose platform was the reduction of the federal government and the expansion of personal liberties.
“There’s never been a more libertarian time. I think people had become fed up with Bush and now they realize that Obama is just another politician too,” Alexander McCobin, a Ph.D student in philosophy at Georgetown University and the executive director of the national group Students for Liberty, said.
Tyler Frazier, a pre-junior studying chemical engineering at Drexel, reiterated Mr. McCobin by saying “Liberals and conservatives think that they’re only fighting against each other but what they don’t realize is that there’s plenty of other groups with other views.”
However, getting alternative views like this into office might be difficult for the Liberty Movement. Although Ron Paul was supported by the Liberty Movement in the last election, he ran as a Republican but lost the party’s nomination to John McCain. The Libertarian Party’s own presidential candidate, Bob Barr, only obtained 0.4 percent of the national vote in 2008.
Despite these setbacks, the students at the Drexel event felt positive that the Libertarian Movement was growing among the students who supported Obama but have become disillusioned by what they see as inaction in fulfilling his campaign promises. They point to the show’s broadcast from Drexel as being a huge boon to the movement because it brings together many of the leaders of the movement to discusses important topics that actually resonate with people.
During the broadcast from Drexel, a panel of several students and politicians were selected to participate on the on air debate with Jude Napolitano.
The discussion centered on several topics, including “What makes a war just? What are the dangers to personal liberty brought on by the economic crises? And, what are currently the largest threats to our liberty?” according to Irena Schneider, the Mid-Atlantic director for Students for Liberty and a sophomore at American University studying Russian.
Drexel’s own Student Liberty Front, an affiliate of the national Students for Liberty, was also represented on the panel. Both the president of the organization, Pericles Niarchos, and the vice president, Stacy Litz, discussed topics live on the show. Aaron Moyer, a Drexel University student and president of the Philadelphia Forum for Freedom was also a member of the panel.
One of the shows topics was the growing popularity of the Liberty Movement on college campuses. Niarchos said, “A lot of student groups support anti-war platforms [like the one taken by the Liberty Movement].”
All three Drexel panelists agreed that the Liberty Movement is gaining ground on college campuses and events like the broadcast of a network news show are putting Drexel at the forefront of the student movement. But if recent election numbers are anything to go by, the Student Liberty Front has a lot of work to do before they are counted among the major political parties.
The show, which was hosted by Drexel’s Student Liberty Front, was held in the University’s Main Building in front of a small audience of Drexel students, local politicians, and the media.