Young Republicans Club is Stronger Together

Mars Svec-Burdick, Opinion Editor

“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

With the Pledge recited in unison, thus began the first-ever meeting of the Sequoia Young Republicans Club.
Following the 1950s Grease-themed homecoming rally Oct. 7, the Sequoia campus hosted an even older American tradition of assembly. As girls in Poodle skirts and boys in leather jackets went out to lunch, fourteen male Sequoia students congregated in the windowless back room of the library to talk politics.
Primary club officials are Party Chairman senior Andrew Acevedo, Vice President senior Tyson Fraley and Treasurer sophomore Harrison Fukuji. Although Debolina Dutta was originally staff advisor, she has since pulled out. The club is seeking another teacher to fill the role, or else they may have to disband.
The main goal of the Young Republicans is to express their political beliefs while challenging existing stereotypes about conservatives.
“Why do liberals hate us? We’re not all sexist right-wingers,” one club affiliate said.
So far though, no female students have shown serious interest in attending meetings.
“We want people of all different backgrounds and opinions involved in the club,” Acevedo said. “A big part of political and social institutions is having a whole pallet of opinions to work with on how to make the school & community better.”
On Friday, however, the main agenda item was to collect contact info.
“Make sure you list your official school email—no personal email accounts, please,” one club member said.
Acknowledging that GOP representation is a minority in this area, Acevedo reminded his fellow club members that “we are stronger together.” Ironically, this parallels Democrat Hillary Clinton’s campaign mantra: ‘Stronger together.’
“We appreciate that we have the right to hold this club,” Acevedo said. “It’s fantastic. In other countries, we could be arrested for gathering like this.”
A strong trend of discussion during the second meeting was their sense of being antagonized by the Bay Area’s strongly progressive environment.
“There is no Young Liberals Club because all of Sequoia is a liberal cult,” another member said.
Statistically, he’s not wrong. According to the California Secretary of State’s Report of Registration, 51 percent of registered voters in San Mateo are democrats compared to 19 percent who align themselves with the GOP.
To increase visibility, Acevedo and Fraley hope to hold a Q&A with other student clubs such as the Black Student Union and the Gender and Sexuality Alliance. They also plan to create ‘I am a conservative because…’ posters.
When the issue of fundraising for official club apparel arose, many club members were in support of purchasing Trump’s “Make America Great Again” hats.
Acevedo reminded the assembly that they will not be offering a club-wide endorsement for any candidate. Still, the room was in majority consensus on both their candidate and his ‘politically incorrect’ discourse.
“We love Trump,” one freshman said. Others chimed in their agreement.
“Yeah, we love him because the things he says are funny,” another member said. “This is not a safe space.”
Both Acevedo and Fraley will be voting in November, but neither shares this enthusiasm for Trump. During the primaries, they favored Ted Cruz and John Kasich, respectively.
“Donald Trump addresses the right issues, but he goes about addressing them the wrong way. Here I am, just one more month away from the election, and I’m going to find it very hard to put a checkmark next to his name. Now, I certainly am not going to vote for Hillary Clinton. That is not going to happen, ever,” Acevedo said.
When election day comes, the Young Republicans will be holding a special meeting to observe the occasion. Some discussed taking it a step further.
“If Hillary becomes president, we should riot downtown,” one member said.