The Libertarian Party of Georgia’s annual State Convention is this Saturday, and I’m going to be there! I may be tweeting live, we’ll see how that goes. If you aren’t following me yet and would like an inside look at a State Convention from the eyes of someone who has never been to one, follow me at @swgalibertarian!
In addition to going to this event for the first time, I will also be a candidate in an election for the first time in six years, and my first time ever outside of college. I plan on seeking the District 1 Representative spot on the LP-Ga Executive Committee, and I think I’m in a great position to do a solid job with it, particularly as we prepare for the 2010 midterm elections.
In my brief time as a full-fledged Libertarian I have taken a nine county area that had precisely three members – counting myself – and have already nearly tripled our strength, with three more people set to join very soon from what they have told me.
Nor do I shirk from challenges. Not counting the daunting task of working to organize an affiliate with only two other members anywhere near me when I started, I have also started a libertarian-oriented blog focusing on the SWGA area, and I even wrote commentary on nearly every bill authored by a member of the Georgia Senate. Through this blog and my efforts on Facebook, Twitter, and PeachPundit, I have gained the attention – and I’d like to think at least some small modicrum of respect – from some of the biggest names in GA Political blogging, including Erick Erickson, Bill Simon, and ‘Icarus’.
I have also gained the respect of respected members of the GA Libertarian community, including both former Chairman and current At-Large Representative Jason Pye and current Chairman Daniel Adams.
I also have experience in exactly this type of position. While in college, I worked with an organization called the National Society of Collegiate Scholars, where I rose to what was then known as the Region 3 Representative on its National Leadership Council – essentially the student-led version of its Executive Committee, where the President and Vice President of the NLC were actual voting members on the controlling board of the entire organization. My duties then were to represent my region to the best of my ability to the rest of the NLC, as well as chapter development. Indeed, I actually managed to visit 10 of my 35 chapters that year, which was daunting even of itself considering that Region 3 then was the traditional ‘Southeast’, minus Virgina.
I know I’m a recent convert to Libertarianism, but I’ve actually been on the path for several years – approximately a decade, in fact. Early on, it was more of a religious conversion from the Southern Baptist legalism I had been raised under to the full realization of a ‘Different Kind of Free’, as contemporary Christian band ZOEgirl puts it. Just before my final decision to become a Libertarian, books that impacted my religious beliefs included William Young’s The Shack and Ted Dekker’s The Circle Trilogy, which both confirmed and expanded my views of Freedom. During that time, I was also impacted by works such as Shaunti Feldhahn’s – a local Atlanta author – Veritas Conflict as well as Dale Brown’s character of President Thomas Nathaniel Thorn and his Jeffersonian Republican party, which is similar to the LP’s beliefs on foreign affairs and the Constitution.
Finally, for me it came down to two men: Dr. Ron Paul and Bob Barr. I began to follow Dr. Paul early in the primary season for the 2008 Presidential Elections. I saw him as the only hope for the Republican Party, and the Republican Party rejected him. I began looking into the Libertarian Party with some seriousness at that point. I had also been following Mr. Barr’s columns in the AJC called The Barr Code, and knew him to be solid in privacy rights and other issues. When he stopped his column to pursue the Presidential nomination of the Libertarian Party, the LP had my full attention. I began telling everyone I could about Bob Barr and his Liberty for America platform, and everyone around me knew exactly where I stood.
The day President Barack Obama was elected, the LP-Ga officially gained a new member, and I joined LP-National less than two weeks later. Around that same time, I also began my efforts to organize an LP presence in my area in Lee and Dougherty Counties, and I stand ready to submit the paperwork to the Executive Committee within two weeks to allow them to decide whether to make SWGALP the newest LP-Ga affiliate. I have also already been talking to some people in Valdosta about the possibility of establishing an affiliate there, even as nothing more than the organizer of an affiliate in a nearby area.
I would like to continue my work at both the local and the State level, and I ask for your support in electing me District 1 Representative on the Executive Committee of the Libertarian Party of Georgia.