Antonia Okafor is someone you need to familiarize yourself with if you haven’t already. A native of Texas, Antonia currently serves as the Southwest Director of Students for Concealed Carry and has worked on the Rand Paul for President campaign. Not only is she a dedicated activist for freedom-minded ideas, she’s smart as a whip with her educational background; she received her undergraduate degree from University of Texas-Dallas and is pursuing her masters degree there.
She recently testified before the Texas Senate Committee on State Affairs about the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston prohibiting firearms in most of their buildings. She also regularly appears on the NRA News program Cam and Company. We believe her story and her activism are noteworthy. Check out our interview with her below!
GH: Tell our readers who you are. Why are you conservative/libertarian?
AO: I can honestly say that I wear quite a few hats, but to be concise, I am an aspiring law student and the Southwest Regional Director for Students for Concealed Carry and locally, I am the precinct chair for my local county’s Republican party. I am a conservative, or rather a “conservatarian” because I believe that a limited government allows individuals to be the most free and live a life of freedom, happiness and prosperity. I actually voted for Obama in 2008 and more reluctantly so, in 2012. The ever increasing debt of this country and the ever expanding role of government in my life, changed my mind after 2012. It was shortly after that I realized that I am not only a Republican, but a conservative. Because fiscal issues and gun rights issues are very important to me, I believe getting more involved with the “liberty movement” was a natural progression. Less government, more freedom is a mantra that I hold dear to me, daily.
Teen conservative and Smart Girl Politics activist Bethany Bowra (@bethanybowra) interviewed me for the latest installment of Smart Girl Politics’ “Youth in Action” series profiling young conservative female activists. Those of you who know me are familiar with my hold-no-prisoners approach to conservative politics, anti-Communist tendencies, and desire to lure in more young people to our movement.
I hope my thoughts and sentiments in this interview inspire other freedom-loving youngsters to speak out and reject collectivism. Without a doubt, we must encourage more young conservatives…especially young conservative females.
While Planned Parenthood and Democrat women in Congress claim to speak for all women, these young women have something to say about that. Contrary to popular belief, those groups do not speak for all young women— many young women my age have views that are quite the opposite. Below is my interview with conservative activist, Gabriella Hoffman!
Why did you get involved in politics?
I got involved in conservative politics because of my parents. My mother and my father are Lithuanian immigrants who escaped from Soviet communism 27 years ago. The Left’s policies remind them too much of the Old Country, so conservatism came naturally to them. Their stories and perspective on life really brought me to conservatism. Both sides of my family suffered immensely in the former Soviet Union. I’m in this fight to honor their memories and remind people that freedom must be safeguarded for future generations to come.
How did you get involved?
In 2006 when I was 15, I started writing a column in a local Orange County, CA community paper, The Coto Voice, called “Teen Beat.” I maintained this column for three years. I primarily focused on topics ranging from volunteering in high school to upholding traditional values. After I graduated from high school and moved onto college, I began to write about politics for The California Review, the conservative paper at UC-San Diego. From there, I went onto running a YAF chapter and hosting David Horowitz on campus- an event which landed on national news. After the event garnered a lot of attention, I started working for The Rick Amato Show as an Executive Assistant and landed a coveted role at Eagle Forum of San Diego as the Director of Youth Outreach. I also started blogging for various websites and publications.
What issues have you been focused on since you became active?
I’m a firm believer in sound conservatism (social and fiscal conservatism), and I also believe in strong national defense. During my time at UC-San Diego, I heavily focused on support for Israel (I have family there and support a healthy U.S.-Israel relationship) and exposing militant leftists on campus. I also exposed radical feminism and openly condemned the Vagina Monologues. Now, I concentrate on a plethora of issues ranging from traditional values to Israel advocacy to media/leftist/campus bias to free enterprise.
StandWithUs recently launched an online petition drive in support of a July 9 report on Campus Climate at the University of California highlighting campus anti-Israelism and anti-Semitism.
In response to the report, entitled “University of California Jewish Student Campus Climate Fact-Finding Team Report & Recommendations,” some anti-Israeli students and community members – ironically, some Jewish students – decried the report’s findings and said that it’s not representative of the Jewish community at large. They created an online petition denouncing criticism of anti-Zionist sentiment in the UC system.
Unfortunately, this report fails to meet minimum standards for accuracy and sound methodology and offers only a partial view of Jewish life and culture on UC campuses. The report excludes the experiences and values of many Jewish students who are connected to and critical of the state of Israel; it misrepresents support for Palestinian rights and inquiry into Israeli policy as anti-Israel and anti-Semitic acts; and it suggests, in marked contrast to all available campus life surveys / quantitative evidence, that UC campuses are hostile environments for Jewish students. In short, the report distorts campus life, and it includes recommendations that threaten free speech on campuses.
StandWithUs, on the other hand, supports the report and is asking past/current UC students, faculty, and community members to sign their petition. Here’s a brief description of it:
On July 9, 2012, a report entitled “University of California Jewish Student Campus Climate Fact Finding Team Report and Recommendations” was presented by Alice Huffman, president of the California NAACP, and Richard Barton, national education chair of the Anti-Defamation League, to the University of California (UC) President’s Advisory Council on Campus Climate, Culture and Inclusion. The report was commissioned in June 2011 by the advisory council in order to identify both the challenges faced by, and positive experiences of, Jewish students attending UC campuses and to recommend steps needed to make UC campuses more inclusive and welcoming for Jewish students and the community at large.
The report followed a fact-finding process from October 2011 to May 2012, which involved a team visiting six UC campuses–Santa Cruz, Davis, Irvine, Berkeley, Los Angeles, and San Diego. The researchers interviewed students, faculty, and community members to paint an overview of the diversity within these campuses, especially within its significant Jewish student population. It outlined the many nuances and at times diverse political views within the Jewish community on these campuses. The report concluded with a list of recommendations, inviting the UC system to develop model institutional protocols that will ensure that bigotry, intimidation, and undue bias are marginalized, that Jewish students, faculty, and community members’ rights to free speech are protected, and that the university sets clear guidelines for responsible, reasonable debate.
It is extremely unfortunate, but not surprising, that a petition has surfaced recently within the UC system denouncing the validity and veracity of the Huffman/Barton report and calling upon the UC President’s Advisory Council to dismiss the report. Students, alumni, faculty, and parents are invited to sign a petition denouncing the claims and the recommendations articulated in the report. It is absolutely essential that this dismissive, opposing petition be countered effectively and immediately.
The opposing petition reflects the very problems that the report describes: bias and an effort to silence or deny the experiences of many Jewish students, faculty, and community members. Only the report on Jewish students is being criticized for its methodology, even though it used the same methodology as the report on Muslim and Arab students, which was not criticized. The report documented what many Jewish students, faculty, and community members described as their experiences, but opponents are trying to deny the validity of these reported experiences. The opposing petition denies that criticism of Israel can cross the line into anti-Semitism by rejecting the EUMC working definition of anti-Semitism, even though the U.S. State Department and the Office of Civil Rights of the U.S. Department of Education both adopted the EUMC working definition.
As someone who identified with the Jewish community during my time at UCSD, I lend my full support to StandWithUs’s petition and the UC Campus Climate report. Please sign it and share it.
Last week, I was interviewed by USA TODAY College’s Samantha Glavin, a sophomore at Saint Anselm College, on Obamacare and its impact on young people. CRNC communications director Alyssa Farah and Students for Santorum president Shane Bias were also interviewed.
Here are my thoughts:
Gabriella Hoffman is a senior at UC-San Diego and assistant editor of the popular blog, “College Conservative”. While she’s excited to graduate in the spring and enter the real world, she’s worried about the effect that Obamacare, if upheld, could have on her post-college environment.
Hoffman’s parents both came to the U.S. after escaping from the Soviet Union, and she says that they “lived with a health care model that was an extreme version of Obamacare.”
Says Hoffman, “Though the government there said that the mandate was ‘free and wouldn’t cost you’, they ended up paying 80% of it and the care was extremely unsanitary. While that’s not exactly happening here yet, it could the way things are going.”
I also said that Obamacare forces young adults to be subservient to big government.
Hoffman worries about the creation of a similar Big Brother-esque form of control. “Obamacare perpetuates paternalistic government,” she says. “Young people will learn early on that the government has to provide for every need.”
You can read the entire article here.
- Why ObamaCare is not EMTALA and still without precedent (teapartywit.com)
- Ron Paul wins if Supreme Court strikes Obamacare (kentuckyweed.wordpress.com)
- Ron Paul wins if Supreme Court strikes Obamacare (whengovernmentfailsinkentucky.wordpress.com)
- ObamaCare Faces Death Panel of Nine (thecollegeconservative.com)
- Progressive Whining About Last Week’s Supreme Court Hearings on Obamacare (healthcarebs.com)
Are you a pro-life activist that enjoys making movies? Do you stand for life and want to bring change to Hollywood? If yes, then attend LifeFest Film Festival this May 4-6, 2012!
Below is the first of many promo videos for the festival:
Here’s more about the event from the website:
LifeFest organizers offer programming and events for film enthusiasts of every interest and background. With the support of a passionate arts community, LifeFest has attracted worldwide interest from some of the industry’s best filmmakers. We feature opportunities for burgeoning filmmakers and will be entertaining distinguished industry guests and thousands of film enthusiasts from around the world.
The second annual Life Fest Film Festival is expected to attract many activists, filmmakers, and Hollywood actors to the L.A. Convention Center. Those interested in attending LifeFest can register here.
Those who wish to support LifeFest can donate to it. Watch the video to learn how:
Hope to see you there!
Cross-posted from National School Choice Week blog on November 22, 2011:
In his book Capitalism and Freedom, Milton Friedman writes, “Not all schooling is education nor all education, schooling. The proper subject of concern is education. The activities of government are mostly limited to schooling.” (86).
At a time when big government policies are all-pervading and equally treacherous, education similarly suffers at the hands of bureaucrats and union bosses. Copious amounts of dollars are funding school administrations and teacher pay, while student needs are neglected and tossed aside. For example, “Teachers Unions Gone Wild”—an undercover video by James O’Keefe that exposed the New Jersey Education Association teachers’ union in Fall 2010—captured problems inset with powerful and equally egregious teachers unions. When an oversized bureaucracy rules, quality education ceases to exist.
In a time where education reform is desired and necessary, it is imperative to note that big government policies are counterintuitive to a world-class education system.
Milton Friedman encouraged a localized approach to education. In particular, he emphasized parental control over school placement. Additionally, he best explained the case for school choice with respect to limited government through vouchers:
“Governments could require a minimum level of schooling financed by giving parents vouchers redeemable for a specified maximum sum per child per year if spent on ‘approved’ educational resources. Parents would then be free to spend this sum and any additional sum they themselves provided on purchasing educational services from an ‘approved’ institution of their own choice. The educational services could be rendered by private enterprises operated for, or by non-profit institutions,” (Friedman 89).
Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice continues the legacy wrought by Milton Friedman and his wife Rose Friedman:
“In 1996, they established the Milton and Rose D. Friedman Foundation to advance a system of k-12 education where every parent, regardless of race, origin or family income, was free to choose a learning environment that was best for their child. As they said, “This foundation is the culmination of what has been one of our main interests for more than four decades: improvement in the quality of the education available to children of all income and social classes in this nation, whether that education is provided in government or private schools or at home.”
“Today, while our name is different (The Foundation for Educational Choice) our mission remains the same.
“Our Foundation is dedicated to building upon our founders’ theories and vision, clarifying their meaning to the public and amplifying the national call for true education reform through school choice.” – (Taken from the Foundation’s website)
As a result, this is the best time to heed Milton Friedman’s words about limited government in education.
- Milton Friedman Addresses the Occupy Wall Street Crowd (economicnoise.com)
- Department of “Huh?!”: John Taylor and Milton Friedman’s Monetary Policy Edition (delong.typepad.com)
- A message about “greed” for OWS bums… (fellowshipofminds.wordpress.com)
- Milton Friedman on Why Capitalism is Best (dakotavoice.com)
- Video: Milton Friedman on Socialism vs. Capitalism -cnbnews.net (gloucestercitynews.net)
|Written by Gabriella Hoffman|
|Monday, 20 June 2011 21:35|
|In the narrow world of green fanatics, college students must follow the script.
They must save whales, be hippies, cuddle with lemurs, boycott meat, and defeat ‘global warming’.
Sadly, eco-hypocrites Al Gore and James Cameron, and their entourage of celebrity followers have brainwashed my peers with apocalyptic rhetoric, exaggerations and lies.Essentially, these zealots opine that the world is on the cusp of destruction due to “‘global warming’ and the continual abuse of Mother Earth.” If people don’t submit, green fanatics will do all in their power to convert skeptics.
And if that does not work they will use threats.
Take James Cameron’s words for example : “I want to call those deniers out into the street at high noon and shoot it out with those boneheads. Anybody that is a global-warming denier at this point in time has got their head so deeply up their ass I’m not sure they could hear me.”
After meeting Ann McElhinney and Phelim McAleer at a Young America’s Foundation’s seminar last year, I was inspired to be more critical of ‘global warming’ and the green movement. I watched both of their documentaries—Mine Your Own Business and Not Evil Just Wrong—and saw the need to get this viewpoint out there through Facebook, articles, and other mediums. It was so refreshing to hear someone say that we were not alone in the fight to combat ‘global warming’ hysteria.
Previously, I knew cap and trade to be detrimental to the United States, but wanted to know more. Ann clarified this during a speech at Young America’s Foundation’s “Advancing Freedom” seminar last July.
“Cap and trade is an unbelievable scam. They want to punish fossil fuel companies. It will be disastrous to America,” she said.
Like other campuses, my university—the University of California at San Diego—inundates students with sustainability tips, Meatless Mondays, green products, and a slew of awareness events. This university has also played host to Ralph Nader, Al Gore, and as of late, Bill Clinton and his Clinton Global Initiative University program. Unless speakers like Ann McElhinney are brought to campus, students will never hear the alternative viewpoint.
Additionally, her views on sustainability are spot on. Known for being straightforward, Ann McElhinney exposes the hypocrisy of the green lifestyle with witty remarks, anecdotes, and jokes. For example, she sheds light on how maniacal, hypocritical, and anti-human environmentalists are during speeches at campuses, events, and rallies nationwide. At CPAC 2010, Ann exposed James Cameron for being an eco-hypocrite.
She said, “James Cameron is an idiot because James Cameron makes a film where mining is evil and living in the rainforest is gorgeous. Here’s my advice for James Cameron: Burn your passport and move to the rain forest. Bring your mother there!”
Watch more from her video below from CPAC 2010 detailing how deceiving and anti-American Avatar and its proprietor, James Cameron, really are.
Fortunately, a growing number of college students are rejecting this brouhaha.
John Howting, a recent graduate of Miami University in Ohio, describes the crusade to combat ‘global warming’ as one that misleads.
“First it was “global cooling” then it was “global warming”…now it’s “global climate change”… I call it the four seasons,” he said.
Justen Charters of Oregon adds that apocalyptic rhetoric makes ‘global warming’ not credible.
“The Second Ice Age was supposed to happen thirty years ago. Unless they were predicting the sequel to the Pixar film, liberals are messing up the facts again. Global warming, I mean climate change, is as much of a farce as Harold Camping’s rapture prediction…”
There is a growing need for young people to expose ‘global warming’. As a result, I have been enlisted by Ann and Phelim Media, LLC, as the New Media Intern to help disseminate the truth about movement to “Go Green.” My work will range from exposing outrageous ‘green schools’ to bringing Ann McElhinney to campuses nationwide to disseminating information about our films and upcoming projects.
It is pivotal that my generation sees how nonsensical and equally farcical worshipping individuals like Al Gore and living green lifestyles really are. Be sure to check out NotEvilJustWrong.com for updates to learn how you can get involved.
- Eco-Hypocrite Prince Charles to Address Georgetown University This Week (thegabriellahoffman.com)
- Nikko’s 3D meat measurement system is enough to make James Cameron’s butcher jealous (video) (engadget.com)
- Oscar-Nominated Green Documentary Plays Fast and Loose With the Facts (minx.cc)
- James Cameron and Sam Worthington team up for a new big budget, scifi blockbuster [Myth] (io9.com)
- Get REAL Alternative Speakers, Not Trash, To Speak at Rutgers (thegabriellahoffman.com)