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Student Activism, Fundraising, and the Permission Complex

“The worst thing that can happen is a forced apology” was what a senior Students For Liberty Campus Coordinator once told me.

Short of something illegal, I knew what right and wrong was pretty clearly when it came to student activism when I started at Marion Military Institute.

Two years ago Show Producer Ryan and I did a two day campaign bootcamp at the Leadership Institute. During the course they had a table with hundreds of free books and a sign above them that said “take as many as you can carry.” Between Ryan and I we took home 86 books. Did we read them? Probably, I only kept one and Ryan kept a couple. What I ended up doing was shipping them to my dorm in Alabama where I sold them so I could afford to pay for food, guest speakers, and other expenses for our libertarian club because we were the only student organization on campus not to accept a dime of school funding because we believed it wasn’t right to use student tuition for club expenses. One of the people at LI learned of my plan and told me I wouldn’t make more than $50.

I ended up making $350.

I used the money to not only cover all the remainder of the semester activities but used some of the remaining cash to invest in planning a fundraiser for the local dog shelter and managed to earn triple as much as I originally invested. Because of that we were able to microchip, spade, neuter, license and provide food for over a dozen homeless dogs.

Oh, and did I even ask the school permission to host my unregulated/unsupervised book sale? No, it didn’t even cross my mind because I was willing to succeed and face the repercussions later if they came because I was fully committed to what I was doing.

Far too often people want to save face with people who don’t have their same interest at heart. They want to ask permission for everything and are willing to stand by bogus rules and regulations regarding student groups so everyone has a fair shake.

Here’s a truth about life, the only fair shake anyone deserves is opportunity. Some businesses fail and others thrive, and student groups are the same way. Some schools won’t allow certain fundraising activities to occur because they know other student groups don’t have the same dedication and will cry when others make more money than them.

The moral of the story is each time I hear a student groups at bigger universities complain about not having money, stop complaining and start hustling because obviously you’re not thinking outside the box. Great men were the ones that knew when action had to be taken even when certain boundaries “placed for their own good” had to be ignored.

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About Remso W. Martinez (328 Articles)
Remso W. Martinez is a blogger, activist, and host of the “Remso Republic” podcast. You can see more of Remso’s work at www.remsorepublic.com

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