I guess this is the part for the man behind the work. My name is Andrew Hicks.
I’m a central Ohio student with an affinity for politics, particularly in regard to economics. When it comes to life, I consider myself an optimistic realist, in that what comes my way must be taken for what it is, but with enough time and effort, any trial can be overcome. (Right now one such trial just so happens to be a college search.)
I’ve been raised in a conservative household, but eventually I found that I do not match that dynamic, nor can I say that I am a liberal. I have found myself growing increasingly tired of the partisan politics that both parties stand for, a tiredness that grew tenfold in the 2016 political season. This website intends to transcend party lines, just as I consider myself wholeheartedly Centrist.
I may be young, but I assure you that this is no school project. At the age of 16, I joined forces with a close friend of mine to write a political proposal to aid the state of West Virginia. He approached me with the idea because he felt a duty to the state of his birth, and I, born near the Appalachian Mountains and looking for a challenge, happily agreed.
With his scientific expertise, my love of policy analysis, and a mutual desire for positive change, we devoted every spare hour to planning, researching, and writing. Months later, A Multifaceted Proposal to Aid Employment, Energy, and Identity Within The State of West Virginia emerged. (Long enough name to be a P!atD song title, isn’t it?)
It was fulfilling work, and its completion may still be my proudest achievement. I believe it to have been full of pragmatic solutions and plans for years of reform that promised a more stable future for West Virginia. A representative in the state legislature expressed interest in proposing our plan, and we went about finding like-minded organizations in the state to back us.
Unfortunately, the political climate turned icy before we could get it off the ground. West Virginia, to cover the losses of the mounting recession, was forced to close parks, shut down their broadcasting, repeal parts of the Clean Air and Water Act, and ultimately agree on no new spending. On the national level, President Trump mandated that “for every new regulation, two must be removed.” Furthermore, he promised to remove regulations on coal mines, the heart of our plan. We still actively promote the plan, but it appears that we will have to wait for more favorable circumstances for it to come to fruition.
The setbacks of recent legislation are disheartening, to be sure, but the challenges the Plan now faces have given us insight into the political system. Compounding upon my already-present belief in the need for political change, I was inspired to start Youth in Moderation. It’s time for a political movement to emerge that puts the good of the nation above the good of a party, and I believe my generation to be the one capable of doing it.
It is my firm belief that traditional Republicans and Democrats’ inability to compromise is jeopardizing America’s future. Our national debt grows exponentially while spending increases and taxes continue to fall. Laws and regulations become increasingly half-baked as parties zealously appeal to special interest groups. Worst of all, citizens are so polarized and indoctrinated that the house is divided and poised to fall.
Inspired by the work of Charles Wheelan, founder of the Centrist Project, I intend to serve as a catalyst for long-lasting political change. Understanding that the upcoming generation of voters represent the largest group without official political affiliation in American history, I hope that I am not alone in this endeavor. It may be too late to influence the generations before me, but I sincerely hope that my fellow young people will take up the banner of pragmatic solutions for the good of the nation rather than the good of any one party.
Just how far we go is in your hands.