Past Activities

Vanderbilt Chapter of Young Americans for Liberty

2011-2012 Activities
August 21st, 2011 - Founders Walk and Community Picnic
August 22nd, 2011- Honor Code Signing Ceremony
September 7th, 2011 - Official YAL@VU Semester Kick-off and Interest Meeting
September 16th - 18th, 2011 - Constitution Day 2011
September 19th, 2011 - Dr. John R. Lott Jr. on Concealed Carry on Campus
September 27th, 2011 - No Sweat: How Sweatshops Improve Lives and Economic Growth
October 6th & 8th, 2011 - Report on Occupy Nashville
November 10th, 2011 - An Evening with Belmont Univ. Political Science Prof. Nathan Griffith
November 17th, 2011 - An Evening with Vanderbilt Law Professor Erin O’Hara
November 28th, 2011 - Celebrating the 220th Anniversary of the Bill of Rights
January 16th, 2012 - NDAA Teach-In & Debate Watching Party
January 23rd, 2012 - An Evening with Vanderbilt Sociology Professor Richard Pitt
February 13th, 2012 - Radley Balko: The Militarization of Main Street
February 14th, 2012 - Crony Capitalism = Phony Capitalism
March 26th, 2012 - Dr. Ming Wang and Ralph Weber
April 20th, 2012 - 4/20 Bake Sale & Radley Balko on the War on Drugs

2010-2011 Activities
September 17th, 2010 - Constitution Day 2010
October 23rd, 2010 - Nullify Now! Chattanooga
November 5th, 2010 - Guy Fawkes Day
November 11th, 2010 - Protest at Senator Corker’s Town Hall
November 15th, 2010 - “End the Fed” Tabling
November 16th, 2010 - Protest the TSA (1)
November 19th, 2010 - Protest the TSA (2)
January 15th, 2011 - Campaign For Liberty Political Training Seminar
February 23rd, 2011 - “The State of Student Rights at Vanderbilt” Lecture by Adam Kissel, FIRE
March 22nd, 2011 - Tim Pawlenty = Neocon
March 26th, 2011 - National Debt Clock Display - Sarratt Promenade
March 30th, 2011 - “Hate Speech vs. Free Speech” Panel
April 2nd, 2011 - National Debt Clock Display - Commons Center
April 14th, 2011 - Atlas Shrugged Movie Preview and Discussion
April 15th, 2011 - Atlas Shrugged Group Viewing
April 17th, 2011 - "End the Fed" Nashville Protest
April 21st, 2011 - “Paper vs. Gold & Silver” Economics Debate

April 21, 2011
Paper vs. Gold & Silver Economics Debate
We hosted a debate to discuss the merits and downsides of using fiat currencies such as the US dollar.  We were glad to see a good turnout and an interested audience.  Both Dr. Murphy and Professor Crucini offered thought inspiring viewpoints.  During our Q&A, our audience was eager to ask questions.

The reception afterwards was a great opportunity for the audience to get to know our guest speakers better and learn more.


Anyone who wants to learn more about this topic can watch this informative video produced by the Mises Institute:


April 17, 2011
"End the Fed" Nashville Protest

Several YAL members along with local activists gathered in front of the Nashville branch of the Federal Reserve to discuss the Fed's role in the economy. Following the speeches by our two speakers, Barry Donegan, Constitutional activist and mucisian, and Eric Sharp, President of Young Americans for Liberty MTSU and columnist for the Humble Libertarian and Mises Canada, we marched along Broadway with our signs.  Some of the people we encountered along our march were supportive, while others were puzzled.

April 15, 2011
Atlas Shrugged Group Viewing

Ten Vanderbilt students joined approximately fifteen local Nashville community members for dinner at a restaurant across from the theater.  Everyone enjoyed the dinner discussion, and of course the film.  One of our attendees has written a movie review in the campus newspaper, The Hustler, which can be read here.

April 14, 2011
Atlas Shrugged Movie Preview and Discussion

We hosted a movie preview and discussion of the new film Atlas Shrugged Part 1. Many new people attended this event and the discussion was interesting, to say the least.  We got into some in-depth discussion about obscure parts of Rand's philosophy but most attendees enjoyed the preview.  Special thanks to our guest speaker, Christopher Cotter. And of course, I must credit T.J. McCubbin for being a stanch counterbalance to objectivism. Tomorrow night, eleven of us will be meeting for dinner with local Nashville community members and we'll be going to see Atlas Shrugged Part 1 in theaters.

Anyone who wants to view an extended playlist of the videos we showed at the event can click here.

April 2, 2011
National Debt Clock Display - Commons Center

We setup our debt clock again, this time, in front of the Commons.  We also gathered several hundred more signatures for our petition to bring Ron Paul to speak on campus.  The weather was sunny but strong winds led us to re-setup inside the building during the last half of the event.  See the March 26th debt clock for more details.

March 30, 2011
YAL President, Kenny Tan Speaks on Free Speech Panel

*Correction to article: 'Young Americans for Liberty' incorrectly titled "Young Americans for Freedom"

Panelists (right-to-left): Vanderbilt Student Government President Adam Meyer, Associate Dean and Director of Strategic Initiatives and Assessment Patricia Helland,  Professor Donna Ford, Young Americans for Liberty President Kenny Tan, Professor Bruce Barry, 2010-11 Multicultural Leadership Council President Sarah Goodrich
Moderators - Chaloea Williams and Lauren Wallace of Vanderbilt NAACP

Media: (Page 1 and 3)

March 26, 2011
National Debt Clock Display - Sarratt Promenade


We displayed our debt clock on Sarratt Promenade, with the goal of raising awareness of the problem that debt poses to the country. We distributed t-shirts, literature on the national debt, and paper one-dollar bills with Ben Bernanke’s picture in the center. The event was well-received, with numerous passers-by stopping and expressing support for our efforts. The “free money” started a number of conversations among those waiting in line at Rand Hall for brunch.

March 22, 2011
Exposing Tim Pawlenty
When presidential hopeful Gov. Tim Pawlenty came to Vanderbilt to speak at its Impact Symposium, we took the opportunity to educate attendees about his policy positions, namely his interventionist foreign policy preferences. We handed out folders containing, among other items, a picture of Pawlenty above the words: “Neoconservative: Neocons define national interests to include their own ideological interests and support the use of American economic and military power to bring democracy and “capitalism” to other countries.”

February 23, 2011
Adam Kissel's  FIRE Lecture

We hosted Adam Kissel, the Vice President of Programs for the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), as he gave a talk on the state of student rights at Vanderbilt. FIRE is a non-profit advocacy group for students’ rights at America’s colleges and universities. The event drew a respectable number of students as well as a number of citizens from the Nashville area. In his lecture, while noting that Vanderbilt gives student speech relatively strong protection, Kissel identified Vanderbilt’s over-broad definitions of hazing and sexual harassment as policies which need improvement. He also pointed to the Community Creed, a non-binding mission statement of sorts for Vanderbilt students, as a restrictive speech policy, as its definitions of civility and caring are unreasonable and paternalistic.

January 15th, 2011
Campaign for Liberty Political Training Seminar
Members helped organize and attended a CFL training session in Nashville.  Renowned political consultant Dimitri Kesari, who has worked on dozens if not hundreds of elections and legislative fights, taught us how to win an election, get legislation introduced and passed, and build a political organization.

November 16 and 19, 2010
TSA Scanner Tabling
The week before Thanksgiving Break, over which many students were flying to and from home, we took some time to inform students of the health, privacy, and property risks posed by the Transportation Safety Administration’s backscatter x-ray and millimeter wave machines. We encouraged students to “opt out” of being subjected to one of the new body scanners, and showed them a number of ways to report inappropriate touching during invasive “enhanced patdowns”.

November 15, 2010
“End the Fed” Tabling
We continued our Ron Paul petition drive while displaying our “END THE FED” poster and distributing educational materials about the Federal Reserve. We had a number of interesting conversations with students, one of which involved a grad student studying finance.


November 11, 2010
Senator Bob Corker Town Hall Meeting
We joined with local members of Campaign for Liberty to crash a Nashville town hall meeting of Senator Corker. Prior to his presentation, which was on the national debt, we distributed flyers which contained information about his voting record and previous comments about the Federal Reserve. During the question and answer session we drove the discussion toward Corker’s positions on the Federal Reserve. The next Tuesday morning, Senator Corker, speaking on CNBC, remarked that “It is time that we work to clarify the mandate of the Federal Reserve. Providing our central bank with a clear and explicit focus on keeping inflation low will serve America better than the broader mandate approach we have today.”

November 5, 2010
Launched Ron Paul Petition Drive

We began our ongoing petition drive to bring Ron Paul to speak at Vanderbilt with a “V for Vendetta”-themed tabling.

October 23, 2010
Nullify Now! Chattanooga
We joined with members from the Middle Tennessee State University YAL chapter to attend Nullify Now! Chattanooga, an event hosted by the Tennessee chapter of the Tenth Amendment Center, a think tank which promotes principles of limited government. The event featured a dozen or so speakers who dealt with a number of different topics related to limited government, including federalism, the philosophical basis for the Constitution, and the importance of influencing the nation’s climate of ideas. One presenter, Dr. Dan Eichenbaum, a 2010 candidate for Congress, left us with a particularly memorable quip: “The Constitution has not failed us, we have failed the Constitution.”

September 17, 2010
Constitution Day
Our first event, we distributed 200 Pocket Constitutions provided by YAL national. We had great participation and students were very receptive to our message of promoting the Constitution. We also had our first encounter with the Vanderbilt University police that morning. They had heard we were doing a Constitution day event and came by to see how we were doing and support us.