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Government involvement crucial for students

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Illustration by: Ryan Jeans | Star Illustrator

The time is now for students and young people to take back their future and make their voices heard.

Texas students have visited the state capitol to share their opinions on key issues such as immigration, concealed carry laws and healthcare districts in disadvantaged counties. Students got involved by going to Senate and House sessions and testifying on bill hearings and proposals.

Staphany Ortega of University of Texas Pan-American travelled over 300 miles to testify on behalf of Hidalgo County and its healthcare district. This dedication shows the resolve of a woman who is invested in both her own future and the betterment of others.

San Marcos is a hop, skip and a jump away from Austin, so students should use that proximity to their advantage. Taking a quick drive down to Austin to lobby and use one’s first amendment rights to evoke change or consistency should be of importance. The importance is further emphasized by the fact everything set in place now, both good and bad, will be inherited by the current generation.

Unfortunately, the Texas legislative session adjourns on June 1, and the next one will not start until the beginning of 2017. Those deciding to don their patriot caps as they march up to the capitol to stick it to “the man” due to this convincing editorial may have to wait until next year for their performance.

All jokes aside, being involved in the future of one’s state or nation is a thing to be admired and recommended. Student Government at Texas State is a good place to get started if Bobcats cannot wait until 2017 to satiate their appetites. Officials with the organization hold open forums during their meetings, and due to limited attendance, students will find no problem getting a word in edgewise.

Cat Chat with President Denise Trauth is another stepping-stone for students who want to be more active. Trauth wants to hear from students about ways the university can be enriched.

Getting involved in local politics would bring change in the City of San Marcos. Students constitute a large portion of city’s population. Members of the San Marcos City Council encourage people to speak at their hearings and bimonthly meetings.

People cannot complain about what is going on unless they are active members in the civic process. No one likes a Monday morning quarterback or a backseat driver. Not being involved is fine, but people who do not participate should not nag and complain the moment things change for the worse. People have the right and the privilege to allow their voices to be heard. Those that have the means and resources to participate in the civic process who choose to stay quiet must renounce their right to complain about issues they could have campaigned for or against.

Students who want to get involved in the legislative process by testifying during congressional hearings can visit the Texas House or Representatives witness registration page to sign up for a meeting. People can access the website using their mobile devices through the capitol’s public wireless connection. They can visit the five kiosk stations outside the Texas Capitol at the Capitol Extension for wireless connection as well.