Ajamu Baraka, vice presidential candidate of the Green Party, spoke to Renaissance High School students on Oct. 18 during a town hall meeting in the school's auditorium.
"I think it is great for that a presidential candidate is taking the time to visit our school so that our student body can learn more about the democratic process and the inter-workings of American policy,” said Renaissance senior Grant Cutler.
“Especially because some of our seniors are at the age where they have become registered voters and will be able to participate in the election,” he added.
Now in its fourth decade, with its four pillars of “Peace”, “Ecology,” “Social Justice,” and “Democracy,” the Green Party is one of the fastest growing political parties in the U.S.
Running alongside Dr. Jill Stein, Mr. Baraka is a candidate with various experiences in civil and human rights.
With roots in the Black Liberation Movement, he went on to serve as the founding executive director of the US Human Rights Network and has served on the boards of several human rights organizations, including the Center for Constitutional Rights, and Africa Action.
Renaissance 2015 alumnus Andrew Johnson said: "I think that it is great that the youth is being exposed to politics, particularly a smaller party such as the Green Party, in this day and age. It builds awareness, and increases the likelihood that the students will vote in a presidential election when they are of age.”
"It's nice that Mr. Baraka is coming to the school, especially since he's a human rights activist,” said senior Lauryn Wheeler. She did not know about the Green Party until recently.
Sophomore Moteniola Ogundipe said it is important to listen to other parties, so one is not limited in their views.
Jamilah Morris, senior, says she does not know much about vice presidential politics.
“But I think it will be an interesting thing, because we would be able to see one of our nation's potential leaders up close and ask our own questions to gain our own opinion of who he is and what he's about,” Morris added.
Photos and video coverage of Mr. Baraka’s visit will appear online after the event and in next quarter’s Dialogue.