Have you ever felt like you don’t have a say in politics? A very small crowd of students and community members voice their opinions on political subjects at the Holden Public Policy Forum event Pizza and Politics at Webster University to do just that.
Video by Kaitlin Riordan
Former governor of Missouri and Webster University faculty member Bob Holden is the mediator of Pizza and Politics. Holden has guest speakers who are experts on the areas of interest and its subject matter. The experts then take questions from the audience in a town hall style format. The forum also offers pizza and refreshments.
This week he invited Kelly-Kate Pease Ph. D, Webster associate professor of history and politics. Pease specializes in international relations and humanitarian issues.
The topic at hand this week was the rights of Guantanamo Bay prisoners. This YouTube video was shown as well as this video from PBS to give the audience some idea of the issue. After each video, Pease answered questions and gave comments.
Some of the questions that arose were, “Why did America chose Guantanamo for the holdings of prisoners from the Iraq war?” “Why did President George W. Bush believe the prisoners were considered ‘unlawful combatants’?” “Do Guantanamo prisoners have the writ of habeas corpus on their side?”
Governor Holden says the forum chooses topics that will generate questions and intrigue students. It is also based on the guest speakers available. Holden also wants students to learn about different viewpoints and to take part in democracy. He also says that if you don’t take part, you are letting someone else make democratic decisions for you.
Governor Holden does more than just Pizza and Politics to get students involved with political opinions. Starting this year the Holden Public Policy Forum will hold movie nights and a book club.
Movie Nights will be held on Mondays and will feature a documentary about specific political points of view. They will take place in the Webster Village Apartments clubhouse. The first movie, Fuel, is a documentary about America’s need for fossil fuels. Blue Gold: World Water Wars is coming up on October 10.
The book club will be analyzing books written by current and past presidents. This will allow students to look deeper into presidencies. The first book will be The Audacity of Hope by President Barack Obama, which will be discussed September 22nd. The club meets Thursdays at noon in the Webster Village Apartments clubhouse.
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