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Second YCT Anti-Obama Carnival Draws Crowd Of Protesters To Texas A&M

This story was written by Sarah Linebaugh, The Battalion

The Young Conservatives of Texas (YCT) hosted the second Anti-Obama Carnival Friday, this time with an egg toss at a poster of Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Barack Obama's policies instead of an egg toss at a poster of his face.

Tony Listi, a Texas A&M senior political science major and YCT chairman, said YCT decided to host the event again because of the feedback.

"We received a lot of feedback about how we can communicate our message more effectively, and so we've made some modifications to that effect," Listi said.

A crowd gathered as YCT encouraged onlookers to step up and throw an egg at a board with Obama's policies listed on it, and underneath the policies were photos of Obama and other prominent figures of the Democratic Party.

"Who would like to be the next person to throw away their nest egg for Barack Obama's socialist economic policies?" said Listi, as he carried a carton of eggs in his hands.

Listi said the eggs represented "nest eggs," a term used to describe a sum of money saved for a specific future purpose, and were a metaphor for Americans' savings. A few students stepped up to throw an egg. Most, however, watched or yelled in protest of the event.

One student grabbed an egg from Listi and threw it down on a table, to the applause of those watching.

Junior biomedical science major Noelle San Miguel said she was unhappy with the event's message and complained that despite posting Obama's policies, the event was still disrespectful.

"I don't think their so-called 're-tooling' is much better," she said. "They're still throwing eggs at something, you can still see Barack Obama's face, so I think it's still pretty disrespectful."

San Miguel stood near the crowd and held a poster with two friends that read, "Voting for Obama, Respecting McCain."

"I'm here today to show that there's a respectful way to do this, which is why this says what this says," she said. "I just want to show them that you can do free speech and have free speech, but there's a way to do it, and there's a way not to do it. What they're doing, to me, is a perfect example of the way not to do it."

Gil Rosenthal, a Texas A&M faculty member in the biology department said the event was silly.

"Throwing eggs at their policies, I mean, it shows that they really don't have a fundamentally sound argument to stand on," Rosenthal said.

Listi said that the point of the event was to engage students in a civil discussion.

"We want to educate the student body about Sen. Barack Obama's socialist policies," Listi said. "We want them to understand what his policies actually are, cutting through the rhetoric and going to his record, and what he has said on the record and to explain to the student body why these specific policy points are bad for America."

Some students were also upset that while YCT opposed Obama, they did not endorse another candidate.

"Tell us about McCain!" one onlooker said.

Texas Aggie Democrats, a student organization for students who are members of the Democratic Party, was present at the event with a griddle to fry eggs instead of throwing them.

University officials were also present to make sure university rules were followed.

Machteld Verzijden, a post-doctoral fellow in Texas A&M's biology department, who came to the event wearing an Obama T-Shirt, said that she wanted to see what YCT would do at the event.

"I'm making a statement with my shirt, obviously, but I'm not necessarily protesting what they're doing today," Verzijden said. "I wanted to say that thre are other supporters out here, but I want to encourage discussion rather than a fight."

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