A young conservative on civic engagement
Below is the transcript of a recent interview with Carter Nordman. He is a senior at Adel-Desoto-Minburn High School in central Iowa, State Director of Iowa Students for Trump, Campaign Manager for Ralph Watts for Iowa House, and Adel Parks and Recreation Board Member. Nordman is a prime example of a young, conservative voice that is challenging the status quo by empowering students to not be afraid to use their voice.
Q: Talk to me about the importance of voice.
A: When I think of that I think of how young a lot of us are especially in Students for Trump. I think of how our voice was a lot of times not being heard because of our age. Which is sad because we do have a lot of input to the situations, ideas, and concerns of the political world. Voice to me means not only talking, but doing. That’s the main take away. Talk about the issues that matter to you but most importantly do something about it — vote, start an organization, run for office. Do something about it.
Q: Describe some of the ways you’ve been involved in politics, government, and advocacy.
A: I currently sit on the Adel Parks and Recreation board. I am probably one of the youngest city government officials in the country. I work with people no younger than late 30s but I enjoy doing that. I was also the State Director during the campaign of Students for Trump. I visited major universities like ISU, University of Iowa, UNI, Drake, Grand View and various other high schools. I talked about Trump’s vision and why a millennial like myself supported him. I was also Campaign Manager for Ralph Watts. I ran social media pages, consulted him on issues regarding the campaign and planned events. Getting involved doesn’t have to be as in depth as all that, though. It really can be as simple as getting out and voting and getting your friends to vote.
Q: Why is it important for Generation Z to be engaged in public policy?
A: I think it’s important for every new generation to be engaged because they are going to be the ones that take over and lead the country with what is left behind. It is important for every generation to be involved. It’s going to be their future and their kid’s future that they inherit. They’ll be inheriting a mess or I guess a “not mess” that is left behind. Instead of waiting to see what happens, it’s better to get involved and make it happen. Try to make it the best situation it possibly can be.
Q: Politics can be heavy and bogging. What gives you hope for the future & motivation to move forward?
A: What gives me hope is the fact that we were able to elect a President that has this country’s best interests at hand. The Republican party is able to direct this country down a road that will be able to better suit my generation and generations to come. It gives me hope that this country will be able to freely elect the people that we want to elect. There are going to be disagreements, but that’s what makes our country so great. We can disagree on everything, but still unite as one nation.
Q: What are your views on a couple recent bills that have been passed in Iowa that directly affect students?
A: The collective bargaining bill can be a two way bill. I believe it will actually enhance student learning at schools because it is going to make an environment in schools that will be more structured and organized with what is going on. If you don’t do your job in the private sector you get fired. It should not take three years to do so to fire a teacher like it currently does. That is the most inefficient and absurd thing I’ve ever heard. We pay administrators six figures to do the job of managing teachers. It’s not just about firing, though. If you’re doing a good job they’re not going to fire you. I guarantee you that. I think it will make schools more efficient and productive. I also think the state should give school boards more jurisdiction of their budgets. Each school is different and has different opportunities and conflicts.
Q: What role should public schools have in educating students about democracy and public servitude?
A: I believe public schools should be the forefront of teaching that kind of stuff. I think school should teach real world issues and problems, and this relates to that. Schools have wandered away from current events, but it should be the first place to learn about government, democracy, and civil duties. If you want to talk about change, talk about it. If you want to see change, do something about it.