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Senator Adam Pugh’s visit to Edmond Memorial

Senator Adam Pugh represents many areas within Edmond.

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Senator Adam Pugh represents many areas within Edmond.

Kulsoom Ghias, Memorial Staff Writer

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Throughout the past year, many high school students have begun to find their voice in the midst of many societal and political issues. Teenagers across the nation have organized and taken part in the March for our Lives and the Teacher Walkout.

Recognizing her student’s involvement in social and political issues, Beth Lewis, an Edmond Memorial High School sophomore English teacher, invited Senator Adam Pugh to her fifth and sixth-hour classes on May 4. Senator Pugh is a Republican senator who has represented Edmond or District 41 since 2016.

“I have been visiting an Edmond school every Friday for about two years, and I often go to elementary schools,” Pugh said. “This is the first time I have had a high school teacher invite me to her class which is why I am here today.”

Walking into a high school environment in this day and age was very different for Pugh, and many students had asked insightful, challenging questions about the current political environment and controversial issues that ranged from the legality of marijuana to the current prison inmate population to the results and future plans for the Teacher Walkout.

“It was interesting hearing a different perspective about the teacher strike and what the Senate was saying they were going to do about it,” said sophomore Kristen Hall.

Some students agreed with Pugh’s position on certain topics, however many felt different about his views on the problems that affect Oklahoma and the United States as a whole.  

“Having someone give accurate answers was refreshing, however, there were times where I felt like my questions were not answered completely,” said sophomore Alex Mullings. “I know that many politicians often try to shield the truth from the public, and will often times mention a personal story if they are uncomfortable with the topic being discussed to divert the audience’s attention to something else.”

Some students felt that their questions were not answered fully and that Pugh redirected the conversation by talking about his own personal stories rather than discussing how the topic would affect the citizens of Oklahoma.

My students, without a doubt, walked away as more informed citizens,” said Lewis. “I saw students come to understand why things work the way they do in our state and how they can honestly make a change when they become of voting age.”

Even though there were mixed opinions and feelings after Senator Pugh’s visit, many students learned how to talk to a legislature and how to ask questions that were clear and concise. This was a new learning experience for all parties including Lewis’s students and Senator Pugh himself.

Contact Kulsoom Ghias at [email protected]

 

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