War rally in SLC gets little BYU support

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    By Lisa Millett

    SALT LAKE CITY – Lyle Stamps went to Salt Lake City Wednesday March 5, hoping for a large turnout of BYU students to rally in support of U.S. troops but was disappointed to find it turn out as a flop.

    “Unfortunately no one came,” Stamps said. “But, I don”t think that it was a failure at all. Lots of people honked their horns in support of the troops and liberating Iraq. There were only two of us, but we were able to reach about 300 people who honked their horns.”

    Stamps, 28, from Clinton, Davis County, a second-year law student, organized a rally at the Federal Building in Salt Lake City hoping to bring BYU students interested in voicing their opinions about the potential war with Iraq, but no one showed up. He and his wife, Lucina, were the only ones to rally in front of the Federal Building.

    “I wanted to give students an opportunity to express their first amendment rights,” Stamps said. “The media obviously wanted to know the opinion of BYU students, but students in Provo weren”t willing to come to Salt Lake.”

    Stamps said he contacted the College Republicans, College Democrats, New Global Trade and invited classes and clubs on campus to rally in Salt Lake City. He also left a message for the student body and tried to get a public service announcement.

    “I basically contacted all of the politically-aware groups on campus,” Stamps said.

    Stamps decided to hold the rally at the Federal Building in Salt Lake City because foreign policy is a federal matter. It didn”t have anything to do with the legislature, he said.

    Stamps is sick of the minority demonstrations throughout the country when the majority of the country is in support of President Bush, he said. When a person is in the majority, they think there”s no reason to turn out and waste their time.

    “I support liberty,” Stamps said. “We”re all children of God, we all deserve freedom and we all deserve democracy. I think that we should go in there (to Iraq) and do something about it.”

    At BYU, we don”t necessarily have first amendment rights, Stamps said.

    “A process to get a permit to rally on BYU is not allowed, but I don”t have a problem with that,” Stamps said. “We pretty much know that. We said that we”d obey the honor code when we came to BYU.”

    Stamps said everyone has an interest, that”s why people get involved, but not everyone sees how it involves them.

    “It (the war) affects everyone everywhere,” Stamps said. “It”s not just in my own back yard.”

    Stamps is planning on sponsoring another war rally within the next week or two at the Utah County Courthouse Building in Provo.

    Stamps said he thinks proximity and getting off campus was definitely an issue having students go to Salt Lake City, but by scheduling something in Provo, he expects a lot more people to show up.

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