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Lingamfelter speaks at Lord Fairfax

Tuesday, Apr. 15 | By Hannah Dellinger
Del. Lingamfelter speaking to students at Lord Fairfax Community College.
Fauquier Times Staff Photo/Randy Litzinger
Del. L. Scott Lingamfelter talked about the past and the future recently at Lord Fairfax Community College’s Fauquier campus.

The Woodbridge Republican gave the students background on the American Revolution and the nation's founding. But he also looked forward, to the college's next several years.

Understanding history is vital to considering the future, said the veteran delegate, who represents part of Fauquier County.

"The way that you sustain revolution is by having a frequent recurrence to founding principles," said the retired Army colonel. "That’s why civics is so important in our society. It has been horribly neglected in the United States in recent years."

He cited the work of philosopher Os Guinness, great-great grandson of the Irish brewer, and his book, "A Free People's Suicide."

Guinness claims that there is a "golden triangle of freedom" that helps to sustain revolution and freedom in society.

"Freedom requires virtue," Lingamfelter said. "Virtue requires faith. Faith requires freedom."

The lawmaker said that the libertarian movement is focused on preserving individual liberty but might be lacking in the virtue necessary to sustain it.

"Be very careful," he warned. "Remember that apart from virtue, you must be careful. If you don’t have virtue, and the things that give voice to change don’t have virtue, you may work out a freedom that is unsustainable."

Lingamfelter said that a lack of virtue has been his political generation’s downfall.

"That’s the message that my generation wants to share with yours, because we have messed up," he said. "It’s on your generation to reconnect the founding principles with freedom, virtue and faith."

Eric Hernandez, a LFCC student from New Baltimore and a member of the school’s Student Government Association, asked the legislator about what kind of things student leaders can do to be more involved outside of the General Assembly.

Lingamfelter said that the best thing to do is to attend public meetings and watch the Fauquier County Board of Supervisors in action.

He also suggested dressing up like the Founding Fathers and holding a class dinner party as a learning opportunity. He said that, as collegians, it is important to dedicate time to educating younger students in civics.

Building plans
Ashley Balamuta, a student from Bealeton and the secretary of LFCC’s Student Ambassador group, asked Lingamfelter about how the school’s building plans will be affected by the state budget.
He said that is hard to say because the budget hasn't been approved. Legislators continued dickering over Medicaid and other issues this week.

But Lingamfelter promised that he is dedicated to getting the money necessary to improve the campus.

He said that as long as an institution properly plans for capital projects, it should receive funding for construction.

"The good news is, when we finally get this budget passed, I think that we’re going to have our planning money in for the expansion of our academic facilities," Lingamfelter said.

He said that he makes visits to schools such as LFCC because he believes it is an essential part of being a delegate.

"There should be a seamless connection with higher education and the state government," he said. "Politicians should be available to their community and listen to them. I love Fauquier County; the people have been great to me. I feel a particular attachment to Lord Fairfax and the youngsters of this county because I think that they really are the future of the country in so many ways."

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