Governor Deval Patrick Visits Stonehill, Addresses Commonwealth's Youth
June 22, 2012
by Patrick Maguire
Governor Deval Patrick visited Easton Thursday morning to address the youth of the commonwealth.
Patrick spoke at the Boys and Girls State Program, which is held at Stonehill College this week.
It was his sixth appearance at the event, an American Legion run program that mirrors an American democratic system.
Patrick pointed to the citizen as the most important piece of democracy.
"Understand that saving the American dream is not up to the government alone," he said. "It's not up to schools alone. It's up to you - the citizen."
Patrick took dozens of spirited questions from the high school students, who lined up at mics for their chance to speak with him. Questions ranged from energy efficiency, to student loans, to health care.
One student asked Patrick the best way to differentiate between false and factual information in the 24-hour news cycle.
In the process of answering the question, the Governor used the question to take a dig at his predecessor, Republican Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney.
"There's a candidate for president right now who's talking about his extraordinary record as a job creator as governor, and that's just not true," Patrick said.
Patrick pointed to Massachusetts now as a leader in healthcare, veterans services and education, drawing a standing ovation from the crowd.
Massachusetts was also the first state to combine Boys and Girls State this year.
"I'm not surprised that we are first again," he said. "We lead in a lot of things."
Patrick fielded the final question of the morning regarding MBTA service cuts by explaining that the government is doing as much as possible to find a solution for the massive debt left behind after the "Big Dig."
"We've done a number of things to try to squeeze out costs," he explained, while adding that, through public meetings, his administration has learned that people want more service rather than less and would rather pay "a little more" than have deep service cuts.
"We are trying to do now what hasn't been done in years," he said. "Which is to face up to the big questions facing the commonwealth."
Easton was represented at the event by nine girls and one boy.
Oliver Ames students Kelsey Bliss, Juliana Ferrara, Julia Kunemund, Krystina Lincoln, Julia Lowney, Julia Mudd, Ariana Scurti, Jacquelyne Shainis, Amanda Urquhart attended the event. Easton resident and New Testament Christian School student Nick Pickett also represented Easton at Boys State.
Two girls and two boys will be chosen to represent Massachusetts at Boys and Girls Nation in July.
For more information, contact Communications and Media Relations at 508-565-1321.