This weekend the UK Liberty League, co-founded by Students For Liberty’s Anton Howes, will be holding its second annual Freedom Forum at Newcastle University. The Freedom Forum is one of Europe’s largest gatherings of pro-liberty students. From Friday, March 30th – Sunday, April 1st, students from all over the UK will enjoy debates and panel discussions, alongside more practical skill sessions. Not to mention, students will join old friends and meet plenty of new pro-liberty students, strengthening and expanding Europe’s most rapidly evolving libertarian student movement. European Students For Liberty is an official partner of the event.

Attendees can look forward to a diverse schedule that includes sessions such as, “The Great Foreign Policy Debate: To Intervene of Not to Intervene,” “The Ancient Greeks & Freedom,” “What is Free Market Environmentalism?” and “Should the State Ever Intervene in Parenting?” Skill sessions focus on helping students develop practical skills in areas such as journalism, PR, and communication.

Since the first Liberty League Freedom Forum in 2011, the pro-libertarian student movement in the UK has taken off at an incredible pace. The UK Liberty League now boasts almost 30 student groups in its network from all over the country. Their success has even garned national media attention. Anton Howes, Director and co-founder of the UK Liberty League, and member of the Students For Liberty executive board, recently wrote an article for the major national newspaper, The Independent, “Where are all the libertarians coming from?” that described the growing libertarian students movement as, “a silent revolution happening on campuses across the world.”

Shortly after, spiked, an online magazine based in the UK, published the article, “Meet the students taking on the state.” Both Anton Howes and ESFL executive board member, Gabrielle Shiner, were interviewed about their pro-liberty activism in the UK and abroad. The article encouragingly concluded that, “With such genuinely radical arguments being made by campaigners calling for less state interference into our lives, traditional left-wing groups may well find their longstanding monopoly on student politics is coming to an end.”

The Liberty League Freedom Forum promises to be a very exciting weekend, that will continue to fuel the momentum behind the UK’s newest wave of student activism. Today is your last chance to buy last-minute tickets, so if you’re in the UK buy your ticket now!

Throughout the past week, the world has been shocked by the devastating riots that have broken out in London and across the UK. As the government struggled to gain control of the situation, people began calling for authoritarian measures to be put in place. Rash solutions were proposed that oversimplified the situation and trampled on the basic civil liberties of all UK citizens. For example, David Cameron stated, “When people are using social media for violence we need to stop them,” and ridiculously planned to interfere with mobile networks and social media sites, such as Twitter, claiming that, “It will just be a temporary suspension of the freedom of speech.” The government even seriously debated implementing curfews, as well as mobilizing the army against the rioters.

In the face of the possible adoption of such authoritarian measures in the UK, ESFL’s Anton Howes spoke up. Over the course of the week he wrote a series of articles for the Adam Smith Institute’s blog, which challenged the measures the government was considering and dug deeper than the shallow explanations offered for the cause of these violent outbreaks. In such alarming times, it is more important than ever that we make sure our voice is heard – the voice that will stand up for the strength of communities, not armies, and the unconditional defense of individual liberty. As Milton Friedman once warned us, “‎Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program.”

Check out some of Anton’s articles and posts on the subject:

“If this is about poverty, it is poverty of spirit amongst a young few, rather than any widespread material poverty.” – The London Lootings Need Real Solutions (Tuesday, August 9th)

“We need to recognise that the rules of the game have changed, just as with every leap forward in communication technology.” – Freedom of Communication is Helping Communities Defend Themselves. Don’t Curb It. (Wednesday, August 10th)

“[…] you curtail civil liberties for immediate security at the peril of never regaining them” – Stop This Authoritarian Knee-jerk (Thursday, August 11th)

“Gleeful malice rather than anger at the system is not the sign of the young person with limited opportunities.” – What Really Caused the London Lootings? (Friday, August 12th)