YAL Leader Promoted After Calling All Trump Supporters Racists

The unfortunate news came Tuesday that Ty Hicks, the Young Americans for Liberty (YAL) National Field Director who declared that all Trump supporters are racist, has been promoted to Executive Vice President of YAL. This news comes on the heels of the election of Donald Trump, who received support from a wide swath of youth activists from across the conservative and libertarian movements, some of whom are YAL activists. The anti establishment wave that swept through the nation this year has energized the right wing in a way that we haven’t seen in a very long time, a position that libertarians should be poised to capitalize on with a bold populist message. Unfortunately, this latest move sends a message that the YAL leadership does not share this vision of the future and is perhaps growing insensitive to the prospect of alienating wide swaths of the conservative movement. To understand how we got here, let’s briefly review the events of recent months.

The first sign of controversy with YAL occurred when Ty Hicks issued a post on a YAL Chapter Presidents Facebook group declaring that “YAL National does not support hosting Milo Yiannopoulos events, and any event featuring him must be disassociated with the YAL brand entirely”.  Cliff Maloney then stated that this was a post which was made in error, that Ty had made a post of personal preference that was being interpreted as a statement of policy, and that Milo’s relationship with YAL remained unchanged. That being said, sources from within YAL revealed that the YAL leadership at Michigan State was told that YAL was not to host Milo at their campus. A pinned post on the Michigan State YAL Facebook Page which states that “Young Americans for Liberty at Michigan State University is no longer the host of the Milo Yiannopoulos visit on December 7th. Event control has been transferred to Spartans for Free Speech. All tickets are still valid” provides further evidence to substantiate this allegation. It is worth pointing out that some YAL chapters in the south did host Milo this past fall, which is certainly evidence contradicting the allegation. What we know is that Ty Hicks made a statement in regards to this matter which he represented as an official YAL policy, yet turned out to not be according to Cliff Maloney. That sort of behavior is not leadership, and certainly not deserving of promotion.

But, to be frank, that particular incident paled in comparison to the disgusting attack on tens of millions of Americans that Ty launched on his public Facebook page. Citing a story of a church burning in Mississippi that turned out to be a hoax, Hicks claimed that he did not see how anyone could consciously vote for Donald Trump without some level of serious racial prejudice in their worldview.

Hicks has still not apologized despite repeated calls to do so (he was contacted prior to the publishing of this piece and has not responded to our request for comment), and even defended his statement at the time by attacking the author of the piece for daring to criticize a public statement he made as a leader of a student group. He characterized the publication of his bigoted statements as “slander”. Even after Trump’s election, even after the string of leftist abuse of conservatives that has surrounded the aftermath of it, and even after the very story Hicks cited in labeling all Trump supporters as racially prejudiced was proven to be false he has still refused to apologize for this incorrigible statement.  How is such a statement defensible in an era where the majority of people who we hope to convert into our cause voted for Donald Trump?

Some of you may be asking “Why does this matter?” and feel inclined to defend a young person who posted something stupid on Facebook as not deserving of being criticized so harshly over this. But let’s be very clear about what is at stake here; for the first time in 8 years factions of the right wing youth movement other than libertarians have gained serious momentum. That wouldn’t be a bad thing, except that we (libertarians) have stalled as this has occurred. Why has this happened? Because we let somebody else take the position of the bold, daring activists who challenge the status quo in a radical fashion. Suddenly we have rumblings of the most radical, bold and daring activist of them all (Milo Yiannopolous) being banned from YAL events, with Ty Hicks at the center of it. Suddenly most of the people who are doing the bold, daring activism on campus are being labeled as racially prejudiced. During the rise of an anti establishment fervor the National Field Director (now Executive Vice President) of YAL has positioned himself as being completely incapable of harnessing that fervor in favor of the cause of liberty.

The Trump movement is the single greatest coalition building opportunity libertarians have had since Ron Paul’s retirement, and anyone who doesn’t recognize and attempt to take advantage of that is useless in an outreach position such as leading a student group. Anybody who doubts that we need these people must not have been on the ground as activists during the 2016 campaign. Many of us who worked hard for Rand Paul had friends who we assumed would be in our camp that ultimately flocked to Donald Trump due to this anti establishment fervor. Those people are essential to a winning libertarian coalition and pushing them away actively aids statism and harms liberty.

There is also a basic human element to this that cannot be ignored. Ty Hicks literally called the liberty movement’s primary target audience a group which you could not be part of without harboring serious racial prejudice. My parents are Donald Trump supporters, many of my friends in the conservative movement are Donald Trump supporters, most of the people who I end up working with on the ground during intra party fights are Donald Trump supporters, and I don’t feel comfortable asking those people to support Young Americans for Liberty knowing that a member of their leadership team thinks those people are a bunch of racists. If you don’t understand why this is a problem you are not mature enough to lead a major organization.

To be clear, I say all of this because Young Americans for Liberty is the most important group in the liberty movement without question or comparison. Nobody has done more on the ground to help liberty candidates, nobody has launched more young people into a career and/or life of activism, and nobody has done more to build the libertarian message among young people. It is specifically because of this past success that any action which threatens it as seriously as such a heinous attack on the target audience of this group must be addressed with swift and decisive action. Ty Hicks should apologize for his statement, make clear that he does not believe Trump supporters are all racially prejudiced and outline specific steps for how YAL plans to take advantage of the anti establishment fervor that Trump has harnessed. Anything less displays a lack of leadership that the liberty movement simply cannot afford to bear at this crucial time.

Rocco Lucente is the Editor-at-Large of The Liberty Conservative as well as the chairman of the Town of Ulysses GOP and a county coordinator of Campaign For Liberty in New York.


  1. It’s odd, because in some ways, Trump is looking to possibly be the most libertarian president we’ve ever seen so far. This YAL guy looks like a total hipster leftist trying to infiltrate and indoctrinate libertarians. Liberals are the masters of that sort of propaganda. No one truly involved with “liberty” would ever say that *everyone* that voted for Trump is racist. That is just nonsense.

    • First off just because he’s a young person who is involved in politics and is smartly dressed and well groomed doesn’t mean anything, and he didn’t say everyone who VOTED, he said supported, which is meant as the people who were on the Trump train from the beginning, are the ones who are racist.

    • Sorry Mr. Jr, you where duped by the progressive narrative. Fake news my friend. I like the YAL thing . Sounds like, You all, hey is that a red neck racial slur. Sorry.

    • “It’s odd, because in some ways, Trump is looking to possibly be the most libertarian president we’ve ever seen so far.”

      So you don’t have a clue what a libertarian is…

      “This YAL guy looks like a total hipster leftist trying to infiltrate and indoctrinate libertarians.”

      Uh… Libertarians are far more fiscally conservative than Republicans and far more socially LIBERAL than Democrats.

      We are NOT conservative Republicans in any way, shape or form.

    • Josh Puchall Neither of those are arguments. Sounds like you’re just some libertarian virtue signaler to me. And we are not “far more” of either of those things. Not sure what point you’re even trying to make with your last two sentences. If you don’t think leftists are trying to infiltrate the libertarian party, you aren’t paying attention.

    • Ryan Becker “And we are not “far more” of either of those things.”

      You are clearly a typical Conservative-republican who doesn’t actually believe in anything that remotely resembles libertarian ideology.

      The fact that you put Trump in the same sentence as “Libertarian” shows just how ignorant you are about libertarianism.

      The fact that you defend Trump’s racist bullshit is just disgusting and ANTI-libertarian as you can get.

      “Not sure what point think leftists are trying to infiltrate the libertarian party”

      You can repeat your ridiculous conservative Republican BS all you want. It doesn’t change reality.

      The constant talk of “leftist” conspiracy bullshit, is merely whining that libertarians and the libertarian party are socially LIBERAL. It has always been that way and always will be.

      The word “liberal” is not an insult to libertarians. It is a compliment. LIBERTARIANS are far more socially LIBERAL than Democrats.

      Conservative Republicans such as yourself, refuse to admit how ANTI-libertarian they are and that LIBERTARIANS are not conservatives nor are we for the complete bullshit that is “states’ rights.”

      Of course, the name of THIS page is an oxymoron in itself.

      There is no such thing as a conservative who is “pro-liberty.” Conservatives are only interested in freedom for themselves. That is not liberty.

    • Josh Puchall You are an idiot and not even worth further response. Get off your fucking high horse. Your libertarian penis is no bigger than mine.

    • LOL yep, leftist libertarian. Gary Johnson is more liberal than libertarian. And you saying Trump is “racist” proves that you are a liberal disguised as a libertarian. You are exactly the sort of infiltration I am talking about! You are straight up liberal, but call yourself libertarian in attempt to not look like a biased moron.

    • LMFAO, you’re the one calling people racist when he has not said a single racist thing. You are seriously a huge moron. And, most actual libertarians agree that Johnson is not a libertarian. Being nominated is not a measure of his libertarianism, but a measure of his likeliness to get liberals like you to vote libertarian.

    • Libertarianism is distinctively a rightwing movement, this isn’t coming from me either, it’s from Rothbard that I doubt any of you fuckers actually read.
      And you call yourself libertarians.

    • Calling trump libertarian is equally “nonsense”. The guy supported Bush and Obama growth of government and shredding the constitution. He campaigned on growing further. His victory speech was about the left’s favorite code word “infrastructure”. He has a couple redeeming qualities but on some ways he is worse than the rest.

    • You guys must have language comprehension issues. I said “the most libertarian so far”. I’m not saying he IS libertarian, but he’s probably about as close as it has come so far. Like Eric said, Trump is more leftist than the standard republican… aka “kinda libertarian”. He has socially liberal views and financially conservative views… aka “kinda libertarian”. Again, he’s not absolutely a libertarian, but he’s closer to one than any other recent president. Makes sense now?

      Poor idiots that don’t understand language comprehension.

    • Ryan Becker no I didn’t mean leftist as in “kinda libertarian”. I meant leftist as in government loving stooge. He is the opposite of libertarian almost across the board. He is the most economically leftist (anti-libertarian) republican in history and it’s not even close.

    • Getting back to the point, if you disagree, then please tell me a more libertarian recent president? Is Obama more libertarian than Trump? George W? Bill Clinton?

  2. Who really cares about these idiots. None of his business if I am racist or not. Actually I’m not, but it’s still none of his business. Obama and Clinton and the Left have proven to be the racist and dividers in the last year. One big reason they lost ( it was not the Russians, unless OBAMA and Clinton are Russian)

    • If you want the government to use violence to control the medical decisions of other people, especially based on your own illiterate beliefs, you are ANTI-individual freedom and have no right to complain about ANYTHING the fascist government which you you voted for, does.

    • I just believe children are individuals and individual liberty starts at conception. You apparently applaud the government and planned parenthood’s collusion to end another’s life without permission. If protection of individual liberty is important to you at all, we must protect the smallest of individuals also.

    • You Josh Puchal encourage violent death towards the smallest of human life because it’s convenient. When you decide on lawlessness like this, the non aggression principle doesn’t mean much to you apparently, we should also legalize murder.

    • You Josh Puchal encourage violent death towards the smallest of human life because it’s convenient. When you decide on lawlessness like this, the non aggression principle doesn’t mean much to you apparently, we should also legalize murder.

    • You Josh Puchal encourage violent death towards the smallest of human life because it’s convenient. When you decide on lawlessness like this, the non aggression principle doesn’t mean much to you apparently, we should also legalize murder.

    • You Josh Puchal encourage violent death towards the smallest of human life because it’s convenient. When you decide on lawlessness like this, the non aggression principle doesn’t mean much to you apparently, we should also legalize murder.

    • Paul Kras “I just believe children are individuals and individual liberty starts at conception.”

      Your personal, ignorant beliefs are completely irrelevant. You don’t have any right to use the government to commit violence against others to control what they do or don’t do.

      “encourage violent death towards the smallest of human life”

      That is your own ridiculous belief and has nothing to do with anyone else.

      “When you decide on lawlessness like this,”

      Respecting the rights of EVERYONE is “lawlessness?”. Okay then. Bring on the “lawlessness.”

      Your idea of “law” is completely fucked up and is comparable to what Hitler preached.

      “the non aggression principle doesn’t mean much to you apparently,”

      You mean it doesn’t mean anything to you. You don’t have any right to use aggression against others to control their actions that have absolutely nothing to do with you. What other people do is none of your business.

      NON-agression applies to everyone, in all cases. It doesn’t mean you get to use violence against people who disagree with your insane ideology.

      “we should also legalize murder.”

      Murder is aggression against another free individual.

      Abortion is a medical procedure that someone chooses for their own boy and life. Not your business. Not yours to define.

    • Paul Kras “encourage violent death towards the smallest of human life because it’s convenient.”

      A non-sentient, parasitic organism in someone else’s body is not yours to define or control.

      You can think whatever you want… Whether you like it or not, makes no difference. It isn’t your decision to make.

    • Your full of it Josh Puchall if you won’t protect the liberty of every human life in this country, you don’t deserve liberty yourself. You or that mentally defective candidate Johnson. God Bless America how can you still be proud of this guy? Your just another backwards liberal calling yourself a Libertarian and know nothing about liberty for all.

    • Sammy Ir “Yeah abortion is a split issue dawg, we’ve been over this so many times haha”

      Not for libertarians. Libertarians and the Libertarian Party are 100% pro-abortion rights. It is even spelled.out in black and white in the LP platform that the government has no place in it and it is a personal decision.

      There are libertarians who PERSONALLY disagree with it but recognize that their PERSONAL feelings aren’t a license to use violence against others to control what they do or don’t do.

    • Aggression would be forcing someone against their will to create a baby. The parents willingly participate and created life. Now that life has an opportunity to prosper and be happy nobody has the right to kill the person, not even the parents or a government funded kill clinic.

  3. Yeah this guy is a collectivist, not a Libertarian. Libertarians view all people as individuals and wouldn’t put a whole group of individuals that supported a particular candidate in a box and say they’re all racists. All the Bernie-bots and left-Libertarians/Social Justice Warriors Gary Johnson brought to the party are a cancer. This is only going to drive more people away from Libertarianism. You’d think the SJWs/leftists would have learned that if you constantly label people who disagree with you all as bigoted racist/homophobic/sexist/misogynistic etc. all these isms who are none of those things they’ll eventually get fed up and turn against you. They played a big hand in the election of Donald Trump along with the rest of the sneering, snooty Hollywood and costal elitists!

  4. I was going to look into “YAL” the other day and read into their message as I like to be aware of all groups out there. But this turned me off enough to never give a shit about what they have to say. Not wasting my time.

  5. Unfortunately YAL has a few “purists” speaking for the organization. Falling into the trap of near idol worship of Ron and Rand Paul instead of the principles of Liberty that they tried to teach us by word and deed. The inflexibility, vanity, and name calling makes Ty Hicks seem like the arrogant liberal bullies that patriots and n the Liberty movement have to endure as we try to preserve and restore our God given freedoms and opportunities. Who are the dumb clucks who “promoted” this ignorant brat? If he can’t respect other americans’ honest efforts to support our new-found spokesperson of the defense of personal liberty, the US Constitution, and American sovereignty…..President elect Donald Trump without resorting to his own form of character assignation, then he is not as smart as he looks in his political no shirt and tie. Grow up and stop being a bully, Ty. Trump is not racist and neither are his supporters. Many of our countrymen of various races and backgrounds voted for Trump…are THEY racist too?

  6. Oh shut the fuck up he didn’t called all Trumpers racist, but was calling out Trumps anti Liberty agenda. Which frankly isn’t Libertarian at all. “Libertarian Conservative”? More like butt hurt when someone doesn’t like it when someone blindly supports a fascist fuck

  7. Don’t worry. We Brexit voters in the UK have been called racist by a loony left Labour MP Dianne Abbott who HATES whites. It’s a sign we are RIGHT when we ruffle the Lefts feathers.

  8. Rocco this article is petty. I respect you as a person but I honestly think there’s a much more tolerable to make your point. Ty is a hard worker and a kick ass liberty activist. But he also doesn’t completely represent YAL. As libertarians, don’t we respect private lives? I don’t agree with his statement but he can have an opinion as an individual. I feel like one day you’re going to have a similar situation where your personal opinion gets blasted as your companies. I just think you’re better than this.

  9. I think what disappoints me the most isn’t that he blanketed all Trump supporters as racist but that they promoted someone who clearly doesn’t understand the political landscape. Leadership needs to be able to objectively survey the field to make the necessary decisions going forward to grow liberty. If all Hicks saw was racism from the Trump phenomenon, then he clearly is not that person.

  10. What snowflakes you are whining and whining. So politically correct. If you think libertarians were behind Trump then put on your jackboots and start goosestepping. Your deluded. No conservative favors liberty, otherwise they wouldn’t be conservatives.

    • That’s real cute, Dave. From a supporter of the guy that’s great friends with the Clinton’s pedo-pimp hookup.

  11. YAL is a 501c3 and not allowed to pick candidates. Not allowed to exclude people for their voting choices. But this guy thinks he can do what every he wants. He’s not following their own rules.

  12. So many people throw around the word fascist when they really don’t understand what fascism is. If you did you would know that Obama has implemented the most fascist, anti free market interference.

    A presidents job description does not include picking and choosing which businesses are allowed to exist in this country. But that’s what he’s been doing. Helping certain insurance companies monopolize through Obamacare. He tried to force Gibson guitars to hire unskilled foreigners to build guitars. But luckily for fans of world renowned awesome guitars he didn’t win that one.

  13. Retarded~!
    Trump is in no way libertarian or widely trustworthy. YAF need not cowtow to GOP fantasies of hope. Trump still pushes combative against 2/3rds of major states resistant to the global banking cabal.

    Surges in investing attributed to Trump will yield severe losses and resentment.
    YAF does well to not polarize the liberal universe that rightly criticizes non-racist Trump supporters for turning blind eyes. The Dollar is going to bottom. Snidely Liquidator must be watched. Hide your Rights and your Children.

  14. not all trumpsters are racists, but then again every single racist is an ardent trumpster. what’s wrong with telling it like it is

  15. Milo and proud sodomites in general are not conservative. We must never allow them to infiltrate.

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