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June 1, 2014

Government disorganized? Boys State delegates get real life lesson

DUNCAN — Five boys from Stephens County returned on Saturday from a week-long stay at Oklahoma Boys State, where they learned the ins and outs of representative government, including one important aspect -- it can be disorganized.

This year’s group of Stephens County delegates to Boys State included Brannon Hancock and Mason Bivens from Duncan, Tanner Ford from Empire, and Nick Yates and Hector Bullock of Marlow.

The program, a project of the American Legion, holds classes on government throughout the week, then holds a mock election. Boys throughout the state participate and can earn college credits by participating.

 Part of their education included a lesson on the impeachment process.

 After Ford was elected speaker of House, he  joined forces with  the speaker pro tempore to impeach the teenager who was elected governor.

 The impeachment parlay failed, but there were no hard feelings.

“It was a lot of fun,” said Ford, who also was elected mayor of his group’s fictitous city and received the Chauncey Witcraft Award.

Hancock agreed the Boys State experrience was fun, but he said he discovered the mock government at Boys State was “disorganized” -- which may, one supposes,  make it more like real life government than many of the youngsters realize.

“But I had a lot of fun though,” Hancock said. “I had a blast. I learned a lot about government. It sparked an interest.”

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