Politics across the Pond 23.05.12

In what was effectively the third biennial Politics trip to the USA run by the Politics Department, the first week of the Easter holidays saw 35 Year 13 and Year 12 students of Politics (from both ends of The Walks) visit New York, Philadelphia and Washington DC.

This week-long trip began with three days in New York where all got to visit Ellis Island and Fraunces Tavern for an insight into the history and development of America. The group got to take in the spectacular views from the Empire State Building on a crystal-clear sunny morning on a day which ended at the theatre on Broadway – after some inevitable shopping on 5th Avenue – and tours were also undertaken of the United Nations, Ground Zero and the financial district, all of which have considerable significance in the understanding of current affairs.

En route to Washington, a day was spent in Philadelphia where the independence of the USA was born and its Constitution politically constructed and written.

The three days in Washington were dominated by insights into the government and politics of the USA (as studied on the AS course): these included visits to the Houses of Congress and the Senate, the Supreme Court and the White House. Other politically significant visits were also made to the National Archives, the Arlington National Cemetery, and the legendary Ben’s Chili Bowl – a favourite of Obama!   Additionally, all enjoyed a trolleybus tour of the capital by moon light, which included stops at the nation’s National Monuments.  Arguably, however, it was the sight of Mr Dawkins zooming around the capital on the Segway tour which will linger long in the memory of all, in what was universally agreed to be a fantastic and fascinating trip. Hearty thanks to Miss Jenkins for organising the week.  Here’s to 2014!