Garrett makes stop at R-HHS

Published 1:39 pm Wednesday, March 8, 2017

The Randolph-Henry High School senior class held a Q&A session with U.S. Rep. Tom Garrett, R-Buckingham, on Friday.

Garrett, who formerly served in the state Senate, represents Charlotte County in the U.S. House of Representatives. He took office in January.

“It’s awesome to be here,” he told the seniors. “One of the things that we talked about when we ran was (was) that we wanted to go to every high school every year (in the 5th Congressional District),” Garrett said.

“Your character is not determined by what happens to you, but by how you respond to what happens to you,” Garrett said, citing R.R. Moton High School’s Barbara Johns, who organized a student walkout in protest of inadequate school facilities for African Americans, calling her a hero.

Garrett told students they had to figure out what they felt was best, because their guidance counselor or parents wouldn’t always determine what was right for them.

“Know how good you got it even when you got it bad,” Garrett said. “Target a goal and chase it, tenaciously.”

Garrett took questions from the students about net neutrality, legalization of marijuana, transgender bathrooms and what led him into politics.

“What made me run for office is I’m crazy,” Garrett said. “I was so lucky — like one in 26 odds of being born here … I’m lucky enough to have had (my father). I lost him. My dad was my best friend ever. He was my best mentor. He’d whoop my tail when I needed it, but he loved me and he guided me. And in life when you get advice, that advice is usually colored by the interest of the individual giving it to you.”

Garrett said usually when parents give their kids advice it isn’t colored by anything but the best interests of their child.

“Never ever think you’re too good for work, because the way you get the better work is to do the crappy work,” Garrett said.