Crusader Standard: origins, mission and future

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Valerie Kuzma reading the most recent publication of the Crusader Standard. Photo by Henry Gramling.

Publication spearheads discussions on conservatism and Catholic culture at UD

The University of Dallas has a handful of journals and magazines that publish on a regular basis. However, there are very few that are entirely student-run and independently funded. One such journal is the Crusader Standard, which aims to cover current affairs and culture through a conservative Catholic lens.

The Crusader Standard began three years ago due to the initiative of several upperclassmen at the University of Dallas. Their aim has grown and changed over time, but is ultimately to enhance discussions among students and provide support for conservative culture.

One of the founders is Harrison Vetter, now an alumnus of UD with a degree in history and concentrations in American politics and political philosophy. He described the origins of the Crusader Standard.

“A group of fellow classmates and I, both in my class and the class below me, noticed a void in on campus publications that were seeking to do higher things,” Vetter said. “We also saw an opportunity to really fortify and preserve what we thought were some of the best things about UD at a time when we thought they were potentially being lost.”

Thus, several students formed the first band of editors, solicited articles from friends, and worked with the Printing and Postal office to print their first issue. Through the hard work and dedication of the original band of founders, their first run of articles met with great success.

“We ended up publishing that first issue, I think, at the beginning of November 2021, after really committing to doing this in September,” said Vetter. “It was pretty amazing, the development from conceiving of the idea in September and then being able to produce about one hundred and fifty print copies of a fine-looking journal that was really well received on campus.”

Thus, the journal successfully entered the circulation of UD intellectual thought, where it has remained to this day. Several current editors of the journal, however, were not present for this fateful original issue. Editor-in-chief Luke Posegate detailed his discovery of the publication and the beginning of his experiences with the Crusader Standard team.

“The Crusader Standard started my sophomore year,” Posegate said. “I first picked up a copy in the lounge in Theresa Hall back then. I read it and I wanted to get involved. I ended up meeting with Charlie Atkins who was one of the editors at the time, and he helped bring me on. I was the politics editor last year and now I’m the editor-in-chief.”

Joseph Moynihan, a senior politics major and the only remaining founder still studying at UD, spoke about the changes and growth the Crusader Standard has undergone over the years.

“Originally it was founded as a forum to provide a response to cultural issues on campus, and to provide an avenue for students to get their specific beliefs out,” Moynihan said. “Since then, we’ve found that there’s less of a need for that and more of a need for students to have a way to publish their academic writings or their commentary on the news or whatever is going on.”

Despite these changes, however, the Crusader Standard has not reached its final form. The editors look forward to increasing issues to a monthly rate of production and joining forces with another publication on campus. Moynihan discussed their publishing rate and goals of achieving past production levels.

“The goal is to publish monthly. We didn’t do that last year,” he said. “The first year we published monthly pretty much from the inception of the Standard throughout, and we’re working on getting our infrastructure in place [for future issues].”

Posegate noted a new area of innovation for the journal: joining forces with The Mockingbird, an artistic student-run journal with similar values.

“It’s more of a poetry and literature-focused journal,” Posegate said. “They’re hoping to publish monthly eventually as well. They’re getting restarted off the ground. They will also be publishing on our website, Crusaderstandard.com. At some point, you’ll be able to see a section on there for The Mockingbird as well.”

All three editors invite readers to get involved with the journal. Their articles can be read online or through physical copies, and they accept submissions of completed pieces or pitches through email.

“We’re always accepting submissions. We want it to be a place of discourse among members of the community, within the Catholic, liberal arts and conservative intellectual perspective. We really invite people to join in that discussion,” Posegate said.

Vetter provided similar sentiments. “Any of the people who are involved with the Standard will be more than happy to put students in contact [with the journal] whether they want to read or write or help,” he said.

The Crusader Standard will continue to grow and evolve as time goes on. Cheers to all publications at UD, for making the university an intellectually richer place and for facilitating discussions and community on campus.

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