Bari Weiss, a staff editor for The New York Times opinion section, is the winner of Reason Foundation’s 2018 Bastiat Prize, which annually honors writing that “best demonstrates the importance of freedom with originality, wit, and eloquence.”
“Bari Weiss’s brilliant, incisive journalism defends that cornerstone of individual liberty and civil society: freedom of speech,” said Julian Morris, a senior fellow at Reason Foundation and founder of the Bastiat Prize. “Against a maelstrom of politically motivated activists seeking to silence opponents with absurd accusations, Weiss reminds us, again and again, that ‘the battle against genuine authoritarian threats needs to be waged consistently, credibly and persuasively.’”
The prize is named after Frédéric Bastiat, whose brilliant, witty essays explained, “The solution to the problems of human relationships is to be found in liberty.”
Weiss was awarded $10,000 in prize money and received engraved crystal candlesticks in a nod to Bastiat’s famous “The Candlemakers’ Petition,” which humorously urged the French government to pass protectionist legislation to shield the country’s candlemakers from the ‘unfair’ competition they were getting from the sun.
Jake van der Kamp, a columnist at the South China Morning Post, collected second place and a $5,000 prize. Conor Friedersdorf, a staff writer at The Atlantic, earned third place and $1,000.
Previous winners of the Bastiat Prize include, Radley Balko, Hugo Restall, Daniel Hannan, Robert Graboyes, Lane Filler, Ross Clark, Virginia Postrel, Anne Jolis, Tom Easton, Bret Stephens, John Hasnas, A. Barton Hinkle, Amit Varma, Jamie Whyte, Tim Harford, Mary O’Grady, Robert Guest, Brian Carney, Sauvik Chakraverti and Amity Shlaes.
Reason Video Prize
Rob Montz of We the Internet took the 2018 Reason Video Prize. Montz’s video, “Silence U Part 2: What Has Yale Become?,” took home first place and $5,000.
The Reason Video Prize honors short-form films and videos that explore, investigate, and enrich our appreciation of the libertarian beliefs in individual rights, limited government, and human possibilities.
Institute for Justice’s Mark Meranta’s video, “Why Is Teaching a Crime? California Denies Blue-Collar Workers Entry to Trade Schools,” secured $2,500 for second place. And “What if You Could Legally Sell Your Kidney?” by American Enterprise Institute’s Anthony Wojtkowiak garnered $1,000 for third place.
The Young Voices Award
In partnership with Young Voices, a nonprofit public relations organization, Reason also awarded “The Young Voices Award” to honor excellence in writing and policy work by people under the age of 30.
Nolan Gray, who writes at Market Urbanism, won the $2,500 grand prize.
The other two finalists for the award were Nick Sibilla, a writer and legislative analyst at the Institute for Justice, and Brittany Hunter, a writer and editor for the Foundation for Economic Education.
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