Apathy wins no votes for SG
The student body has often viewed Student Government in an apathetic light. It is frequently seen as an organization that is detached from the student body, of interest only to the people involved in it. Even people who express interest in becoming involved make a mockery of SG, as was the case at last night's debate in Mandel Hall. From apathetic candidates to silly traditions gone awry, the situation at the debate revealed the sorry state of this year's race for the SG executive slate positions.
SG has limited power to affect change within the University, but it still serves an important role on campus. SG acts as a liaison between the students and the administration, in addition to controlling the purse strings of RSOs through the SGFC. This year, SG helped to implement the 24-hour study space in the A-Level of the Regenstein, set up complaints.uchicago.edu, and was instrumental in setting up e-mail stations in the Reynolds Club.
Executive slate candidates should have a realistic vision of what they can accomplish through the vehicle of SG, yet they should also be enthusiastic about their positions. This year we've seen slates that have promised us impossible dreams, as well as slates that overemphasize the ineffectiveness of SG.
The student body needs an executive slate made up of students who are responsive to their needs, and have experience working with the administration. The executive slate should have a healthy view of its job, neither grandiose nor overly pessimistic. Of this year's candidates, the Metamorphosis slate appears to be the best choice. Although their ideas are not the most original - much of what they are proposing seems to be already underway - they seem to have the best understanding of how SG works, and how they can use the organization to better serve the students.