Last week’s editorial sparked a necessary but uneasy discussion among some senators at ASMSU. Most of the article correctly identified the weaknesses of the senate, but the placement of one senator’s Facebook comments directly before “power seekers, hard-nosed ideologues, ambitious brown-nosers or casual resume-padders” was a poor and unfair choice. Disregarding those comments, the Exponent exposed two problems within the senate: the culture of ASMSU and the timing of elections. They are not new to us and this new senate can choose whether to address them or to ignore them as we in the outgoing senate have. Senators-elect, I have some advice for you.
First, resist the old culture of ASMSU. As much as you may feel it, you are not special. There are many others on campus who can perform as well or better than you as senators. To begin, the new senate should relax the dress code policy. Dressing business formal only affirms the elitist impression students get from the senate.
Secondly, move the elections to the spring. I have raised this point to my fellow senators several times, only to be met with mediocre and unreasonable arguments to the contrary. Spring elections give the senators-elect sufficient time over the summer to become acquainted with the processes and issues that are important to ASMSU. If you visited the debates or saw the film clips, you may have seen just how uninformed the new class of senators are.
Finally, last week’s editorial acknowledged, “being a student senator is a responsibility worth taking seriously.” I agree, but meeting campus administrators and being in the know can breed conceit and narcissism. Resist the temptation.