So in a “Letters to the Editor” this issue, a student’s names is mentioned as who the author will be voting for FCRH ’11’s USG Vice President rather than Creighton Muscato. Creighton felt that this was a bit unfair, since he won’t have a chance to “respond” before elections, this Thursday, and we don’t blame him. So here’s his platform, just so y’alls got everything straight.
1.) Double the Student Activities Fee Referendum:
As one of the most ambitious aspects of my platform, this initiative, as opposed to many others, would be relatively easy to accomplish with proper student involvement and consent. With practically little effort, we could very seriously improve each one of our college experiences. As it is, the current student spends the exact sum of $100 to be put towards the Student Activities Fee, a general pot from which clubs may exercise funds and which finances events like Spring Weekend; my aim is to increase this figure to $200. Now, while this may seem like a heavy increase, the figure must be put into context. This extra $100 dollars would account for a 0.19% increase in the Resident’s total sum and a 0.23% increase in the Commuter’s total sum, a negligible amount in either circumstance. The effect would be a notable proliferation of student club activity, on-campus events, and would generate the proper degree of funding to support an event, the scale of Spring Weekend, twice a year. Or, better yet, with the overhead covered for Spring Weekend, we would have enough money to potentially triple the amount spent towards the Weekend’s main performance. We would have our pick of the litter. And consider this, the Hughes resident last year was charged $250 toward their bursar account for general vandalism (many of whom never participated in such activities); the money was then basically absorbed in the black hole that is Res. Life, never to be seen again. But this increased referendum money would be directly influencing us in the most affirmative manner.
Also, as it is my understanding, the Student Activities Fee has remained dormant at the $100 figure since some time in the early nineties when the tuition was approximately half of what it is today. To change this, all we would have to do is collect 15% of the student body’s handwritten signature; after that, a simple majority vote of the student body would put the new fee into action. It would be a lofty task, indeed, but it seems completely feasible and, in any case, totally justified. With your vote, I would work doggedly toward this end so that, by the time we leave this place, we would have had a Spring Weekend of truly epic proportions.
2.) Free Speech
Having served on the newly erected Commission on Free Speech, I hope to see the endeavors of this group continue into the next academic year, for good or ill. It will take some creativity to ensure an adequate free speech space on our campus, but it is a pure and basic effort. The ideal model would resemble that of Georgetown’s “Red Square,” a designated area in which the individual is able to express whatever viewpoint deemed fit or otherwise (for example, the place has been allegedly used for the dispersion of contraceptives). The establishment of this sort of entity would not only benefit the intellectual progress of our university, but it is completely necessary given the country and times in which we live; its current absence is a plain hypocrisy to the Jesuit tradition, in the spirit of diverse, intellectual discourse and chaste, honest education.
3.) Club Event Advertisement
As it was my previous intent to run for Exec. VP of Student Life, I formed some thoughts on how we can better implement the McGinley Center. I believe that the televisions on the sides should be reserved for the advertisement of club events, and other generally important information. The text is often too small, the format odd, and some of the information wholly irrelevant. Ideally, a club would submit an advertisement in the form of a PowerPoint slide, and the advertisements would cycle briefly at the top of every hour. It is an ill-utilized space for advertisement and I wish to see this changed. Also, I believe that USG should be able to sell a small portion of the advertisement space to local businesses in order to generate revenue which would eventually be transferred to the student body by way of the Doctrine of Active Purchasing (a resolution passed by USG this year which allows the government to purchase items for the student body; this year we purchased an assortment of weights for the gym, as well as several new squash rackets).
In the spirit of elections, here are the Facebook links for the others running for USG VP, FCRH ’11 (that we could find). We encourage you all to read their platforms and make an educated decision. Any other people running for any of this USG business, feel free to e-mail us (firstname.lastname@example.org) a link to your Fbook page/Web site/whatever and we’ll post it for you.