Op-Ed: Ryan Patrick Hanrahan

I have a problem with my government, and not the real one.

The recent decisions regarding the proposed musical act for the Student Association (SA) Productions run spring concert have seriously undermined my already minimal trust in how SA expresses the opinion of the student body. A survey was held with the explicit function of determining the most popular potential act for the upcoming spring concert last semester. Although Taking Back Sunday was the obvious winner of the survey, defeating such artists as Regina Spektor, Matt and Kim, Big Sean and Wale in that descending order, inaccuracies with the survey results (due to possible voter fraud) led the executive board to decide upon the artist who would perform at the upcoming concert. SA vice-president of programing Laneesha Bacchus was quoted by The Oracle as saying “My E-board thought the student body and Wale were a good match.” That’s nice, but pardon me if I don’t give a fuck what the E-board thinks.

The job of the SA is to shut up and listen to what the student body thinks. The acts chosen to perform at the spring concert are voted for by the activity fee paying students of this university, and although the SA members have as much right to their opinion as any member of the student body, in no way should their opinion have become the final decision. Just because some people may have voted more than once does not mean the E-board can follow suit. The SA should have taken the news of the possibly flawed results and instead of going forward as they saw fit, should have quickly created a more reliable survey. Why not one done in a fashion similar to how the SA representatives themselves were elected?  For those who haven’t read the SA Constitution,  Article II, —  a.k.a the “purpose” of the representative body in question, is “to act as the governance system of the student body of SUNY New Paltz to ensure fair representation of the student body in all college-related matters, and to fairly distribute and oversee mandatory activity fees.” Well hey, I’m a student who pays his mandatory activity fees and feel that those “acting” as my representatives are not representing myself or my fellow students fairly. Students need to realize that it is our money that is being squandered and that they have the power to end its misuse. I challenge the SA to create a new survey with a clearly readable presentation of results. I also wish to send the SA the message that if they continue their uneconomical and irresponsible stewardship of our money, there will be consequences. I’m sick and tired of shitty spring concerts, so get on your game SA or the level of venom toward you in my future tirades will not diminish.

P.S: If there is one iota of truth to the rumors that students who wish to attend the concert must pay any fee after they’ve already funded the event I will be further enraged, but unsurprised.