Disunity Impairs UCSD’s Student Body

    A.S. Council has 34 voting members. Imagine a car full of opinionated broponents debating about where to go, but with no shared vision as to where the car is heading and no incentive to agree on a destination. Scattered, unconvincing debates can drag on for weeks.

    But we shouldn’t rush to blame council when it aimlessly disagrees. It comes from deeper problems.

    One unfortunate reality of UCSD is that some campus communities needlessly antagonize other segments of our student body. Frat bros take a lot of heat — haters gonna hate. But so do the sorority girls, anyone pro-Israel, international students, the Koala staff, etc.

    Added to this is the fact that some campus communities fundamentally disagree with one another on the “right” direction for the campus. The debate over moving to D-1 athletics was the last public display of UCSD undergraduate polarization.

    It may seem that as long as there are short lines at Bear Garden and a good lineup at Sun God, then student government has done all it needs to. But not everyone on council agrees with this. This is because disagreement in our representative student body is a symptom of our current campus climate. The goal for this school and our identities as Tritons aren’t handed down by A.S. Council — instead we have a system where competing visions for UCSD butt heads in a campus-wide forum.

    Like us or not, frat bros actually have it all figured out. The president of a fraternity makes all decisions. He’s the proverbial driver of the car. Passengers get to chill out and enjoy the ride. There isn’t this endless back and forth of repeated points, and there aren’t slate lines drawn in the sand. Instead, there’s action. The president is like the person who rallies everyone to leave a pregame — he acts with every one’s best interest in mind.

    I’m curious what would happen if A.S. Council dumped the 34-person cheerocracy and instituted a fraternity power structure. This would, by all accounts, be a student-led dictatorship. But it’s not like the A.S. dictator would command the secret police. A benevolent overlord would protect all the campus communities, allocate student fees justly and give occasional speeches to masses of students on the balconies conveniently located around campus.

    If there were to be a student with that much influence over the student body, perhaps then administration would take action based on what we have to say. But given the actual structure of A.S. Council, until the student body agrees on a unified vision for the school and until we stop antagonizing other campus communities, that’s just wishful thinking.

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