Letter to the Editor

By Les Roka


As a strong advocate for giving students an effective and substantial voice in university governance, I find the frequent reports about defaced and vandalized election materials to be utterly disappointing.

Instead, this process should have been focused on electing articulate student representatives who come from a wide range of social and cultural backgrounds.

I have experience with student governance at two universities in Ohio, and I can safely say that these crude and immature acts of vandalism never occurred during the course of campaigning at these schools.

Even when campaigns took a provocative and even highly controversial turn, students resisted this sort of sophomoric temptation. And candidates did a good job of making sure their legions of supporters avoided such activities as well.

For those who decided to deface posters, thank you for helping remove those precious shreds of legitimacy from your student government. You clearly demonstrate that students at the University of Utah apparently are not ready to participate with the voice they really should have in campus governance.

Thank you for your attempts to validate the apathetic feelings of those students who believe that student government is a joke.

Thank you for those additional efforts which kept turnout ridiculously low and demonstrated that, without a broadly based mandate, no student government leader will have any real standing with university officials when it comes to discussing the issues that really affect students.

I have been at the university for less than seven months and, after seeing virtually every campaign poster defaced, I am asking: “Is this what is supposed to happen on the campus of a major university?”

Les Roka

Faculty, Communication