The mud, the bad and the ugly surrounding ASUU elections

So there I was, eating a delectable trifle at the Heritage Center, when lo and behold, campus drama rested upon me.

Allow me to explain. Next to me was a dashing junior, Bryan Buchanan, sporting one of the Grassroots Party’s green T-shirt. I’m sure that none of you has missed the ardent campaigning going on around campus. Anyway, this young buck had tastefully used a black marker to write a giant “SUCKS” beneath the “Grassroots” label on the shirt.

Buchanan had been in the Heritage Center for only a few minutes when a rather frightening student (wearing the so-called “wifebeater” tank top) accosted him and warned him that he should remove his shirt,”or else.”

I cannot recount exact details of the conversation, but will mention that the F-bomb was dropped numerous times.

I personally found myself torn between hysterical laughter, disgust and comic indifference at the event.

This particular event has opened my eyes. The whole point of student government is to give college students a taste of what the big leagues could be like. And what a fabulous job they’re doing-the backstabbing of the political world has never been so remarkably frank in its reality.

American politics is plagued with a history of cattiness and backstabbing. I believe that one of the most memorable political beatings occurred in 1856 when Preston Brooks beat Congressman Charles Sumner with his cane nearly to death after a speech against slavery.

Another one of my favorite episodes had to be this year when a weepy Joseph Lieberman cried to Mama about Gore throwing his support behind Howard Dean.

Whine about it, why don’t you?

At the conclusion of a competitive ASUU primary elections, with final elections upon us, there is a certain tension in the air- enough for a seemingly placid, politically uninvolved junior to desecrate a certain party’s T-shirt.

I’m going to be honest with you. I have no idea for what any of the political parties on campus stand. All I know is that I am being constantly bombarded with glamour shots, posters and candy wherever I go.

I don’t mind the candy so much.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the kids who vandalized some of the campaign posters in two of the U’s engineering buildings this week. I got a kick out of some of the of the comments pasted over the face of the candidates: “I don’t know you, and I don’t care about you, but this annoying poster will make you care about me.” Or there’s this one: “Unlike you, I have so much free time that I posed for this glossy picture, with my big, fake smile.” Clever.

Now, I don’t like conservatives. It does not mean that I am ever going to feel the need to impose a physical threat on a Bush-lover or smear campaign posters with graffiti. I just wouldn’t do it. Not to mention the fact that a Bush lover (or anyone, for that matter) would undoubtedly kick my ass.

However real it might be, aren’t you all going a little too far? Grassroots people: Don’t threaten someone because they, quite loudly and profusely, think that you suck. I hate to break it to you, but a lot of people will think that you suck in your lifetime.

And Bryan Buchanan, wherever you are: If you are going to write on a T-shirt in the hopes of impacting the future of college campaigning, think of something more clever than “Grassroots Sucks.”

For example, if my best friend Megan were to permanently tattoo the Grassroots shirt, she would have crossed out the “roots,” and have it say, “I smoke Grass.”

This seems oddly more profound.

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