Editorial: Students should take a stand on this election season

By Staff

October 30, 2012

Flip-flopping seems to be the game that the Missouri Western Board of Governors likes to play.

In a crucial election year, the Board of Governors has decided to support Proposition B which would favor a bill that could raise taxes on cigarettes for revenue toward Higher Education.

The proposition would generate an estimated $84 million boost from the tobacco tax for universities throughout the state of Missouri. Western would be given a nice handout if the tax is passed by the voters in Missouri on Nov. 6. If passed Western would receive two million dollars.

However, at the same time the Board has voted to make smoking of any tobacco illegal on campus. It just seems quite remarkable for a Board to support a bill that would favor a cigarette tax, but not allow students to smoke on their own campus.

The support for Proposition B by the Board is just another example of where a select few individuals make a decision and hope the majority of students will follow. It just doesn’t seem fair to raise the tax on a pack of cigarettes by 73 cents from a nationwide low 17 cents per pack.

Proposition B has good intentions for other universities throughout the state who have not banned tobacco on their campuses. It’s taking away the freedom of individuals and that’s what Western has done to its students, faculty, and guests.

They decided to go around the students by making the campus smoke free without a student vote, and then ask the students to support a bill that would raise the taxes on cigarettes.  If students would pay attention to the issues in this election and vote responsibly they could make a huge impact, and that goes for all voters throughout the state.

Students who are able to vote in the November election need to go into the voting booth and think clearly about the way they vote on this issue. It’s time to stand up and fight for your rights, and show the Board that they could take away our rights on campus, but we can take away extra revenue from them in the voting booth.

It’s time for these flip-flop decisions by the Board come to an end. So on Tuesday Nov. 6, go vote and determine whether or not we need to stand together as a student body, or follow a small group of individuals who determine the outcome for over 6,000 students. Make the right decision next Tuesday.