Editorial: Missouri Western State High School
By Ellis Cross
February 18, 2013
Personal freedoms are being limited at Western to the point that all we need to complete the experience is lockers in the hallways and bells between classes.
Students are not allowed to vote on major legislation on this campus. Recently the Student Government Association made the decision for the student body and voted in a new student fee without taking the idea to a vote of the students.
When students began to work on a petition to bring the new fee legislation to a student vote by getting signatures to overthrow the SGA decision, Financial Planner Mel Klinkner delivered a threat to cut student services as planned. It is the same threat he gave to the SGA that made them vote for the legislation in the first place.
The problem lies not in what was done. It lies in the feeling that comes with heavy-handed legislation. When someone else makes the decision for you it feels like they don’t believe you are intelligent enough to make an informed, accurate decision. If allowed to vote on this issue, students should have sought and been given the information to vote properly in this matter.
As it is, it seems like administration and the SGA are treating students like high school children instead of reasonable adults who could have handled the problem properly with the correct information.
Another problem with the petition was the process itself. The rules are very difficult to adhere to and, probably by design, very time consuming.
The only way to proceed is to have an event in protest of the legislation. That requires approval from, guess who?, Student Affairs administration. There goes freedom of speech.
Soon the very air you breathe will be controlled by the new smoking ban that administration is pushing. They went to the students first twice and the issue was voted down.
Now the administration is going to the MWSU staff. Ty Patterson, director of the national center for tobacco policy out of Springfield, Mo., spoke on campus Tuesday. Patterson explained the health and financial benefits to staff members to garner their support for the ban. Administrative board members need to grow some courage and go against students, faculty, staff and other visitors to our campus and just impose the legislation. Why do they have to hide behind someone or some organization?
Will they ban non-healthy foods from vending machines? What about the sugar in the drinks, fat in the pizza, short skirts, tattoos, facial hair, sagging pants, foul language, etc.?
Somewhere along the line the administration has failed to realize that many students here are adults. Many others have just arrived from high school. If they continue to treat people like they are in high school, when then do students grow up and become adults? This campus will truly have university status when the common student produced here has the respect of the administration. It’s their move.