Members of the Multicultural Student Coalition will hold a rally on Library Mall today to protest the Student Services Finance Committee for “unregulated and illegal processes” when reviewing MCSC’s request for more than $1 million of segregated fees.
The MCSC has framed their budget battle as an issue of race and ethnicity at the University of Wisconsin when it should be about proper procedure, objective criteria and the candor of a student-funded organization.
After years of calling SSFC racist, reporting feeling unsafe at committee meetings and not offering solutions for the myriad problems our student government faces, it is clear MCSC’s tactics are counterproductive to their own cause. They need to consider changes to their approach.
MCSC has two options. First, they can work with, and not against, SSFC to foster a better relationship with the committee and work toward fixing the problems they see on this campus. SSFC is not off the hook – they, too, must improve their currently rocky relations with MCSC.
Secondly, the group can stop applying for General Student Services Fund money and use the lack of financial regulation to their advantage to seek large national grants or donations as a non-profit organization dedicated to improving campus climate.
Doing so would aid their cause in many ways, including allowing them to leave facilities perceived as racially unsafe, such as the SAC. Additionally, being free from the GSSF removes many onerous regulations from the group, such as restriction of fundraising and the often-derided requirement that a GSSF group provide a direct service. Without GSSF, MCSC could serve the campus and spend their own money as they see fit.
By using inventive strategies, MCSC will be free to contribute more constructive activities than rallies that only continue to alienate those who can help their cause. Instead, today’s rally will likely ignore any new ideas about the future of both SSFC and MCSC.