At the beginning of the week, President Bush said, “Our nation was horrified, but it’s not going to be terrorized.” Bush told us to go back to work. And so we are, offering another Seg Fee Abuse of the Week.

This week’s abuse is particularly outrageous, especially since those responsible for this waste of money make no apologies. After all, as the founder of the UW Cigar Club told a Herald reporter last semester, the club was founded because she “would rather have my money go up in smoke than go to a group [she] didn’t support.”

After the UW Cigar Club received $100 for such things as office supplies, posters and ads, they applied for a grant to have a cigar-tasting event. Much to their surprise, and our chagrin, they were successful in obtaining $500, $400 of which they spent on cigars for the lucky members. The other $100 was spent on matches, lighters and cutters.

The absurdity of this waste should be obvious. While seg-fee lovers regularly defend student fees by pointing to such valuable student services as University Health Service, it’s important to note that our student government also funds some activities that are decidedly unhealthy.

Due to the new court-ordered requirement that student groups receiving money perform a student service, the Cigar Club will hopefully be a one-time seg fee incinerator. But if ASM was ever able to spend our seg fees on tobacco for classmates, it would be clear that something is horribly wrong with the system. It is high time we get control of our money and gain the right to give it to student groups of our choice. Or, if we so choose, to buy our own cigars.

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