Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald

Independent Student Newspaper Since 1969

The Badger Herald


Dangerous Liaisons

It is comforting to know some things will never change.
Political bickering in our student government is one of them.

Once again, the Associated Students of Madison is wasting time
squabbling over unrealistic ideas instead of bearing down to make a
positive difference for the students who supply their paychecks
with segregated fees.

At Wednesday’s meeting, the council sat down to vote on the
internal ASM budget. Trouble began with the mention of the five
liaisons ASM currently employs to represent traditionally
underrepresented students: LGBTs, women, students of color, female
students of color and LGBT students of color.


These liaisons act as the go-betweens for these constituencies
and the student government. The council, in an attempt to ensure
all voices are heard, pays for these liaisons at a cost of $3,579
per liaison.

After discussion about adding a sixth liaison for students with
disabilities, some members of the council voiced their skepticism
regarding the necessity of these positions in the first place. When
this discussion came to an end, their protests did as well.

Or so we thought.

Instead of proceeding, Student Services Finance Committee
members Peter McCabe and Lindsay Ourada sarcastically proposed
adding 10 more such liaisons. This proposal came from the same two
members who had previously questioned whether any liaisons were
necessary at all.

Yet, instead of acting like the mature adult representatives of
40,000-plus students with the responsibility of millions of
dollars, they offered a proposal to essentially snub their noses at
ASM. Instead of offering a real alternative to an issue they
recognized as important, they extended the legislative equivalent
of the bird in protest to the initial five liaisons.

We can respect the fact that ASM represents a variety of
perspectives on controversial issues. And, like any legislative
body, heated arguments can ensue.

But this is not the answer. Offering up blatantly sarcastic
proposals not only disrespects the legislative goals of other
council members but also wastes the students’ time and money in the
process. ASM constantly tries to fight student apathy, low voter
turnout and a general sense on campus that they do little or
nothing. After learning of Ourada and McCabe’s recent actions
before ASM, we cannot help but begin to share the opinions of our
fellow students.

In the end, ASM could serve as a model of respectful
discourse and representation for the thousands of students on
campus. They could work in positive ways toward student
interests. Ourada and McCabe’s actions are just another in a long
line of internal bickering among a group of students that seem more
concerned with power and resum� building than accomplishing
something worthwhile.

We encourage you to contact these members and voice your

Peter McCabe [email protected]

Lindsey Ourada [email protected]

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