A duty to vote, not just a right

The Wichitan

It’s not just our right to vote – it’s our duty. No, we aren’t just talking about the national presidential elections, but the Student Government Association elections. The decisions and programs implemented by SGA will impact our everyday lives just as often as the decisions made by our next president. 

If we don’t vote, then we have no right to complain about the policy and agenda of the next group of SGA officers. Our Student Government representatives are our most direct link to the administration on this campus, and it is their sole job to act in the best interest of the study body. But if they don’t know what the study body wants, if they don’t hear our voices because we don’t speak, they can’t truly make informed decisions on our behalf. 

The first candidate debate was held Monday night and only 50 people showed up. Less than one percent of the student body was present to listen to the platforms of the candidates.

The next candidate debate will be next Monday, March 7, in Bolin 127 at 7 p.m. We should all be there. Not just listening, but asking questions. We should all want to know who our next SGA president, vice president or sophomore senator wants to do with the power that they will hold.

We already know that speaking up leads to real change – after the SGA elections were criticized over the past few years, SGA has continued to update their bylaws in efforts to maintain a fair democratic process. But let’s get involved in this democratic process before something goes wrong and we want to complain about it. Let’s shape the agenda of our student government from the get-go by speaking up now.

Once we have our new SGA officials in office, we can continue to hold them accountable by attending their meetings. Again, you can’t expect SGA to serve your best interests if you don’t let them know what your interests are. 

Login to OrgSync via the MSU portal for more information on the elections, and check for the link online when voting opens March 14 at 8 a.m.

It’s a privilege to have a student government association to represent our voice in decision-making on campus. Don’t take it for granted.