Dear Wesleyan Community,
After numerous conversations with both members of the WSA and The Argus, I want to express my discontent with the recent egregious treatment of The Argus. In spite of extensive productive changes that The Argus has enacted after critiques last semester, some members of the WSA have continued to direct the WSA and the SBC to attack The Argus. Hmmmm. Is there someone on the WSA who holds a position of power and has a vendetta out against The Argus? People with knowledge of the inner workings of the SBC have informed me that some of the WSA leadership board, which is supposed to be distinct from the SBC, had direct influence over the proceedings that led to the resumption of The Argus funds.
In the midst of their financial difficulties, the SBC informed the Argus of their annual resumption of funds policy, and asked the Argus if they planned to use all dollars that they had been allocated. The Argus complied and offered a portion of their funds back to the SBC. Next, the SBC informed the Argus that all of their funds for the semester would be recouped, because The Argus failed to report that they had created a rainy day fund last semester. Though the article released by SBC claims that their stance is not political…how can it not be if in the SBC’s response to the Argus’s article it claims that “a student newspaper requesting funding from a student government structure is inherently ideologically flawed and deserves further community debate”.
The SBC knew that The Argus had a rainy day fund because The Argus solicited donations. But the SBC has access to the balance of the account, and so they knew that The Argus had raised money from the first day that The Argus requested funds. Ironically, the recent SBC decisions have proven that the Argus needs rainy day funds. With the current power structure of the WSA, The Argus needs to be able to secure its longevity by maintaining a rainy day fund. WESLEYAN join me in critiquing our leaders for misappropriation of power and authority to promote their agenda.
Now… to a pragmatic solution!! The Argus did not provide an exact dollar amount to the SBC, although, as previously stated, the SBC had knowledge of the donation funds. The Argus can apologize for not mentioning their donation funds on the form! Yet this does not mean that the SBC should not fund The Argus. The WSA needs to recognize its obligation to fund our school newspaper and return to normal funding levels while allowing the emergency funds to exist. One more thing… In the future, the leaders of the WSA needs to interact with more productive and communal approaches instead of abrupt decisions.
I wrote this letter because I am fed up with some of the WSA members mistreating The Argus. Many people have been involved in necessary reforming of The Argus through positive dialogue and action, but certain members of the WSA have not been among those players. These political moves and vendettas don’t reflect well on our community.
Brint is a member of the class of 2016.