The “scandals” in the Student Association have reached a new low. When I envisioned and planned the GW Farmers Market, I intended it to be an organization to aid and enhance student life, to foster a relationship between students and the community and to bring items unavailable around GW to the very center of campus. I came up with it as part of a campaign platform, but wanted to initiate it even after the election. When I proposed this idea, the Student Associate Senate was one of the avenues through which the program received funding, as I had come up with the program there. My proposal for market funding was first taken to the senate committee chairs, and upon their unanimous approval and initial allocation, the market was incorporated into the 2002-2003 SA Senate budget (a public document, available on the Web) and voted on in a public Senate meeting.
The fact that the Farmer’s Market was an SA Senate initiative was no secret. I had a mailbox in the Senate office. The SA office assistants took messages from vendors for me. Many members of the Senate helped me work on the program over the summer and through the school year. The Senate logo was on all of my signs. If the “investigators” would take the care to go over the records and books, they would see that the Farmers Market is and has been totally legitimate.
I am writing this because I resent the fact that the handful of witch hunters within the SA are taking a successful program that has helped students, faculty, administrators and community members and using it as fuel for their mudslinging. In the Farmers Market, I saw an opportunity to do something good and help improve community life around GW. It disgusts me that a totally authorized organization, meant to help the student body, is being used to tear people down with no just cause.
As a retired SA veteran, I can say to current politicos with confidence: from your time in student politics, you remember what you do for other people, not for yourself. To those seeking office or those who are merely caught up in the game, get out of the Marvin Center, take a look around and go actually do something good for a change instead of tearing down the progress of people who do.
-The writer, a senior, is an Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner and former SA executive vice president.