EDITORIAL: I think I see a Gator!

If you didn’t go to the UM-UF game, then you were probably pretty lonely on an empty campus. However, if you did go, and you were a student, then you noticed how poorly the event was handled, in regards to student admissions and seating.
Lines outside the southeast student entrance of the Orange Bowl were extra-long this past Saturday, and it wasn’t just because state rival UF was playing a tough game inside. Cane Card electronic readers (and operators) were not functioning properly much of the time. Students who have paid tuition and have paid the student fees were turned away from the entrance because of electromagnetic glitches. They had waited for nearly two hours, dressed in UM apparel and wearing orange and green makeup, just to be sent home.

Because most students joined these lines well before 6 p.m. and did not enter the stadium until after 8 p.m., they weren’t happy campers. They chanted, they shouted, they even knocked over and trampled. And they were drunk.

This lovely intoxicated and infuriated crowd then rushed the stands (after kickoff and the opening touchdown, which the students had missed) to find that there were absolutely no seats left. Many seats in the UM student section were filled with orange-and-blue clothed fans. Seats in the upper deck were full. These hot, sweaty, inebriated students (they just wanted to see some football and cheer on their Hurricanes!) had to stand in the aisles, in the stairwells, and in the concourses to catch a glimpse of the field. Then the yellow-shirted Orange Bowl employees told them they couldn’t stand there. These students, who pay the salaries of the football coaches and the administration, were denied access to what they deserved. Not enough student seats, not enough preparation. Oh well, the seats were probably worth more after they were sold to Gators fans, anyways.
Up with smoke

Have you realized the foolishness of the UM administration’s decision to “let students enforce” the new 25-foot smoking buffer zones around residence halls? The simple irony is that this policy has been in effect for almost a month, yet students just heard about it in the last issue of the Hurricane. Thank goodness for free press.

The current Student Government should either follow in the footsteps of former leader Mike Johnston, and enforce the no-smoking barrier officially, or drop the matter. Do not expect students to do your dirty work. Do not try to persuade one shy student to approach another and tell him to stop smoking. If this policy were to succeed, it would need to be enforced 24 hours a day by an informal student police force, and nobody wants to be the traitor by going inside and filling out a report. Unless you pay us. Give us a commission rate on that $50 fine.

This entire buffer-zone idea skirts the issue that smoking is an unhealthy and unattractive behavior. Yes, there are anti-smoking programs offered by the Wellness Center and others. And programs like these are more likely to curb campus smoking and prevent health issues in the future, than this student police force concept. Get it right, SG: you represent us, the students; it isn’t the other way around.