RE: “Student Government’s potential for good change,” 11/23

When reading the recent column written by Scott Wacholtz, I was surprised to find a comment about the Student Activity Fee Allocation Committee (SAFAC). Mr. Wacholtz indicates that disbanding SAFAC would provide SG with the “tools” to implement “good change.” My opinion is inherently biased, serving as a member of SAFAC. However, I can’t justify his statement.

Mr. Wacholtz says SG should take on the additional responsibilities originally granted to SAFAC through Student Referenda that was enacted over 35 years ago, saying adding SAFAC’s responsibility to the SG docket would benefit the campus. I’m not sure if Mr. Wacholtz believes that SG should take on the responsibility of determining how funds are allocated to the over 200 student organizations on campus, or whether he believes that SG should simply receive all funds collected from the activity fee. Either premise undermines his belief that SG is the proper venue to allocate funds.

Who in SG would allocate the student activity fee? The Senate? The Executive Committee? A new committee created solely for this purpose (SAFAC Part II)? Senate meets weekly to pass amendments, pursue and improve campus events, and serve as a programming board to advance student initiatives. On the other hand, SAFAC also meets weekly for approximately three hours to review requests from several student organizations at a time. When is it that Senate would find the time to review these requests? If Senate had to review requests each week, when is it that they would have time to enact initiatives? All Senate would be doing is allocating funds and not fulfilling the true mission of SG.

Furthermore, how can SG, which receives one of the largest portions of the activity fee, allocate funds to not only itself, but also to 200 other organizations equitably? Mr. Wacholtz says this would serve as a “resource” to SG. How? Perhaps allocating your own organization more money because you have the carte blanche to do so is an asset, but it’s surely not equitable for the other student organizations. To me, “resources” would mean additional funding. It would not mean taking on additional responsibilities that will ultimately dilute SG’s purpose.

Bryan Weisbard

2004-2005 SAFAC Chairperson

A crocodile in Lake Osceola

A good friend in Miami called to tell me about the nine-foot-long croc being currently sought in Lake Osceola. We laughed as we thought of Osceola in 1971-1972. A fellow student at the time, nicknamed “Griz,” was an avid outdoorsman. He and his tales were larger than life, so we were skeptical about his accounts of spotting large barracuda in Osceola.

One morning he got out his bow to “do some fishin’.” We walked down to the bridge where a local family had come to fish and were there for 20 minutes when a five-foot-long ‘cuda passed. Griz fired his shaft and the heavy line spun out from his reel. He hit the ‘cuda in mid-back and the fight was on. The ‘cuda was center-shot and in no danger of escaping, but at the same time was not mor tally wounded. It thrashed and bit for all that it was worth, which was quite a lot actually, and it made for an awesome spectacle. Griz gave the fish to the family that was fishing had the satisfaction of proving himself to be right beyond any contradiction.

At Homecoming, an inebriated swimmer decided to jump in the lake “just for fun.” Once inside, the mullet began jumping out of the water trying to avoid a vicious ‘cuda attack. The swimmer came close, we were all certain he set an Olympic record in his trip back to the shore.

I can’t say if any of the other critters that are claimed to inhabit Osceola are legend or fact, but I can assure you that at least one type is quite real, has rows of big teeth, and is on the prowl.

Rick Hendricks