Many entered. Few won. And the losers were left in the dark.
Such were the results of a lottery system implemented to distribute student tickets for the Univision events featuring President Barack Obama and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney at the BankUnited Center Fieldhouse this week.
When an email about the lottery was sent to the student body Tuesday evening, the Division of Student Affairs made it clear that priority access would be granted to student members of UM College Republicans, UM Young and College Democrats, and other affiliated organizations on campus including SpectrUM, Student Government and the Federacion for Estudiantes Cubanos.
What makes political organizations and their affiliates more entitled to an event than other organizations? Just because students don’t have an active civic role on campus does not mean they’re not interested in politics.
Because such a limited amount of tickets were available for these events, priority access should not have been granted. The organizations, which were guaranteed tickets, did not organize the candidates’ events. All students should have had the same opportunity to obtain a ticket.
This is a once-in-a-lifetime experience, but the chances to receive a ticket to the event should not be one in a million. It isn’t right that some students will be able to graduate UM with the memory of seeing Obama and Romney, while others only wished they had that memory.
Though the concept of a contest essentially means that some individuals aren’t going to win, all students should have been told whom the organizations affiliated with the political parties were. And students who were not granted a ticket should have been notified via email.
Space in the Fieldhouse may be limited, but the BankUnited Center holds up to 8,000 people. Therefore, it would be possible to stream the events live in the BUC and allow students to enter on a first come, first serve basis. If not, maybe no students should be allowed to attend.
We all have one thing in common: We can vote, and our votes can make a difference. Give us all the opportunity to participate.
Editorials represent the majority view of The Miami Hurricane editorial board.