PSG is out of touch

Purdue Student Government is just like every other government: out of touch, corrupt and self-serving.

I recently read the article about PSG approving $18,000 for an event that can only have 100 people in attendance. Considering the Purdue Student Government is supposed to serve the entire Purdue student body, it seems more than a bit exclusive to be spending that much money for so few people. I've been to residence hall events that served more people on a fraction of the budget.

This article, coupled with the well-despised election campaign, made me realize that the PSG really only cares about its own image and accomplishments and not the 40,000 students that are on campus. It is a pitiful shame that this is the reality of PSG. But it doesn't seem to be going away anytime soon, with the behind-closed-doors, secretive approach they just love to employ. It quietly passes bills without giving any information to the student body, quietly announced the presidential winner on an Instagram live video and gave no explanation to why it took a week to announce the winner when the rules state it should have been announced on April 1.

I hope to see a more representative government leading Purdue, but I'm afraid I'll never get that chance during my time here.

- Benjamin Goldman, sophomore in the Polytechnic Institute

There are better ways to spend $9,500

On April 7, an article from The Exponent regaled the PSG’s contribution of $9,500 to hosting an event featuring a Korean Vegan chef for the limited audience of 100. For the longest time, I used to think that people who believed in horoscopes were in first place when it comes to possessing a severe lack of sagacious judgement. After having read that article, I am wiser and now know that they occupy third place, right behind Libras and the PSG. While I may not be the best at finance or at planning special events, I believe that most readers will agree that there are far more prudent uses to which our fiat currency may be used most effectively.

For instance, a hefty tribute to our overlords who drive the Boilermaker Special in exchange for their cessation of blasting the horn at nine on a Saturday morning would be a handsome price all Purdue residents would find most agreeable and practical. However, in respect to that money’s original purpose in having been dedicated to the AAARCC for a special event, another idea would be as simple as procuring $9,500 in goods from the various Asian-themed stores around campus and hosting some cultural event with a larger constituency.

Such an event could easily feed more than 100 willing participants (or four Redditors) and would do a far greater service in spreading awareness of general Asian culture in a way that everyone can enjoy.

- Matthew Swanger, senior in Krannert School of Management

Voter turnout is 'laughably poor' 

PSG elections have recently concluded, with the organization touting the “second highest vote count” since 2015. This total vote count was 3,692 votes, accounting for less than 10% of the undergraduate population at Purdue. Voter turnout like this is not new. Based on enrollment data, PSG election turnout has not reached over 12% since 2015, and the high turnout in 2015 was still less than 20% of the undergraduate population. This is laughably poor engagement for an organization that touts to serve as the “primary representative organization” for Purdue undergraduates. With such low turnout and high student apathy, it is amazing that this organization gets an annual budget of over $100,000 from the university. That’s money that comes out of fees all undergraduates pay. To add insult to injury for the students funding this organization, PSG has a habit of spending that money controversially.

The same day election results were announced, The Exponent ran an article about PSG voting to spend nearly $10,000 for an event that can accommodate at most 100 students. Last year, PSG spent around $18,000 to host a virtual event with Meena Harris, the niece of Vice President Kamala Harris. Questionable spending decisions and the failure of the organization to gain legitimacy through engagement with students leads to a single conclusion: abolish the Purdue Student Government.

- Drew Ryan, graduate student in engineering

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