Tuesday, November 18, 2003

*Edited- Pictures available. See below.*

This is a record for me- three posts in one day. I'm so cool.
*Scott- don't bother reading this- I just copied my email to you and posted it. No point in writing it all again.

Just Say NO to the U of A Debate Fee!
Lunch today was a great exciting drama. If I hadn't alreay posted so much today I'd blog about it. There are these 15 guys on campus that no one likes but who believe they are God's gift to the University of Arkansas. These guys all happen to be on the Debate team. I hate-- I dislike them all. There's this one, I've known of him since my freshman year and I've never liked him. He is Pretentious, he is the very vessel pretention sails on, and he is everywhere kissing so much ass you'd think he was engaged to one. He entered the Arabic Speech Contest the year I did. Our speeches were meant to be 3-5 mins long- His lasted a horrific 25. His Arabic was attrocious, no one had any clue what he was talking about. A girl from Syria spent the whole time frowning at him and looking at her watch and getting thoroughly pissed off with this guy terrorizing her language. She said it resembled something like a cross between Persian and Turkish. He has a big butt. He's on Student Council. He carries a laptop. He thinks he's Bill Clinton.

The Debate Team has started a petition to include the Debate Fee in our tuition. It will cost us each some small price of like $3- though today I heard $23- and its to give them money to compete nationally. Fair enough. But I've been against it, passively, just because I see no reason to give the Debate Team money when there are a gazillion other organizations who don't have money, like Inspirational Singers, for instance, the University's black gospel choir. We had to pay $50 a semester to travel in Inspire. It sucked, but we did it. I feel that if every debater can afford an SUV, they too can afford a $50 travel fee.

Today they were giving out free hot dogs outside the union. Nice enough. Or so it appeared. They approached everyone in the line and asked them to vote for the Debate fee on their wireless internet laptops. (And they can't afford to travel.) The catch- You couldn't vote no on this computer. You could only vote yes. Then I saw a bunch of people arrive with signs. There was a protest. A Debate Fee protest. This was getting good! Apparently their protest had been broken up when the Debate team called the cops on them. The signs showed that the Cultural fund, which is the fund that supports all the arts and music on campus, has a budget of $95,000 a year. The Debate Team is asking the Cultural fund for-- $95,000. PLUS the tuition fee, I'm assuming. These dismissed protesters now stood by the line yelling to hungry college students things like "Do you want to pay $23 for a free hot dog??!" "Is that hot dog worth $95,000??!" It was genius. In the excitement, I began to yell "Protest! Protest!" A Debater pulled out his cell phone and called the police again. A policeman arrived and the Big Butt Debater Who Can't Speak Arabic approached him, shook his hand and said "I don't believe I've met you. My name is...." whatever his name is, I could care less. I told some guy the debaters were shameless. The word shameless caught on and it could be heard repeated throughout. The debaters offered the policeman a hot dog. Kim and I both felt "in our natures" the desire to start karate chopping people or steal the laptops and run away. Excitement was in the air! I got out my digital camera and started taking pictures of the event. I got the police officer and the Big Butt Guy. I got the crowd. I got the protesters. I saw Big Butt presenting his case to some helpless students who just wanted a hot dog. I approached the group and started shooting. Another debater gave me a fierce look and said, "O-kaaaaaaayyy." I smiled and said, "What? I think you're ridiculous." and he retorted, "O-kaaaaaaayyyy."

All in all it was an eventful hour. I had ice cream. I came back to work and voted against the Debate fee.

Click here to view pictures.

Click here to vote against the U of A Debate fee.

Go visit Amanda's site for her opinion on the Debate Fee.

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