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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Aronin trial a call for change

Published: January 22, 2010
Section: Editorials

This sunday, Union Secretary Diana Aronin ’11 will be tried by the Union Judiciary after being impeached by the Senate on Dec. 6 for allegedly failing to put a Constitutional amendment for the creation of a midyear senator position to the student body for a vote.

This trial could result in the removal of Aronin from office. Meanwhile, Union President Andy Hogan ’11, who allegedly supported Aronin’s original decision to withhold the vote, was simply censured.

This disparity in consequences suffered by the two alleged perpetrators is preposterous; however, this editorial board recognizes the difficult dilemma the Union Senate faced upon discovering Aronin and Hogan’s alleged transgressions.

On the one hand, if the Senate simply censured both Aronin and Hogan, it would send the message that there is no consequence for breaking the Union’s bylaws, thereby rendering them insignificant. On the other hand, impeaching and potentially removing Aronin and Hogan only adds to the perception already held by a large part of the student body that the Union is self-important.

Unfortunately, as it now stands, the Union Constitution allows for no happy medium between being kicked out of the governmental body and receiving a hyped up finger wagging.

This must change. In order to be respected and taken seriously by the student body, there must be some alternative to these two choices.

Fortunately, the Union Constitution is currently under review. We hope that the review committee learns from this trial and thinks of a way to prevent such situations from occurring. The best form of student government is one that is able to lead by example and make changes that will be best for the student body as a whole.

The members of the Union can certainly disagree, but the government’s structure ought to foster an environment whereby disagreements can be resolved easily and without fuss. This editorial board expects the proposals of the Constitutional Review Committee to address these specific concerns. Otherwise, our student government will continue to remain aloof and its judicial proceedings laughable.