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ASUO sponsoring Obama rally

The Commentator received a letter to the editor today from University student Aaron Polk. It’ll be in the next issue, but I thought it would be timely to post it on the blog:

Dear Editor,

When I opened up my Facebook today, the first thing I noticed was an event invitation to an Obama rally this Friday. An even bigger surprise was that Obama himself was coming. To be honest, I was glad to see that he was coming because I saw it as an opportunity to protest and show him that not all young students are naive enough to fall for his charismatic speeches. But that enthusiasm didn’t last for too long when I found out that the ASUO was sponsoring this event.

Now quite frankly, I was unbelievably pissed off. Not because of the fact that the man who is the center of my anti-Obama Facebook group (the largest one in terms of members) was going to come to my home state and sway our youth with his facist-type speech skills, but because of the fact that my incidental fees were going to a partisan cause, especially a man with costly political agendas. Seeing all the flyers around campus that encourage students to report biased actions that take place, it’s safe to say that we go to a school that emphasizes on fairness. Even our own IRS (as much as we hate them) won’t give tax deductions to donors of partisanship for the sake of fairness. I can even say that the majority of our liberal youth supports the broken program of affirmative action.

But using the (already) over-priced incidental fees to bring a candidate that almost 1,470 (seven percent of students identify as conservative) U of O students don’t support is completely biased and undermines our ability to attain a fair campus by giving everyone a voice. It’s hard enough to know that these expensive incidental fees are the reason why some people can’t even afford to go to college.

And if anyone were to ask me, “would you be writing this if John McCain were to be sponsored by the ASUO instead?” Why yes, despite my strong support for the man, I would be against it unless Obama were to be sponsored as well. I believe in this, all for the sake of fairness and that every student deserves a voice.

Aaron Polk

In the EMU today, I saw several students painted signs for Obama’s appearence. My hunch is that i-fee money was used for the supplies, but it’s just a hunch. Here is the Facebook event description about the created by the ASUO executive.

“…The student government (ASUO) is so happy to invite you, on the Friday of finals week, to come out to this event and get involved in the political process and choosing our next President.

The University of Oregon is known for its politically charged student body, engaged electoral work, and record setting voter registration and get out the vote work. The student vote has helped to determine the outcome of many legislative races throughout Oregon and the student vote is going to be no different this November 2008 in the Presidential election!

The Oregon Primary is only a couple months away. So come and check this out and get involved in this extremely important election.

This is the first candidate for nomination for President that has asked to come to the U of O so far. So come out to Mac Court this Friday- because students are going to have a determining effect on this election. Come be a part of it…”

  1. Jackson says:

    Commander In Chief.

    FROM THE ADMIN – Seriously, folks, learn basic HTML.

  2. Jackson says:

    I am pretty sure that Obama’s campaign does not have the luxury of visiting UO when most students are in Eugene. The Senator has many primaries to focus on and was probably lucky to make it to campus on the last day of finals. To be honest, I think it was good timing; no homework or school the next day. I do, however, feel bad for the students who did not hear about Obama’s visit until wednesday or tuesday. People like Nate Gulley, who were able to spend the break in dream vacation spots and therefore left Eugene before Obama’s visit, deserve more forewarning next time.

    I cannot wait until Hillary, though. Her campaign said that the New York Senator will be in Oregon in a few weeks to let the conversation begin. I hope she pulls out her “Shame on you, Barack Obama” speech. I love a woman in charge!

  3. ThunderLove says:

    So what if Kari gets a shout out during the obama rally Ron Paul just called me for phone sex.

    ThunderLove 08

  4. Vincent says:

    I’m so fascist, I shit swastikas.

  5. Guy says:

    CJ, I’m a fascist.

    I’m so fascist I jack off to Nuremburg rally tapes. Oh yeah!

  6. CJ Ciaramella says:

    Sounds like T is on board, but in case anyone else hasn’t read it yet …

    “Politics and the English Language” by George Orwell

    I wish this essay could be condensed into nerf form so I could pelt people with it via a large chaingun.

  7. T says:

    Totally, CJ.

    Words like “fascist” and “racist” have ceased meaning anything, frankly, and in rhetoric you should generally avoid both. (Yes, I’m cribbing from Orwell here, but that beats cribbing from the spittle-flecked masses who use the words interchangeably with “person with whom I disagree.”) In the grand scheme of things, there have only been a handful of truly fascist leaders. Racism still exists, but its impact is cheaponed by people’s insistance on using “racist” like an all-purpose pronoun.

    “Demogogue” is equally nebulous, though it generally applies to a person who preys on others’ fears in order to manipulate them. When you think of it, though, isn’t that every politician?

  8. CJ Ciaramella says:

    I think “demagogue” might be the word Polk was going for, and I still don’t agree completely with that. By the way, if anyone ever actually meets a real, honest-to-god fascist, let me know.

  9. Ossie says:

    Here is the story in the Register Guard today about Obama’s visit. The lede is priceless:

    Barack Obama made Nate Gulley cry.

  10. Jake says:

    Fascism–a governmental system led by a dictator having complete power, forcibly suppressing opposition and criticism, regimenting all industry, commerce, etc., and emphasizing an aggressive nationalism and often racism.

    Barack Obama must be a dick.

  11. T says:

    “As for the fascist comment, it

  12. Sean Jin says:

    Yes, Sakaki, I do know that. But it doesn’t mean you get to be an asshole whenever you want.

    Well, I guess you do, since that’s freedom of speech. Veterans know that ALL too well, also.

    But it doesn’t STOP you from being an asshole.

  13. Niedermeyer says:

    Sakaki: Didja know that Emily McLain was Dallas Browns running mate for his um, explosive run at the ASUO Exec? I still have the T-Shirt!

    I’m not sure what my point is here… besides wishing I could have been witness to some of their legendary screaming matches. Oh, and if Emily does bring Kari up there to catch a little reflected glory, it will just prove what everyone already knows:


  14. Sakaki says:

    Respect is not given, it is earned. Veterans know this.

  15. Sean Jin says:

    And yes, respects is plural.

  16. Sean Jin says:

    You guys are so mean. It’s pretty easy to sit back in a chair and criticize someone else…regardless of her politics or effectiveness, she’s definitely not ‘dumb as a box of rocks’.
    Have some respects, please.

  17. Sakaki says:

    That’s because McLain is as dumb as a box of rocks. Hence why I ask:

    What Would Dallas Brown Do?

  18. Guerra Sucks says:

    you know mclain is takin Kari up there with her, but dhe doesn’t have any bias towards exec candidates

  19. Sean Jin says:

    Stop saying ‘racist’, please?

    I don’t have anymore alcohol left.

  20. Vincent says:

    While I’m not overly impressed with Obama as a candidate, and even less impressed with the absurd hero worship directed his way by a lot of his supporters, bringing the word “fascist” into the mix officially makes Aaron Polk’s letter the dumbest thing I’ve ever read in the Commentator. And that includes Nate Gulley quotes.

    And “racist bastard”? For fuck’s sake, people. Grow up.

  21. Ossie says:

    Also, why is the Obama campaign coming when students aren

  22. Ossie says:

    The argument here is not that the ASUO organized this event.

    J, of course they couldn’t organize this quickly, it

  23. J says:

    I’m with T on this one. It’s rare for a viable candidate to stop in Eugene (John Kerry made a visit to a very small, somewhat private neighborhood group in Springfield in 2004). The ASUO works hard to get students registered to vote and interested in the political process, and this is a candidate who does well with our demographic. I wish he’d come at a time when students are actually here (I’ll be there), but it seems fitting to support candidate visits.

    Also, the fact that the campaign seems to have contacted the administration prior to contacting the ASUO to request a venue (see deLancie’s post a few days ago) would indicate that the ASUO didn’t request the visit. Even if they wanted to, they’re certainly not organized enough to put together something like this so quickly.

  24. T says:

    Um, this is obviously a campaign stop (meaning the ASUO didn’t bring him here). So how is the ASUO “sponsoring” this? Maybe they just want to get the word out because it’s not often that a viable candidate for president stops by. I mean, there’s a difference between supporting something and sponsoring it.

    Aaron Polk: “Facist-type (sic) speech skills.” What the fuck does that mean? Explain please.

  25. CJ Ciaramella says:

    Yeah, “racist bastard”? Seriously? If you haven’t noticed, we’re kind of against loosely throwing around the “R” word.

  26. Niedermeyer says:

    Well, all expenditures are logged with the controllers office in the form of purchase orders… it’s public information… (hint hint)

    Sakaki: Racist?


  27. Sakaki says:

    Pretty typical that the ASUO would do such a thing. But, then again, I wouldn’t have expected them to NOT fund the racist bastard from coming to the U. I mean, they did allow the I-Fee to bring Angela Davis to campus and all.

    I think the ASUO should now be forced to bring Larry Elder to campus.

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