OPINION | Involvement is the solution for independent voters

As an independent, I sometimes feel underrepresented in Student Government Association, since Greek students hold a lot of the organization’s leadership positions.

Of course, not being a member of any official groups outside of the newspaper probably contributes to this feeling.

If independents like myself want to see better representation in leadership positions, we have to better organize ourselves in this SGA election.

Some groups, like Greek houses, do have more natural organization, especially if the members are living together, but no one has reason to cry foul when Greek houses vote for their members.

Instead, independents need to get to know the candidates the old-fashioned way, like watching the Collegian’s debate online.

Some independents perceive discrimination against themselves.

It is beyond the scope of this column to argue either way on that issue.

But one way to improve the representation of independents on campus is for them to simply take part in the campaign and events in general.

Butler University is a small community, and non-Greek students make up a large majority of the student body—as much as 75 percent, according to Butler’s website.

Two of the four current candidates for SGA president specifically placed independent concerns in their platforms.

“As SGA president, I would work relentlessly toward increased communication and cooperation between Greek students and independent students,” sophomore Katie Palmer said.

Junior Kelsa Reynolds agreed.

“I will strongly support Greek philanthropy events and independent students’ sponsored programming,” Reynolds said.

Independents clearly have a stake in this election and candidates have taken notice.

Yet some independents still feel they are underrepresented.

Members of Greek houses hold a lot of leadership positions, but this is a consequence of their natural organization.

Especially for Greek houses, the chapter members frequently live with one another.

That spells out more exposure to potential Greek candidates.

This cuts both ways, of course.

Anyone who knows a candidate outside of his or her political aspirations is just as guilty as any fraternity or sorority member.

To be perfectly honest, I voted for Al Carroll last year because I know him personally.

That is not to say that anyone, Greek or not, picks their candidate based on friendship alone.

But knowing the presidential hopeful personally gives the voter insight into which candidate he or she is choosing.

Attend the SGA meeting on Wednesday, go to the debate and read up on the platforms of the candidates.

The campaign is only just getting started, so we have plenty of opportunities.

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