Taking Back Student Government

Chance Layton

Andrew Pessin is a Professor of Philosophy at Connecticut College. In June 2015, NAS released a statement supporting Professor Pessin’s “academic freedom in the face of controversy” when students and faculty members denounced him for comments he made about the terrorist group Hamas.

In a recent article, Professor Andrew Pessin proclaims that student government should be focused purely on matters affecting the student body. He observes that student activists tend to hijack student government and use their positions as a political weapon.

Dr. Pessin explains that when movements such as Boycott, Divest, Sanctions (BDS) visit colleges they leave “behind a campus in shambles.” And when these activists control student governments, “The result is typically a lot of hollering, tremendous divisiveness, individuals feeling marginalized and even attacked.”

To help students resisting the “efforts by angry activists to hijack their student governments,” Dr. Pessin offers a template resolution (which is available in the Huffington Post). Student governments that take up his proposed resolution would stick to “tackling issues that directly concern student life on campus,” and ensure that activists pursue their causes in other student organizations.

The best way to keep student governments productive and aligned with their intended purposes is to take Dr. Pessin’s advice and create safeguards against infiltration by those intent on advancing divisive special interests.

Image: McGill BDS launch by McGill Daily // CC BY

  • Share

Most Commented

October 25, 2022

1.

NAS President Peter Wood Addresses the Pending Racial Preferences Cases

Read NAS president Peter Wood's remarks on the upcoming Supreme Court cases, which he presented at a meeting of "Oasis," an informal group of academics and intellectuals based in......

July 25, 2022

2.

Against Transgenderism

The ideology of transgenderism strives to slam shut any door that offers opposition to its attempts to acquire power and control. This statement explains our opposition to such an ideology i......

October 20, 2022

3.

NAS Statement on Nomination of Ben Sasse for University of Florida President

We believe that Senator Sasse would make an excellent president of the University of Florida, and we urge the Board of Trustees to follow the search committee’s recommendation....

Most Read

May 15, 2015

1.

Where Did We Get the Idea That Only White People Can Be Racist?

A look at the double standard that has arisen regarding racism, illustrated recently by the reaction to a black professor's biased comments on Twitter....

October 25, 2022

2.

NAS President Peter Wood Addresses the Pending Racial Preferences Cases

Read NAS president Peter Wood's remarks on the upcoming Supreme Court cases, which he presented at a meeting of "Oasis," an informal group of academics and intellectuals based in......

October 12, 2010

3.

Ask a Scholar: What is the True Definition of Latino?

What does it mean to be Latino? Are only Latin American people Latino, or does the term apply to anyone whose language derived from Latin?...