Last week, the Collegian covered the proposed amendment to the Student Federation Constitution, which would secure a seat for a member of the Van Andel Graduate School of Statesmanship.
The idea has been in play since last year, and is shared by the undergraduate students as it does to the graduate students. The grad students interviewed made the only two arguments necessary to see that implementing the amendment needs no debate. Give the grad students a seat.
“Taxation without representation” was the rallying cry of the American Revolution, appears on every Washington, D.C. license plate, and lies at the heart of the statesmen-in-training’s desire to have a seat at the Student Fed fleet of tables. As the article mentioned last week, grad students pay student fees like the rest of campus. They should have a voice in how those fees are spent. If you’re worried about a coup by the didn’t-want-to-stop-going-to-schoolers, stop it. They want one seat. That’s only a little more power than Queen Elizabeth II. It’ll be the most efficient seat on the Fed, too: one proto-statesman representing a couple dozen more.
So, there’s your justice argument. The graduate students just want all their rights of Hillsdale citizenship. Plus, Hillsdale is a college, a partnership. Though these are late additions to the partnership, it doesn’t make them less a part of it. Christ’s parable of the laborers, in which the same denarius was paid “unto this last” — the late arrivals to the field — as was paid to the men who came with the dawn, denies us a right to reject the graduate students’ desire to join with us in the privilege of student government.
The Hillsdale student community is more than the events and clubs that the Student Federation finances and facilitates. While the integration of the graduate students into this community can only take time and charity, taking this finite step toward further friendship between grad students and undergrads is simple.