SGA responds to critisism
Amid informal polls, vote accurately reflected constitutes
Lara Ismert | SGA president
Last week in the Collegio, Editor-in-Chief Jay Benedict published an opinion article concerning Student Government Association’s method of handling the resolution in opposition to concealed carry on campus.
Benedict said that the survey was rushed, not publicized, and that the allegations against the validity of the results may have been influenced by the personal opinions of the members of SGA.
He also inferred that Student Government would not represent a constituent’s opinion if it was in opposition to an opinion in SGA.
It’s true that the survey was not implemented with the care and concern the issue deserved, and we are looking at ways to better conduct surveys in the future.
What wasn’t published in Benedict’s opinion article, because no member of SGA was formally interviewed or consulted concerning the details about the validity of the survey or discussion at the meeting, is that there were other informal surveys conducted by SGA members.
During the nearly two hour debate that SGA had concerning a resolution in opposition to concealed carry on campus, senators referenced informal surveys they had held in their classes.
Several senators simply asked their classmates to give a show of hands of who would be in favor of concealed carry on campus. Out of some large class polls, approximately 10-15 percent of students favored concealed carry on campus. This is a stark comparison to the results of the online survey results.
Many varying polls of constituent opinions were taken into consideration when the resolution came up to vote. In addition, statistics were shared by senators on both sides of the issue.
What I am inferring is that the Student Government at PSU takes the student body’s opinion very seriously. Each senator has a different group of constituents that he or she reaches, which brings a diverse viewpoint to a vote like the one we had on concealed carry on campus on Feb. 6.
Our vote’s result was 22-16 in favor of the resolution that opposed concealed carry on campus.
As president of an organization that has members who I believe are the top student leaders on campus, I would argue that every senator voted that Wednesday evening with integrity to their constituents.
Each senator cast a vote that reflected the majority of the students’ opinion they consulted. Concealed carry is a sensitive issue on campus, and it has obviously created a hot debate.
SGA is glad for the discussion and input from constituents, and will continue to do its duty in voting as a representative body for the students of PSU.
Benedict should have done homework before criticizing
Sydney Ward | SGA vice president
I appreciate the vast amount of coverage Student Government Association has gotten recently in regards to the concealed carry resolution that was passed and for our work in Topeka at Higher Education Day. However, I am disappointed by the comments made by editor Jay Benedict.
As a fellow Communication student and First Amendment supporter, I would ask that in the future editors and reporters seek a more “expert” opinion than even those in SGA.
By asking any of his Communication professors, Jay could have gotten a researcher’s perspective of the survey done by Ph.d. holders who do survey research all the time. Whether it was GCC or anti-conceal carry supporters lobbying in the Oval, or if no one had lobbied, there is still a huge margin of error in the survey. I think it is irresponsible of Jay to speak without support or evidence to back his claims. The survey was flawed, and we sought outside faculty input on the numbers. We as a student government are taking steps to correct our survey gathering in the future.