The Associated Student Senate shut down completely last Thursday following a unanimous vote of “no confidence” in the UCSB student body.
The democratically elected group of student officials told reporters at a press conference that they simply refused to work for such “uninformed, self-righteous, completely irrational” people, whose approval they were scrambling desperately to obtain mere months earlier.
“I ran for Senate because I wanted to prove how fabulously popular I was,” said Off-Campus senator Andre Theus, “not to deal with the ignorant ramblings of a bunch of ugly losers.”
“I’ll come back when one of my sexier constituents stops by to chat,” added Theus, winking.
A.S. Senate’s decision to temporarily abandon their posts was preceded by a vote on another “no confidence” resolution, A Resolution in Support of Undocumented Students and Immigrant Communities, which would have expressed, in writing, a lack of faith in recently appointed UC President Janet Napolitano. The resolution’s authors believe that Napolitano’s work as Secretary of Homeland Security, including the deportation of undocumented immigrants, makes her an egregious candidate for her new position. When the resolution failed to receive the necessary two-thirds majority vote from the senators, its supporters were quick to express disappointment in their representatives.
“I just can’t believe our senators are so cowardly that they wouldn’t openly attack Janet Napolitano the moment she took office,” said third year Chicano Studies major Lisette Acevedo. “How are we supposed to work with her to improve our school’s policies and conditions if she doesn’t know how much we despise her and everything she stands for?”
Despite the resolution’s eventual rejection, twelve of the twenty-five A.S. senators voted in favor of the resolution, including On-Campus Senator Kimia Hashemian, who thoroughly explained her decision to reporters at Friday’s press conference.
“I just need people to like me,” said Hashemian. “Really, really, really bad.”
But while Hashemian’s fellow senators all exhibit the same compulsive addiction to the approval of their peers, the aftermath of their first controversial decision gave them reason to believe that they would never completely satisfy their constituents. The futility of their desire for campus-wide validation drove their subsequent vote to immediately vacate their offices and stop serving the “bat shit insane” students of UCSB.
“If they complained about poor student conditions, a lack of diversity, or insufficient funding for overlooked campus organizations, I would have no problem placating the students by pretending to actually care about all of that stuff,” lamented On-Campus Senator Derek Wakefield while packing several OPP campaign t-shirts into a cardboard box. “But when they’re calling me racist and asking me to decry the President of our school, even though she explicitly said she would work to resolve their issues, no amount of pandering, empty rhetoric could ever make them happy.”
Indeed, numerous senators have received accusations of racism towards undocumented immigrant students, whom the DHS, while led by Napolitano, marginalized and deported as part of current U.S. immigration policy. Students of all minorities view Senate’s support of Napolitano as a blatant act of xenophobia.
“I don’t care if she’s a Democrat, or that she was selected to run a department that was founded by a Republican administration out of post-9/11 nationalism and fear, or that no Homeland Security Secretary, no matter how liberal, will ever be able to shake the implicit bigotry and paranoia of DHS’ very existence, or that she supported the DREAM Act, or that she is a prominent critic of the discriminatory REAL ID Act, which she was pressured to enforce as Homeland Security Secretary, or that she is the first woman to be named UC President and will need the support of UC students in order to succeed,” said Human Rights Board co-chair Anisha Ahuja. “Janet Napolitano is racist, and if our senators would rather close their offices than work together to publicly shame her, then they’re racist too.”
Though A.S. Senate did not provide a projected end date to the shutdown, one senator, who wishes to remain unnamed, said she would return to work when her constituents “stop being bullies.”