It took me a long time to really figure out where I stood on the strike. Unfortunately, this was after I said I’d write this piece. After reflecting, I realized that my problem doesn’t stem from the strike itself, but rather the light it sheds on the student body in general.
It has shown that student politics are a joke. Votes with only 6 percent turnout are difficult to take seriously to begin with, and when the majority of the assembly is spent arguing about procedure, it becomes even more laughable. I can’t fault the Student Unions entirely however, they’ve done what they can for the most part. Who I do put at fault however, are the students themselves.
Everyone has an opinion either for or against the strike, whether you’re a student, mother, priest, or homeless man. While this is perfectly acceptable, what isn’t acceptable is an uninformed opinion. Not taking the time to find out what’s being fought for, and instead, drawing it up to “a bunch of hippies being hippies” is what my biggest problem is.
If I hear another word about hippies and hipsters, I’ll ironically go flower-power on someone’s ass. People are, for a various number of reasons, uninterested in fighting against tuition hikes, and to a certain extent, what the government does with our money. They’ve decided to hate the strike, simply because it’s an inconvenience, without understanding what those strikers are striking for.
People also love to use the low voter turnout as a way to demean the strike; it’s these same people who are the reason for the low turnout. Had they gone and voiced their opinions, the results may have been different.
What this strike has made me realize, if I may speak bluntly, is how selfish and lazy most students are. Not being concerned with tuition hikes is fine, but to comply through inaction is just as troublesome as drinking PBR and drinking water out of a mason jar. I think everyone involved in the student protest would simply like people to take the time to understand the effects of the tuition hikes and to then make an informed decision on whether to support the cause or not.
After all, it’s not a meme that’s going to enlighten you.