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As a senior, I have seen the Undergraduate Council change from a elitist organization run by representatives of the final club "old boys" network to a much more democratic and truly representative organization which is slowly but surely achieving greater legitimacy in the eyes of the students and administration.
Integral to the increased accountability and respectability of the council is its decision last year to elect the president and vice president by popular vote. (Interestingly, some of the opponents of Lamelle D. Rawlins '99 and Michael A. O'Mary '99 voted against the popular elections in which they are now partaking!)
We have a duty, as students, to take advantage of this opportunity and make our voices heard in the elections that are going on right now. We have a duty to vote for the student leaders who will best represent our interests and concerns--for the student leaders who will fight for and with us: for greater safety, greater student representation on the Administrative Board, greater administrative accountability, better MAC facilities, more money to student groups, a Multicultural Student Center and so on.
Rawlins and O'Mary are the candidates who will best represent us on these issues. Negative press by their opponents notwithstanding, these are the only two of the legion of candidates for council president or vice president who have a record they can run on. These are the only two who have proved that they can and do work for--and achieve results on--the issues that matter to us. They are the only two who have consistently demonstrated their progressive ideals and who don't just mouth nice-sounding lines that sound vaguely progressive, but actually put that stuff in action. I had the privilege of working with Lamelle last year on numerous women's issues, and I saw her record of fighting for issues many of us hold dear.
I urge the students of Harvard-Radcliffe to vote Rawlins/O'Mary in this week's elections. Don't let the council fall back into the hands of the representatives who would rather keep money and power within the council. Support the only two candidates whose goal is to distribute the council's money and power to the students.
(And if you have doubts--check out the Rawlins/O'Mary World Wide Web page at http://www.fas.harvard.edu/~rawlins/) --Megan L. Peimer '97, co-president, Radcliffe Union of Students
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