Former student body president Barclay Harless’ resignation Friday went only so far in saving face for the organization.
The failed last-minute dismissals of three key Student Government officials the same day showed the powerful chokehold cronyism exhibited upon the organization.
President Gavin Flowers, however, should be commended for his handling of the misdirected dismissals. The termination orders, which would have officially dismissed SG director of special projects Natasha Bui, athletic affairs coordinator Gregory Morgan and director of student life and development Megan Latchford, were passed to him unsigned and therefore
As acting president, Flowers had the authority to carry out the dismissals, but was correct not to, considering the situations surrounding the dismissals.
According to letters written between deputy chief of staff Alecia Peacock and chief of staff David Brickhouse, the three were fired because they lacked the confidence to work together as part of a team.
Lack of confidence, however, does not mean the three senior staffers were fired because they failed to perform their jobs or did so badly.
The chronology of the dismissals, instead, suggests that “teamwork problems” is simply SG-speak for not playing ball.
The three staffers dismissed openly disagreed with Harless’ leadership, including his handling of a June 14 incident, during which drinking is said to have taken place in SG offices during a Bulls Night Out orientation event.
Harless and SG didn’t officially react to allegations of drinking in SG offices until last week.
After the alcohol incident came to light, the Oracle also revealed that campus ride-provider SAFE Team- which is run by SG – had provided illicit rides.
Considering the long list of Harless’ missteps, Bui, Morgan, and Latchford were warranted in criticizing him. They also upheld their duty to serve the student body by voicing their concerns and observations publicly: The three met with Oracle managing editor David Guidi when Harless and many SG members were evasive and secretive.
They helped the student body learn the truth, and then acted on it by discussing impeachment proceedings against Harless before their dismissals.
Flowers is right not to sign the termination orders, because it penalized three courageous students who demanded professionalism in SG.
Flowers must now follow up with a little housecleaning in SG and firing those who were partial to Harless’ corrupt