Opinion: The shortened RSU election leads to apathetic, uneducated voters.

(Peter Goffin/Ryersonian Staff)

(Peter Goffin/Ryersonian Staff)


Feel like the Ryerson Students’ Union (RSU) elections are a little quick this year? That’s because they are, and we should be pissed about it.

Last year, the election campaign period was two weeks. However, due to student complaints, the campaign period was shortened this year to three business days.

Does anyone else find this jump extreme? Changing the election period from two weeks to three days is like accidentally pouring way too many chocolate chips into your chocolate chip cookie dough. So to make up for it, you decide to put none in your next batch. Both batches turn out nasty and there’s an incredibly obvious happy medium being ignored. Did anyone think of a week-long campaign period? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

I get it, last year’s campaign dragged on, but at least we knew who we were voting for. Students knew what each slate stood for and its campaign promises.

This year, the 72-hour campaign period falls at the tail end of midterm season — the lovely time of the semester when students are juggling midterm exams, quickly-approaching assignment due dates or both. What student is going to spend their minimal free time researching the election? If the election campaign season is going to be in the middle of one of the busiest times of the semester, it should be at least long enough for students to gather their thoughts and form a legitimate opinion. At least respect students enough for that. Please.

Because if students don’t have enough time to learn about the candidates, how are we expected to make an educated vote for the candidate who best represents our interests? An uneducated electorate leads to a poor election outcome, because students are either going to vote blindly, or simply not at all.

This abhorrent disrespect for students’ voting rights will lead to an apathetic student body, and result in a low voter turnout. Once again, unsurprisingly, students aren’t going to give a rat’s ass about their student government. And everybody’s cookies are going to be ruined.

I took the liberty of asking students on campus questions about the RSU and the election, and filmed it. The results won’t surprise you — unfortunately.

[jwplayer mediaid=”40640″]


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