Staff Editorial: LUCC defends power of student body

Thank you to the members of the Lawrence community and LUCC who strive to preserve the ideals that this institution promotes and the promises to empower, respect, and enrich the student body. In light of the recent issues between LUCC and the Lawrence administration over Lawrence’s smoking policy, we must realize how vital it is that we take action to defend the freedoms granted us by this university.

Lawrence claims a unique curriculum that assists students in “developing the analytical and communication skills needed to succeed in college and beyond,” and that teaches us to “think critically, write cogently, and argue persuasively,” (LU website).

Yet, when LUCC, our “distinctive college government,” employed these skills in finalizing a decision on smoking in campus buildings, the administration negated its validity and passed a non-smoking policy without consulting our student government.

It was never made clear that by “empowering students to affect the community” the LU administration meant affect the community in only “administration-approved” ways.

By acting executively above the efforts of LUCC, the Lawrence administration has trivialized any power LUCC ever had, cutting it down to a conditional representation of merely what the student body might be able to accomplish if granted permission.

But rather than responding passively, LUCC has passed a resolution demanding that the administration cancel the non-smoking policy.

This active effort to rebuke the administration’s decision and reclaim the undermined power of LUCC deserves great appreciation and acclaim from the Lawrence community and especially the student body.