Lawrence administration, after subtly encouraging it for who knows how long, has decided to ban Senior Streak.It seems that the administration has taken the wrong approach toward a rather innocuous senior tradition by not getting a handle on it before it got out of hand.
There has long been a wink and a nod about Senior Streak. Speakers throughout the Senior Dinner, with President Warch and other administration members present, would make sly remarks about what would be coming up after the dinner.
Members of Lawrence security would stand at strategic points throughout the streak route.
Two years ago, I overheard President Warch winkingly ask a senior what she was going to do next, as a group of us walked from the senior dinner to the VR.
I’ve seen Andrea Powers, the associate director of alumni relations, carousing with seniors in the VR shortly before, if not during, the streak. The administration knew exactly what was occurring as it happened.
Have things gotten out of control? Certainly. At last year’s senior dinner, several students drank too much alcohol and ruined it for the rest of us.
But the administration is going from feast to famine in its approach. The administration’s decision to limit this to just the wine is a good one-seniors should be able to enjoy the dinner without rowdy drunkenness.
If the administration was worried about trouble after the senior dinner, why not send a memo to the entire senior class letting them know that past problems have caused them to start to examine whether the streak should be allowed in the future? Publicize the supposed problems that the streak has caused. If seniors knew the tradition was in jeopardy, they would be more likely to be on better behavior to make sure it continued.
If there are incidents of people breaking the law, they should be prosecuted. Sexual harassment or assault should never be tolerated, and making examples of those responsible surely would be an ample deterrent.
Whatever the solution that the Lawrence community decides upon, it should be arrived upon after discussions that are open to the students who will be most affected.
It is laughable that the memorandum to the senior class notes,”[I]t is important to note that numerous details have not been worked out yet.” And what details would those be?
Unfortunately, this seems to be another in a line of recent decisions President Warch and the administration are making against the will of the student body, deaf to any on-campus debate.
Before his final exit this spring, it seems that the president is now wringing out the last of his political capital to remake the university in accordance with his imperial design.
It’s a shame.