The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

50° Stony Brook, NY
The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

Newsletter

    Campus Media and the USG

    Some members of the Undergraduate Student Government seem to be under the impression that with an office and a title comes a shield from the press. They always appear shocked when an article or an Op-Ed is published that criticizes their actions and their conduct. So to these USG members, let us make something perfectly clear; you do not get a pass from the Statesman or the Press or any other media outlet, you do not get to play the role of victim. You ran for your office, you knew (theoretically) what you were getting yourself into.

    The point needs to be made because on more than one occasion the USG has questioned the ‘journalistic credibility’ of the Statesman, and has all but boycotted the Press. Allow us to speculate as to why. Our current theory is this: seeing as how a suspiciously large percentage of the USG also doubles as members of the Enduring Freedom Alliance, Stony Brook’s equivalent of the College Republicans, and seeing as how the Republicans we currently have running our national government also seem to believe that the press should not be allowed to question their actions or oppose their beliefs, it stands to reason that Republicans-from commander-in-chief of the United States, to USG members at Stony Brook University-think that they are somehow above the scrutiny of the press, and in retaliation for unpleasant stories that grace the front page can throw around wild accusations and unfounded conclusions.

    Of course, they don’t actually respond to our articles under the auspices of their USG positions; either they are concerned journalism majors or just your everyday average Joes who disapprove of our work. We of course have no problems with people questioning our reporting; its when questioning starts to border name-calling and even intimidation that we interfere and call a time out.

    It must also be said that not all USG members are so bitter about press coverage. Some people actually listen to what the campus papers are reporting and do something about it. Needless to say, when USG members actually listen to the complaints that we publicize and actually act on them, they don’t get barraged with articles about them. Only the select few who are so sure of themselves, so wrapped up in their egos, find themselves in the crosshairs of USG beat reporters.

    Never mind that the USG has been surrounded by scandals ranging from racism during an election period to the subsequent impeachment of the former USG president, never mind that participation in campus politics is abysmal at best; when USG members try to interfere with the work of the press and try to discredit campus papers because they don’t like what we are saying’hellip;its on a par with McCarthyism and the era of declaring oneself supreme chancellor and vanguard of all knowledge.

    Ironically, the press should be doing a much better job of holding the fire to the feet of the USG. After all, it is the duty of the USG to act in the best interest of the student body, and the organizations to hold them accountable are the media groups like the Statesman, the Press, SBU-TV. And assuming USG doesn’t close their doors to Statesman reporters, that is what we will do. Let this be a challenge to all who question the press’s validity: let us do our job. You may sometimes get angry or upset, we may on occasion run an erroneous fact, and we will apologize and correct it. In the end, the only thing we are really after is a fair fight.

    Leave a Comment
    Donate to The Statesman

    Your donation will support the student journalists of Stony Brook University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

    More to Discover
    Donate to The Statesman

    Comments (0)

    All The Statesman Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *