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ASUA and UAB should stick to their own turf

By Wildcat Opinions Board
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Friday Feb 1, 2002

In the grand scheme of things, there's a reason why dogs stick to barking and cats stick to meowing.

However simplified the comparison may be, student organizations like the Associated Students of the University of Arizona and the University Activities Board should follow the examples set by these two animals - each group should stick to what it knows best.

In the past few months, ASUA has booked, and subsequently cancelled, two major concert events: alternative rock groups 311 and Better Than Ezra. The reason for the cancellations? ASUA just doesn't have the experience necessary to put on a concert.

This statement is a bit harsh, but it really is the most substantial reason why ASUA has not yet this year had success booking campus entertainment. Traditionally, ASUA has existed as a student body government for the University of Arizona, and UAB deals mainly with campus entertainment.

Yet, this past year, ASUA has tried - unsuccessfully - to implement the position of a special events director, a position currently held by political science senior Pamela Epstein. It is true that the student body indicated its wish to have more concerts and entertainment events held on campus, leading to ASUA's idea to tack a special events director onto its staff.

Now, let it be said that ASUA's desire to make this campus a better and more entertaining place is a noble gesture. But having been met with barrier after barrier on the road to a successful concert, ASUA should either hand the reins of entertainment completely over to UAB or come up with some sort of a way to collaborate with UAB on concert events.

Logistically speaking, UAB leans heavily on the support of Arizona Student Unions for its concert promotion, a backing that ASUA doesn't have. J.J. Kruglick, director of UAB concerts, said Arizona Student Unions provides UAB with an entire marketing staff that devotes itself to advertising whenever UAB needs the additional promotional support.

ASUA President Ray Quintero has argued that ASUA does, in fact, have a similar support system - one that is presumptively a good one but has yet to prove itself worthy in the face of concert ticket sales.

However callous the reality may be, ASUA is slowly gaining a bad reputation because of its failed attempts at booking concerts. If it continues down this path, it will not only lose credibility as an organization that knows how to coordinate events but also as an organization that knows how to lead in general.

The student body doesn't seem to have come to this conclusion yet, but ASUA shouldn't continue its drive to bring entertainment to campus if it hopes to maintain any sort of integrity in the eyes of students.

Leave the concerts to UAB. Leave student government to ASUA. No one wants to see a barking cat. Enough said.


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