A call to act for students

Villanovan Editor

This past weekend the University hosted the Special Olympics Fall Festival. This event is often one of the highlights of the year and demonstrates one of the best aspects about the students at Villanova: their commitment to service.

No one can deny that Villanovans give back to the community. Through numerous programs, such as Special Olympics, Bigs and Littles and Habitat for Humanity, we spend our time here serving, and often continue serving after graduation through programs like City Year and Teach for America.

However, although Villanova students are willing to serve, they have lost their sense of activism. Villanova students may complain about tuition, the basketball lottery system or any number of things on campus which they disagree with, yet they refuse to take action or even speak up about it. Why are students so willing to serve the community, and yet also so willing to simply go along for the ride rather than taking an active role in the world?

Maybe it’s because the majority of us are from upper middle class or wealthy backgrounds and are pretty satisfied with the status quo. Perhaps it is because we are afraid of the repercussions should we stand up. Whatever the reason, students need to overcome their fear of activism and stand-up.

There doesn’t need to be protests on campus every week. In fact, this would probably be both disruptive and counter productive. But a healthy sense of outrage is good sometimes. When there are issues which the student body feels strongly about, they need to unite and stand up for their rights. Disagree with the costs of books or maybe a University rule? Maybe it’s something as simple as the new fries in the Connelly Center. Whatever your cause, speak out about it. Students should take on the world head on. We are active participants in our lives, not just passengers. Student’s always complain about not being taken seriously or not being treated with respect, but it is a two way street.

To paraphrase Eli Wallach’s character from “The Magnificent Seven,” If you act like a sheep, you’re going to get sheared.

Margret Meade once said “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” It’s about time University students took her up on her offer.