I did Speech and Debate in high school. There was no such club at the college I attended. So I started it my Freshman year. I drummed up members, wrote a Constitution, got a faculty adviser (the easiest part by far), and finally watched as the club was chartered.
The problem is, running a Debate Team is expensive. Tournament fees, travel, hotel, speech material, magazine subscriptions for research, and that's far from an exhaustive list. So I had about a dozen dependable members after a couple of months. I trained them myself since we didn't have and couldn't afford a coach. To this day our motto is "No Coaches, No Gods, No Masters".
But even though we had a dozen people who wanted to compete, we could only afford to send a handful to each tournament and we couldn't go to any tournament further than thirty or forty miles away at all due to lack of funds. We worked insanely hard to get funding from alumni interested in sponsoring public speaking. We did fundraising and we fulfilled various obligations set by our university to have them dispense money to us (like bringing in speakers, holding various events for students to attend, etc.)
After three years we managed to cover our expenses better and squirrel away about $120,000 into an endowment that several of our finance students, the University Finance Department, and some alumni created for the purpose. As required, it was held in the University's bank under the University's name. And everything was great. Until last Friday. This is the email that I found in my inbox:
The Student Council wanted to congratulate you on raising all that money for student activities! We're going to manage the funds and disburse them where they're needed most. Just let us know if you ever need money, we'll evaluate, and probably be very happy to give you whatever you need.
Thanks and Congratulations!
Princess Fernypoo Bitchface,
Student Council President
Needless to say, I burned with the rage of a thousand suns. They would "evaluate" whether or not we'd get the money we raised. I wanted to write a submission on it on Friday, but it seemed wise to not talk about it til the issue was resolved.
I checked with the faculty adviser to the Student Council. I was informed that, yes, the Student Council DID have ultimate control over student activities funds and could move them around more or less at will. So I prepared for war. It was a classic Nerds vs. Jocks.
The Student Council had stepped in the wrong pile of dogshit this time. The alumni that we got those donations from were people who had done speech and debate in high school. And people who do speech and debate in high school, VERY frequently go on... to become... lawyers.
Patent lawyers. Criminal justice lawyers. Most importantly, financial lawyers. The gentleman who was kind enough to help us manage the endowment required that all checks be earmarked specifically for our use. And thank God he did. Because this morning, I got to more or less barge in on a Student Council meeting accompanied by no fewer than four lawyers who had donated to our endowment.
After the commotion of our initial entrance settled down and we stated our purpose, the gentleman who managed our endowment addressed the faculty adviser whom I had previously dealt with.
"Here are copies of all the checks that were made out to the endowment you plundered. Here are the fourteen separate Earmark Contracts that the Student Activities Bursar signed when the University accepted the checks. And here is a Cease and Desist order. The money is back in the appropriate account by Wednesday or I'll be bringing up Student Activities on Breach of Contract on Thursday."
"We'll handle it right away. Of course."
My donor held his hand up. "There's someone at the bank right now with the same documents I've just shown you. All you have to do is not fuck up again and let the bank handle it. Really, just do NOTHING. We'll let you know if we need anything from you."
The faculty adviser, for whom the stakes here were very real, was white as a sheet and incredibly polite/apologetic. Because, yaknow, he did screw up so... I didn't feel bad. But then there was Princess Fernypoo Bitchface. She made a "nyeh" face at us and said, in a whiny, stereotypically valley girl voice, "We just wanted to throw a good party for the football team."
And it was the way she said it. She was saying WE were the assholes. Because how dare we have the audacity to ruin a PARTY for her straight, white boyfriend's football team by trying to keep OUR fucking money that we slaved to earn. I've said that I wanted to punch someone in the face before. And I've even said I'd imagined it or dreamed about it. But I'd never actually done any of those things until today. I am not inclined towards violence (I can say honestly I've never hit anyone in my life, yes even as a child), but my mind ran through every horrible detail of punching this young lady in the face. And I understand that violence is wrong and I would never enact it against anyone. But it felt amazing even in my mind.
I think I understand now. I understand why everyone on this blog has such a beef with the majority of students. This lady, no, this girl and the people who voted for her are all dumb, whiny, entitled brats. I've never been more convinced. The gall and panache with which they just fucking stole over a hundred grand that wasn't theirs was mind-blowing. Sorry for the angry rant, but holy shit. I've never been so enraged in my life.
That being said, Nerds: 1 ; Jocks: FUCKING 0
Conan the Grammarian