Tailgating is on life support. It is not dead. We are writing this letter for those who are concerned for the rights of the students and the future of tailgating. The Ball State Tailgating Crew, along with many others, are concerned after experiencing tailgating under the reformed rules. We feel many issues need to be re-addressed by the Student Government Association and administration.
First, we feel the new restrictions placed on tailgating hamper school spirit. Tailgating gives the student body a chance to come together in camaraderie and show support for our school. We believe this unity was desperately missing last weekend. It was obvious the festive air of tailgating was not carried into the stands.
Second, Tommy Rector, SGA president, should represent the entire student body of Ball State. It is apparent the Rector has only showed consideration towards school administration's concerns. We confidently feel that the majority of the students are not in favor of the decisions made by the administration and SGA. Rector should be fighting for the students beliefs and not be a lap dog for Mr. Hyman, Dean of Students, and administration.
We understand that mass alcohol consumption as well as minor consumption is a major concern of the university and SGA. The new regulations will not combat these problems, it will divert these actions elsewhere. Tailgating provides an opportunity for Ball State to keep a watchful eye on behavior they deem undesirable. We support the presence of police to serve and protect the safety concerns of those in attendance.
Finally, the administration and SGA have recently published articles in the Daily News quoting the increase of attendance at games. The administration, as well as Rector, would like us to believe the increase is directly related to the new restrictions on tailgating. The fact of the matter is the football team's four-game winning streak is the reason for increased attendance. Go Cards! We don't know of any sports organization that "packs the house" when the team is losing. Lack of attendance is not related to tailgating matters.
Unity and freedom are as essential to Americans as they are to Ball State students and alumni. Current regulations for tailgating are not prospering the university or the football team. We are simply demanding that the "new regulations" be lifted until something is done to accommodate the beliefs of the majority of students. Until this day arrives we will continue to fight for our right to tailgate freely.
Robbing enjoyment from tailgaters is essentially taking away an aspect of game day that adds to the attraction of Saturday afternoon football. What is next? Where will it end? For those of you who attended last week's game and pre-game activities, we feel your pain and hope to see your support in the petition we have created to have the new regulations abolished. If you have not already signed the petition, they will be circulating around campus, or you can send your name, along with concerns to: email@example.com.