Losing face & respect

Madison Bettle
Madison Bettle

Every year the AMS receives mixed reviews from the student body and every year many students are left feeling bitter and resentful.

But despite students’ complaints, each year the AMS manages to pull through with nothing more than a slap on the wrist.

Sure, a lot of money falls through the cracks and half the time we’re all wondering where our money is going, but what can we honestly expect to happen when we put three students in charge of more than 16,000 others? What it comes down to is that they do the best they can.

But apparently it’s not enough.

When I was in first year, I saw the AMS as something like an “Ivory Tower” where the students who were paving the way for tomorrow made sure that everyone’s needs were being met. In reality, I had no clue what they did. In second year, I became avidly involved and gained a better understanding of what goes on.

Many of my friends put down the AMS because they feel that it’s nothing more than “power-hungry nerds.” And, for the record, they really aren’t.

The AMS is made up of a broad range of individuals who come to the table with an array of ideas of how to make the University a better place. They do a lot to make our transition from high school to university easier.

At the same time, there’s obviously a lot more that can be done—and it isn’t being done.

When I first learned that private T4 forms were stolen from the AMS, my gut reaction happened in typical AMS fashion: blame the culprit. But who really is the culprit here?

I worked for the AMS last year, as did many of my friends. Any of their identities could have been stolen and all because the information was left—forgotten—within a “relatively untraveled” hallway. Not for five minutes. Not an hour. Not even a couple of days. Weeks. Even with my extreme devotion to the AMS, can you really blame me for having doubts?

The AMS cannot blame a nameless individual for stealing those documents; this goes far beyond a bad call. What the AMS decides to take from this incident will determine the kind of leaders the executive are, and the tone of the remainder of the year.

I have been defending the AMS to my friends and acquaintances since my first year. I have worked alongside them with the idea that each year we will progress further, that every year student life at Queen’s will be that much better.

But I’m tired of fighting a losing battle. I came to this institution with the belief that I was in capable hands, but I can’t help but feel personally betrayed by recent events and the lack of effort being made to correct this mistake.

Sorry, this year’s AMS—I may work for you, but this is one advocate you’ve lost.

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