A call for Associated Student Government to be more responsive to student concerns and to not be silent about undocumented immigrants was met with more silence from the senators during the meeting yesterday.
The call was in a statement from diversity and inclusion chair Kim Nguyen and a response to a controversy last semester in which Todd faced backlash from students after using the term “illegal alien” in a Facebook post.
The post, which endorsed Kris Kobach for governor, said that Kobach would “put Kansans first, not illegal aliens.” It was initially a public post, made on Todd’s personal Facebook account. Todd later deleted the post.
Nguyen couldn’t be at the meeting tonight due to a scheduling conflict, her statement was read by Caylie Ratzlaff, senator and sophomore secondary education social sciences and English major.
“This is quoted from Kim, ‘I do want to point out that the silence among ASG members, especially vice president Todd, is frustrating and discouraging,” Ratzlaff read. “There were serious issues, even trauma, that threatened the mental health and safety of students last semester. Although they may not be here, it does not mean that people who were affected are fine.’”
This statement came as a response to a controversy last semester in which Todd faced backlash from students after using the term “illegal alien” in a Facebook post.
Nguyen’s statement, read by Ratzlaff, continued by asking ASG senators to take action.
“I know senators were uncomfortable and simply wanted to get it over with, but that is against the principle of being a student senator,” Ratzlaff read. “These issues of diversity and inclusion will continue to be a problem on campus if senators fail to take judiciary action. The silence and complicity further traumatize students on campus that continue to feel unheard. I, as a senator, feel emotionally unsupported outside of my committee. ASG needs to become a self reflexive organization, and it takes every member of the senate to make sure that the same mistakes like last semester do not happen again.”
Todd stood silent as Ratzlaff read, but did not respond during or after the committee report. After Ratzlaff finished reading Nguyen’s statement, Todd moved the meeting to Cabinet Reports.
None of the senators responded to the statement during the meeting.
The Diversity and Inclusion committee also announced their support for Kappa Delta Chi’s t-shirt sale, which was announced on social media yesterday.
“Last semester, VP Todd made dehumanizing remarks regarding undocumented immigrants,” read KDC’s post about the shirts on their Facebook page. “This semester, we are having a T-shirt fundraiser where all profits will go to a scholarship for Dreamers.”
The front of the t-shirt has a world map with the text “No Human Being is Illegal” repeated 12 times. The back of the shirt contains information about undocumented immigrants.
ASG also unanimously passed a resolution commemorating the founding of Emporia State University tonight. They also appointed a new senator, who was not in attendance, Khushi Ghanchi, a freshman international student, to office.