Latest battle of egos only delaying judicial process

NIU’s version of the battling Bickersons is at it again, but this time it’s at the expense of the students.

NIU student Regent James Mertes and Judicial Director Larry Bolles are quibbling about whether Mertes should be allowed to join the student Judicial Advisory Board.

Student Association President Preston Came resigned from the board about two weeks ago because of time constraints. Came named Mertes as his replacement but Bolles balked. Apparently, Mertes is not a member of the judicial hearing board, a prerequisite for serving on the advisory board.

Bolles’ objection is quite valid on procedural grounds—Mertes’ appointment would violate the bylaws. However, Bolles allowed Came and SA Campus Welfare Adviser Greg Leathers to serve on the advisory board even though they too violated the bylaws, as neither Came nor Leathers are members of the hearing board.

As a result, Bolles decided to take his bat and ball and go home—he won’t allow the committee to meet until Came comes up with a new nominee.

The real story here is that both parties are at fault and are letting their egos get in the way of the student judicial process.

Came, who does serve on several time-consuming university committees, feigned a lack of time in order to get Mertes a slot on the advisory board. The move was a blatantly political one hatched up by Came and Mertes. Mertes has been arguing for months to get changes made in the student judicial code which would certainly call into question some of Bolles’ current tactics. For precisely this reason, Bolles wants to keep Mertes off the advisory board.

However, Mertes should be allowed to serve on the board. He will only have one vote on a board with 15 members. Besides, Bolles has already let Came and Leathers serve in violation of the bylaws.

In addition, the advisory board, which is usually only a perfunctory committee, has been working hard over the past few weeks to determine whether or not any changes will be implemented. Time is running out, and Bolles should allow the committee to continue meeting and come up with a vote on the judicial code matter. Why waste all of the hard work? After all, if the current codes are sound the advisory board will realize this and vote the changes down. In other words, Bolles has nothing to fear.

Both sides should end this petty dispute. It is only going to adversely affect students if the student judicial code issue is not voted on.

Come on guys, grow up.