Grizzlies: Stop complaining

By Postie Editors

Only a few dozen tickets to the Republican presidential debate in the O’Rena were made available to students.

And while it seems unfair, students must remember that Oakland University is simply a venue for the event — the debate is being hosted by CNBC and the Michigan Republican Party, not  OU.

A lot of misconceptions have abounded regarding the planning of this event, something we’ve reported multiple times and have been reminded of.

We’ve been witnessing floods of social media entries complaining about the paucity of tickets available and how difficult it was to obtain one.

The fact of the matter is, it’s not up to OU.

Learn the facts and be informed, even if it isn’t about politics or the upcoming election.

The guest list is up to the discretion of the Michigan GOP and the school was fortunate to have access to the amount of tickets received.

This event should be treated like any other outside event being held on campus.

Just because a wedding is being held at Meadow Brook Hall or in the Oakland Center doesn’t mean that all 19,000-plus Golden Grizzlies are invited to attend.

Though politics may not matter to you (the professors on page 4 present some arguments on why this shouldn’t be so), what should at least matter is the university you chose to attend and pay tuition to.

It may seem strange that a public university is holding a partisan event, but students must once again remember that Oakland is simply playing the role of a host in this event.

These debates play an integral role in elections and, by extension, the democratic system.

Another misconception being circulated is yet another perceived lack of parking being available this week.

The university has responded to this accordingly by creating an additional 410 parking sports to offset the occupation of various parking lots from Tuesday night to Thursday morning.

Yet again, parking may pose a problem, as we reported in last week’s edition of The Oakland Post. But think about the trade-off in this situation.

The university is receiving what President Gary Russi estimates to be millions of dollars worth of television time.

That kind of exposure lends to OU’s rise to prominence as a nationally recognized public university.

This isn’t the be-all-end-all route to becoming renown, but it certainly is a huge stepping stone that has presented itself to the university, especially now as we try to redefine ourselves and our image.

This event represents the first time in which a large-scale national event has been held on campus.

That’s why you should not only care about the debate, but welcome both the event and the inconveniences it may pose.

It’s not a matter of whether you hold an interest in the politics or the Republican Party, it’s about creating a future for the school that will boost the value of an education attained at OU.

In exchange, we’ll have to make room for the hundreds of media organizations for a day or two.

Other universities that have held similar events have reaped the benefits of this type of exposure, according to Russi and there’s no reason we shouldn’t take advantage of it and embrace the hosting of this event.

CNBC producer Samantha Wright said at a panel Friday that  OU was chosen as the venue for the debate because of the administration’s willingness to cooperate with the debate’s host.

That attitude should carry through to students as well.