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Vote Juan Cubillo in for another school year

You may have missed the epic miniseries of Student Government drama that could have filled a season of “Degrassi” or an episode of “House of Cards,” but let me assure you it’s all very serious business. Egos were stroked. Catty glances and veiled words were exchanged. Angry letters were sent. Very serious business. And if you’d let your imagination replace issues of healthcare with a mobile barbershop (and issues of national security with parking problems), you might be able to draw lines from our national government to our student government, you know, if you’re into that sort of thing.

What you’d find if you were inclined to search for similarities is that our SG President Juan Cubillo is in a political situation reminiscent of President Obama – just without the nuclear codes or “Leader of the Free World” responsibilities. The strained relationship with Congress. The accusations of a self-inflated ego. The spending and debates against spending. The mobile barbershop Obama wanted to place outside the Capitol. It’s all here for our viewing and comparing pleasures.

But when you strip away all the nonsense and political posturing on either side, what you end up with is a president who represents the interests of our student body, a president who loves this University and what it stands for – a kid who spends every day putting on for our city and our school. For the work he’s done and the effort he’s put into his role, I believe you should vote to re-elect Juan Cubillo to the position of president of our Student Government.

Let’s get the 12,000-pound trailer in the room out of the way first. With the sort of reaction students and the student press have given the mobile barbershop, you might have thought the mobile hair stylist was literally a communist invasion by Monica Lewinsky to bring Obamacare and disease to our campus. But when my leadership makes mistakes, I would prefer they be made in an attempt to do something I’ve asked of them. Juan Cubillo ran on a platform that included a barbershop at FGCU. It wasn’t some fine-print pledge or backroom promise. It was a major piece of the platform he was elected on. So punish him for implementing a mandate he was given? What horrible manners. Why not invite someone to your house and then scream at them to get off your lawn once they arrive? When public opinion became obvious and apparent, Cubillo revoked the barbershop’s spot on our campus. Little harm and no foul.

On the other hand, of victories rather than failures, there’s much to speak about. Courserequired calculators are now available for rent. Library hours have been extended during finals week. Attempts have been made to make textbooks cheaper and available as e-books. A Scantron machine has been ordered for campus, allowing students not to be beholden to campus bookstore hours to get the Scantrons they need. Campus jobs, possibly your own, have been expanded to give much-needed earned incomes to students with tight budgets. Each of these things count, too. This University is expanding at a rapid pace. The leadership that represents us must be as flexible and passionate as Cubillo has demonstrated he is. When you strip away all the political nonsense, you find a leader who has given his all to the students here – a straight shooter who cares about the future of this school and this community and has helped shape it.

George W. Bush once said, “You may not have respected the decisions I made, but I hope you respect that I made the decisions.” It isn’t the likely aspiration of a modern young leader to be compared to Bush, but I think that fits well here. Love and loyalty – what more could you Juant?

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