The Scarlet & Black

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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Staff ed: 10/10 party cannot devolve into chaos again

We realize that the last thing most students want to do right now is remember the most embarrassing moments from 10/10. However, the gravity and massive amount of infractions this year, as reported in the story on page 1, demand that we continue to discuss ways to improve this campus holiday. We cannot continue to behave the way the we did and expect the event to carry on as we know it.

Self-governance requires accountability and this 10/10 was a failure of that. It is supposed to be a party, not a riot. Ben Finkelstein, Nathan Levine and Andrew Otto, captains of the Frisbee team, deserve our sincerest apologies and gratitude for picking up the tab for our unaccounted mistakes. We extend this to those who have graciously stepped up and taken responsibility for their own mistakes. Hopefully, more will follow in their footsteps.

There are several ideas being bounced around on how we can fix 10/10. One of these ideas is that we should limit or eliminate the visitors that come to campus for the party, but it’s a suggestion based on the faulty belief that Grinnell College students couldn’t be behind the infractions. It’s a lazy solution that doesn’t attack the root of the problem—10/10 is an intrinsically energetic event and everyone has to be aware of the blurry line between riot and party.

Along these same lines is the suggestion that security cameras could be installed on campus as a way of discouraging bad behavior. This is another solution that breaks from the self-governance ideology, and one that should be avoided at all costs in order to maintain the Grinnell community’s sense of freedom and responsibility.

There are a few institutional changes that might help 10/10 run more smoothly. The first concerns the rescue dogs. While we can all agree they do a commendable job battling sobriety as well as helping those who do actually need rescuing, their job description should be expanded to include “watch dog” duties as well. Still, they can’t be everywhere, so it is up to everyone to say something when events take a destructive turn.

Our next suggestion is that the locations be planned to avoid a riotous bottleneck. This year, Loose hall was such a location. In accordance with this idea, a guidebook that would direct future 10/10s could help to avoid the mistakes made this year. There is no need to add x-factors to this event by changing it annually—proper planning can proactively reduce the possibility of bad situations.

Finally, something as simple as a wristband for those who want to take part in the festivities could act as a deterrent. Those without a wristband would still be able to participate, but wearing one would mean that you’re pledging to keep a lid on the wildest behaviors. In addition, not wearing a wristband would mean that if your behavior were out of line, you would be asked to leave or retire for the evening.
But these options are just the beginning. Continuing the conversation on how to improve 10/10 is the best way that we can ensure that it will continue. However, at the heart of the matter remains the fact that self-governance is key. We all have to remember to control ourselves and to help guide those around us in making the right decisions.

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