Photo Caption: Max’s campaign poster.
Ohio University Student Senate is going through a transitional phase.
With vice-president Anna Morton having stepped in to replace former Senate President Nick Southall - who, you may recall, resigned after being Tased and arrested at the Beef O'Brady Bowl for drunken and disorderly conduct - the role of vice president is now open.
And, unlike in years past, any Ohio University student may now be nominated to fill that role - even if that student also happens to be a dog.
Motivated by the recent incompetence of student government, an English bulldog named Max has just announced his desire to be nominated as the new vice president of Student Senate, and, despite his lack of opposable thumbs, he hopes the voting body will sincerely consider him as a viable candidate when they cast their ballots tomorrow.
"I am very serious about this," Max said, his responses translated with the help of a certified dog whisperer: "Often, as I sat in the park, nibbling my collar and reading the paper, I would come across the reports of our Student Senate's ridiculous incompetence, and the whole thing just made me howl.
"I sniffed around the issues," he added, "and I detected something really smelly about our student government."
Because Student Senate is such an important, influential and well-respected institution, Max says he doesn't want the next year of student government to turn into a mockery.
"I will focus on the important issues, such as the decriminalization of public urination on campus, which is surely a natural right of any student," Max said. "In addition, I will work toward the elimination of vacuum cleaners, which are a menace to society and a harmful distraction to the entire student body."
He added that he also hopes to allocate university funds to subsidize tennis balls for every student, which will increase morale and physical fitness and are really soft if you chew on them.
"Oh, and we should totally be able to eat squirrels, because... um... the economy is bad, and food is expensive, and there are a lot of squirrels... so maybe we should just eat them," Max said.
The odds, however, are against Max's efforts, for although anyone can apply for the position of vice president, only a private body of Student Senate members are allowed to vote - which, Max does admit, is completely understandable and entirely fair, given Student Senate's excellent track record of electing qualified, professional candidates who are totally not dumbasses.
"Tomorrow," Max said, "when they vote to fill the position of vice president, I hope they will look at my own track record and realize how truly qualified I am for the job, especially considering my skills in eating my own feces and my tendency to pee on the carpet."
Max is aware of the difficulties of breaking into the world of student government. In the past several years, Student Senate has, for the most part, been led by the same group of people. Each year the name of the ticket changes, but it's essentially the same legacy, a collective that is able, again and again, to out-campaign and outspend its opposition, often by thousands of dollars. Because top positions in Student Senate come with large scholarships, it's a good investment, as well as a sweet way to boost one's resume.
But Max is a kennel dog, raised in tiny, bleak cages, so he understands adversity and the value of hard work.
"I wasn't born with a silver chew toy in my mouth," Max growled. "And I will work my hardest to ensure that student government will be taken seriously. Also, I like to scoot around on my ass and lick my own testicles, so I am capable of any responsibility Student Senate can throw at me."
Max may be a gentle lap dog at heart, but he says he's not afraid to bark when problems arise or if the doorbell rings. And although the last Student Senate president was brought down by a Taser, Max's experience with shock collars and electric fences assures he will not be tamed so easily.
"Sometimes I vomit, and then I eat my own vomit, and I think it tastes good, so I'm well-suited for student government," Max said.
Even if Wednesday's vote does not go in his favor, Max says he will remain staunch in his goal of fixing student government, and he plans on running for president when open elections are held in the spring.
"What I want is a longer leash, a bigger cage, and a nicer master for every student," Max said. "If you don't want Student Senate to become a joke, then you should vote for change. Vote loyalty. Vote obedience. Vote dog."
A former campus activist, alum Will Klatt, is helping Max's campaign, along with a group of current students.