2015 Cowboys & Braves Poster(1)Instead of the traditional Polyester Paradise dance, SGA came up with five options for students to vote for: including Masquerade, Cowboys and Braves, Winter Wonderland, Harry Potter and Polyester Paradise.

Although all students had the chance to vote, only around 60 students of the close to 2800 did.

In the last two weeks, a petition to change the theme from Cowboys and Braves  to Polyester Paradise gained 180 signatures. Although a handful of them were obviously fake, this should not detract that virtually all of them were coming from real students who were upset about the misconducted vote and removal of the traditional Boone dance.

The students who started and signed the petition have a valid point for objecting to the Cowboys and Braves dance, although originally labeled as Braves vs. Cowboys. The school is already full of racial insensitivities, like calling our campus “The Reservation” and other mockeries of Native American culture, the change from versus to and was a smart move, diffusing any tension about some sort of violent connotation.

Although some of the objection was to the insensitivities of the theme, much of it was towards the wiping away of a long-standing tradition, with an undemocratic vote. Even when factoring in occasional fake signatures from students, it is still significantly more than the estimated 60 votes cast to determine the new theme of the spring dance.

All students had the chance to vote, but the way it was executed excluded much of the student population. The voting was completed at lunch on computers, unlike most student voting which is done on student’s phone during Brave TV. If a student was absent, had early release, ate lunch somewhere besides the lunchroom, or had to wait in the lunch line, voting would likely have been forgotten or not an option.

If the school is going to give the students the option to abolish a 22-year-old tradition, they should give everyone an equal voice, not just the 60 students who rallied support for their favorite theme and got their friends to vote on a single day. Voting should have been a multi-day process, to allow students who were not at school on voting day a chance to participate.

Also, it should have been accessible, not just in the lunch area one day during lunch. Every student has a phone, the modern voting device. Allowing students to vote through Eduballot (like students have grown accustomed to doing) on their phones would have increased the amount of participation tremendously, instead of making them sacrifice lunch time and trying to remember to vote.

With only a 2 percent of the entire student population voting, the vote grossly under-represents the school’s student population.

While the petitioning students have merit to their claims, even if they are being discrediting because a few students added fake names, the students cannot expect administration or PTSA do anything to alter the theme of the dance this close to the dance. The theme was determined back in January and PTSA purchased supplies and decorations shortly after, almost two months ago. If students actually wanted change, they would have submitted the petition after the vote, when change could be have been logistically possible.

While neither side is in the right, both have good intentions. Administration wanted to give students a chance to pick the theme of their own dance, when they could have easily kept it without input from students. Sadly, the lack of execution by officers and participation by students made the vote lose all credibility.

The students wanted to stand up against a vote that was done swiftly and unfairly to all students and preserve a piece of school tradition, but presented administration with a proposition that was not possible merely days before the dance.

At this time last year, 550 tickets had been purchased for Polyester Paradise. Only 50 tickets have been sold for Cowboys and Braves. The dance will be cancelled if 200 tickets are not sold because PTSA will lose money if that amount is not reached. With just a day of sales remaining, the dance will likely be a failure for PTSA and students.

Not much can be done now for this year’s dance, but as a community of students, parents and school officials, we can stop this kind of situation from happening next year by having an accessible vote. Sixty students may have decided the theme of the dance this year, but if a proper vote can be presented next year, the undemocratic demolition of Boone tradition can be further avoided.

By Thomas McDonald

Web Editor in Chief

3 thoughts on “Vote for dance sparks controversy”
  1. In response to this article, I would like to point out a few things. The dance as voted on has originally and always has been Cowboys AND Braves. This was supposed to incorporate Boone culture, not negative bias. This dance was a reward given by the PTSA to the students for winning Celebrate My Drive, as Polyester Paradise was abolished several years ago by administration. Therefore, there was pressure for a new theme from parents, teachers, and students alike, hence the vote. Voting was completed on phones, not computers, taking advantage of modern devices. Anyone not present could have accessed the link as it was advertised prior. Students had the chance to take part in the democratic system, however they chose not to exercise their rights. Historically, PTSA puts on this dance as a gift to the students, and for a fundraiser. If they feel like the student body is no longer interested or supportive, then a dance will simply be history. PTSA just wants to help students positive outside involvement with their peers with events like this dance, and for students, the best way to support them would be through attendance.

  2. If y’all want a good time, u should(ve) chose(n) masquerade for the old style and to me classically cooler than any other theme.

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