SATIRE – Budget Troubles Lead to USG Shutdown

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SATIRE – Budget Troubles Lead to USG Shutdown

USG President Demetrios Stratis crosses his own Rubicon in the plaza.

USG President Demetrios Stratis crosses his own Rubicon in the plaza.

KEVIN CHRISTOPHER ROBLES/THE OBSERVER

USG President Demetrios Stratis crosses his own Rubicon in the plaza.

KEVIN CHRISTOPHER ROBLES/THE OBSERVER

KEVIN CHRISTOPHER ROBLES/THE OBSERVER

USG President Demetrios Stratis crosses his own Rubicon in the plaza.

By GRACE GETMAN and CASEY BRENNAN

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As of Thursday, Feb. 5, United Student Government (USG) has been in a state of partial shutdown for 47 consecutive days. This breaks the previous record of two days in 2013, when the USG President at the time lost his keys to the USG office. Shockingly, Austin Tong, Gabelli School of Business ’21, is not at fault this time.

USG President Demetrios Stratis, Fordham College Lincoln Center ’19, failed to reach an agreement with Fordham to gain funds for a pool table to be placed in the student lounge, prompting the shutdown. The funding for pool tables for undergrads was one of Stratis’s most notable campaign promises — one which has proved to be increasingly more difficult to fulfill over time. Early in his campaign, Stratis built much excitement based on this platform, an initiative intended to give Lincoln Center a sports program as successful as Rose Hill’s.

Following failed budget discussions with Dean Wertz before break, Stratis doubled down on this promise and insisted he would take the blame for causing the shutdown if he did not receive the funding. Stratis has since reversed this statement, choosing to blame the shutdown on the Fordham Theatre Program. In a recent tweetstorm, he asserted: “Despite the proof and also evidence of INCOMING CARAVANS OF PROSPECTIVE STUDENTS, Wacky Wertz and the CROOKED Theatre Majors won’t build the DESPERATELY needed POOL TABLE.”

USG cannot continue its normal practices until Stratis can compromise with Dean Wertz and his backing coalition of Theatre majors and Ailey lobbyists. Ultimately, Stratis must either find the funding for the pool tables or give up on the centerpiece of his campaign. President Stratis released a statement regarding the shutdown on Jan. 14, 2019 saying, “I’m not looking to call a campus-wide emergency … I have the absolute legal right to call it.”

He later confirmed his stance on a Fordham Barstool Instagram Live event.

The effects on the student body have been brutal. Every Friday, dazed students can be seen walking through the hallways, unsure of where they are or what school they go to now that USG isn’t buying their school spirit through pizza.

In McKeon lounges, vape enthusiasts have bemoaned the fact that their suggestions to “SELL MANGO JUUL PODS AT THE RAM CAFE” are piling up in the USG suggestion box. With the government mired in shutdown, Stratis is wholly unavailable to sigh heavily and throw the suggestions out in a timely manner.

Most cruelly of all, Stratis has become a shell of a man. He can be seen stumbling through the back alley of the 140 W. building, where all the club offices are located, asking passersby if they know what USG is or that it is shut down. Each response of “no” drives him further to the brink, causing him to mumble about the importance of approving clubs under his breath.

These harsh consequences have taken a toll on the student body, and demands to compromise have intensified. After what seemed to be an uneventful meeting with Dean Wertz, Stratis took to the Fordham Facebook Meme Page to write, “I’m willing to compromise — instead of pool tables, I’m willing to settle for ping-pong tables.”

It is unclear how long this shutdown will last. Even more unclear is when people will actually start to notice that USG shut down.

Dean Wertz was busy stealing USG’s idea to buy love through pizza with his “Beyond Grades” program to be reached for comment.