Add another entry to the file of hopelessly misguided student proposals. The Yale College Council has proposed adding to the Spring Fling mayhem by picking two students to serve as what they have tentatively referred to as the “king and queen” of Spring Fling.
We know it’s a not yet a firm plan and acknowledge that the details have not yet been finalized. But even the hypothetical and abstract idea offends us, and we want to speak out against the plan before it becomes an unchangeable one. The YCC is seriously out of touch with its constituency if it believes that there is no more fitting end to the year we spent at the kingdom that is Yale than to crown two students to rule over it.
We’ve all been to high school. Maybe we’re crazy, but we do seem to have vague memories of graduating from high school and leaving all things related behind us. But this sophomoric contest makes us think we may have been mistaken. We resist the idea without even knowing what the coronation of our new king and queen will be based upon. Will it be looks? Popularity? Even if the most noble of criteria are used (academic achievement or community service, for example), Yalies don’t really need another award to compete for. After years of comparing SAT scores and GPAs, we seem finally able to develop into our own people, without having to rank ourselves against others.
One of the great things about Yale is that everyone starts on equal footing. We are assigned to residential colleges randomly, most of us live together on Old Campus, we are all required to have the 21-meal plan as freshmen. We don’t know each other’s backgrounds or histories. Once here, we all find our own niches and interests. We have our own circles of friends, but there are no cliques and no inherently most popular students. Artificially and arbitrarily try to create some would be a shame.
Most of the time, we’re too busy to be petty. We all have our own interesting and diverse lives, and we don’t understand how two people from our mix can possibly represent Yale or what the ideal Yale student is. A king and queen would reduce us to such characterizations and generalizations.
And at the risk of taking the metaphor too far, we just want to point out that this is self-importantly liberal Yale. Many queens don’t need kings. And some so-called kings are, in fact, queens. Having a king and queen of Spring Fling is not only hetero-normative, it is couple-normative, imposing definitions on a student body that continually goes out of its way to defy definition.
Those problems aside, we can’t even imagine the selection of a king and queen being fun. Or interesting. Or exciting. We just don’t understand what a king and queen will add to the weekend. It’s Spring Fling. We want to celebrate the year we just finished at Yale. We don’t need gimmicks. Just a good band, good friends, good weather and, for those of us who choose to partake of it, good alcohol. We want to have fun. Not cull the two best from our midst so that they can feel the most important people in all the land, living happily ever after.