Pointless politics

University students wake up every day and immediately face countless choices. What to wear? What to eat? Who should I text during class? On Thursday, students will have an additional choice: Should I join the student walkout? A variety of student organizations have been circulating pamphlets encouraging students to strike against the Republican National Convention by leaving their classes at 11 a.m. and marching in protest outside the Xcel Energy Center. Regardless of activist inklings, students would be well-advised to start the day by making the wise choice: skip the walkout. There are a number of reasons to stay in class, and perhaps the most obvious is this: the protest march on the RNC is not expected to begin until the Antiwar Festival and Rally ends at 4 p.m. Students who want to send a message to the GOP will find that they have plenty of time to do so after they have completed class and taken an afternoon nap. Furthermore, the concept of the walkout is misguided. Like a labor union strike, a walkout is an act of defiance towards the institution being walked out of. As such, students are not protesting the GOP by walking out of classes, but the University âÄî an unaffiliated entity. Even if the walkout could be considered a strike against the GOP, walkout-prone students do not represent a Republican constituency, and it is unlikely that the strike would even receive acknowledgement. If all that is not pragmatic enough, take note that absenteeism, politically-motivated or otherwise, provides students an opportunity to lose their seats in classes with waitlists during the first week of instruction. By all means, students of strong political principles ought to either protest or support the GOP on Thursday. But students hoping to affect change would do well to simply register and vote, and not partake in the feeble gesture of a school walkout. One last fact to consider before you make your choice: Undergraduates can pay as much as $44 per hour for classroom instruction. All other things aside, you should ask yourself if this empty civil disobedience is worth it.