Sunday, April 5, 2009

Combat Comes to Campus!

"Let's split up and look for clues!"

- The Scooby Doo Gang, on numerous occasions

"Don't you know to never split the party
The clerics in the back keep the fighters hale and hardy
The wizard in the middle, where he can shed some light
And you never let that damned thief out of sight!"

"Never Split the Party"


Last week, our Amtgard group decided to have a "fighter practice" on the University of Maryland campus in order to attract students to come play Amtgard. We were only able to fight for about half an hour before it started raining and we had to leave, and we didn't attract anyone, although we are planning to try again sometime in the next few weeks.

However, it won't be long before University of Maryland students won't have to go to Amtgard or even leave campus in order to participate in exciting combat action. According to The Diamondback, on-campus safety and security is a major issue in the upcoming SGA elections, and there's no shortage of innovative ideas. Some of these ideas include:

1. Expanding the SGA "safety walks" to areas off campus, so that people can point out areas that aren't safe, like "there's no lighting over there, a mugger could easily hide there."

2. Taking a page from the Department of Homeland Security and making color-coded "alert maps" showing which areas of campus were not safe. (I was telling this to a fellow Amtgarder and he said he didn't think it would be a good idea, because it would encourage police to focus their attention on areas labeled as safe because "those are the areas we promised would be safe", and thus neglect the areas labeled as "unsafe.")

3. Providing free self-defense classes to students. Also, giving all bus drivers mandatory first-aid and self-defense training, because apparently there are a lot of fights on buses.

4. Increasing the length of time that the "security checkpoints" on the entrances to campus are active. (However, one thing I have noticed is that there are security checkpoints on the entrances from Route 1, but there is no security checkpoint on the entrance from Adelphi Road. Maybe that is another thing that could be fixed.)

I was telling this to my Amtgard group and one of them said he went to UMCP a long time ago, and back then there was a medieval re-enactment group that also had a way of helping to solve the problem. They offered an escort service where someone could call them and they would send out someone dressed as a knight in armor to escort the person where they wanted to go. I imagine this is likely to work, because if there's a guy wearing armor and carrying a sword, a mugger is not likely to try to attack him. Also every year, as a joke, they ran a candidate for the SGA in their "Monarchist Party," and their platform was to make campus safe by building a moat around campus. One time people were so fed up with the other candidates that they voted for the Monarchist Party candidate - and he won!

1 comment:

Dan Mont said...

Why couldn't they just cast a "Protect Campus" spell?