The self-proclaimed rabble-rousers at the Texas Travesty are setting their sights on SG leadership for the third time — this year to save humanity from nuclear war.
The Travesty is a University-sponsored satirical newspaper that pokes fun at University institutions. Since 2009, members of the organization have infiltrated SG elections under the guise of presidential candidates.
Natalie Butler, presidential hopeful and Plan II, government and political communications senior, is the butt of this year’s joke. The campaign casts her as a tyrant whose potential presidency will lead to the destruction of the human race.
The first Travesty presidential candidate, 2010 alumnus Zak Kinnaird, said aside from the humor of the gag, he cannot remember why the Travesty decided to sponsor SG candidates. Kinnaird also ran for the now defunct at-large representative position in 2008 as the first satirical Travesty candidate.
“Maybe it was a publicity move, or maybe we just thought SG was very silly,” he said.
Kinnaird ran a platform on the basis of filling the “SG president-shaped hole” in his resume and looking good in a suit.
“I guess the statement there was that sometimes issues are relevant and sometimes they aren’t,” Kinnaird said. “A lot of times the people who are running are interested in furthering their own careers or interests.”
He said as the University’s satirical paper, the Travesty decided to play a humorous role in the elections.
“It is our duty to lampoon and make fun of institutions — they are usually a big target to anything that we do,” he said. “I don’t think we’ve ever wanted to make any political statement other than that humor publications can be sort of a safety valve of regulation institutions.”
Last year’s Travesty candidate, philosophy senior Aaron Walther, said his campaign was run on a “stern but fair rule” because other candidates often focus on “non-issues.” Walther and his running mate portrayed Russian-inspired totalitarians in their campaign.
He said he wanted to bring healthier food to UT by planting fruit trees all around campus and mandate that UT faculty carry large assault rifles on their hips at all times to instill fear in students.
“Students who feared for their safety would be more inclined to study to the best of their ability, and would therefore be more desirable for an employer,” Walther said.
He said his issues may have been a bit too extreme for voters but this year’s campaign is motivated by nothing more than the salvation of the human race.
“I cannot stress enough how important this is — if Natalie Butler is elected as student body president the world as we know it will end,” he said.
This year’s Travesty candidate, David McQuary, also known as presidential candidate Captain Dave-id Tiberius McQuary 5000, said Butler, as the “de-facto winner,” was an obvious target for his campaign.
Butler, who giggled when she talked about McQuary’s mission to destroy her, said the campaign is hilarious and can only help her in the elections.
“It’s sort of getting my name out there,” she said. “If some people had no idea who I was but they knew about the Travesty candidates’ campaign, they would be more inclined to look me up and see what I’m really about.”