The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

Texas A&M University System Chancellor John Sharp attends the Class of 1972 50-year reunion in Kyle Field on April 20, 2022.
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Texas A&M pitcher Chris Cortez (10) reacts during Texas A&M’s game against Oregon at the NCAA Bryan-College Station Super Regional at Olsen Field on Saturday, June 8, 2024. (CJ Smith/The Battalion)
One step away
June 8, 2024

Our own farewell

The Memorial Student Center rave may have stepped on some toes, but I think it was a fitting tribute from a student body that loves the building and this University. Times change, but the Aggie Spirit never dies.
There are (at least) two ways to show honor and appreciation. Either by doing something you normally wouldn’t, which means something to the other person, or, by giving them something that is very special to you. To see the difference, think of a teenager who dresses up for a family dinner to respect their parents and older relatives even though they’d be more comfortable in jeans versus a child who gives his mother a handful of treasured shells and colorful pebbles which have no material value. The child’s mother knows that he gave the best of himself, and that makes the worthless pebbles like gold.
Muster is a formal affair. Many students dress up and time is set aside. Silver Taps, on the other hand, isn’t a fancy service. It isn’t in a church or at 10 a.m. Sunday; almost no one dresses up. Students come in shorts and T-shirts and pajamas pants, taking time away from studying or partying to stand in silence and honor the dead. We sacrifice our time and honor them by clearing our minds of everything else for a little while, we come as we are. Though it is less formal, Silver Taps is no less respectful or honoring. I’ve often thought of this most sacred of the Aggie traditions as being so very special because we simply bring the best of ourselves.
The MSC is a building which is traditionally honored in the former manner. We take our hats off inside; we carefully stay off the grass. These are traditions that have been in place for years. I think every generation and every person has honored this building and the soldiers it represents in their own, more personal ways. In our case, we’ve fought and considered and debated to be sure that the impending renovations are completely necessary and will be up to the highest standards.
So, if some students wanted to say goodbye to the MSC with a party, I see no reason to be angry with them. This is how we would say goodbye to a dear friend or the end of an incredible four years: with a truly spectacular party. No, they weren’t in line with the way we normally treat that building, but we formally honor it every day. Like the child with a handful of pebbles, students brought the best of themselves to say “thank you” and “good-bye,” and I take my hat off to them (and the MSC) for it.

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