Disruption - 10th Annual Honi Soit Writing Competition

USU Board candidates 2020: Ruby Lotz

Honi's profile and full interview with USU Board candidate Ruby Lotz.

Slogan: ‘Rebuild with Ruby’

Colour: Orange.

Faction: NLS (Labor Left).

Quiz score: 77%.

Housewives tagline: ‘I know I’m a piece of work, but now I’m a work in progress.’

At the tender age of 18, Ruby Lotz is one of the youngest candidates in the race. Lotz supplied us with a policy statement that has been half-heartedly adapted to accommodate the effects of COVID-19. Her proposals are distinctly reminiscent of those put forward by board director and fellow NLS member Nick Forbutt, who is assisting her campaign.

Many of her policies are focused on a post COVID-19 future. When asked how she could adapt her proposed “Drug, Sex and Consent Week” (explained as Rad Sex and Consent Week, but with drugs) to suit the current situation, she explained that it was an event that would work best after social distancing had been relaxed. Other policies, such as subsidised RSA courses, “second chance events for first years” and an umbrella hire scheme, operate under the optimistic assumption that campus will be running as usual in the near future. 

Lotz’s interview was conducted in three parts. The first half took place as scheduled with the latter half taking place after Honi was sent additional offensive screenshots from her Facebook. In the first interview, Lotz was apologetic in referring to her boyfriend as a “faggot”, apologising for her behaviour and specifying that it came from a place of ignorance and that she had politically grown. However, in the second half of the interview, confronted with screenshots of herself posting a Nazi meme and using a racist slur, Lotz struggled to respond. She initially accepted responsibility, before claiming that she didn’t remember making the comments, and then suggesting that they had been doctored, before eventually finding them on her profile and deleting them. 

Lotz was 15 when she posted the comments, and whilst undeniably offensive, they seem to be the product of edgy teenage humour rather than any genuine commitment to racist or antisemitic ideology. What is concerning is the way in which she reacted to them. Given multiple opportunities to respond, Lotz seemed more concerned with attempting to conceal the full history of her problematic past than she did with proving political development. Honi was provided with no tangible evidence of a commitment to anti-racist politics, despite Ruby saying she would send us evidence. Overall, her response reveals considerable immaturity that is unbecoming of a potential board director. Whilst she scored third highest in our quiz and she has some degree of experience in student representation, it is unlikely that she would be able to handle the pressures of being a board director, particularly during the COVID-19 crisis.

A link to the full transcript of the interview can be found here.

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