Spencer Wu
Staff Writer

Youth culture has been and always will be intertwined with music. As such, concerts will always be the bridge that connects fans to their favorite musicians and artists. In recent years, music festivals have become the apex of such an avenue. Music fans flock to festivals to connect with others on a regular basis. Especially free events that require only a valid UCSB ID, like Extravaganza, for which people will go through any means necessary to obtain an Access Card, even if they do not go to this school.

Ideally, this Gaucho-only event only permits UCSB students to attend the music festival. The organization hosting the event, Associated Students Program Board, issued a statement stating “any persons selling access cards may be subject to disciplinary action. Access cards are nontransferable.” Vague wording like this will hardly deter a local fan of ODESZA or Rae Sremmurd from coming. Rather, it highlights the inability of ASPB, or any program board for that matter, to properly enforce the ID policy. Who is to say that I haven’t gotten a tan over the years or gained a few pounds since I got my photo taken? It is essentially impossible to match card with face for these given reasons.

Of course, with the addition of out-of-towners to the mix, there is a greater potential for dangerous situations. They simply do not regard the campus as highly as us students do, which opens a window for irresponsible behavior. This apathy mixed with the jovial atmosphere and possibly some alcoholic beverages is definitely a recipe for disaster.

This safety issue is always a concern because the well-being of everyone in attendance is at stake. Increased security during the event and information sessions beforehand could educate the student body on the decisions they are making during the day-long concert. Since we can’t crack down on its problem at its source, we have to mitigate the damage it does.

In order for non-students to obtain these ID cards in the first place, they have to ask their friends who attend the university to advertise that they are in the market for temporarily buying an Access Card off of a fellow student. That in itself is wrong because the concert is meant for Gauchos and the out-of-towner is assuming an identity that is not his or hers. If these dilemmas do not dissuade people from coming, there really is no stopping the influx of non-students from coming to these events. Couple that with the inherent credulity vested in people with IDs and this problem basically cannot be stopped.

It is inevitable that non-students will make their way into the crowd. It is how we handle them that shows who we really are. We have to accept the reality that although these people may be unwanted, they will be at Harder Stadium for this year’s Extravaganza, and for many years to come. Therefore, it is our responsibility to watch over the student body and ensure the safety of everyone in attendance. Properly matching face with card is a problem that is easily identifiable but not easily fixed.