Attracting people of all associations and from all walks of life, the BU Contrarian Society, or the BUCS, aims to provide a safe space for those “above” the mainstream. Rather than having to start their sentences with “Unpopular opinion…”, BUCS members are able to express their views in an environment free of judgement or restraint, without facing pushback from the otherwise strong one-way current of the BU student body’s opinions. Despite having opinions that might just “rub people the wrong way,” the BUCS push their first amendment rights to exercise strong opinions on such things as terriers, BU hockey, and “like why does everyone hate winter so much.”
The Black Sheep recently sat down for an interview with BUCS president and co-founder Idis A. Gree. We met him at his dorm in Danielsen Hall, where he greeted us in a maroon sweatshirt, gold pants, and a New York Yankees baseball cap.
The Black Sheep: I like the BU banner strung across the door to your room. Go Terriers!
That’s my roommate’s, actually. I’m more of a cat person myself; I never really liked dogs. Especially not terriers. They’re so small and yappy. Definitely not my type of pet.
TBS: I see. Well, anyway, to start off: how did the idea of starting a contrarians’ society first come up?
Well, I was seeing all these clubs: robotics this, Delta Gamma Phi that, you know. And I was thinking…where’s my kind of group? I felt like BU needed a space for people like me, people whose opinions aren’t necessarily “the majority” but are definitely still valuable and can contribute to the campus environment even if people don’t want to hear them.
I started talking with my friend Jake about creating that sort of space. At first, we didn’t want to make it a club, because both of us thought clubs were pretty overrated and not really worth the time. But eventually, we realized it was the best way to get our message out to a large number of students.
TBS: Was the club always marketed as essentially an anti-mainstream organization?
Ooohhh. First off, I would prefer if you didn’t use the m-word. That’s considered a pretty heinous term in our circles. But yeah, that’s essentially it. An organization for those dissatisfied with the majority opinion. It’s free speech, yano? Like so what if we don’t think tuition is that high?
So yeah we’re going to say stuff like that and not back down. Like we totally understand if President Brown wants to raise it. Considering what BU provides to us, $67,000 a year is really nothing. When you really think about it, what difference will three or four thousand dollars make?
TBS: Your club has caught a lot of flak since its inception for its stances on some subjects; for example, disliking ice hockey and adopting a pacifist attitude towards Boston College. How do you respond to that?
I think I speak for the entire BUCS when I say that ice hockey really isn’t that great. It’s just a bunch of people with blades on their feet, wearing weird masks and carrying deformed sticks, chasing a disc around a sheet of ice. I really don’t understand how people here find it so entertaining. And what’s the big deal when BC comes to town? They’re just another opponent, so why do we act like it’s the biggest sporting event in the world when we play them?
Actually, on the subject of BC, I don’t think they’re that bad, honestly. To me they’re just another college. Students here always like to say BC isn’t part of Boston, but I mean, Chestnut Hill is still basically Boston. It’s pretty exclusionary and elitist to say that Chestnut Hill is separate. I’ve met some really nice people who go to BC, so I think it’s really mean when we chant “BC Sucks.”
All in all, when you’re a club based on opinions, you’re going to get bashed by somebody somewhere who disagrees with you. That’s how society is. And we just happen to have opinions that a lot of people here disagree with.
TBS: Well, I think that’s all the questions I have. Thank you for your time, and have a good afternoon.
No problem. I’ll be following you out the door—it just so happens that I have a BUCS e-board meeting to attend. We’re planning a food drive to raise money for the construction of another Kilachand science building—we think it’s great that schools like COM keep getting skipped over for upgrades, and we want to help accelerate that process in any way we can. Look for us this week at the link tables!
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