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Goliath's Dilemma
[02/03/2003] [Randall]

Goldenvale violated its contract with Amtgard, Inc. when it threw out the results of its recent crown qualifications and appointed, through unfair and inequitable means, a champion who does not meet the qualifications to serve required by Corpora. King Goliath must fix the problem by restoring Dame Willow to her position as Champion, or he must face the Amtgard Board of Directors and explain that Goldenvale no longer wishes to uphold the contract that makes it a kingdom.

Dame Willow declared for all three offices with the understanding that the winner of each office would be chosen according to specific criteria -- each candidate must have declared for the office, qualify for it during crown quals, and be eligible to serve. These were the requirements that the entire kingdom was given before the elections. Goliath, the only other person who met those standards, became ineligible to be champion when he won the election, since no-one may hold more than one of the top four kingdom offices. That meant Willow was the only person who could possibly become champion. By throwing out the results of crown quals and changing all the rules after it became clear that Willow was the only candidate for the job, Goldenvale failed to hold fair and equitable elections.

Changing the rules after someone has already won is not fair. Changing the standards to let someone unqualified become champion after a winner already exists is not equitable. Unfair and unequitable appointment of club officers is a serious breach of one of the most important sections of the Amtgard contract. And by giving Willow one set of rules to run for champion and giving the entire kingdom another set of rules after Willow won, it could be argued that Goldenvale is also violating Section 10 of the contract, which requires all members to be treated fairly and equally.

Furthermore, King Goliath permitted the bylaws of his kingdom -- the Corpora -- to be thrown out. The Corpora says that each king may set the standards for how crown qualifications will be run. Goliath's predecessor did that, and Willow ran, in good faith, for the position of champion with the belief that the winner would be decided according to those standards. Goldenvale changed the rules after Willow already won, and therefore specifically violated Section 6.1A of its Corpora, along with most of 6.1 in general.

Annulling the results of the Month of the Crown and installing an illegitimate champion according to brand new rules is not what Section 6.1 of the Amtgard Corpora mandates. By permitting the results of the illegal tournament to stand, Goldenvale is in violation of its Corpora.

A Corpora violation of this magnitude also constitutes a breach of Section 4 of the Amtgard contract, which requires Amtgard groups to obey the law. Ignoring an incorporated organization's bylaws so that you can bypass the election process of that organization is illegal.

Finally, Goldenvale is not acting the way a kingdom should act. There are only twelve kingdoms in Amtgard, and they are looked to for inspiration, advice, and leadership by smaller groups all across the nation. When one of the twelve kingdoms bungles an election, abdicates leadership in fixing the issue, and attempts to whitewash the whole issue and sweep it under the carpet, it is teaching its shires that it's okay to break the rules as long as you can get away with. This sort of conduct is unbecoming a kingdom of Amtgard and should not be allowed to stand. Wayward shires act in this way. Kingdoms should be better than that.

As a new, young monarch ruling a kingdom traditionally governed by its knights, King Goliath undoubtedly felt a great deal of pressure to give in to the misguided Althing and allow the illegal tournament to occur. This was a terrible mistake, and he should realize the gravity of this error before it is too late. The problem of Goldenvale's violation of contract, Corpora, and kingdom duty can only be resolved through strong leadership. King Goliath has an opportunity to prove that he is a leader willing to stand for the rule of law by restoring Dame Willow to her rightful position as Champion of the Kingdom of Goldenvale.

The Electric Samurai has long believed that the throne makes good men into good kings. We have faith that King Goliath will fix the situation as quickly as possible by making Willow his Champion. We know, as he must know, that the alternative is to give in to shame and sink to a place where few Amtgard groups dare go, a place where election rules don't matter and anything is okay as long as you win. King Goliath can avoid the ugly and humiliating spectacle of Goldenvale becoming synonymous with every corrupt shire that has been taken to task for holding shady elections, but only if he acts quickly, and with honor.

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