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Student apathy is more serious than protest noise: CSU councillor
This is to address
some of the comments made in a letter by Steven Rosenshein in the last
issue of the Thursday Report, (CTR, Oct. 24).
Rosenshein sounded like a nagging mother when he stated that the protests
caused a commotion when many students have exams and are
trying to study.
The walls of the library, rest assured, are thick enough to block out
most noise, and especially that of a megaphone used at a protest rally.
The fact that people are allowed to protest university policy or government
policy is something to be cherished. In fact, it is a healthy indicator
of our Canadian democracy.
As a councillor in the CSU, I have often found my opinion differing
from the majority of my colleagues that sit around me. The CSU is not
an oppressive, authoritative force. It cannot be oppressive
when the vast majority of Concordia students do not vote in their student
Students were given choice in their Union, as the 2002 elections were
completed without incident. Elections were open to all, and carried
off without a hitch. I even won my election as a result of a recount!
I do not advocate all of the policies that the CSU has pursued [but]
I would ask that Mr. Rosenshein reconsider questioning the legitimacy
of the CSU, and instead focus on criticizing their policies. It is a
fallacy to criticize a bodys representativeness when voter apathy
is the real problem.
John Gravel, Political Science, CSU Councillor
Member supports part-time union
I am writing in response to Kate Blighs thoughts in the
Thursday Report (CTR, Oct. 24, page 4).
I have been teaching in the Music Department since 1979 (senior PT in
Music) and have been an active member of the Montreal music community
for the last 35 years. My choice of a life in the arts was based on
the joy and happiness that my participation in music gave me and, of
course, the possibility of making a decent living. I feel that I have
been extremely fortunate to be able to continue performing and composing.
During my teaching career, I have seen time servers at all
levels of the university system, and I do not support their way of doing
things or their mediocre participation in the educational process. However,
I cant understand Ms. Blighs unrealistic slamming of job
security proposed by our part-time faculty union (CUPFA).
Is there something wrong with having a minimum of security in our workplace?
At least at that level, we can have greater choices in the organization
of our lives. Continuity and consistency will be easier to maintain
over a longer timeframe if we know our course loads in advance.
Perhaps Ms. Bligh has had the misfortune of teaching different courses
every year at Concordia or has been passed over for her preferences
during the hiring period. I was instrumental, along with Louise Samson
(Music) in establishing the first PT hiring committee in the Department
of Music and I am well aware of the protocol involved.
Perhaps Ms. Bligh would like this body to have increased powers, i.e.
get rid of the time servers? Does she have any concrete
suggestions about improving the way that we are represented by our union
as opposed to griping about an idea that will help us? Sounds like Ms.
Bligh needs a severe reality check.
Gary Schwartz, Music