Western Standard

The Shotgun Blog

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Re: The thought monopoly of Academia

Dane's right on the money. Seriously, this is what passes for subversive material on a Canadian university campus:


(h/t Andrew Potter)

Posted by Kalim Kassam on September 10, 2009 in Campus watch, Canadian Conservative Politics | Permalink | Comments (0)

The thought monopoly of Academia

This short and sweet post by Big Blue Wave got me thinking about the unfortunate ruling of academia by the left, and the stifling effects on the diversity of thought. Many times I have made posters and fliers asking for the help of students to create a conservative society at my university, but in the end didn't post them up as I had hoped. It's not that I'm particularly lazy or apathetic, but the pointlessness of even trying to promote conservatism at a university always gets to me.

I can't say for certain, but I honestly believe if I posted conservative related fliers around campus, they would be torn down in no time. Although it would be the students doing it, I guarantee no professor would stop it. That being said, posting more controversial things such as anti-abortion fliers would create a lot more fuss than I care for (I don't feel like getting expelled, or my genitals cut off by the feminists for that matter). I can honestly say I haven't ever seen a flier even resembling being written by a conservative. Even pro-Israel posters don't exist at my school, although pro-Palestine posters are everywhere. Surprised? Me neither.

At the society expo this year, the only political group that bothered with it was the Young New Democrats. I've never seen or heard of any conservative society at SMU (and this is my third year), so it wasn't a surprise to not see the PC Party or the federal Conservative Party being represented. Students aren't even into the Liberals that much apparently, as they weren't there this year either. To me this furthers my belief that the only political activists that are able to voice their ideals without persecution is the far-left; even the centre-left seems to have given up. As Big Blue Wave pointed out, to the elite of academia, being "educated" equals believing in the dogma of the left: progressivism.

Of course, progressivism includes the belief that the environment is superior to humanity, that abortion is the greatest thing since sliced bread, that Islam is the greatest religion, and that mediocrity should be strived for, among other things.

In an institution meant to educate people, no one wants to seem "uneducated", so no one wants to be conservative. It's a ridiculous statement that somehow still rings true in my head, but I guess that shouldn't surprise anyone - I'm "uneducated" after all.

For those who share my thoughts, I suggest watching the wonderful documentary called "Indoctrinate U". The film explores the strange thought-monopoly that has been plaguing our universities and colleges and I have to say, it's very well done and very thought provoking. Check it out!

[Cross-posted at The Right Coast]

Posted by Dane Richard on September 10, 2009 in Campus watch | Permalink | Comments (17)

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Only the right kind of discrimination please

The University of Saskatchewan got on its high horse this week and rejected a $500,000 gift to establish a new scholarship. A university turning down money? Turns out the donor wanted to endow a scholarship that only went to non-aboriginal students.

Now I know a lot of people will argue that given how many scholarships are open only to women and minorities and that the group that has the hardest time getting one these days is white males. (Edited for clarity - SM)

Me? While I support the right of people to do whatever they want with their money -- and the donor can set up an off-campus bursary that will shell out money to whomever they want -- I'm of the opinion that universities shouldn't be discriminating in favour of anyone except the best and the brightest, regardless of race, gender, creed or religion. I'm old fashioned that way.

So yeah, the university is hypocritical by lamely defending their race and gender-based scholarships but the answer isn't to increase discrimination.

Posted by Steve Martinovich on May 13, 2009 in Aboriginal Issues, Campus watch | Permalink | Comments (9) | TrackBack

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Campus Conservative conspire to be conservative

I served on the Campus wing of the PCPO’s executive for three years. I found it to be a rewarding and often amusing experience. Amusing because every once in a while some loon would attack us with crazy accusations and innuendo. The past week has really made me miss the time I spent with the Ontario Progressive Conservative Campus Association (OPCCA). The Ryerson Free Press, known for its journalistic standards, released what can only be described as an attack article.

Here are some samples of the author’s stupidity (the author is listed as ‘admin.’ Obviously whoever wrote it is too embarrassed to put their name on it):

At a session held in early February by the Ontario Progressive Campus Conservative Association...discussed strategies to gain funding from student unions for the Conservative Party and ways to run for—and win—positions within student unions.

Gain funding for the Conservative Party? From student governments? Conservative campus clubs get the same funding from student governments as every other club, including the Liberals and the NDP. Besides the Conservatives are by far the richest party, why the hell would they launder money from a student government? That is just idiotic.

Also, young political activists talking about how to win positions on student government? That is outrages. How dare these youngsters wish to be involved in campus politics! Don’t they know that they must either be communist or apathetic?

The leaked materials were posted on WikiLeaks.org over the weekend and add to the growing body of evidence that the Conservative Party has a strategy for interfering in campus student unions.

It should be noted at this point that OPCCA and the Conservative Party have no relation to each other. Throughout this article every time that they say ‘Conservative Party’ they really mean OPCCA. And yes there is evidence that OPCCA has a strategy for interfering in campus student governments. Mainly the evidence involves them saying so repeatedly in public for the last twenty years. But I am interested in what evidence this ‘newspaper’ has to offer.

In early 2002, the campus press first learned of a secret Millennium Leadership Fund that the party’s campus wing used to fund candidates in student union elections.

Yes the secret Millennium Leadership Fund that was written into the constitution that is publically available. I say was written because it was removed a couple of years ago. It was removed (by my initiative) because the MLF hasn’t actually existed in nearly a decade. So it was a publicly published secret that didn’t actually exist that was revealed seven years ago. Great evidence there Sherlock, I’m sure you could have found something better than that. Like maybe look at the OPCCA mission statement.

Also the Conservative Party didn’t exist in 2002, so how can this be evidence that they had a strategy for anything? The writer’s inability to separate OPCCA from the CPC demonstrates the single minded stupidity of...well of the sort of person that would write an article like this.

My Favourite part of the article is this:

Shelley Melanson, Chairperson of the Canadian Federation of Students-Ontario was surprised when told of the leaked strategy. “Campus students’ unions are there to represent students and should be free from the partisan interference of federal and provincial parties,”

Really? Should we take a second and investigate the relationship between CFS and the NDP. Truly the ability of these people to say things like this marvel me to no end.

Through all the innuendo and paranoia, this article has one piece of news in it. Young conservative activists plan on being actively conservative in youth politics. Well done Ryerson Free Press.

(original article and OPCCA response)

Posted by Hugh MacIntyre on March 19, 2009 in Campus watch | Permalink | Comments (6)

Monday, February 02, 2009

University of Calgary brings trespassing charges against anti-abortion group members

The saga of the University of Calgary administration's attack on the expression of a campus anti-abortion group continues. Three student members Two students and one other member of the group have been charged with trespassing, which carries a maximum fine of $2000. The Calgary Sun reports:

Representatives from the Campus Pro-Life club say three of the court orders have been issued by police so far, and three other club members are anticipating similar charges to be filed against them.

The accusation of trespassing comes after a conflict with university officials, who took issue with graphic signs displayed by the pro-lifers at demonstrations on November 26 and 27, where abortion was equated with genocide.

The charges were expected — university officials at the time said they would ask the Calgary Police Service, “to issue the appropriate summonses to the individuals ignoring the notice of trespass or to take other appropriate steps.”

Part of the "Genocide Awareness Program," the graphic signs which have photographs of aborted fetuses and victims of the Holocaust and Rwandan genocide can be viewed here. Leah Hallman, president of Campus Pro-Life, believes the university is applying a double standard and targeting the group for their political opinions. She told the National Post that she believes the administration:

...endorses a prejudice against anti-abortion groups by regularly permitting graphic images to be displayed for some causes -- in November, another, nearby exhibit displayed upsetting photographs of Falun Gong members allegedly tortured by Chinese authorities -- while prohibiting images of abortion.

John Carpay, executive director of the Canadian Constitution Foundation and #11 on the Liberty 100, the Western Standard’s ranking of Canadians who made a contribution to economic or personal liberty in 2008, agrees and will continue to provide legal advice and representation to the students:

“These students have paid their tuition fees, and they have the same right as everybody else to express their views,” said Carpay.

“What the university is doing is censoring one viewpoint that they disagree with.”

Carpay said the Canadian Constitution Foundation is offering the students free legal service, not because of their abortion stance, but because the university is denying them freedom to express that stance.

Following the latest developments, Hallman made an impassioned speech on the steps of the university library, framing the group's defiance as a struggle against censorship and a defense of Canada's liberal traditions:

"The road to the liberty we enjoy in Canada was long and fraught with deadly peril. Many brave men and woman took it upon themselves to bear upward the sacred torch of freedom to greater heights... Once more, Canada faces a challenge to test her commitment to the ideals upon which she was founded, and upon which her society now stands."

Posted by Kalim Kassam on February 2, 2009 in Campus watch | Permalink | Comments (15)

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Carleton University's politically correct racists embarrassed into reversing decision

Here's a press release from Carleton University's Reagan-Goldwater Society which gives you a sense of the intellectual climate in the student government of one Canadian University:

OTTAWA – The RGS is calling on CUSA President Smyth to request the resignation of councillors Northrop and Chander.  

On Monday November 24th a motion championed by Donnie Northrup and Seconded by Merra Chander was tabled asking for revoke the traditional support of Cystic Fibrosis through Shinerama events. Their claim was that “white males” were disproportionately affected by CF and CUSA needed to be more diversified in supporting charities during orientation week.

The RGS recognizes that charity involvement is a crucial aspect of Canadian society. RGS President Scott Gorry had this to say “The more important issue is that CUSA has discriminated a segment of the population and showed no remorse for their actions, they have caused international shame to Carleton and are acting as if discrimination is acceptable. This is not acceptable and action needs to be taken swiftly to correct this.”

Here is the text of the resolution from CUSA (the student government) to end participation in Shinerama, a national fundraising event for cystic fibrosis research:

Motion to drop Shinerama fundraising campaign from Orientation Week

Whereas Orientation Week strives to be inclusive as possible;

Whereas all orientees and volunteers should feel like their fundraising efforts will serve their diverse communities;

And whereas cystic fibrosis has been recently revealed to only affect white people, and primarily men;

Be it further resolved that: The CUSA representatives on the incoming Orientation Supervisory Board work to select a new broad reaching charity for orientation week.

The outrage from Canadians over this misinformed racism was reflected in newspaper editorial pages and calls to radio talk shows across the country but also by Carleton students. Nevertheless the damage has been done, the initial defense of the bizarre resolution by CUSA has maligned the reputation of Carleton University as a whole.

The Ottawa Citizen reports that the two councillors have been forced to resign and CUSA has reversed the motion:

Public outcry against the decision, both on campus and around the country, pressured the student association to reconsider its previous decision and convene an emergency meeting.

Two of the councillors involved in drawing up and approving the motion resigned their seats at the boisterous meeting Monday.

Petitions calling for the impeachment of council president Brittany Smyth and other council members were tabled.

Michael Monks, the councillor representing business students, said Monday night's decision puts the council back in line with the will of the student body.

"The students spoke and we listened," he said.

In other campus political correctness news, the administration of the University of Calgary has backed down after taking legal action and threatening arrests for students from the "Campus Pro-Life" group for displaying graphic images comparing abortion to genocide.

Posted by Kalim Kassam on December 2, 2008 in Campus watch | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack