Letters to the Editors

Hey, thanks

Dear Editors,

I don’t usually write letters to The Journal, but I thought in this instance it would be a good idea.

Last Friday (Sept. 22) I was using my scooter on University when I hit a bump and embarassingly landed on my face. Immediately several first-year med students stopped to ask if I was all right and someone was good enough to call first aid who responded promptly.

I was pleasantly surprised at the professional attitude of the first aid personnel and the friendliness of the Queen’s community in general.

I would like to thank everyone who helped me out when I was bleeding on the sidewalk and hope I will be able to help others in a similar situation in the future.

Hugh Gordon
Arts ’01

Queen’s PC not happy with The Journal

Dear Editors,

I am writing in response to Tuesday’s Federal PC party on campus article, because I feel it unfairly portrays the members of our organization, and also because it fails to highlight the efforts of Queen’s PC to be inclusive to all conservatives of all stripes.

It is true that many members of the executive have chosen to leave for the Canadian Alliance; what is also true is that there are members of our executive who are still supporting the PC Party of Canada. Considering that this summer was a time of real change at the federal level, I made a committment to make sure that the members of my club were informed and engaged in federal politics, regardless of their affiliation.

To show my good faith, I was in contact with the Federal PC Association for Kingston and the Islands this summer, and made a commitment to their executive to attend all their meetings, and also to help and organize an election readiness session for the PC Party of Canada at Queen’s. Thanks in part to my efforts, they held their session here in June. If Queen’s PC was so intent on quashing the Federal PC’s, why would I have made such efforts to help them organize for a federal election?

Regardless, when Ms. Harvey called me late this summer and asked for my thoughts on creating a campus Federal PC Association, I was supportive. I voluntarily eliminated many of the constitutional barriers that our club has, I consulted with the AMS, and I helped to make it very easy for her to get a club up and running by the beginning of the year. Until Tuesday, I thought that there was an amicable relationship between the two clubs, but Ms. Harvey’s comments indicate otherwise. She implied a tension between supposed ‘factions’ in our club. For the record, the implication that there is a divide, or split, in the Queen’s PC is false. Shame on you for implying so Ms. Harvey.

Ms. Harvey says that many of our members were ‘extremists’ simply because they had chosen to switch federal party affiliations. Any person who believes in accountability in the public sector, a promising business environment and genuine reform to health and education has a home at Queen’s PC. We are principled, not extremist. That is who we have been, that is who we are, and that is who we will be in the future.

I would also like to highlight the questionable journalism that went with the writing of this article. As the president of Queen’s PC, I was never contacted for a quote or reaction to Ms. Harvey’s press release. With the one exception of a hastily organized phone call, just a few minutes before print, there was not even an attempt by The Journal to contact me. My understanding is that the press release was sitting in The Journal offices for a few days, so I ask: what took so long? It was dissappointing to see an article that slandered my club, especially when I had no real opportunity to respond.

Regardless, I wanted to deliver the message — Queen’s PC is a wonderful club, and we are open to all conservative-minded students on campus. Hopefully Ms. Harvey and The Journal can figure that out sometime soon.

Alex Van Kralingen
Arts ‘01
Queen’s PC President

A word from the Campus Crusade for Christ

Dear Editors,

In the September 22 Op-Ed, Rob Adamson states that the Queen’s “campus [is] dominated by the self-righteous Campus Crusade for Christ.” As a member of the Queen’s Campus Crusade for Christ movement, I apologize to Adamson if for any reason he has misunderstood our message to be in any way “self-righteous.” This is, in fact, the complete opposite of what we stand for. Campus Crusade for Christ exists to share two things in particular with the members of our campus. First we want to share the message of the gospel of Jesus Christ, that “God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life,” (John 3:16). Second, we want to share how God’s Son, Jesus Christ, has made a difference in our lives. It is in recognition that in God’s eyes none of us are righteous that we firmly believe and declare that Jesus Christ was sent to earth: His life, death and resurrection provide all who believe in Him with meaning and purpose in this life and hope for the next. As a member of Campus Crusade for Christ, let me be the first to admit that I have no righteousness of my won, but because of Jesus Christ, I know that I am forgiven. So, with the apostle Paul, I say; “I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes… For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last.” (Romans 1:16-17) I apologize to you, Mr. Adamson, for anything that you have heard or seen from Campus Crusade for Christ which was depicted as “self-righteous.” This has never been our intent nor our message.

Alex Philip
Con-Ed ’02

Journal needs some work

Dear Editors,

I’d like to register my amazement and awe at Natalia Diaz’s “Infotainment” editorial in your Sept. 26 issue. You’ve finally done it: you’ve printed an article that makes such a huge amount of no sense that it borders on the surreal.

Ms. Diaz seems to be operating from the thesis that the worlds of news and entertainment are merging (my God, really?) before spinning off into the stratosphere of complete looniness.

“Many news-related programs are purely fictional”

Which ones? How so? “News stories become Hollywood productions.” Yep, and they’ve been doing so for a hundred years. And Wag the Dog anticipated Clinton’s little scandal, it wasn’t influenced by it.

You’re talking about how the media packages news, and you use a story about Scrabble as an example? And since when is a gnarled old hand esthetically pleasing? Do blue fingernails make one think of nurturing mothers, or pleasure, or death? And what the hell has all that got to do with Scrabble, anyway?

And to conclude this little masterpiece of moronity, you state that “the emergence of infotainment will produce innovative ideas and help generate the future of creative journalism.” How can you conclude this from evidence of the examples you’ve cited before? Is Oprah creative journalism? The O.J. trial? Cops? Or will these “innovative ideas” be strictly centred on senior citizens playing board games?

I’ve had enough of trudging through the illiterate sludge printed in this paper. Can none of your writers form a point, or at least a sentence? Oh well, at least you can rest easy in the knowledge that you’ve surpassed Golden Words as this campus’ leading humour weekly.

By the way, Ms. Diaz, regarding your coverage of the Toronto Film Festival: sad to say, not every movie can be likened to “Thelma and Louise” or “My Best Friend’s Wedding.”

Andrew Tracy
Arts ’02

Get a job, just don’t sell your soul

Dear Editors,

This morning when I checked my mail box I found an invitation from Proctor & Gamble addressed “Dear Student Leader” with a great big headline telling me to “release my potential.” The invitation expanded a bit on the topic of P&G informing me of ‘essential’ tidbits of information like “Packaged goods is a fast moving business,” and that “ P&G has had great success with Queen’s students in the past.” Essentially it encouraged me to come out to information sessions in the next while and meet Suzanna McAlister (Comm ’97), the P&G representative.

As an arts student, I’m not accustomed to being solicited by companies. It is quite possible, therefore, that I am not reacting to this well, but I find the recruitment drive that goes on here at the start of every year offensive. I know that universities have been forced in recent years to try to give students a more job-oriented education, but it seems as though the fundamental purpose of university is being forgotten as students try to ensure future white picket fence pseudo-Canadian/American dream success.

It has always been my understanding that the purpose of University is to allow those who are interested to expand their minds and effectively learn how to learn. I chose History as a major in spite of the fact that I have no interest in being a historian because I figured that it was important to know history in order to understand the present. But now when I tell people that I’m a history student, it’s assumed that I am going to law school at some point. The commercialization of education robs the university experience of its potential meaning.

There was a time when not “selling out” was an all-important goal. Whatever a person decided to do with their life it should be on their terms and for their reasons. I guess that I haven’t shaken this belief as easily as others seem to have. The trodden path now involves desperately trying to sell yourself to the highest bidder for a BMW and a cottage. It seems that there are entire fields of study devoted to helping students sell themselves. Business programs are, I believe, a good deal more about gathering corporate-minded individuals into a group and teaching them how to interact and network then it is about teaching business skills. I don’t mean to malign the people in these career-oriented faculties because I can understand the temptation to invest in a guaranteed future. But I wonder if commercial success is thought to be the path to guaranteed happiness or if the romance of the business culture blinds people to the bad side of corporate culture? Commercial success does not preclude an individual from having a meaningful life, but if the time of your life that’s supposed to be devoted to figuring your shit out is devoted to job hunting then when do you figure yourself out? I guess that when it’s all over I’d just like to look back on life with faith in the fact that I’ve done more with my life than ensured that packaged goods continue to be a fast moving business.

Max Binnie
ArtSci ’01

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