More Harm Than Good

The article written by Alex Woznica claims that “the tuition increases in question are quite reasonable.”

Now this is clearly a matter of opinion, up for debate, which is why it is being debated in the first place.

The article written by Alex Woznica claims that “the tuition increases in question are quite reasonable.”

It also states that the “hikes will generate badly needed funding for universities.” If university funding is in such trouble I would hate to see what Frederick Lowy, Interim President of Concordia makes on a good year considering his salary is already $350,000 a year, plus perks.

Within this attack on the student voice is a reiteration of something the Liberal government has been boasting: the fact that Quebec students will still be paying 30 per cent less than other Canadian students despite the increases.

The Concordia Student Union has pointed out in their campaign posters that, while this is true, it is also a fact that Quebec’s post-secondary participation rate is 9 per cent higher than the rest of Canada. There is clearly a link between lower tuition costs and higher academic participation this writer avoided to mention.

The new provincial budget, including the tuition increases, may have already been passed and is extremely difficult to reverse, but, as it was put in the article, it is most certainly not impossible to reverse.

What’s more is that the student body is being disempowered by these words. They are being told, “There is nothing you can do, sit down and shut up. You are powerless.”

On Jan. 27, Pulitzer award-winning journalist Chris Hedges spoke at the Bibliothèque et archives nationales du Québec. This author and former war correspondent had words of encouragement for those brave enough to butt heads with the establishment when their actions are deemed to be rash and unfair: “No act of resistance ever goes to waste.”

The fact is that we have a constitutional right as students and citizens to speak up and protest if we so choose, regardless of whether the government or anyone else believes it will amount to nothing.

The CSU is empowering students, not deceiving them, as Woznica suggested.

Fighting against the powers that be is never easy, but for the 30,000 people that are estimated will be unable to attend university in the near future because of these hikes, it is well worth it to at least try.

—Michelle Moore
BA Communication & Cultural Studies

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