Home CommentaryEditorial Editorial: Sometimes, picking a side can make things worse

Editorial: Sometimes, picking a side can make things worse

by The Concordian September 2, 2014
Editorial: Sometimes, picking a side can make things worse

Why the CSU shouldn’t have taken a stance on actions taken in Gaza

In today’s world, everyone has an opinion on social issues, whether they’re taking place here in the city or halfway around the world.

For the past few years, not many issues have garnered as much attention, and debate, as the Gaza conflict. Although Canada is not geographically close to Gaza, cultural ties have made the issue relevant for many Montrealers. In a school as culturally diverse as Concordia, with large quantities of both Jewish and Muslim students, it is understandable that students would simply agree to disagree on the subject.

And yet, the Concordia Student Union (CSU) which represents Concordia’s 46,000 students, and the school’s many cultural groups and clubs, has voted on whether or not they agree with the acts taken up by Israel towards Palestine.

At a CSU special council meeting which took place on July 23, the CSU agreed that they were, “against the disproportionate use of force, the use of chemical weapons, the illegal settlements in Palestine and the blockade on Gaza all caused by the state of Israel.”

Based on the wording used by the CSU,  they probably did not mean to come out as sounding pro-Palestine. They simply stated that they disagreed with many of the things the state of Israel was doing. Still, their motion will inevitably cause members of the student body they represent to be alienated.

This is an opinion that many Concordia students, and many organizations, may not share.

There is therefore a definite discrepancy between what the CSU has stated, and what many students may believe. This should not be the case

We understand that, by taking this stance, the CSU had good intentions. Of course, peace should always be endorsed. But this is not the same. It would be unethical for the CSU to openly endorse a political party, so what makes this any different?

Many may be offended, and, at the end of the day, what will have been accomplished? The CSU cannot possibly have an effect on an issue of this importance. The CSU should consider spending their time in council discussing matters directly pertaining to Concordia students, like their many ongoing projects.

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