Captain Canada comes to Concordia

In an effort to promote a return to centrist politics, Liberal Concordia invited Inter-governmental Affairs Minister Stephane Dion to discuss Liberal party politics and Canadian unity at Concordia.
Liberal Concordia is a student organization that hosted the event last Friday at a wine and cheese. About 40 people attended the event.
Marc Younger president of Liberal Concordia said his main goal for inviting Dion to speak to Concordia students was to up the profile of Canadian politics and shift campus politics back to domestic and campus-related issues.
He said he recruited Dion to help him in this goal. “He is the one man who has a beautiful view of Canadian unity.”
In his speech, Dion focused on four main issues: promotion of the Liberal party mandate, the Quebec sovereignty question and internal divisions within the Liberal party.
At the beginning of his speech, Dion established an historical link between Concordia and the Liberal party on the premise that the two institutions were founded on principles of multiculturalism, tolerance, justice and unity.
He said his main goal as an MP was to make sure that we will not have closed ghettos, but a strong country shaped by people coming from everywhere.
Dion also addressed the recent divisions within the Liberal party, stating that the race for leadership within the Ontario government was not a healthy situation. “The worst enemy of the Liberal parties should not be the Liberal party. There should be no race for leadership before the leader has left.”
In promoting Canadian Unity, Dion also addressed the Quebec sovereignty issue, declaring that it was bad to have the Bloc Quebecois. “The Bloc only argues on their own behalf and does not care about the other members within the federation.” He referred to as a sad mentality.
Dion came voluntarily and the event was non-solicited, but Liberal Concordia had to assume the costs of hiring security personnel to make sure the event was not sabotaged, as was threatened at similar events in the past.
No threats of protest
The event marked the first successful attempt as of late by a student political association to successfully sponsor a high-profile Liberal political figure on campus.
According to Younger, the recent attempt by the Political Science Student’s Association to invite Paul Martin to speak on-campus was scuttled by a security threat from the CSU.
According to Younger, the CSU threatened to throw pies at Martin and debate openly with him. He added the CSU was spending too much time, effort, and money attacking government, corporations and the university administration.
Younger said part of the reason his group hosted the wine and cheese function to advance their name recognition on campus and to let people know that Liberal Concordia exists.
Liberal Concordia does not receive any funding from the CSU because according to Younger the CSU council decided to deny all campus political associations funding. Therefore, they do not any funds to promote their activities.
“We are reliant upon private fundraisers to promote on-campus activities [and] for that reason the wine and cheese is probably the only event we will be able to hold free of charge this year at the University,” said Younger.


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