On Sunday, there was an opportunity for members of the BOA, on behalf of the students they represent, to stand up and do the right thing. What happened? BOA members failed to protect students and fight for us at the table, leaving myself and many others feeling frustrated and angered.
Your money was allegedly stolen from you by someone you should have trusted. Be angry about it, talk with your friends about it and make it an election issue. But what you should never do is make this a partisan issue, and that’s what one of my colleagues did. Contrary to his attempt, Alexei Kazakov’s letter does nothing to galvanize students and if his advice is heeded, the student body will be worse off for it.
First off, I would like to apologize to you, the student body. Most of us in student politics go into it because we want to improve your experience at the university, not make you stress about scandals and the acts of certain individuals. We do not all go out and buy expensive sunglasses or shoes, nor do we go off on expensive trips. Most of the student bodies are volunteer run, i.e. no money goes to your elected officials—it goes straight back to you.
I write to you in the wake of the latest SFUO scandal to tickle the part of our brains concerned with righteous indignation, i.e. president Rizki Rachiq engaging in large-scale embezzlement of SFUO funds to buy himself luxury goods, including but not limited to visits to a haute-couture hair stylist in Montreal, Louis Vuitton shoes, and a $950 pair of glasses.
"With such a great reputation to upkeep, the university should cover basics, such as providing food services on its campuses year round, rather than sending its own students, faculty, and staff roaming and searching in lack of sustenance and nourishment, in the name of summer hours and summer savings.”
There is no “right” versus “wrong”. There are policies that occur that must be discussed and debated. These policies are important to people here in Canada, but also to the lived experiences of Palestinians and Israelis. However, we must have the opportunities within an academic institution to fully discuss and explore these implications of policy.
The reality is, Israel, like every single country in the world—including Canada and the United States—is imperfect. A nation always has room to improve, from its justice system to its economic equality to its treatment of minorities; and Israel is no exception to that.