Editor, the Gauntlet,
Campus Pro Life booked space in the Students' Union display case last week. Before putting up the material, was given approval by the SU executive. Complaints arose about the picture of a picture of a legal medical procedure in Alberta, an abortion. Due to complaints the SU ordered the club to take down the poster by 4 p.m. the next day, and suggested replacing it with an 8½ x 11 piece of paper.
This question was addressed to Tuesday night's Students' Legislative Council meeting. The Gauntlet posed the question of what is the point of a 20-foot display case if you don't want people to see what's in it. The SU claimed to be against censorship, which they tried to hide through focusing only on the size of the poster. The content was the problem and has been censored.
SU President Bryan West said the SU are the elected representatives of the student body, and this is why complaints about a controversial issue were grounds for censoring the large poster. Yet, no information has been given about how these complaints have been documented. No one on council could desceibe the quanity nature or source of complaints. If complaints will result in council banning posters that do not promote illegal activities, can they also prevent a political club from postering for their political party if students who prefer another party find them offensive? What statement could you possibly put up that no one would complain about? Is our university about educating students and raising awareness of issues, or is it about showing them only what is deemed good for them? If the SU's true agenda is to represent students, why have they not addressed over 60 letters from students [in support of the poster] in less then 12 hours? Why should the complaints of a few override the support of many?
Maybe we should be thankful that the SU Executive Council's censorship is limited to the university campus or only the ruling party would have the right to poster during an election. Now what type of democracy would that be? Not one I want to be a part of.
If the SU censors factual information... what will they do next?