Wednesday, July 20, 2005

York's ultimate whiners...

As a teacher, I can tell people that the word "ultimate", often used to mean "most extreme", technically means "last".

I have determined that June's whiner of the month (Yeah, I'm tardy. So sue me.) is possibly the ultimate York whiner of the month - since I officially graduated in June, I make no guarantees that future whiners will be from York.

As such, it is appropriate that June's ultimate York whiners of the month (three individuals from one organization) are both "last" but also "most extreme".

This one's easy, even with the sparse contents of the June 1 Excal. Is there any doubt that the dishonour goes to the York Federation of Students executive members Omari Mason and Corrie Sakaluk and their councillor Milton Chan?

Corrie Sakaluk, presently the VP but formerly the college councillor from Winters, has a bee in her bonnet about some new people moving into Winters.

As the Accolade Project is underway, plans for the Fine Arts and Music departments to vacate their college offices leaves (sic) room for space reallocation in Winters, Founders and McLaughlin colleges. Winters will be the first college to experience the ripple effect of certain departments and faculties moving into college space. This has spawned a negative reaction from the college community since they were not initially consulted or notified about their new roommates until a few weeks ago.

According to vice-president of students Robert Tiffin, the renovation proposal was a decision made in the winter by the University's executive committee to move the Faculty of Education out of the eighth floor of the Ross building in order to make room for the expanding Faculty of Arts.

Apparently, according to Sakaluk, Ed is just not welcome in their space:

"This is a clear attack and infringement of student space," says Sakaluk, adding that there has been a lack of communication and consultation with the students and master.

FACT: Fine Arts students are getting the big-ass Accolade project building all shiny and new for their use. The fact that they don't get to keep their Winters space entirely to themselves as well should not be a big issue. We're all students, aren't we?

Or is Sakaluk acting like the member of CFS she is and suggesting that her special interest group is more important than someone else's special interest group?

Anyhow, there's more.

In the other front page article, a piece bemoaning the dismissal of long-time equality crusader Teferi Adem strikes a few of the wrong chords:

Adem's forced departure has the YFS and many student groups looking for justification since he was an integral part of the student community.

YFS president, Omari Mason, believes that it is important for the University to be as transparent to students as possible and that failing to provide an adequate explanation for the decision to dismiss Adem is questionable.

"There should be no reason why the university cannot reveal why they would choose to remove someone who has contributed to the university within a very important capacity for almost 20 years," says Mason.

Nazareth Yirgalem, the YFS presidential commissioner whose focus is on the dismissal of Adem, states that he has a historical connection in terms of what he did on campus.


According to Yirgalem, Adem was the only black representative for students.

The YFS did not pay the salary of Teferi Adem. Should they choose to hire him to work for them (something they could feasibly do), it becomes their business. Until then, the only person who can complain is Adem, who could easily file a wrongful dismissal suit with an actual court of law if he felt he was wrongfully dismissed.

But a YFS-led witchhunt will do no one any good, especially if it disempowers many other black employees at York by suggesting that York's sole black student liason was fired.

Let's finish off with Milton Chan's ghastly op-ed suggesting that YFS exec salaries be increased:

To be perfectly honest, even full-time remuneration wouldn't really reflect the long hours that student executives devote to their work. It is always a sensitive task to talk about salary increases for politicians, but I believe student leaders should not be exploited and penalized for their dedication.

I was at York for four years and didn't feel that my life was so significantly benefitted by or affected by any student government, except maybe when the shenanigans of various YFS administrations (mostly Milton's leader Omari Mason and his people) led me to be embarrassed by my duly-elected representatives.

Message to YFS execs: Our lives are NOT enriched by your services. Why should you be enriched by our student levy?

Message to Excalibur: When did you become the unedited mouthpiece of the whiny YFS?


With this last post, I allow that from this day forward, I am not a York student and I don't have the same right to comment on the goings-on of York students as I did in March. Nonetheless, I'll continue to do what I please and comment as I see fit.

As always, I say to those who dislike what I have to say: Go read someone else's blog.