Volume 92, Issue 45

Tuesday, November 24, 1998

sweet as it comes


Consumerism alive in UCC

Re: The future of UCC advertising, Nov. 17

To the Editor:
It should be apparent to any remotely conscious student on this campus that the USC is quickly transforming the UCC, a once pleasant and principled gathering place for students, into nothing short of a full-blown mall.

The most recent, gratuitous addition to this despicable project is a large electronic billboard. If purchased, the USC claims the advertising revenue gained from it will exceed the associated capital costs. Despite the absence of any foreseeable direct expense to students, it is an utter outrage that the USC is even considering the hideous billboard as a permanent fixture in the atrium.

There's more. The USC recently refused Oxfam's request to hold an event in the atrium on Nov. 27 for "Buy Nothing Day." The day is to be observed across North America as a 24-hour moratorium on consumer spending.

Oxfam's objective is to inform the student body of the high degree to which our society is based on consumer consumption. Last year's event was peaceful. Due to vendor complaints that coincided with last year's event, however unjustified, the USC has refused Oxfam space.

This is clearly not the reaction you would expect from the governing body that represents the interests of students who elected them. We are witnessing the escalation of corporate influence into a once student concern-oriented academic community.

Apparently, the vendor's rights now take precedence over our own and to our great chagrin, we are now subjected to an assault of corporate messages when we enter the atrium. However, "Buy Nothing Day" will go on.

Participate by not participating!

Simon Fraser
English and Philosophy II

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Copyright The Gazette 1998