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Education UCL student union bans military

Discussion in 'General' started by theevilelephant, 10 Mar 2008.

  1. supermonkey

    supermonkey Deal with it

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    The city of Berkeley, California, recently voted to banish a Marine recruitment center from the city, though the threat of cutting off funding to the University of California at Berkeley reversed the decision.

    :)

    -monkey
     
  2. Ramble

    Ramble Ginger Nut

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    I have no idea what you're talking about...
     
  3. mrplow

    mrplow obey the fist!!

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    he's right, just agree with him.
     
  4. Ramble

    Ramble Ginger Nut

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    I've spoken to spec far too much to agree with him.
     
  5. DougEdey

    DougEdey I pwn all your storage

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    You wrote scAlding which is when your skin gets ripped off your body due to boiling liquids, it hurts badly, I've been there, what you probably mean is scOlding which means telling someone off.
     
  6. Nexxo

    Nexxo * Prefab Sprout – The King of Rock 'n' Roll

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    If you don't mind the killing people and getting killed bit.

    It is not about the job being dangerous; it is about the questionable morality of the job. There's personal responsibility, but professional hitmen don't get to recruit at job fairs either (and to them, at least, life is not cheap).

    Let's reframe it this way: if someone hires you to help him commit a crime, are you an accomplice?

    Now, if someone hires you to do something that turns out to be a crime, but you go ahead with it because you signed up, are you an accomplice?

    steveo_mcg mentioned personal responsibility. A soldier knows that he does not get to choose his battles-- in signing up, he signs away his choices. But even relinquising your choices is still making a choice. You still own the responsibility for that. This is why the whole "we were only following orders" argument doesn't hold --you cannot abdicate responsibility for the consequences of your actions. Because even if you didn't know what you would be ordered to do, you agreed to do whatever you were ordered to do.
     
  7. Loz

    Loz Blah Blah

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    Why is it suddenly immoral or insulting to criticise the military? Surely they're the people in need of criticism most. They decide who lives or dies, and are one of the defining factors in international opinion of a country.

    Maybe the students should be targeting civilian government and organisations aswell, but the military don't get off completely.
     
  8. specofdust

    specofdust Banned

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    It's not suddenly immoral to criticise the military, it's always just been frowned upon to criticise some grunt you see on the street. Soldiers join up for between 4 and 20 years (last time I checked), this means that a good deal of them will serve under different governments. In a democratic system you're as responsable for them going off to fight some war as they are. It's not like we're all being asked to go all american and cheer our solders every time we see them. It's just heavily frowned upon when people actually verbally abuse soldiers who've often been through unimaginable hell, simply because they disagree with a political decision that is as much a result of the critic as it is the criticised soldier. I've known plenty of soldiers and ex-soldiers, and for the most part they're fairly chilled out guys who keep their political beliefs to themselves, if they have any. Generally when they go out to wherever they're sent, it's not because they agree or disagree with the political decision, it's because every country needs an army and they've chosen to serve in our one. Beyond that, they do the job they're told to do because they're soldiers adn that's what soliders do. Sure, if they were told to do anything horrific (say, slaughter a village of civvies) they'd tell their SO to go to hell, but if they're told to get on a plane, and go to war, that's what they do because that's what their job is about.

    That's the way militaries work, and just because the trials of the nazi's failed to recognise this as a good excuse doesn't mean it isn't true.
     
  9. Loz

    Loz Blah Blah

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    specofdust:

    I largely agree with you. What we're talking about here though is a Student Union banning recruitment at student events on campus and severing ties with the OTC, then being made the subject of wild accusations of attacking military individuals and being linked, by some, to the undefendable physical assault of military personnel.

    Patrick Mercer MP, quoted in the article, stated that "They are insulting the men and women ...". This isn't an unprofessional journalist trying to stir up a contraversy, although there are plenty of those around, this is a member of parliament essentially saying that it's unacceptable to protest and discourage recruitment.
     
  10. ch424

    ch424 Design Warrior

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    They are trying to change that too. They're just a student union though, they can't vote on what the governing body of the uni invests in as easily as they can decide not to let the military into freshers' fair.

    I really don't see why they should ban the OTC though. Joining the OTC is not joining the army. I wouldn't want the war with Iraq or anything like that, and I wouldn't want to go and fight in the army, but I'd happily join the OTC if it weren't full of public school w*****s. I have a friend at UCL who wants to be an RAF medic, and I think that's probably the right job for him. Why should other people not know about the military? Banning the military from freshers' fairs is like saying that people at freshers' fairs are too stupid to choose for themselves - and I can tell you now, people at UCL aren't stupid.
     
  11. D3s3rt_F0x

    D3s3rt_F0x New Member

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    What a bunch of inbreds, what do they expect war to be other than aggresive and the army is there under the goverments orders, what happens if the army did whatever they wanted?

    Perhaps a military coup? I mean did they really think this through?

    Personally I think its a disgrace from a bunch of idiots so far up there own arses they cant see the sun.

    Once I've finished uni Im hopefully joining the Royal Navy to become an officer and I'll be proud to do it, like my dad and grand dad before me and no student group that doesnt represent the majority is going to change that with a vote thats meaningless.
     
  12. specofdust

    specofdust Banned

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    An ex-military tory, what d'you expect?

    From your description of the students who voted, and then the rest of your post, I do have to wonder, you weren't one of the students who voted for this were you?
     
  13. theevilelephant

    theevilelephant New Member

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    then surely they are responsible for the lives they take, but you cant blame them for the war....

    How many people regard veterans of the second world war as heroes? a lot, me included. Yes the circumstances couldnt be more different, BUT they did the same thing as soldiers are doing now, they killed people.

    If they deserve respect why dont the soldiers of nowadays?
     
  14. D3s3rt_F0x

    D3s3rt_F0x New Member

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    No cant say I was lol im at University of Teesside and would shoot down anything like this if I had the chance

    Although the military at freshers fairs cant say I've ever seen this, only time I've seen them is at careers fairs.

    Seems like there is some light at the end of the tunnel in the story which this is taken from heres a small exert:

    A spokesman for UCL Union accused a group of "hard core", Left-wing students of orchestrating the vote. "It's quite a silly thing," he admitted.
     
    Last edited: 10 Mar 2008
  15. ch424

    ch424 Design Warrior

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  16. Will

    Will Beware the judderman...

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    Should a student union be acting in a way that limits the freedom of (career) choice of its students, by banning the recruitment of certain legal and legitimate employers based upon the political ideals of a vocal minority? How would you feel if an extremist Islamist group managed to get a majority on the student comittee and went all Taliban style, passing motions banning music, arts, alcohol and so forth...a decision made without consultation with the vast majority of the university populace, relying on apathy and forced through by a vocal minority with a particular agenda.

    Aberystwyth uni's one-time decision to get rid of Nestle vending machines and not replace them (as 'ethical' or non-Nestle stocking vending machine companies are thin on the ground) springs to mind...nobody voted against when the SU committee voted for it on and the vote was hardly publicised, yet the outcry when people suddely found they couldn't get their snacks any more wars overwhelming and the decision was soon reversed when the student committee was derided as unrepresentative of the wishes of its students.

    Its not without precedent mind, usually with regards to defence industry recruitment...from another forum I frequent....

     
  17. specofdust

    specofdust Banned

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    That's not a discussion, that's a circlejerk.

    Should we all start reading the news stories attatched to threads perhaps? This was voted in 80 to 50, the democratic process was followed ffs.

    The SU aren't in any way restricting the freedom of their students, they are simply refusing to aid in the militaries recruitment of personell. This is no different than them refusing to aid in the BNP's recruitment of people. They are within their rights as a union to refuse assistance to any organisation they choose. Similiarly, people are within their rights not to make use of their SU, or to boycott it entirely.
     
    Last edited: 10 Mar 2008
  18. Cthippo

    Cthippo Can't mod my way out of a paper bag

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    I don't disagree with their action (and I wold have supported it given the chance), but they could have made a distinction between the government's policy and the soldiers carrying out that policy. It would have been even more meaningful if they could have brought in former students who have gone off to war and now oppose it to speak.

    Undoubtably those who fight have a responsibility for their actions, especially in an all volunteer military. The problem comes when people start blaming the soldiers for the actions of the government, even when they willfully carried out those actions.

    I think in general it's best not to criticize the troops for being soldiers, but it is not only fine but our duty to criticize the government when we feel it has done wrong.

    @Will...

    Tyrany by the majority is only possibly with the consent, often in the form of apathy, of the majority. If people don't want unplesent things shoved down their throats by their government, then they need to get involved. Take part in governing, or accept the consequences of your apathy, but don't play the victim after the fact.
     
    Last edited: 10 Mar 2008
  19. theevilelephant

    theevilelephant New Member

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    joining the OTC doesnt make you a soldier, you are not forced to join the Army or the TA at the end of it and you can resign at any time. There is a focus on army training but a lot on teamwork and leadership etc.

    @Will - nice too see someone else from aberystwyth, u go to uni there?
     
  20. Bogomip

    Bogomip ... Yo Momma

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    Im not saying students shouldnt do anything, im saying the student union shouldn't. We have societys here at edinburgh which focus on that type of thing, if union members want to make a stand they should join them, not take the union and its money into it - that money belongs to the students they should be representing.
     
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