Re: Travis Turenne’s letter (Sept. 30, page 10)

In response to A different kind of sponsorship scandal, published September, 23, 2010.

When Mr. Turenne claims that I have “no affiliation to the university” and insinuates that I am not “a real student,” he has made an ad hominem argument.

How does my affiliation, or lack thereof, in any way negate the validity of my concerns? Not only is it an ad hominem, but it is an untrue ad hominem. I have a rather profound affiliation with the University of Winnipeg, both as an alumnus and as someone who continues to involve himself with many aspects of student life.

When Mr. Turenne summarizes my position by stating that I wish to “prevent corporate sponsors from setting up tables during Orientation Week,” he has committed the straw man fallacy.

Perhaps the subtlety of my position confused him, so allow me to restate it in simpler terms:

I believe that it was wrong for the University of Winnipeg Students’ Association to give the atrium space to the sponsors and make the Spence Street mall the default location for student tables.

In the future, I would like to see sponsorship minimized (not necessarily completely eliminated), more carefully selected, and sponsors not given first choice of location at the expense of student groups and services.

If Mr. Turenne detected any “bias” in the original article, perhaps it is due to the fact that reality has a well-known anti-corporate bias.

– <Robert McGregor

Published in Volume 65, Number 6 of The Uniter (October 7, 2010)